Space Age exhibits to land in Australia 50 years after moon landing
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Space Age exhibits to land in Australia 50 years after moon landing

One small step for man, one giant leap for the Queensland Museum.

Astronaut suits, rocket engines, moon boots, lunar cameras and full-scale replicas of historic US and Soviet spacecraft will enter Brisbane's orbit this year.

The innovation gallery featuring full-scale spacecraft replicas.

The innovation gallery featuring full-scale spacecraft replicas.

One of the world's largest touring exhibitions, NASA – A Human Adventure, will land at South Brisbane in March and give visitors access to almost 300 exhibits.

Taking up almost two museum levels will be replicas of the front section of a NASA shuttle, a Lunar Rover, crafts from the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo missions, as well as the Soviet lunar rover Lunokhod.

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The exhibition has been transported around the world in almost two-dozen 40-foot shipping containers since 2011 and has visited Sweden, Spain, Korea, Japan, the Netherlands and, most recently, Italy.

Some of the suits on display have travelled into space.

Some of the suits on display have travelled into space.

March will be the first time it has visited Australia, coinciding with the 50-year commemoration of the Apollo 11 program, when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the moon.

Queensland Museum chief executive Jim Thompson said the exhibition hall had recently been expanded to 1000 square metres and refurbished.

"There is a real fascination with space, you’ve only got to look at what has happened in the past two days - the Chinese have put a craft on the far side of the moon," Dr Thompson said.

"I guess that challenge to put a man on the moon and that space race from the '50s and '60s period was something that was quite spectacular.

"[The exhibition] tells the story of the early ideas about how you could actually do it and [features] replicas that explain that story from the American and Soviet Union side of things."

Dr Thompson said some of the smaller artefacts such as the spacesuits and moon boots had actually flown into space.

A full-scale replica of the Lunar Rover used on the last three Apollo moon missions.

A full-scale replica of the Lunar Rover used on the last three Apollo moon missions.

State Science Minister Leeanne Enoch said Queensland Museum beat out Sydney and Melbourne to be the first in Australia to host the exhibition.

"This exciting exhibition, together with the enhancement of the museum’s spaces, further bolsters the museum’s position as a leading cultural tourism destination, which last financial year saw 2.1 million visitors."

NASA – A Human Adventure will touch down on March 15 and take off again in October.

Toby Crockford is a breaking news reporter at the Brisbane Times

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