Only Space Center Houston Brings Spacecraft from First and Last Lunar Landings Together
The “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission” exhibit opens Oct. 14 at Space Center Houston, bringing together the first and last spacecraft to return humans safely from the moon.
The Apollo 17 command module is the final spacecraft to participate in a lunar landing mission and is part of nonprofit Space Center Houston’s permanent collection.
It’s the ultimate “buy one, get one free” experience for students, educators and people of all ages as guests will experience two moon capsules for the price of one admission to Space Center Houston.
Astronaut Buzz Aldrin’s moonwalk visor and gloves are among the artifacts that will be on display as part of “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission.”
Houston is where the Apollo astronauts lived and trained for their missions. Today’s human space program stands on the shoulders of these legends. Their inspiration drives us toward future deep space exploration with such initiatives as the Orion spacecraft and the Space Launch System, the most powerful rocket that NASA is working on now.
Space Center Houston welcomes the media to work with us on a story about “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission” exhibit, a unique opportunity here at the world’s leading science and space learning center.
If you’d like to work with Space Center Houston on a news story about the “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission,” please complete the Media Inquiry Form and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for sharing this opportunity to experience some of the most iconic artifacts in human history with your readers and viewers.
25 years and still growing
There’s never been a more exciting time for the nonprofit, now in its 25th anniversary year with a major world premiere exhibit opening, the recent opening of a new permanent exhibit and growing educational programs.
The leading science and space learning center draws more than one million visitors. Last year marked the best-ever year for the nonprofit. The record-breaking one million milestone came at the end of an incredible year for the nonprofit which included eight record-breaking months of attendance.
Ushering in the new year with Super Bowl LI in Houston, the center opened its newest permanent exhibit, Mission Mars, in January. The forward-looking exhibit takes visitors through a Mars portal and teaches them about deep space exploration.
In 2016, the center opened a colossal exhibit complex, the one-of-a-kind Independence Plaza. The $15 million project took four years to develop and now draws people from all over the world to enter the historic shuttle carrier aircraft and the full-scale shuttle replica mounted on top.
The center has a rich array of education programming for teachers and students and extraordinary learning opportunities. This year the center expanded its Space Center U™ education program offering students ages 11-18 a challenging five-day experience to train like an astronaut.
Why it’s important to grow
The center’s mission is to inspire all generations through the wonders of space exploration. It aims to make an impact on youth and spark curiosity in the explorers of tomorrow. It strives to be the leading science and space learning center in the country.
Accomplishments and honors
- It opened Oct. 16, 1992 and the successful nonprofit is in its 25th anniversary year.
- One million visitors annually come to explore its extensive space collection.
- A science and space learning center to more than 200,000 students and teachers from all over the world.
- Opened two new exhibits: Mission Mars and the international landmark, Independence Plaza.
- Earned Top 4 Things to Do in Houston by TripAdvisor reviewers.
Iconic bookends to mankind’s only steps on another planet
Only at Space Center Houston will guests experience the command modules from the first and last lunar landings, together under the same roof for the first time. While Space Center Houston is the first stop in a four city tour, the Apollo 17 command module is part of our permanent collection and will remain here.
- Tie your story to the power of these artifacts to inspire the world and as a source of pride for the United States.
- The Apollo 11 mission marked the first time mankind brought back samples from another planet. The exhibit includes one of the “rock boxes” from the mission.
- The Apollo 11 command module last travelled to all 50 states throughout 1970 and 1971, before entering the Smithsonian’s collection.
- Space Center Houston is the official visitor center of NASA Johnson Space Center, where guests can experience Historic Mission Control, where NASA monitored all the Apollo lunar missions, including Apollo 11 and Apollo 17.
A collection that brings the Apollo era to life
Give your readers a close look at the legacy of the Apollo program within Space Center Houston’s museum collection. See the Apollo 11 and Apollo 17 command modules, the first and last crewed missions to the moon, touch a moon rock and visit Historic Mission Control. Discover The Real Thing.
Space Center Houston’s Apollo era exhibits and artifacts include:
- The actual presidential podium used during President John F. Kennedy’s speech, “We choose to go to the moon,” given at Rice University, Houston, Texas in 1962.
- A spacesuit collection featuring Commander Pete Conrad’s spacesuit worn during his Apollo 12 lunar walk, with moon dust still on it.
- Apollo era flight director Gene Kranz’ memorable red, white and silver sequined vest worn while directing Apollo 17, the last mission to land on the moon.
- The Lunar Roving Vehicle Trainer that astronauts used to prepare for missions to the moon. The vehicle, which has no steering wheel or brakes, was used for Apollo 15-17 missions.
- A prototype of the Apollo 13 lithium hydroxide canister device, which was fashioned together by the astronauts with the help of the men in Mission Control. Made up of a flight manual cover, socks and duct tape, the device filtered the dangerous levels of carbon dioxide in the lunar module.
- The Lunar Vault, kept in a pure nitrogen environment, which holds the largest collection of rocks, core samples, sand and dust on public display.
- An actual moon rock you can touch – one of only eight touchstones in the world.
- The Lunar Module LTA-8, which helped with the development of the first Lunar Module flown in space during Apollo 9.
- Space Center Houston takes visitors to Historic Mission Control at NASA Johnson Space Center aboard the NASA Tram Tour.
Additionally, “Destination Moon: The Apollo 11 Mission” exhibit includes:
- Buzz Aldrin’s moonwalk visor and gloves
- Astronaut Michael Collins’ Omega Speedmaster watch
- A lunar sample return container, star chart, a survival kit
- The injector plate for the enormous Saturn V rocket’s F1 engine, which would empty an Olympic-sized swimming pool full of propellant in less than three minutes.
- An interactive 3-D tour created from high resolution scans of the command module includes its intricate interior, which has been inaccessible to the public until now.
Space technology in your life
From handheld cordless vacuums and other battery-operated equipment to the insulation in your attic, NASA technologies are more prevalent in your life than you think. Explore the hundreds of space spinoffs that resulted because of the innovation at NASA and our missions to the moon specifically.
- The trials and triumphs that took place within the Apollo Program paved the way for developments in commercial products and services.
- Called spinoffs, these developments have made a great impact in life on Earth.
- Apollo Program spinoffs include
- Memory foam
- Water filters
- Anti-glare filters for lenses, glasses and screen
- Improved kidney dialysis technology
- A programmable pacemaker
- For more NASA spinoffs, visit https://spinoff.nasa.gov/.
Possible interview opportunities
- A Space Center Houston exhibit curator and space historian on the significance of the Apollo Program, its impact to our lives and how our trips to the moon have shaped the way ahead for deep space exploration.
- Hear remarkable stories from the retired Apollo-era NASA flight controllers and retired astronauts who made the impossible happen.
- A NASA historian.
- Interview guests of all ages from around the world – more than 80 percent of our guests come from outside Houston and more than a third are from other countries.
- Spanish-speaking interview subjects available.