Lindbergh’s boots and cosmonaut chicken

Published 07.13.2020

Alumni News
Automated Manufacturing & Machining
Engineering Technologies

At the Smithsonian Institution’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Daniel Ravizza stands in a hangar full of objects that shaped aviation history. The center is the annex of the National Air and Space Museum.Ravizza helped to conserve famous aviator Charles Lindbergh’s insulated flying boots. In 1927, Lindbergh was the first to complete a solo flight across the Atlantic, flying nonstop from New York to Paris.Ravizza’s first project for the Smithsonian was cans of space food – including cans of Soviet veal, chicken and cheese that dated from 1969. “I had to open these cans from the bottom and remove the contents,” Ravizza said. “This was done with lots of PPE (personal protective equipment)!”Ravizza reinstalls the mercury boiler into the mercury bombardment ion engine/thruster on the SERT-1 (Space Electric Rocket Test 1), a NASA probe that was launched July 20, 1964, to test electrostatic ion thruster design. The conservation team took the spacecraft completely apart to remove the liquid mercury.From the Spring 2020 Penn College Magazine: In a Smithsonian Institution conservation lab, Daniel Ravizza, a 2014 manufacturing engineering technology graduate, combines his hands-on skills, meticulous nature and passion for history. The treasures he helps to preserve range from spacecraft and space food to the boots and helmet of legendary aviator Charles Lindbergh. Read "Lindy's boots and cosmonaut chicken."