Exhibition: 'The Netherlands' first space adventure' in NRM


25/03 to 25/03

Luchtvaartmuseum Aviodrome

Friday 25 March 2022 to Monday 25 March 2024

Premiere film and exhibition about the Netherlands' first space adventure in NRM

On Friday 25 March, the National Space Museum, located in Aviodrome in Lelystad, will open a new, permanent exhibition about a very special Dutch project: the first artificial satellite in the world to be launched into space, the ANS. The documentary 'ANS - Dutch first space adventure' about this satellite will also premiere.

The ANS, which stands for 'Astronomical Dutch Satellite', was launched in 1974. According to Zeholy Pronk, chairman of the National Space Museum Foundation, ANS is way ahead of its time. "It is the first digital satellite in the world. Even NASA is stunned by the ingenious technology. Yet the story of ANS has fallen into oblivion. With this film and exhibition, ANS regains its well-deserved place in the canon of Dutch science."

Spectacular Discoveries

In the 1960s, the Netherlands hardly received any orders in the European space industry. In order to gain experience in this new branch of industry, Fokker and Philips decide to build their own satellite. The Dutch government supports the project.

In 1974 ANS is launched (for free!) by NASA to study the universe with telescopes from the universities of Utrecht and Groningen. She makes spectacular astronomical discoveries.

'ANS-Dutch first space adventure' - the film

Who are the builders of this satellite? What makes ANS so special? What has ANS discovered in space? The documentary tells the forgotten story of ANS on the basis of unique original film material and interviews with the very elderly makers of the satellite. In addition, some anecdotes are animated by Michiel Hoving (known for 'Varkentje Rund') and the position of the Netherlands in the astronomy world is clarified.

The directorial duo of Jasper Huizinga and Lotte Veltman have been working together for over twenty years. They won the Dutch Golden Stone Award for 'Ypke' and the Best Groninger Film Award for 'It is never quiet'. Producer Stichting Beeldlijn produces intriguing and controversial documentaries in the field of culture, society, landscape and science.

'Dutch Fame in Space' – the exhibition

The National Space Museum shows the history of ANS in a permanent new exhibition. A special display case has been built in which a test copy of the ANS can be seen, supplemented with various spare parts from the satellite and (a shortened version of) the documentary. 

The film and exhibition were realized with contributions from the Prince Bernhard Cultuur Fonds and the Mondriaan Fund.

The National Space Museum is located in the main building of the Aviodrome Aviation Museum and is therefore closed on Mondays.


Luchtvaartmuseum Aviodrome
Pelikaanweg 50
8218 PG Lelystad