Abstract

In 1957 as part of the Minitrack Network, the U.S. Army installed a satellite-tracking station in Peldehue, Chile, intended to track radio signals from what was then the United States’ Vanguard project. With the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1958, the station came under its new administration, becoming the subject of a process of rebranding that included the monumental installation of the agency insignia, a rounded slab made in concrete and tiles. By examining this object from a design and archaeological perspective - as it nowadays lays abandoned nearby its original location - this paper attempts to advance our understanding of the Chilean station in terms of its place within a much larger global network by analyzing it within the intersection of design, military economies, technologies, ideologies, and cultural and geospatial considerations.

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