The design team of Frank A. Florentine, William Jacobs and David M. Heck, of the National Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Institution, recently won the coveted 2004 GE Edison Award for lighting the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar in Chantilly, Va.
The James S. McDonnell Space Hangar at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center features 113 large space artifacts, including the Shuttle Enterprise, an instrument ring from a Saturn V rocket, and more than 500 smaller artifacts. Said Florentine, “The scale of the project was overwhelming. It was like lighting players in a sports stadium, except the players weren't moving. Lighting from different angles was imperative.”
Low-mount track lighting, with GE 39W PAR30 ConstantColor CMH ceramic metal halide lamps, and high-mount theatrical fixtures, with 150W ceramic metal-halide lamps, highlight individual artifacts throughout the 53,000-square-foot hangar.
Special exhibits, like the Mobile Quarantine Facility, which was used to transport astronauts from the recovery ship to Houston, are lighted with fiber optics and LEDs. GE PAR30 ConstantColor CMH lamps in track fixtures highlight intricate mechanisms within the Saturn V instrument ring.