Rarely Seen NASA Images Create Smithsonian’s new VR Moonwalk

In May The Smithsonian will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of NASA’s Apollo moon landings with a special exhibition titled FUTURES. As part of the exhibition, the institution has collaborated with Meta Immersive Learning on a virtual reality (VR) portion called “FUTURES x Meta: Moonwalk”, allowing visitors to step onto the moon like never before.

For National Air and Space Museum, July 30, 1971.

From 4″ x 5″ black and white negative.

Moonwalk utilises over 7000 rarely seen archival images from NASA to put visitors onto the moon’s surface using a Meta Quest 2. Guests will be able to “experience some of the most famous and heart-stopping moments of lunar exploration,” watching the lunar rover drive around the surface and see the awe-inspiring views of Earth. All whilst listening to conversations between Apollo astronauts and Mission Control.

In addition to the VR exhibition at The Smithsonian, Meta will also be releasing several custom AR effects for Instagram. You’ll be able to take a “lunar selfie” as an astronaut and learn about The Smithsonian’s Arts and Industries Building (AIB) where the FUTURES exhibition is being held.

“The historic Arts and Industries Building was the first place most people ever saw a rock from
the moon, and later the historic Apollo 11 that made that epic journey,” said Rachel Goslins,
director of the Arts and Industries Building in a statement. “It’s so exciting that more than 50 years later we are able, through this collaboration with Meta, to give visitors a new ground-breaking experience of moon travel. Experiencing ‘Moonwalk’ is going to ignite future dreams of adventure and space travel in our next generation of budding scientists and space explorers.”


“Like space exploration, the future of learning is limitless,” adds Monica Arés, head of Meta
Immersive Learning. “Partnering with the Smithsonian’s Arts and Industries Building allows us to
showcase how immersive technology can transform the way we learn by exploring simulated
environments. Through a combination of in-person, virtual and immersive experiences in the
metaverse, we can increase access to education and help build a more connected and curious

FUTURES x Meta: Moonwalk will make its debut on 4th May 2022 and run through to 6th June. A special free public evening on Thursday, 19th May called “We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Panel: Future Journeys at Your Fingertips” will be held both in-person and online. The main FUTURES exhibition is already open and free to attend. For further updates on the latest VR deployments keep reading gmw3.