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On the matter of Alan Shepard's Apollo 14 spacesuit and its display -- Yes, you are correct, the ideal conditions for the suit would be in a sealed case with climate and environmental controls. We store our collection of suits that are not on display under these conditions. Unfortunately, if we demanded this level of climate control for each of our suits one loan, it would be prohibitively expensive to our borrowers and none of the suits in our collection would ever be on public display. As a compromise between serving the public and preserving the suits, we limit climate requirements for display to strict climate controls within the facility overall. Each borrowing institution must submit documentation demonstrating that the temperature and humidity levels within their institution does not exceed our specifications. We have similar requirements on both visible and ultra-violet lighting for our displays. In addition, all spacesuit loans have a 10-year limit, at which time they return to the museum and our conservation staff does a detailed assessment of their condition. So in answer to your question, the conditions under which you saw the suit in Florida were not ideal, but they still meet our stringent requirements for public display.
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