This review paper focuses on measurement techniques and facilities for the study of the contamination and space environment effects on optical and thermal radiative surfaces. Laboratory measurements are reviewed and illustrate how cryogenic and relatively warm surfaces can be affected by contaminants, vacuum, and UV. The laboratory data are used to illustrate the important parameters that require consideration when trying to determine these types of effects on future satellite missions. Optical properties of thin contaminants films, BRDF measurements on cryogenic films, quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) measurements, and UV effects on silicone/hydrocarbon films are presented and discussed relative to their applications to satellite systems. The laboratory data are complemented with flight data from the Midcourse Space Experiment (MSX) satellite. Laboratory results were used to interpret MSX spacecraft flight data. The MSX demonstration and validation satellite program was funded by the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization. MSX had UV, visible, and infrared instruments including the Spirit 3 cryogenic telescope and had several contamination instruments for measuring pressure, gas species, water and particulate concentrations, and condensable gas species. Some of the data collected from the flight QCMs are presented.