What skills do you think future astronauts will need in order to survive a long trip to the Red Planet and return safely?

Smithsonian TechQuest: Astronaut Academy is a free alternate reality game at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center that will challenge you to become an astronaut-in-training for a future trip to Mars. Choose what role you will play on the mission; engage in fun interactive activities; and explore the science, technology, engineering, and math skills you will need as a member of the next generation of space travelers. Along the way, you'll learn about some of the Museum's fascinating artifacts.

Instructions and guidance are given via a special webpage accessed on your mobile device. Players should bring their own phones or devices equipped with an internet browser and a camera. Having a digital picture-taking device (smartphone, tablet, camera) is highly recommended, but not required. See the Training Specialist for special instructions if you do not have a digital device.

The game is aimed at upper elementary and middle school visitors and their families. Bringing a group? Reservations are required for groups larger than 15.

Begin your training with Astronaut Orientation in the Claude Moore Education Center Classroom 1 located on the first level across from the restrooms. Astronaut Orientation is offered at regular intervals between 10:30 am and 2:30 pm. The last opportunity to start the game is at 2:30 pm. A self-guided activity, the game should take between 60 and 90 minutes, and staff will help you along the way.

Visit the TechQuest website for more information, as well as dates of other upcoming Astronaut Academy games.

Smithsonian TechQuest is made possible by the generous support of McDonald's USA, LLC. 

Smithsonian TechQuest: Astronaut Academy

How to attend