Tuesday, February 2, 2010

USAF Museum - News and Notes: February 2010



News & Notes

February 2010


NMUSAF Aerial View



New shuttle and expansion Web page 

Museum's Web site explains on-going efforts

Artist's rendering of proposed fourth buildingThose looking for information on the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force's efforts to acquire a space shuttle or planned expansion can now find the latest updates on the museum's Web site. This newly designed Web page includes a booklet highlighting the partnership between NASA and the U.S. Air Force, answers many frequently asked questions, and explains how you can help. Visit the shuttle and expansion page today!



68th Doolittle Raiders Reunion set  

Public schedule of events now available

North American B-25B Mitchell and Doolittle Raiders diorama in the Air Power Gallery at the National Museum of the United States Air Force. (U.S. Air Force photo)The Doolittle Tokyo Raiders will celebrate their 68th reunion with many free public events, April 16-18. The full schedule, which is available by clicking here, includes plans for three autograph sessions, a memorial service and B-25 flyover at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, and a tribute concert at Wright State University's Nutter Center.
Other free events include the museum's Family Day programs featuring the Doolittle Tokyo Raid, and the film "Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo," which will be shown in the museum's Carney Auditorium on April 17. The public opportunity to interact with the Doolittle Raiders will be only at one of the three autograph sessions, April 16-18. There is a limit of one item per person at each session. Check the museum's Web site for additional updates on the reunion.



Beat the winter blues 

Visit the museum for Cabin Fever Night Feb. 5

Cabin Fever NightBeat the winter blues by getting out of your house and coming to ours! Visit the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on Feb. 5 from 6-10 p.m. for an opportunity to hear stories about aviation history, stay for a movie in our IMAX Theatre (with reduced rates), purchase a home-style dinner in the cafĂ©, and enjoy complimentary desserts and hot beverages to keep you warm as you head back home. The gift shop also will be open. Admission and parking are free. Click here for more information.



MQ-9 Reaper now on display 

Remotely Piloted Aircraft added to Modern Flight Gallery

MQ-9 ReaperThe National Museum of the U.S. Air Force recently added to its growing collection of remotely piloted aircraft with the world's first permanent public display of an MQ-9 Reaper. The Reaper is a medium-altitude, long-endurance remotely piloted aircraft (RPA), which locates and destroys time-critical and highly mobile targets and provides real-time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance to military commanders. Click here for more information on the museum's Reaper.



2010 concert series starts this month 

First museum concert takes place Feb. 13

USAF Band of FlightJoin the U.S. Air Force Band of Flight as it commemorates Black History Month, Valentine's Day and Presidents Day during the annual Hearts, Heroes and Heritage Concert on Feb. 13 at 7:30 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and admission and parking are free. Click here for more information on this concert or the upcoming Spring concert in March.



Family fun at the museum  

Learn about astronomy and satellites on Feb. 20

Family DayEnjoy activities for the entire family at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force on Family Day, Feb. 20 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. This month, commemorate the birthdays of Galileo and Copernicus and the anniversary of the first GPS satellite by learning about astronomy and satellites. The day also features storytime and aerospace demonstration stations. Admission and parking are free. Click here for more information.



Special appearance by Col. Coombs  

Presentation on Unmanned Aircraft Systems on Feb. 25

Col. Christopher CoombsCol. Christopher M. Coombs will present a lecture titled "Unmanned Aircraft Systems - Their Contributions to the Nation's Air Arsenal," on Feb. 25 at 7:30 p.m. The presentation will focus on how a number of unmanned aircraft systems have become among the most critical weapons in the Air Force's air arsenal. As the Commander of the 703 Aeronautical Systems Group at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Col. Coombs oversees the MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper programs.  This free presentation will take place in the museum's Carney Auditorium. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. Click here for more information on this and other lectures at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force.



Open Cockpit Night set for March 5

Catch a glimpse inside the cockpits of various aircraft

Museum VolunteerVisitors will have the rare opportunity to get a glimpse inside the cockpits of some of the museum's aircraft on March 5 from 6-10 p.m. Watch the Web site for a complete list of open cockpits as the event draws near.  Members who show their Air Force Museum Foundation membership card will get special access for yourself and one guest beginning at 5 p.m.  Admission and parking are free. More information about this event will be posted to the Web site in the coming weeks.



Learn about Black History at museum

Museum podcast tour features Black History in Air Force  

Eugene Jacques Bullard exhibitTo commemorate Black History Month, the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force has created a guided podcast tour to allow visitors, both onsite and online, to learn about contributions from black personnel in Air Force history. The guided tour features four exhibits throughout the museum including information about Eugene Jacques Bullard, the world's first black military aviator; the Tuskegee Airmen; a segregated support group of black airmen serving in an Engineering Aviation Battalion during World War II; and an exhibit highlighting the integration of the U.S. Air Force. Click here to download or listen to this tour.



Featured exhibit of the month

Engineer Aviation Battalion exhibit

Minuteman II Missile Procedures TrainerDuring World War II, the U.S. military segregated African Americans into separate units. However, the U.S. Army Air Forces gave them a unique opportunity to do sophisticated engineering work in segregated Engineering Aviation Battalions. These specially trained units constructed, concealed, maintained and defended airfields in every theater. Eventually, these black Airmen disproved the unfortunate belief that they could not do complicated construction or engineering work. The museum's exhibit portrays a scene of black aviation engineers working on an airfield in the China-Burma-India Theater. Click here for more information about this exhibit.


This month in USAF history 

Feb. 27-28, 1947

Col. Bob Thacker stands beside the North American F-82B Twin Mustang in the Modern Flight Gallery at the National Museum of the United States Air Force.Lt. Col. Robert E. Thacker flew a North American F-82 from Hickam Field, Hawaii, to New York's La Guardia Airport to set an FAI record of 14 hours 31 minutes 50 seconds for the flight. He flew 4,968.852 miles at an average speed of 341.959 miles. The aircraft, nicknamed Betty-Jo, is now on display in the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force's Modern Flight Gallery. Click here for more information on the museum's North American F-82. (Information provided by Air Force Historical Studies Office.)

In this issue

Shuttle and Expansion

Doolittle Raiders Reunion

Cabin Fever Night

MQ-9 Reaper

Band of Flight Concert

Family Day

Guest Lecture

Open Cockpit Night

Black History Podcast

Featured Exhibit

USAF History

On the Radar

IMAX® Schedule


Plan Your Visit



On the radar

Feb. 5 · Cabin Fever Night


Feb. 5, 12, 19, 26 · Behind the Scenes tours


Feb. 15 · Presidents Day, MUSEUM OPEN

Feb. 20 · Family Day

Feb. 25 · Wings & Things Guest Lecture



IMAX® schedule

Space Station · 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. daily


Fighter Pilot · 12 noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. daily


The Magic of Flight · 1 p.m. daily, 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday 


10 a.m. shows can be arranged for groups of 50 or more.

For ticket prices and to confirm show times, visit







Plan Your Visit 

Museum Hours
Open daily

9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year's Day

FREE admission!



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