Introduction

The Trieste II (DSV-1), the Navy’s most advanced deep sea submersible at the time, surfaced about 350 miles north of the Hawaiian Islands in the pre-dawn hours of 26 April 1972 after recovering a mysterious item. Publicly called a “data package,” the object was actually part of a U.S. spy satellite, codenamed HEXAGON. Before today’s digital technology, photoreconnaissance satellites used film, which returned to Earth in capsules ejected from the satellite. The capsules, called “buckets,” reentered Earth’s atmosphere and deployed a parachute to slow their descent. During the first HEXAGON mission in 1971, the parachute broke off causing the bucket to crash into the ocean. This release includes photos of the capsule on the ocean floor, pictures of the Trieste II (DSV-1), and an article recounting the deepest undersea salvage then attempted. We also linked to the Naval Undersea Museum, where the Trieste II (DSV-1) is on permanent display.

blank An Underwater Ice Station Zebra: Recovering a Secret Spy Satellite Capsule from Booklet cover of Underwater Ice Station Zebra16,400 Feet below the Pacific Ocean [36 Pages, 6.21mb]

Declassified CIA Documents

blank 1971-07-10 – Cable 2969

blank 1971-07-11 – Cable 2972

blank 1971-07-11a – Cable 2987

blank 1971-07-12 – Cable 1311

blank 1971-07-27 – Cable 3260

blank 1971-07-28 – RV-3 Recovery Planning Meeting

blank 1971-08-04 – Cable 9097 Recovery of RV-3

blank 1971-08-05 – Effect of Salt Water on Beryllium

blank 1971-08-05a – Penetration of the RV into the Ocean Bottom

blank 1971-08-10 – Deep Sea Recovery of Hexagon Reentry Vehicle

blank 1971-08-13 – Cable 1527 RV-3 Impact Point

blank 1971-08-18 – Deep Sea Recovery of Hexagon Reentry Vehicle

blank 1971-08-23 – Cable 4960

blank 1971-09-01 – Perkin-Elmer Proposal for Recovery of RV3 of SV-1

blank 1971-09-08 – Cable 8164

blank 1971-09-13 – Cable 3709

blank 1971-09-14 – Status of Recovery Effort as of 14Sep71

blank 1971-09-16 – Cable 2150

blank 1971-09-17 – Cable 1223

blank 1971-10-07 – Cable 2266

blank 1971-10-28 – Cable 5446

blank 1971-10-28a – Cable 2338

blank 1971-11-18 – Cable 26767

blank 1971-12-10 – 1201 RV-3 Recovery

blank 1972-01-12 – Notes on Conversation of 11 Jan 72

blank 1972-01-13 – Cable 8209

blank 1972-01-31 – Trip Report Recovery of RV3

blank 1972-02-02 – Prognosis for RV-3 Recovery Operations

blank 1972-02-03 – Prognosis for RV-3 Recovery Operations

blank 1972-02-14 – Status of RV-3 Recovery Operations

blank 1972-03-15 – Recovery Operations RV-3 of SV-1

blank 1972-03-29 – Recovery Operations RV-3 of SV-1

blank 1972-04-20 – Cable 2193

blank 1972-04-27 – Cable 1097

blank 1972-05-02 – Cable 3009

blank 1972-05-24 – Deep Sea Recovery of Hexagon Recovery Vehicle 1201-3 With Four Attachments

blank 1972-07-28 – Report on the Analyses of Recovered 1201-3 Film Samples

 

Declassified NRO Documents

blank All NRO documents declassified on this subject [138 Pages, 5.97mb]

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