Star Trek Original Enterprise Model Returns to National Air & Space Museum


The latest stage of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s renovations may have the museum temporarily closed, but Trekkies will have something to look forward to when it reopens on October 14: The Enterprise studio model used in Star Trek: The Original Series. The Museum is reintroducing the popular display as a part of its reopening later in the fall, unveiling 8 new galleries in the transformed space.

Paramount Studios donated the model to the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in 1974, but the model has been off-display since October 7, 2019. The complex display of the model needed to be removed before renovations of the space began, leading to its 3-year hiatus.The Enterprise starship model was used as part of the original iteration of Star Trek which ran for 3 seasons in the late 60s. The ship consists of 11 decks, and the starship measured around 950 feet long and over 400 feet in diameter on the ship’s saucer section. The model measures 11 feet long.


This final design was just one of many created by principal designer Walter Jeffries, who had to design based on creator Gene Roddenberry’s parameters. The National Air and Space Museum describes the ship as such:

Consists of three main sections: a saucer-shaped primary hull housing the Command section; a secondary, cigar-shaped hull (Engineering section) connected beneath it by a large, slanting pylon; and at the rear of the saucer, connected to the Engineering hull by pylons, are the two long, projecting engine pods; the series of small domes on the top center of the saucer is the bridge, the ship’s command and nerve center containing all the computer controls; the primary Command hull could operate independently of the other components and contained its own impulse engine at the rear of the saucer but was limited to sub-light speeds; overall, painted gray and gray-green.

RELATED: “Trials and Tribble-ations” Remains a Star Trek Crossover Dream-Come-True

The museum’s site gives additional details of the multi-year renovations, stating:

The National Air and Space Museum is undergoing a monumental multi-year renovation, which began in 2018. Transforming every visitor’s experience, the museum will use creative and dynamic techniques to engage visitors while they are at the museum and after they leave. All 23 exhibitions will be completely reimagined, with new presentation spaces and attractions.

Building on a commitment from Congress, we will raise $250 million from leaders in the aerospace industry and people like you to dramatically transform our exhibitions and renovate the entire Museum, inside and out.

You can take a look at the model below, and read more about it here. Check it out in person on October 14 at the National Museum of Air and Space at the National Mall in Washington D.C.


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