Tango-Alpha-Charlie: Texas Aviation Celebration

Exhibit Description:
In 2010, Texas will celebrate a century of flying. From a training ground for military pilots to the home of several commercial airlines, Texas has been first in flight. The museum will commemorate this anniversary by producing Tango-Alpha-Charlie: Texas Aviation Celebration, an extraordinary aviation exhibit focused not on the airplanes themselves, but rather on the people and places that put Texas at the forefront of the aerospace industry. It will be a celebration of the aviators, manufacturers, designers, and aerospace services connected to this dynamic industry.

The exhibit's primary focus will be to interpret how Texas has had a unique and innovative role in aviation. The goals of the exhibit are to: 1) show the unique role of Texas in aviation history; 2) show the diversity of the people in the aviation industry; 3) excite and inspire visitors about the future of aviation; and 4) highlight and make relevant the impact of aviation in everyday life. The exhibit will be structured around the stories of individual people or places and their contributions to Texas aviation. The individual stories will be organized into three categories: 1) Aviators illuminating their unique and often adventurous stories; 2) Manufactures and Designers and how Texas has been innovative and on the cutting edge; and 3) Services reflecting the full breadth of Texas commercial aviation and airlines featuring business leaders and service personnel.

Educational programs associated with the exhibit:
All educational programming (both for the K-12 audience as well as adult and family audiences) for the exhibit will focus heavily on the sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). To accomplish this the Museum work closely during the exhibit design to ensure all interactive components are tied to the TEKS.

For educators and students:
All programming for this audience will focus on STEM and provide students with a clear understanding of the career options available in the aviation industry, and the means to get there. A special multi disciplinary educators guide will be produced based on the exhibit and tied to the TEKS. Teacher professional development workshops will be conducted using the guide as a basis for preparing educators to bring their students to the Museum. And finally distance learning programs will be developed using TEKS based curriculum and special experts in the fields of space and aviation technology. These programs will be offered throughout Texas.

For the family and adult audiences fun and engaging programs will be developed around the themes of science, technology, engineering and mathematics as well. These programs will include literacy components, family days with hands on activities and experiments, lecture and film series with outside experts. These programs too will offer visitors a clear understanding of the exciting and fulfilling careers available in the aviation and space technology industries.

Educational activity within the exhibit:
Potential interactive components include: a simulator that teaches the concepts of lift, thrust, pitch, roll, and yaw; an activity where visitors can try their hand at the intricate wiring process involved in building planes; a computer game that makes you the air traffic controller; a simulator that allows visitors to experience flight in a fighter jet; an interactive on fueling planes; a computer game for multiple players where each player experiences the different jobs of the crew; an activity that shows how various aerospace innovations have been used in other industries to make everyday life easier; a dress up section where visitors can don a spacesuit to experience what it would be like to work with the limited mobility of the helmet and gloves; an activity where visitors can create a flight plan and learn to navigate weather; an experiment that demonstrates how force and thrust work in a rocket; an activity on airline safety with an inflatable evacuation slide; and an interactive cock pit and plane cabin where visitors can learn by playing the roles of pilots, navigators, fight attendants, and passengers. Through these and other hands-on exhibits, visitors will complete their journey understanding how the aerospace industry impacts their life and excited about their future in aviation.

Contact: Catherine Kenyon
Head of Education
The Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum
P.O. Box 12874
Austin, TX 78711

E-mail: Catherine.Kenyon@TheStoryofTexas.com