NASA offers virtual tours of space

Date:6 April 2020 Author: Imogen Searra

NASA is helping you stay home in order to flatten the coronavirus curve by offering various virtual tours. With seven tours to choose from, these educational and entertaining trips will definitely keep you occupied.

Go for Flight

In 2018, NASA launched its Go for Flight simulator. This gives viewers the opportunity to explore the Armstrong Flight Research Centre. Visitors can tour through the aircraft hangar, the control room and the back-ramp area where final aircraft prep takes place before a flight, all thanks to Google Expeditions.

Next Stop: The Stratosphere

This virtual tour “enables users to view the exterior of the aircraft, and see the one-of-a-kind door covering the telescope cavity, which is opened in flight,” according to NASA. Explore inside SOFIA, a Boeing 747SP aircraft NASA modified to carry a 106-inch diameter telescope up 45,000 feet.

Guests can take a look around the inside of the aircraft’s main deck area and the flying mission control centre. Visitors can also see where the telescope operators, scientists and mission directors all work from. They can see how these people control the telescope and view the stars, galaxies and black holes of the universe.

Hubble Space Telescope mission operations centre

Take a 360-degree virtual tour of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre in Greenbelt, Maryland. Visitors will be able to see the Hubble Space Telescope’s home for mission operations and the Space Telescope Operations Control Centre (STOCC).

Virtual visitors can check out the lobby and learn about the spacecraft, the Operations Support Room and the Mission Operations Room. Visitors can even tour the tools that astronauts use to repair the observatory as well as the exhibit hall way.

NASA’s Exoplanet Excursions

If you want to leave Earth’s for a bit, join NASA’s TRAPPIST-1 star system guided journey, “known to be the home of 7 Earth-size exoplanets orbiting a star that is only a little larger than Jupiter.” The experience includes an explanation and tour of how the telescope is used to uncover far away places.

International Space Station

You and NASA astronaut Suni Williams can take a tour of her second home, the International Space Station. Williams will show you the inner workings of this zero-gravity lab, including interesting science gear and other trinkets.

Exoplanet Travel Bureau

Why travel internationally when you can travel inter-galaxy? Go on a virtual 360-degree visualization of planets and stars far, far away.

Langley Research Centre

NASA’s oldest field centre, Langley Research Cenre, is offering up virtual tours too. Visitors can view the centre’s wind tunnel, engineering building, research facilities and so much more.


Image: Unsplash

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