Naval Aviation

The Museum's theme of the month for December 2020 is Naval Aviation. 

Aviation is a big part of the work of United States Navy. Explore the various aspects of naval aviation — from aircraft carriers and TOPGUN to air transport and the Blue Angels — through live programs, digital content, and more.


New Naval Aviation Content

Blue Angels Hornet Joins Collection

A new aircraft has joined the Museum's collection — a Blue Angels F/A-18C Blue Hornet. Learn more about the Navy's flight demonstration and this particular aircraft in a new blog.

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Podcast: Danger Zone

Over the years, the US military has worked with Hollywood on films featuring military aviators to make sure the films have the right stuff. In a recent episode of our AirSpace podcast, we explore the making of Top Gun

Listen now

Soar Together: Family Activities

This virtual family day, which can be enjoyed anytime, features videos, interactive activities, and digital content highlighting how the Navy uses aviation to achieve its mission.

Explore now

Educational Webcast: TOPGUN and Naval Aviation

Teach your kids about naval aviation — and have some fun along the way — with the "Need for Speed" episode of STEM in 30, our webcast for middle school students. In this episode, we take you to the deck of an aircraft carrier to learn about the science behind launching and landing airplanes from a ship. 

Start learning

Story Time

Sea planes can both fly and float. Your little ones will love this story time just for them — including a hands-on craft. 

Watch now

Additional Naval Aviation Content

360 View on Board USS Eisenhower

Take an immersive look behind the scenes as a Smithsonian film crew embarks aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower for F-18 carrier qualifications.

Watch now

WAVES: Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service

During World War II, women served in the Navy as part of the WAVES program (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service). Many of them worked in aviation units, maintaining aircraft, training pilots in navigation, and more. Learn more in this blog.

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Artifact: Aircraft Carrier Model

This aircraft carrier model is one of the most popular models in our collection — it is an 11-foot, 1:100 model of the USS Enterprise, the first nuclear aircraft carrier. The model took 12,000 hours over 12 years to be built.

Take a closer look