The Air & Space Museum in Denver is open late today, Thursday, May 23 until 8:00 p.m! Learn more.

Air & Space Museum

Apollo Command Module Boilerplate

Apollo Command Module Boilerplate

Many of us remember the excitement of the Apollo missions that landed a dozen Americans on the Moon more than 50 years ago. The Apollo Command Module was the only part of the massive, skyscraper-sized Saturn V rocket that returned to Earth at the end of each flight. You can recognize an enlarged version of the Command Module’s cone shape in today’s Lockheed Martin Orion spacecraft and the Boeing Starliner.

This artifact looks very much like an actual Apollo Command Module, but it never carried astronauts into space. It is a boilerplate—a simplified metal model created to test specific aspects of the real spacecraft, such as water landings, launch abort escape rockets, or recovery systems. It duplicates the size, weight, shape, and center of gravity of the actual vehicle.

This particular boilerplate is BP-1101A. NASA used it for flotation tests in the Gulf of Mexico in July, 1965. After some modifications, NASA used it again for additional ocean testing in 1966 and 1967. In most photos of Apollo spacecraft floating in the ocean you can see large round balloons near the top. They pull the spacecraft right-side-up if it capsizes, and they were tested on this very boilerplate.

On loan from the National Air and Space Museum.

Capsule specifications:
Diameter: 12 ft 10 in (3.9 m)
Height: 8 ft 10 in (2.7 m)
Weight: Varied, approximately 10,000 lbs (4,536 kg)

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Lowry - Denver

Air & Space Museum

Upcoming Events

Thursday May 23
10:00AM TO 8:00PM
Air & Space Museum

Air & Space Museum Open Late

Air & Space Museum Open Late
Thursday, May 23, 2024 | 10:00AM to 8:00PM

Can’t make it to the museum during the day, or looking for a fun evening out? Experience Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum in a whole new light! Our hours for ‘Open Late’ nights are from 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Standard admission pricing applies. As always, admission is free for our members. Don’t miss this special opportunity to explore captivating aviation and space exhibits after hours. We look forward to seeing you!

Purchase your tickets now for a memorable night at the museum!

Pre-Purchase Tickets

Saturday May 25
10:00AM TO 2:00PM
Exploration of Flight (Centennial Airport)

Backcountry Flying Showcase

Backcountry Flying Showcase
Saturday, May 25, 2024 | 10:00AM to 2:00PM

Expose yourself to the fun and challenges of backcountry flying! Meet pilots who enjoy escaping to Colorado’s backcountry and view featured aircraft on display including a Cessna 185, Cessna 180, Aviat Husky A1B and more!

Backcountry flying includes landing on grass or dirt strips, or dropping in to remote areas with a specially designed bush plane or seaplane. It can even include the challenging mountain flying that Colorado is famous for. Backcountry flying provides access to camping, hiking, fishing and more for those who enjoy being in the great wide open.

Pre-Purchase Tickets

Join us at 11:00 a.m. for a lecture on Mountain Flying from Bill Standerfer of the Colorado Pilots Association. This presentation is eligible for WINGS Pilot Proficiency Program credit.

Food Truck: Cazuelas Tacos de Fer
*Food purchases are not included in admission.

Tuesday May 28
Exploration of Flight (Centennial Airport)

Summer Camp: Space Exploration

Summer Camp: Space Exploration
Tuesday, May 28, 2024 to Friday, May 31, 2024

Based on a NASA graphic novel, campers will design a drag device system, learn about NASA telescopes, space worms, spiders and other creatures. Campers will create RoboTools, and build a cryogenic fluid management system.

Register Here

CAMP LOCATION: Exploration of Flight at Centennial Airport (13005 Wings Way, Englewood, CO 80112). 

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