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U.S. Air Force groups to participate in museum's fourth building grand opening celebration on June 11-12

  • Published
  • By Sarah Swan
  • National Museum of the U.S. Air Force

How does the U.S. Air Force care for patients in the back of a cargo airplane? Can the technology used in video games help the military develop new ideas? What does a “supercar” have to do with the Air Force?

From 9 a.m.-4 p.m. on June 11-12, visitors to the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force can learn about these topics with free special activities celebrating the opening of the museum’s new fourth building.

Near the C-130E in the new Global Reach Gallery, an Aeromedical Evacuation crew and a Critical Care Air Transport Team (CCATT) will simulate how they use operational inflight kits, supplies and emergency equipment to provide combat casualty care on a global scale. Unlike a hospital setting, their patient care is provided at 35,000 feet in the back of a military cargo or tanker aircraft, such as the C-130 or KC-135, where patients are subjected to the stresses of flight. Since Sept. 11, 2001, crews like these have moved more than 250,000 patients, with an impressive survival rate of 98 percent.

Throughout the day, representatives from the Air Force Research Laboratory will offer several interactive experiences, including one that teaches programming within a Minecraft-type environment. Gaming technologies like this are often used to build simulations the Air Force uses to develop new ideas and reduce costly flight time.

Outside the museum, visitors can check out the Vapor Special Ops Supercar. A team of highly-specialized Airmen partnered with car mechanics and customizers from Galpin Auto Sports to create a fully customized Dodge Challenger showcasing stealth technology. A trailer near the car gives visitors the chance to engage in interactive experiences, such as the touch-screen game “Airman Challenge.”

In addition, the U.S. Air Force Band of Flight will perform around the museum grounds at various times throughout the day.

These are a just a few of a number of entertaining and educational activities that are being planned on June 11-12 as the museum and other participating organizations offer free hands-on activities for all ages, including educational demonstrations, special costumed characters and interactive displays. Most activities are free, although there is a cost for Air Force Museum Foundation simulator rides and movies.

The museum’s fourth building, which opens to the public on June 8, features 10 presidential aircraft and a world-class collection of flight test aircraft, along with exciting space artifacts and huge cargo planes. Visitors can climb aboard the Space Shuttle Exhibit, walk through four presidential and three cargo aircraft, and try out the Air Force Museum Foundation’s new suite of simulator rides, including the Pulseworks’ Virtual Reality Transporter, the first of its kind in North America, featuring an exclusive Space Voyage experience.

The 224,000 square foot building will house more than 70 aircraft, missiles and space vehicles in four galleries – Space, Research & Development, Global Reach and Presidential. Three dedicated, interactive educational spaces, known as STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) Learning Nodes, will accommodate student-centered, technology-enhanced learning through hands-on programs, demonstrations and lectures. When not in use for structured educational programming, there will be a variety of programs available to the visiting public, including science and engineering demonstrations, hands-on activities, special presentations, videos and more.

Mark your calendars for this special weekend of activities and watch the museum’s website,, for up-to-date details.

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio, is the world’s largest military aviation museum. With free admission and parking, the museum features more than 360 aerospace vehicles and missiles and thousands of artifacts amid more than 19 acres of indoor exhibit space. Each year about one million visitors from around the world come to the museum. For more information, visit

NOTE TO PUBLIC: For more information, please contact the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force at (937) 255-3286.

NOTE TO MEDIA: For more information, please contact Sarah Swan at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force Public Affairs Division at (937) 255-1283.