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"National Museum of Nuclear Science and History" The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History Tip by traveldave


New Mexico is where the world's first atomic bomb was developed, built, and detonated, so it is appropriate that the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History is located here. It is the only public museum dedicated to document and preserve the history of the nuclear industry.

The museum was established in 1969 as the National Atomic Museum, and was located on the grounds of Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque. However, after security measures were tightened on the base after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the museum was moved to a location in Old Town Albuquerque in that year. In 2009, the museum moved again, this time to its present location near the air force base in the southeastern part of Albuquerque.

The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History presents exhibits about the Atomic Age, from the period of early research and development through today's peaceful uses of nuclear technology. Artifacts and replicas are on display, and include bombs, missiles, and other weapons made by the United States, the Soviet Union, and the United Kingdom; and the original casings from "Fat Man" and "Little Boy", the first two atomic bombs. The five-acre (two-hectare) outdoor Heritage Park features fighter planes, rockets, missiles, cannons, and other weapons.

Exhibits include the Uranium Cycle, which explains the processes involved in milling and processing uranium for use in the nuclear industry. Energy Encounter explores the treatment, storage, and recycling of nuclear waste. Radiation 101 teaches the basic facts about radiation and its effects on people, the planet, and the universe. Hiroshima and Nagasaki documents in pictures and film the effects the atomic bombs had on the people and cities after they were dropped. The Cold War Fallout Shelter shows a re-creation of a 1950s-era fallout shelter and the materials needed to survive a nuclear attack. The Cold War explores the nuclear arms race between the United States and Soviet Union between the 1950s and 1990s, arms-control measures, and the events that led to the collapse of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War. Atomic Culture/Pop Culture provides a lighter look at the dawning of the Atomic Age and its effects on culture, including music, movies, food, toys, games, and appliances. Little Albert's Lab teaches children about the basics of physics and science, and features a child-size puppet of Albert Einstein that answers questions to make science fun and understandable. The Decision to Drop explores the factors leading to the decision to drop the atomic bomb in order to end the Second World War; features replicas of the Trinity Tower used in the first detonation of an atomic bomb, as well as the McDonald-Schmitt Ranch House that was destroyed by the atomic blast; and portrays what life was like for the scientists working at Los Alamos, a secret city where they developed and built the atomic bomb. And finally, Pioneers of the Atom examines through the use of a time line the discoveries made and people involved in all aspects of nuclear science, from Marie Curie to Albert Einstein to Robert Oppenheimer, among many others.

Address: 601 Eubank Blvd. SE Albuquerque, New Mexico 87123.
Directions: The National Museum of Nuclear Science and History is located at Eubanks Boulevard SE, southeast of downtown Albuquerque near the airport.
Phone: (505) 245-2137

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Dec 7, 2010
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