Weightless–Lighter Than Air


Airship Macon and Curtis Biplanes, NASA Visitor Center, Moffett Field, CA

Weightless when filled with Helium and flying over Moffett Field, the USS Macon was hard to handle on the ground. Its hanger is longer and wider than a football field. Two Curtis Biplanes fit into the hold of the airship, and they could be launched and retrieved in the air.


USS Macon parked in Hanger 1, Moffett Field, USN Photo

The giant hanger, shed of its outer cover, stands at the NASA Museum and Visitor Center in Moffett Field, but the USS Macon is no longer with us. It was lost at sea in a tragic accident. Fortunately, most of the 80 member crew were rescued.


Hanger 1, naked in the sun, waits for Google to cover it up.

Hanger 1 is empty today, waiting for its corporate sponsor to restore the outer cover. A display inside the museum reads:

“The Macon was the result of Yankee ingenuity and German technology. Built by the Goodyear Zeppelin Corp. in Akron, Ohio, she was based here from Oct. 1933 till Feb. 12 1935 when she was lost at sea off Point Sur.”

Visit the museum in Mountain View, CA and check out the many artifacts: a U2 spyplane, several NASA drones, helicopters, and loads of neat junk.


NASA Spyplanes on Display at the NASA Museum/Visitor Center.

Cheers, Carto

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