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Hubble Space Telescope Exhibit Set for Grand Opening at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. (October 3, 2008) – Celebrating the stunning discoveries of one of the greatest telescopes ever built, Eye on the Universe: The Hubble Space Telescope exhibit debuts at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex on Friday, October 3, 2008. The exhibit opens prior to the launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis on the fifth and final shuttle mission to NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.

Eye on the Universe: The Hubble Space Telescope features powerful Hubble images showcasing the science of deep space discovery, allowing visitors to step into the universe and walk the pathway to ancient stars, nebulas and galaxies. Some of the most vibrant images known to man from the far reaches of space come to life through unique presentations.

At the exhibit entry, a multimedia presentation features highlights of the final servicing mission, the work to be performed and the members of the Space Shuttle Atlantis crew. In addition to spectacular Hubble images, like the Carina Nebula, Cat's Eye Nebula and Magellanic Cloud, a one-fourth scale model of the Hubble Space Telescope is on display set against an animated starfield backdrop. It is planned that the exhibit will be featured at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex for two years.

"In recognition of the important contributions of the world's largest space telescope, NASA has created an exhibit revealing the mysteries of the universe, where stunning Hubble Space Telescope images come to life," said Luis Berrios, NASA Design Specialist and curator of the
Eye on the Universe: The Hubble Space Telescope exhibit. "A powerful combination of deep space images mixed with noteworthy Hubble Space Telescope discoveries leave visitors to consider the nature of time and distance."

Seven astronauts will repair and upgrade Hubble during Atlantis' STS-125 mission. The crew will carry two new science instruments to the telescope, along with stabilizing gyroscopes, batteries and thermal blankets that will allow the telescope to continue to function through at least 2013.

2009 is the International Year of Astronomy, and as a companion to the new exhibit, the images of photographer and amateur astronomer Ted Wolfe are on display at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. Wolfe's technique involves photographing objects in deep space using specialized telescopes and cameras from his backyard observatory in Naples, Fla. Wolfe's vibrant images of colliding galaxies, supernovas and dying stars are similar in comparison to the high-resolution images Hubble provides.

Orbiting 350 miles above the Earth, the Hubble Space Telescope helps answer some of science's key questions and provides clear, detailed images of the farthest reaches of the universe. Hubble has yielded unprecedented scientific discoveries including a refined estimate of the age of the universe, the occurrences of black holes and images of phenomena billions of light years away.

About Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex opens at 9 a.m. Closing times vary by season. The Visitor Complex is open daily except December 25 and certain launch days. Admission includes the new Shuttle Launch Experience, Kennedy Space Center Tour, 3D IMAX® space films, Astronaut Encounter, all exhibits, and the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, featuring historic spacecraft, simulator rides and the world's largest collection of personal astronaut mementos. Admission is $38 + tax for adults and $28 + tax for children ages 3-11. The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Commander's Club Annual Pass is $50 + tax for adults and $40 + tax for children ages 3-11. For more information, call 321-449-4444 or visit