Museum of Air and Space in Paris
In the Terminal Bourget sits a vast interactive exhibition about the battle of the skies which played out between 1914 and 1918, detailing how aviation evolved and developed during the First World War. All devices showcased in this display are the originals, from planes and ballooning equipment to engines and propellers, armaments, relics, archives and old outfits. Outfitted mannequins are dotted around the planes to bring the exhibition to life, while a large mural evokes the drama of the confrontation. The exhibition features models including the G3 Caudron and Farman XI, which were reconnaissance aircraft working in 1914.
From some of the very first fliers to today’s passenger planes, visitors can go on to examine the Boeing 747-128. Originally commissioned in 1966 by Pan American, the Boeing 747 was the first jumbo jet ever designed to carry civilian passengers and it revolutionised travel by doubling the capacity in the first batch of jets. The Boeing 747-128 F-BPVJ carried out its first flight on October 26th 1972 and began work with Air France the following year, and in 1988 crossed the 50,000 flight hours barrier – finally retiring after a flight on February 10th 2000. The model has been situated at the Museum of Air and Space since June 2003, and is a particular star of the museum.
The expansive museum also looks beyond our atmosphere to space, with visitors asked to consider the question “are we alone in the universe”? In the Planetarium guests will learn to observe the night sky, including discovery of constellations from Cassiopeia to Andromeda and the Big Dipper. A planetarium session with live commentary takes place at 11.00 in the morning.
Another planetarium session looks beyond the night sky to celestial bodies above which really reveal the beauty of deep space, which are promised to be “the most beautiful pictures of the universe to reach your eyes”.