Educator News

NASA's Futuristic Starship 2040 Exhibit to Share the Vision for Space Exploration During Festival of Nations in Selinsgrove, Sept. 3-6
08.31.04
Brandon Boone
Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.
(Phone: 256/544-0034)

Release: 04-224

NASA's futuristic Starship 2040 -- a traveling space liner exhibit that gives visitors a look at space flight technology as it might exist 40 years from now -- makes its second stop in Pennsylvania this year, when it arrives at the Festival of Nations in Selinsgrove Sept. 3.

Starship 2040 will be on display during the four-day event, Sept. 3-6, at the Selinsgrove Speedway. The international, multi-cultural, multi-ethnic education and family oriented entertainment event is expected to draw 50,000 visitors from surrounding states.

Located inside the 21,600-square-foot Expo Center, Starship 2040 will be open to the public from noon to 8 p.m. EDT each day. The exhibit is handicapped accessible and admission to take a self-guided tour of the exhibit is free.

Starship 2040 offers visitors a glimpse into a very possible future -- one in which humans will travel and work in space as safely, affordably and routinely as we now navigate the skies. But the exhibit isn't just a product of the imagination. The technologies on board -- such as propulsion systems technologies and vehicle health management systems -- are based on technologies that are being developed today at NASA.

Guests touring Starship 2040 will have a chance to talk to NASA staffers about the Vision for Space Exploration, which will return humans to the Moon, where they will lay the groundwork for exploration missions to Mars and beyond.

"We hope Starship 2040 excites visitors about the future, and the technologies being developed that will help NASA chart a bold new course into the cosmos," said John Dumoulin, exhibits manager at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.

Starship 2040 is a look at what a commercial passenger vehicle of the future might be like. It is a concept, not a blueprint for a future vehicle. Visitors walk through full-sized control, passenger and engineering compartments, where audio effects -- engine noises, computer and crew conversations -- add to the ambience of the experience.

All the innovations suggested aboard the exhibit -- automated vehicle health monitoring systems, high-energy propulsion drive, navigational aids and emergency and safety systems -- are based on concepts and technologies now being studied at NASA centers and academic and industry partner institutions around the nation.

While touring Starship 2040, visitors will learn about technologies now being investigated by NASA and its partner organizations that will increase the safety and reliability of space transportation systems while dramatically lowering costs. Such progress could make space travel safe and affordable enough for routine flights just a few decades from now.

For more information about NASA's Starship 2040 exhibit on the Internet, visit:
http://www.starship2040.com

For more information about the Vision for Space Exploration visit:
http://www.nasa.gov/missions/solarsystem/explore_main.html