Historic SpaceX Falcon 9 core to go on public display in Houston

As commercial space flight becomes more and more prominent in the world of space exploration, technology from companies like SpaceX is being acknowledged as worthy of preservation for public display. Soon visitors to the Space Center Houston will be able to see one of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rockets that was used twice for NASA-commissioned missions.

The Falcon 9 is notable for being reusable, and the particular core that will go on display was first launched on June 3, 2017 for a mission to resupply the International Space Station. After the first stage landed successfully at Cape Canaveral, it was used again six months later for a second mission carrying a Dragon capsule to the station on December 15, 2017.

This will be one of only two Falcon 9 boosters on public display, and it will be the first time that a commercial exhibit will be shown at the NASA-operated Space Center Houston. It demonstrates the role of private companies in space exploration through NASA partnerships.

“One of the things we’ve been wanting to do here is interpret the history of the space program, but also interpret for the public what is currently going on and where we are going moving on into the future,” William Harris, president and CEO of Space Center Houston, said to collectSPACE. “With the relationship that NASA has with the commercial sector in support of the International Space Station and other missions, I felt we really needed to begin interpreting that as well.”

The Falcon 9 core is an impressive size, measuring in at 41 meters (134.5 feet) tall and 3.6 meters (nearly 12 feet) in diameter. Even empty of cargo and fuel it weighs 27 tons, and when it was full of propellant it weighed 438 tons.

To display the core, it will be placed horizontally and elevated up 14 feet in the air, allowing visitors to walk underneath it and see it up close. The visualization video released by the Space Center Houston shows a grassy area outside with curved paths going underneath the rocket which is supported by pillars.

The aim is for the exhibit to be in place later this summer, so if you want to see this piece of SpaceX history for yourself you can start planning your trip to Houston.

Smart Home

Amazon slices the price on Instant Pot DUO Plus 60 for this Memorial Day sale

Amazon dropped the price on the Instant Pot DUO Plus 60 6-quart, 9-in-1 multi-use cooker for this year's Memorial Day Sale. The right size for 4-to-6 people, the 6-quart DUO Plus 60 is a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, and more.
Gaming

How to unlock and catch the flying disc toy in this Fortnite weekly challenge

The season 9, week 3 challenges in Fortnite: Battle Royale have arrived and the biggest obstacle tasks players with throwing and catching a flying disc toy. Here's how to unlock the disc and complete this challenge.
Emerging Tech

SpaceX joins internet-from-space race with launch of 60 Starlink satellites

SpaceX has launched a Falcon 9 rocket carrying its first batch of Starlink satellites for its ambitious internet-from-space project. The payload, SpaceX's heaviest to date, successfully deployed an hour after liftoff.
Emerging Tech

Watch live as SpaceX tries, for the third time, to launch 60 Starlink satellites

SpaceX is having another go at launching the first 60 satellites for its ultra-ambitious Starlink internet constellation. Here's how you can tune in live to watch it all go down today.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Huawei updates, Starlink launch, and Pac-Man’s birthday

On this episode of DT Live, we discuss the ongoing Huawei saga, Amazon’s social games for workers, Ford's partnership with a robotics company, the Starlink satellite launch, Pac-Man’s birthday, and more.
Emerging Tech

Las Vegas officials bet big on Elon Musk’s Boring Company

Elon Musk’s Boring Company has just been awarded a $48.6 million contract by Las Vegas to build a high-speed transportation system beneath the city’s enormous convention center, and it could be ready by early 2020.
Emerging Tech

I mainlined a bag of liquid vitamins — for science

Healthy people are signing up for treatments that are typically saved for patients stuck in hospital beds. Known as nutrient IV therapy, the treatment entails pumping vitamins, minerals, and fluids directly into the bloodstream, bypassing…
Emerging Tech

Airbus shows off the futuristic interior of its autonomous flying taxi

Airbus has given us the first look inside its single-seat flying taxi. The absence of controls in the Vahana electric aircraft is a reflection of its autonomous capabilities, so you can just sit back and enjoy the ride.
Emerging Tech

Future smart clothes promise to keep you the perfect temperature at all times

Regulating your body temperature can sometimes be tough. Engineers from UC San Diego have developed heating and cooling wearable tech which could be embedded into future smart clothing.
Emerging Tech

Japanese spacecraft Hayabusa 2 aborts marker drop mission

The Hayabusa 2 spacecraft's mission to drop a reflective marker on the surface of asteroid Ryugu has been aborted. The Japanese team was considering a second touchdown on the asteroid to collect more materials, but this now seems unlikely.
Emerging Tech

Whose name should we etch on the Mars 2020 rover? NASA wants a vote

Dream of making it to Mars? NASA has opened up a new public outreach program to let people send their names to the Red Planet, as an engraving on a silicon chip launched with the Mars 2020 rover.
Emerging Tech

What would it take to build a Matrix-level simulation of reality?

What would it take, technologically speaking, to build a real version of the Matrix? We definitely don't have the technical abilities to do that now, but we're rapidly approaching the point that we will. In this article, MIT computer…
Emerging Tech

The best solar chargers for your phone, tablet, and other battery-powered gear

Looking for a gizmo that can help you charge your phone while on the go? Here, we've outlined the best solar chargers on the market, whether you're looking to charge your phone once, twice, or three times over.
Emerging Tech

This plane-pulling robo-dog makes Boston Dynamics’ Spot look scrawny

A robot dog created by researchers at Italy’s Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia showed off its impressive ability to pull a three-ton airplane down a runway. Check it out in action.