Exploration Space Initiative

The Exploration Space Initiative is a multi-faceted expansion of the Museum’s STEM programming and exhibits that includes:

  • A vastly upgraded Space Flight Gallery with interactive learning stations and new displays anchored by the Apollo VII Command Module and artifacts from Apollo, the Space Shuttle program, the Hubble Space Telescope, the Skylab Orbital Facility, and the only Moon Rock in North Texas.
  • A Lunar Sample (Moon Rock) brought back to Earth by astronauts from Apollo 15 - it's the closest you can get to the Moon from North Texas!
  • Our Texas Space History Kiosk offers an interactive learning experience highlighting the role of Texas in the past, including Beal Aerospace, and the present and future of space travel. The Kiosk describes NASA careers in space, the Apollo missions, and features a video of Apollo 7 Lunar Module Pilot Walt Cunningham.
  • Our Space Portal Odyssey Capsule (we call it "SPOC") is an engaging and immersive digital portable planetarium experience for on-site and outreach programming
  • The EarthX OmniGlobe uses an internal high definition projector to display detailed images on a 48-inch spherical screen. A touch-screen kiosk lets visitors choose from dozens of displays in real time: moving ocean current, tsunamis, cloud patterns, air traffic, climate trends, and even examine the solar system.

The experience is designed to provide visual hands-on learning experiences that enhance what students have already learned in the classroom and align with TEKS requirements. Learn more about on-site and outreach programming here or contact our Education Department.

Space Flight Gallery
Beal Rocket
An integral part of the Exploration Space Initiative is a mural and Beal Aerospace BA-2 Launch Vehicle.

The Museum is proud to celebrate Texas Space History, and thanks Space Industry Pioneer Beal Aerospace for their generous support.

Founded in 1997, Beal Aerospace sought to develop medium- to heavy-lift rockets to launch commercial satellites. Through its brief but eventful existence, the company helped lay the foundation for the success enjoyed by the private space industry today.

Beal’s BA-2 orbital launch vehicle was a technologically-innovative initiative to lower the costs of commercial space transport. In March 2000, Beal Aerospace tested the massive BA-810 Stage 2 engine, the largest liquid-fueled rocket engine of its generation, second only to the Saturn V rocket used by NASA's Project Apollo. The peroxide/kerosene 810,000-pound vacuum thrust engine made a 21-second firing at the company's engine test facility in McGregor, Texas.
Become a partner in this next step of our acclaimed STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) programming. Learn more about how you can support the EXPLORATION SPACE INITIATIVE - Education Department
Thank you to these Space Flight Gallery donors
Beal Bank
The Meadows Foundation
Hillcrest Foundation
Summerfield G. Roberts Foundation
Hobilitzelle Foundation
Joe M. and Doris R. Dealey Family Foundation