The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum is home to the most impressive and undoubtedly the largest collection of space and aviation artifacts, encompassing all aspects of human flight, but also related archival materials and works of art. The museum operates 2 giant facilities that see over 8 million visitors per year, easily ranking #1 as the most visited museum in the US. On top of that, the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum is also home to the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies.
2 Locations, 1 Museum
The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum is housed in two large buildings that house 1000s of artifacts that are showcased in exhibitions on planetary science, space exploration, but also aviation. Despite that, it seems that no matter the location you decide to visit, you’ll get to enjoy the same amazing performances, lectures, educations activities and programs that reflect the optimism, courage, innovation and also the genuine American spirit that has helped us achieve major recognition in flight, technology and science over the years.
The museum in Washington opened in nineteen seventy six and it houses some of the most impressive icons of flight. By visiting this museum, you’ll be able to see all of them in all their glory. On the other hand, the second building is in the proximity of the Dulles International Airport, more specifically in Chantilly, VA. This is a very big building that features hangar-like and open settings which house massive spacecrafts and aircrafts, but also unique collections of space and aviation artifacts.
The Museum’s Mission
The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum’s mission is to inspire education and commemorate US aviation history by exhibiting works of art, archival materials and artifacts related to history, but also studying, preserving and collecting more artifacts as they’re discovered. The museum has incredible outreach and research activities that serve a wide range of audiences from all over the country and even internationally. One of its main missions is to help people understand the significance of flight for humanity, but also to educate and inspire them to become the next famous visionaries and contributors to the industry.
The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum is continually looking for new ways to improve its programs, but also its tools and processes by frequently assessing them and making improvements where possible. To better engage and educate the public, major efforts are being made to refresh the exhibitions and revitalize existing facilities. In fact, there are a lot of things going on inside the museum that many people don’t know of.
The titanic work that’s being done by everyone working here is vital to making sure the museum keeps stirring up people’s interest about the history of aviation, how far we’ve come since the first airplane was invented and how current technology is shaping the airplane of the future.
Whether you’re a simple visitor or an aspiring pilot, by visiting the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum you’ll be able to get a better understanding of the complexity of aircrafts, what it takes to fly the different types currently in production and the passion and dedication necessary to pursue a career in aviation regardless if that’s going to be as a commercial pilot or a fighter pilot.