"Air and Space Exhibition" Commemorating 100 Years of Flight Draws 100K Visitors at Nat'l Museum of Nature and Science

The Japanese-made YS-11.

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On January 8, the number of visitors to the "Air and Space Exhibition - To Fly: Over 100 Years of Dreams!" held at the National Museum of Nature and Science in Taito Ward, Tokyo since October of last year surpassed 100,000.

The special exhibit, which commemorates the 100th anniversary of powered flight in Japan in 2010, presents the history and successes created by 100 years of aerospace technology development as well as a look towards its future with materials in the museum's possession that had not yet been released to the public, Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) materials and more. The exhibit ranges from Edo period efforts to fly and the propeller plane that achieved the first successful powered flight in Japan to a large realistic model of the Hayabusa asteroid probe and a small model of Ikaros, a probe powered by a solar sail.

The highly popular exhibit has seen crowds of visitors day after day since its opening that include aerospace enthusiasts along with families, aerospace development researchers and technicians and more. On January 8, an elementary student from Arakawa Ward named Mai Takiwaki became the 100,000th visitor. She was presented with a Hayabusa Plastic Model sold only at the exhibit along with "moon dust" resembling the composition of the moon's soil.

The exhibit is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (until 8:00 p.m. on Fridays). The museum is closed on Mondays. A general admission ticket bought on the same day costs JPY 1,300.