Discover a world of imagination and fun at the Virginia Air & Space Center in Hampton, located in the heart of Coastal Virginia! The world-class science and learning facility, and official visitor center for NASA Langley Research Center, immerses guests into a full throttle space and aviation experience.
Two permanent galleries, Space Quest and Adventures in Flight, showcase everything from a full-size Air Tran DC-9 to a three-billion-year old moon rock. Learn how America’s first astronauts, The Mercury Seven, trained right here in Hampton! With over 100-hands on exhibits, families will spend a whole day soaring through space and time, exploring all the center has to offer.
The Virginia Air & Space Center is the only science center in the world to feature all four capsules, including the Mercury and Gemini test capsules, as well as the original Apollo 12 Command Module. The Apollo 12 was the sixth manned flight in the United States Apollo program and the second to land on the moon. In addition, the center houses the Orion PA-1 Test Vehicle. Orion will serve as the exploration vehicle that will carry the crew to space, provide emergency abort capability, sustain the crew during the space travel, and provide safe re-entry from deep space return velocities.
The center also hosts camps, educational classes, and special events throughout the year. This October 2016, The Virginia Air & Space Center will welcome several new STEM-related classes and exhibits, including the highly-anticipated “Space Challenge: Exploration Awaits.”
This interactive, state of the art exhibit will leverage popular gaming techniques and 21st century technology to immerse students and visitors of all ages in the NASA and STEM content relating the manned rocket mission for space exploration. The exhibit is composed of three interactive modules: Build, Learn, Explore, all accessible through touch-screen monitors. The Build module allows students to design and launch their own rocket to complete NASA exploratory missions to the Moon, an asteroid, and Mars. The Explore module takes the student on a first-person interactive quest where the player must collect tablets to launch a spaceship past Earth’s atmosphere. The Learn module is a free-choice learning environment that invites students to learn more about the world of space discovery and NASA’s past, present, and future missions. The exhibit content will be closely tied to educational programming centered on the Virginia Standards of Learning goals for 4th and 5th grade thereby further enhancing the educational experiences of students of all ages.
In addition, the center will also launch “MathAlive!” October 2016. This immersive exhibit will enable students, teachers, and visitors of all ages and backgrounds to experience the wondrous outcomes of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics through highly engaging hands-on activities. MathAlive! welcomes students and teachers to explore exciting STEM-powered activities such as designing video games, engineering cities of the future, and riding snowboards. Interactive stations allow students of various grade levels and capabilities to enjoy fresh subject matter to complement the math they experience at school and at home.