Be the Astronaut

Be the Astronaut” is an innovative first-person experience for all ages that teaches science and engineering content via a fusion of physical exhibitry, state-of-the-art video game technology, simulators, and actual NASA reconnaissance data.

Described as one of 12 must-see exhibits in the country by USA Today, the new exhibit came to Reno by way of Space Center Houston and is now available only at the San Diego Air and Space Museum and the National Automobile Museum.

“We are absolutely thrilled to be the official home for this world-class project,” said Jackie Frady, president and executive director of the National Automobile Museum.

Scientifically verified by experts at NASA for accuracy and feasibility, this new interactive experience teaches visitors about the concepts, challenges, and excitement of spaceflight through the use of touch-screen stations, artifacts, and interactive simulator pods built to look like space capsules.

Visitors have the opportunity to command a crew of virtual content experts throughout each stage of the exhibit. These digital experts help visitors learn what’s needed to fly a spaceship, pilot a lander, and drive a surface rover — and they appear onscreen as visitors climb into the simulators to perform these feats, in an exciting narrative adventure that spans the solar system.

Each space capsule contains a large flat-screen monitor which serves as the ship’s “windshield,” giving visitors a first-person view of their adventures. Touch screens and industrial-quality joysticks put visitors in command. During missions, the cockpit comes alive with visuals and sounds that help visitors imagine what it's like to be an astronaut — training and carrying out their missions.

Also on display is the Mars rover “Opportunity” mockup from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, space suit replicas, artifacts from NASA, and space memorabilia from American pop culture. Included are objects connecting NASA with Star Trek, Star Wars and even Snoopy — as well as the NASA-engineered life support module designed to fly mice to the Moon on the final Apollo mission.

Eureka Exhibits, the producer of the award-winning exhibition, has a Space Act Agreement with NASA and is working with the Nevada Space Center and the National Automobile Museum to develop additional experiences. Some of these are featured on Science Saturdays at the Museum, monthly science-based adventures for all ages. The Nevada Space Center also hosts NASA subject matter experts, scientists, and astronauts.

To get your ticket to experience this and other adventures at the new Center...Click Here