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Mon, March 23 2020

Transcribing the Sally K. Ride Papers

We are pleased to announce that the Sally K. Ride Papers, consisting of over 23 cubic feet (38,640 pages!) of archival material chronicling Ride’s career from the 1970s through the 2010s, have been fully scanned and are available digitally. Air and Space fans can help make them more accessible by transcribing them in the Smithsonian Transcription Center.

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Signed Portrait of Sally Ride
Thu, March 19 2020

Our Friend Al Who Went to the Moon

Alfred "Al" Worden, command module pilot on Apollo 15, passed away on March 18, 2020. We mourn the loss and celebrate the life of Al, an aviator, engineer, and storyteller. From the halls of West Point to the far side of the Moon, the legacy of history’s first deep-space walker continues to inspire.

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Apollo 15 astronaut Al Worden with his spacesuit
Thu, March 5 2020

Exploration is About Perseverance: Mars 2020

The Mars 2020 rover is scheduled to launch this summer, and today is a milestone in the mission: the Mars 2020 rover has finally gotten a name.

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Exploration is About Perseverance: Mars 2020

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Mars 2020 Rover Rendering
Thu, February 27 2020

The Science of Leap Year

In 2020, February gets an extra day. Instead of 28 days, this year February will have 29 days. Almost everyone if familiar with the concept of leap year, but the reasoning behind it is a little complicated. Museum geologist Bob Craddock explores leap years in this new blog.

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Earth and Sun
Tue, February 25 2020

Remembering Katherine Johnson: NASA Mathematician Calculated Mission Flight Paths and Continues to Inspire

On February 24, 2020, Katherine Johnson passed away at the age of 101, after a long life of learning and teaching—and quietly helping the United States reach our destiny in space.

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Remembering Katherine Johnson: NASA Mathematician Calculated Mission Flight Paths and Continues to Inspire

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Katherine Johnson
Mon, February 3 2020

Conserving Michael Collins' Apollo 11 Razor

Conservation of Michael Collins' razor from the Apollo 11 mission presented conservators with a complex ethical dilemma for deciding the best treatment approach: how to arrest degradation while maintaining the historical elements of the artifact.

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Michael Collins Shaving Kit
Fri, January 24 2020

Remembering Julius Montgomery: Space Program Pioneer

Julius Montgomery, a pioneering African American in the space program, died on January 22, 2020, in Florida. He was the first African American ever hired at the Cape Canaveral space facility to work as a technical professional. Additionally, he integrated the Florida Institute of Technology and was the first black member of the Melbourne, Florida, City Council.

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Julius Montgomery at Florida Tech
Tue, December 31 2019

Top 5 Stories of 2019

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.

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John F. Kennedy
Fri, December 6 2019

The Aeronauts Brings the Bravado of Balloon Flight to the Big Screen (Artistic License Included)

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.

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The Aeronauts Brings the Bravado of Balloon Flight to the Big Screen (Artistic License Included)

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The Aeronauts Movie Poster
Tue, December 3 2019

Touching a Piece of the Moon

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.

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Touchable Moon Rock

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