The only flight ready unit on Earth (Smithsonian’s S/N103 is incomplete and not flight ready—S/N105 and 106 are on Mars). Dimensions are: 34″H x 11″W x 14″D and weight is exactly 15.471kg. The top of the unit houses the stainless steel ‘flower’ receptacle, which would be opened via a pneumatic bolt to receive Martian soil samples deposited by the robotic scoop on the Viking lander (scoop not included). After receiving the sample, it could be heated to different temperatures and passed through a column into a lower chamber where the sample would be distributed into one of three experiments. Unit is housed in a professional 8020 aluminum frame with heavy polycarbonate clear viewing panels. All parts are present and connected as they were when this unit was readied for a Mars mission. Purchased directly from NASA Langley, the headquarters for the Viking biological research group. In fine, never used, condition. Extensive research material is available online.
Bidding for the Space and Aviation Auction opens Nov 13, 2014 & ends Nov 20, 2014