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Exploratory Vehicle

A Boeing design for a manned orbital or interplanetary reconnaissance vehicle. The vehicle would be built in orbit around the earth around the Earth, inside a plastic bubble having controlled atmosphere and pressure, permitting technicians to work without space suits. Propelled by a nuclear-powered plasma jet, it could travel to planets within our solar-system , carrying shuttle vehicles to make the actual observations of planet surfaces. Nylon nets, rather than flooring, would divide the vehicle into seven levels.

Eagle Book of Rockets and Space
by John W.R. Taylor and Maurice Allward
Longacre Press, 1961

Image credit: Boeing Aircraft Company

Image source: Numbers Station