The spacecraft which transported Tim Peake, the UK’s first European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut, to and from the International Space Station will be landing at York’s National Railway Museum on Wednesday 17 January 2018.
A landmark partnership between Samsung and the Science Museum Group to create a national tour of Tim Peake’s spacecraft means the Soyuz TMA-19M capsule, complete with equipped interior and re-entry char marks on its outer body, will be on public display for three months along with its 25m-diameter parachute.
The display of the iconic craft will be accompanied by an inspiring and immersive range of activities, including the Space Descent VR virtual reality experience, narrated by Tim Peake himself, which places the visitor inside the Soyuz TMA-19M to witness first-hand the incredible 250-mile journey back to earth from the International Space Station (ISS).
The VR imagery has been created for the Science Museum Group, and is supported by Samsung with the provision of the latest Samsung Gear VR headsets and a bespoke VR lounge inside the museum.
National Railway Museum Director Judith McNicol said:
“It’s hard to express how excited we are to be hosting Soyuz in our museum in York. The Soyuz capsule represents one of history’s most incredible technological feats, and this is an unmissable opportunity for visitors young and old to see the craft that took Tim Peake all the way to the Space Station and back.
“Due to the National Railway Museum being part of the Science Museum Group, it allows us to host such a unique part of science history and is the start of an exciting new adventure for the museum.”
Soyuz TMA-19M carried Peake and crewmates Yuri Malenchenko and Tim Kopra in ESA Expedition 46/47 to the ISS on 15 December 2015, returning on 18 June 2016. It was acquired last year by the Science Museum Group.
Commenting on the acquisition, ESA astronaut Tim Peake said:
“You do become very attached to your spacecraft because it definitely does save your life. I’m absolutely delighted that my Soyuz spacecraft, the TMA-19M, is going to be returning here to the UK and may serve, hopefully, as inspiration for our next generation of scientists and engineers.”
Details of visiting arrangements and special events, including the Space Descent VR experience and February half-term activities at the National Railway Museum will be announced at a later date (charge and conditions apply to Space Descent VR).
Space Descent VR with Tim Peake has been made possible with support from Samsung and the generous co-operation of Tim Peake and the European Space Agency.
About the National Railway Museum
- The National Railway Museum in York has the largest collection of railway objects in the world and attracts over 700,000 visitors per year
- The collection includes over 260 locomotives and rolling stock, 600 coins and medals, almost 5,000 pieces of railway uniform and costume, railway equipment, documents, records, artwork and railway-related photographs
- The National Railway Museum houses a world-class collection of royal trains, which includes a collection of royal carriages, from those used by Queen Victoria to Queen Elizabeth II
- The National Railway Museum’s vast art collection comprises over 11,000 posters, 2,300 prints and drawings, 1,000 paintings, and 1,750,000 photographs, many of which have never been on public display
- The National Railway Museum forms part of the Science Museum Group, along with the Science Museum in London, the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford and Locomotion, the National Railway Museum in Shildon
- Admission to the National Railway Museum is free
About the Soyuz TMA-19M descent module
- Soyuz TMA-19M carried astronauts Yuri Malenchenko (Commander, Russia), Tim Kopra (Flight Engineer, USA) and Tim Peake (Flight Engineer, UK) to the International Space Station on 15 December 2015 and returned the same crew to Earth on 18 June 2016
- The crew was part of Expeditions 46 and 47 to the International Space Station
- The outer surfaces have been charred by temperatures of around 1,500 degrees Celsius experienced during atmospheric re-entry
- The module weighs approximately 1.5 tonnes
Marking the 110th birthday of legendary Russian space chief Sergei Korolev and the the UK-Russia Year of Science and Education, the display of Soyuz TMA-19M celebrates the truly global effort behind space exploration today. Manufactured by RSC Energia for ROSCOSMOS the Russian Space Agency, the Soyuz tells the story of the UK’s first European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut’s journey to the International Space Station (ISS).
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