The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum announces the 2020 “Exploring Space Lecture Series.” This year’s four-part series will look at the universe through a variety of lenses. Each of the lectures will take place at 8 p.m. in the museum’s Lockheed Martin IMAX Theater and all are free to the public. Lectures will be followed by night sky observing in the museum’s Phoebe Waterman Haas Public Observatory, weather permitting.
2019 was a big year at the National Air and Space Museum, as we celebrated the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11, commemorated the 75th anniversary of the D-Day invasion, and worked hard on our ongoing renovation. We shared stories about these projects and more on the blog this year. Let’s dive into five of the most popular stories of 2019.
The new film The Aeronauts truly captures the excitement of ballooning in the 19th century, even if it makes a few historical errors along the way. Ballooning expert Tom Paone explores the history behind the film.
In the over 40 years our lunar touchrock has been on display, millions of people have walked through our doors and touched a piece of the Moon. Intrigued by this idea, staff photographer Jim Preston took over 60 photos of visitors touching our little piece of the Moon.
The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum will expand its popular “S.H.E. Can” STEM summer camp to Bentonville, Arkansas, beginning in July 2020. Building on the success of the camp over the past two summers at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, the museum will pilot the two-week summer camp in northwest Arkansas over the next three years.
On Monday, November 11, 2019, one of my favorite celestial events occurs – a transit! Think of a transit as an “eclipse lite” – a planet will pass between Earth and the Sun, and we’ll be able to observe the planet’s shadow moving across the Sun. Here are six questions to ponder during this month’s transit of Mercury.
Since its opening, and until recent years, our Zeiss Model VIa optical planetarium projector has brought the wonder of the night sky to countless visitors. The Zeiss Company no longer services the over 40 year-old model, and though its stars are as sharp as ever, and its skies deep in their dramatic blackness, its celestial motors have become weary, so it has been retired in favor of an ever-improving digital projection system that offers many advantages to meet modern programming needs. The Albert Einstein Planetarium theater itself is also closing as our multi-year renovation progresses through the Museum, but it will eventually reopen as a fully digital experience. Now that we are saying good-bye to its original projector, the Zeiss Model VIa, the question is, of course, how did it get here