The Deep Space Launch Complex at Kennedy Space Center

Gateway: The Deep Space Launch Complex is the “spaceport of the future”, offering visitors the opportunity to experience “the interstellar journey of tomorrow”.

Photos courtesy of Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

From artifacts and exhibits to modern spacecraft, the multi-level Gateway attraction offers a glimpse into the present and future of space exploration, highlighting everything happening in the space program today through the NASA hardware and commercial spacecraft, immersive displays, launch viewing opportunities, and space “travel”.

“Gateway: The Deep Space Launch Complex is a bold new attraction where guests will personally experience NASA’s next giant leap and beyond, underscoring all the excitement within the space industry,” said Therrin Protze, chief operating officer of the Kennedy Space Center. “Guests will see a glimpse into the future of space travel with Spaceport KSC, an immersive experience with multiple journeys that guests can choose to travel and learn through exciting simulated spaceflight.”

gateway the entrance to the deep space launch complex

Fun fact: Gateway’s exterior walls are accented with iridescent panels in vivid turquoise alternating with shades of purple, designed to replicate the “constant motion and brilliant colors of the universe”.

A futuristic design sets the stage as guests are surrounded by actual in-flight artifacts and life-size models in a 360-degree setting.

Gateway: Deep Space Launch Complex models and artifacts include:

  • Aerojet Rocketdyne RL10 upper stage rocket engine
  • Boeing Crew Space Transportation-100 Starliner Mock-Up Capsule (Full Scale Engineering Model)
  • Boeing space suit
  • Boeing Starliner Simulator (life-size model)
  • LIFE Habitat Cut-Away (model)
  • Lockheed Martin Space Habitat (full-size model)
  • NASA Space Launch System (SLS) rocket (scale model)
  • Orion Exploration Flight Test-1 Capsule (Flight Completed)
  • Orion Heat Shield Tiles
  • Sierra Space Dream Chaser (life-size model)
  • Sierra Space Shooting Star (life-size model)
  • SpaceX Cargo Dragon COTS-2 (flown)
  • SpaceX Falcon 9 Booster, officially known as Booster B1023 (flown)
  • United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket (scale model)
  • United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket (scale model)

On the second floor of the building, adventurers will find a 30-foot floor-to-ceiling interactive wall for robotic space explorers with touchscreens that provide information about 40 different satellites and probes in space.

catwalk the deep space launch complex interactive wall

Visit the HoloTube Presentation Station to learn about the James Webb Space Telescope through manipulation of holographic images, videos and animations.

The KSC Spaceport then takes visitors on a journey through the “airport of the future,” with atmospheric airport chatter and views of active launches and landings in the distance, seen through the windows of the Galactic Spaceport. .

ksc spaceport

Its main hall reveals destination, departure and arrival information, and visitors can choose from four voyages – Cosmic Wonder, Daring Explorers, Red Planet or Uncharted Worlds – for a journey aboard “spaceships” (a two-story motion theater) with atmospheric effects for a compelling space travel experience.

gateway the deep space launch complex poster

Space Bowl Bistro is the resort’s new restaurant, serving Bistro Bowls such as acai bowls and choose-your-own protein bowls created with quinoa, rice, greens or noodles, and protein such as barbecued short ribs, marinated ahi tuna, jackfruit, and more. Soft drinks, coconut water, coffee, tea and local beer are also offered.

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