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    207: Exploring the Planets

Exploring the Planets (Gallery 207)

These displays cover man’s discovery and exploration of the planets in our solar system (and beyond), starting from the invention of the telescope.

One of the first big exhibits in the room is a scale comparison of the planets’ size. Note that the sun is so large in comparison to everything else, that only some of it can fit into the floor-to-ceiling display.

Each planet (and Pluto) gets a dedicated section in this gallery, with detailed photos, video, and other data. Along with information on each planet is displayed the spacecraft sent to view or explore it. Among the highlights there are replicas of Curiosity, Sojourner, Spirit, and Opportunity (Mars); Voyager (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune); and New Horizons (Pluto and beyond).

Touring Tips

At the risk of losing our Neil deGrasse Tyson Fan Club badges, this gallery is expendable if you’re short on time.

Other Lands at Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum