Space Shuttle Endeavour is moments away from touchdown at the Kennedy Space Center's Shuttle Landing Facility, bringing to a close the STS-113 mission to the International Space Station. Image credit: NASA
On April 12, 2011 NASA announced new homes for three space shuttles soon to be retired from the space program at the end of this summer. The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center will receive the Discovery and the California Science Center a Smithsonian Affiliate in Los Angeles, California, will receive the Endeavour.
But NASA isn’t just retiring the gigantic shuttles. Hundreds of space artifacts are also included in the retirement plan and several more Smithsonian Affiliates will have the honor of exhibiting them.
These NASA objects join Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum (NASM) artifacts already on long-term loan to these Affiliates and enjoyed daily by museum goers across the country.
The Saturn V Rocket at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center. Photo courtesy U.S. Space and Rocket Center.
- At the Adler Planetarium, visitors can see the Gemini 12 Space Capsule flown by Jim Lovell and Buzz Aldrin in 1966.
- The Aerobee 350 Sounding Rocket has recently been conserved at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum and will be on view for visitors to the museum soon.
- From space food to drawings to space suits, The Museum of Flight has delighted visitors to the museum with NASM artifacts for many years.
- The U.S. Space and Rocket Center is home to the Saturn V Rocket and many other artifacts such as space instruments and technical devices.
Of course, the history of the American space program and many more historic artifacts from the National Air and Space Museum can be can be seen in numerous Smithsonian Affiliate museums from Portage, Michigan to San Diego, California. There are 168 Smithsonian Affiliates in 40 states, D.C., Panama and Puerto Rico. More than 1,000 artifacts are currently on view at Affiliates across the country just waiting for visitors to experience the Smithsonian in their own neighborhood. Visit a Smithsonian Affiliate in your community today!
Gemini 12 at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago. Photo courtesy Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum.
Congratulations to these Affiliates making headlines this week!
Mexican Heritage Plaza (San Jose, CA)
Exhibit in San Jose triggers memories of farm labor for old braceros
California Science Center (Los Angeles, CA)
Museum Takes New Look at Air, Water, Land and Life (ABC news/travel section)
Museum Takes New Look at Air, Water, Land and Life (SFGate/ San Francisco Chronicle)
Exploring ecosystems at science center (LA Times)
California Science Center near downtown LA takes $165 million, hands-on approach to ecosystems (Canoe.ca-travel)
New look at ecosystem (Straits Times)
Museum Takes New Look at Air, Water, Land and Life (ArtDaily.org)
Blinded by Science: Dynamic ‘Ecosystems’ Exhibit Highlights The California Science Center’s $165 Million Expansion (losangelesdowntownnews.com)
What’s New at the California Science Center? A lot!
High Museum of Art (Atlanta, GA)
Civil Rights Battles, in Black and White
Touring the ‘Road to Freedom’
Conner Prairie (Fishers, IN)
Conner Prairie’s 1859 Balloon Voyage to be featured at Smithsonian Air & Space Museums conference in Washington, D.C.
National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium (Dubuque, IA)
Hy-Vee gives $100,000 to river museum
Plimoth Plantation (Plymouth, MA)
Name that steer