40. A Journey to Space in the Cosmodome

If you have ever traveled north on Autoroute 15 in Laval, you couldn’t have missed a huge rocket with NASA logo in it. Ever since I have seen it on my first week in Montreal I wanted to find out more what is there. There is Montreal’s Cosmodome. It is the only museum in Canada dedicated solely to space exploration.

The museum is good. It does not only have a good exhibition, but also offers its visitors to go on a mission. Right now there are 3 missions available – space exploration history, exploration of Mars, and the outer Space.

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One of the “mission” rooms. Photo from http://www.melaniecrespin.com

I have taken the first mission. It is just awesome! The mission lasts for about an hour, I spent this time inside several rooms and corridors styled as spaceships from Star Trek and looking very futuristic. First, they showed several interesting videos about Yuri Gagarin, first steps in Space, the Moon landing, Space Shuttle and other. Then there was an interactive part. I had to conduct several short assignments on interactive simulators – first, docking in space, then I landed the Moon module on Moon surface, repaired the Hubble telescope in Space. It is pretty much like a computer game, but somewhat simpler so kids can to play it, and way more cool – it all happens in space-station like environment!

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Solar system exhibition

Then there is museum’s exhibit. It is not too big, but I really liked attention to details. Scale model of out Solar System, with all planets being proportional in size, detailed description of each planet, spaceship models, rocket engines, real pieces of asteroids and one of only two real lunar rocks in Canada!

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Jupiter is a gas giant. That’s why there is a cloud of steam underneath it..
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… but for example here under the Pluto and other solid-surface planets is demonstration of what their surfaces looks like.
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The first man in Space, Yuri Gagarin and his spaceship
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Evolution of Russian rockets
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Brief description of all Apollo missions
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Magazines back from July 1969 when the crew of Apollo 11 performed first-ever human moon landing
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Lunar rock! This particular rock was brought to Earth but Apollo 15 crew. Amazing!
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That’s how many satellites we have on the Earth orbit!
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Model of the American Space Shuttle, Russian Soyuz rocket  and Chinese Long March rocket
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Rocket engine
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This is a real astronaut suite that was used for training of one of Apollo missions.
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Space Shuttle model in children camp area

Well, frankly speaking, I did not discover anything new to myself there, but I have seen a lot of cool things and it was definitely a lot of fun! This museum is perfect for teenage kids, they even have a summer camp! Who knows, maybe future Neil Armstrong is among those kids. In my opinion it is a must-visit place with teenage children in Montreal.

And I understood that I really want to see more. I must visit NASA museum in Houston! One more destination for future road trips!

The Cosmodome has really inspired me! I am off to play Kerbal Space Program!

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