CHICAGO - What was cooler as a kid than visiting the Henry Crown Space Center at the Museum of Science and Industry and checking out the lunar module?
Well, there's a new reason to visit: a major artifact in space exploration has just arrived — the Space-X Dragon, the world's first commercial spacecraft to bring humans to the International Space Station.
"The SpaceX spacecraft will undoubtedly spark the curiosity and creativity of future engineers, makers, scientists, and those who will create sustainable solutions that will propel us forward," said Chevy Humphrey, President and CEO of MSI.
The Dragon has been up and back from space twice, including an August 2017 trip to the International Space Station, delivering supplies, spacewalk equipment, vehicle hardware, and computer resources.
"You are witnessing the future of space travel at your museum. Space travel and exploration right here in your backyard, at your museum," said Humphrey.
The Dragon will join other key pieces of space history at the museum, including the Aurora 7 Capsule — the first to orbit earth — the Apollo 8 craft, which orbited the moon, and the Apollo 11 module, occupied by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.
"[The Dragon spacecraft] will live in our hearts and memories as Chicagoans for generations," said Humphrey.
If you want to check out the Space-X Dragon in person, the permanent exhibit at the Henry Crown Space Center opens in the spring of next year.