NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland will open its doors once a month beginning April 2 for a behind-the-scenes, one-hour guided tour of one of its world-class research facilities. Glenn tours, held through October, are part of NASA Glenn’s 75th anniversary. Two open house opportunities at Lewis Field in Cleveland and Plum Brook Station in Sandusky are also part of the celebration.
All tours, except the open houses, include a safety briefing and as time permits, a multimedia presentation on the beginnings of Glenn that explains its transformation from the site of the National Air Races in Cleveland into a world-class aircraft engine research laboratory.
Glenn tours are a unique blend of education and entertainment. Visitors can explore research facilities and see where scientists and engineers develop propulsion, power and communication technologies for NASA’s aeronautics and space programs.
Beginning at 10 a.m., a tour bus will depart from Glenn’s main gate every hour for a 45-minute guided tour. Visitors will also stop at Glenn’s Gift Shop, which offers space themed merchandise and memorabilia including flight suits, NASA apparel and collectibles. The last tour bus departs the main gate at 1 p.m. All touring and parking are free of charge.
Glenn’s 2016 Tour Schedule
April 2: Piloted Control Evaluation Facility and Distributed Engine Control Laboratory
Check out two laboratories on this tour, the Piloted Control Evaluation (Flight Simulator) Facility to experience where researchers evaluate the effect of propulsion control on aircraft performance, and the Distributed Engine Control Laboratory to learn how NASA evaluates new hardware architectures for aircraft engine control.
May 21 and 22: NASA Glenn Open House | Registration is not required
The center will open its doors to the public from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. During the open house, visitors will be able to tour many of the center’s world-class facilities, meet an astronaut, talk with engineers, scientists and technicians who work on space programs and see how the center improves aviation and fosters exploration to benefit all of us here on Earth.
June 11 and 12: Plum Brook Station Open House | Registration is not required
Glenn is opening its doors to Plum Brook Station in Sandusky OH from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Visitors will be able to tour the station’s world-class facilities, meet an astronaut and talk with engineers, scientists and technicians and step inside the world’s largest vacuum chamber, which has tested parts of rockets, Mars landers and Orion hardware.
July 9: Powering Missions to Deep Space
Come visit the Stirling Research Laboratory to see where power systems using Stirling technology are tested for deep space or extreme environments.
August 6: See Things a Different Way
Learn about two laboratories on this tour, Glenn’s Graphics & Visualization (GVIS) and the Glenn Reconfigurable User Interface and Virtual Exploration (GRUVE) Laboratory. The technology developed in the GVIS laboratory is used by designers and engineers who work together virtually, from around the world, on the design of products. The GRUVE Lab is an advanced CAVETM-like display environment for science and engineering. Its three large, moveable projection modules can create a 24-foot display wall, a panoramic 3D theater or a fully immersive virtual reality room.
September 10: Vibration Testing
Discover Glenn’s Structural Dynamics Laboratory, where things get shaken to verify the survivability of a component. Several experiments currently operating on the International Space Station were tested in this lab.
October 1: Prepare for Impact
Come visit Glenn’s Ballistic Impact Facility to see the laboratory that helped to identify the cause of the space shuttle Columbia accident and returned NASA’s shuttle fleet to flight.
Admission Requirements: Tours are open to US citizens and lawful permanent residents. All visitors who are US citizens and lawful permanent residents 18 years of age or older are required to present a form of government-issued photo identification (driver’s license, State ID) to security at Glenn’s main gate before being allowed entry.
Lawful permanent residents are also required to present a United States Permanent Resident Card (green card). Individuals without proper identification will not be admitted to the center.
Registration Information: Advance registration is required to attend Glenn tours and can be made up to 30 days prior to the actual tour. To register, visitors should call Sheila Reese at 216-433-2016, or send an email to email@example.com. Registered visitors will receive a confirmation number from NASA’s tour staff. Visitors must bring this confirmation number and proper ID to Glenn’s main gate. Only visitors with a confirmation number and proper ID will be permitted on the tour.
Special needs guests are permitted to use their own vehicles but must follow the tour bus at all times. Most research facilities are wheelchair accessible; however, some facilities have limited accessibility.