MOUNTAIN VIEW (KCBS)— A water-cooled wind tunnel is just one of the facilities that will be on display Saturday at NASA Ames Research Center in Mountain View. It’s the first time since the late ‘90s that the high-security space center has been open to the public as part of its 75th anniversary celebration.
Also on display; a giant centrifuge used to simulate G-forces.
“So the force is on your chest like a bag of something heavy sitting on your chest, kind of like when the dentist x-rays you, but imagine more so. So it tends to make you want to breathe,” said Dan Morgan with the Space Biosciences Division. That’s where scientists are testing the effects of space on everything from rats to fruit flies.
“The little flies that buzz around your rotting bananas. But they’re a very useful model organism for doing science,” said NASA scientist Sharmila Bhattacharya.
This will be the first time since 1997 that NASA has opened Ames to the public, and Gina Figliozzi said they’re excited.
“We’re going to get a range of folks; grandparents coming with their grand kids, people who know more about NASA than I do and people are going to walk through the front gates and say, ‘There’s a space station?’. We have so many stories to tell,” she said.
Tickets for the October 18th event have already been reserved. Over 100,000 are expected to attend.