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BUFF: The B-52 Story - Coming June 8

The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History will tell the story of the longest serving aircraft in United States military in the special exhibition, “BUFF: The B-52 Story,” on display June 8 through December 29, 2019. This temporary exhibition explores this iconic Boeing aircraft’s past, present and future as an American strategic bomber. It is a substantial history, as this aircraft came into existence sixty years ago to deliver a nuclear payload on the Soviet Union during a possible World War III, and its lifespan is projected to extend beyond 2040.

Visitors will be guided through the B-52’s history of modifications and upgrades, from development by the Boeing six-man “dream team” in 1948 who designed the first prototypes to the aircraft’s role in Iraqi Freedom in 2003. The B-52 played an important role in nuclear weapons testing, starting in 1956, and this special exhibition highlights many strategic operations. It also displays information on Chrome Dome, a seven-year initiative featuring airborne alert missions where B-52 units rotated on flying routes over the Arctic and Mediterranean. Pop culture even plays a role in this engaging exhibition, displaying multiple B-52 themed movie posters throughout the years.

“BUFF: The B-52 Story” also takes time to focus on the achievements of the museum’s own B-52B Stratofortress, serial number 52-0013, newly restored and on display in the museum’s nine-acre outdoor exhibit area. This aircraft is Albuquerque’s airplane - delivered directly from Boeing to Kirtland Air Force Base in 1955, never assigned to another Air Force Base – and it was used for atomic testing in the Pacific during Operation Redwing, 1956, and Operation Dominic, 1962. It remains the only B-52B in existence that has dropped an atomic bomb - dropped during testing. A number of missiles carried by B-52 through the years will also be on display, including the broken arrows accidentally dropped in 1966 by a B-52 off the coast of Spain as well as a Short-Range Attack missile (SRAM).

“The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History is proud to celebrate the incredible military service of the B-52, and we are thrilled to have one here that is so tied to Albuquerque’s military history,” said Jim Walther, Museum Director. “I hope many visitors will come to see our B-52, and learn about the history of this iconic aircraft and its important missions.”

“BUFF: The B-52 Story” will be on display at the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History June 8 through December 29, 2019. This special exhibition is included with the price of admission into the museum. For more information, please visit nuclearmuseum.org.

In Partnership with the Atomic Heritage Foundation

The Atomic Heritage Foundation and the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History have forged a new partnership to preserve the history of the Manhattan Project and the Atomic Age. This significant agreement ensures the Atomic Heritage Foundation’s extensive collection of oral histories, interpretive vignettes, and articles about the Manhattan Project and its legacy will remain available to the public for the foreseeable future.

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Nuclear After Dark - October 4

Experience the Nuclear Museum after-hours, enjoy local food trucks and brewery, be entertained with live music and watch an outdoor showing of the 45-minute History Channel's documentary, "Modern Marvels, The Manhattan Project.

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BUFF: The B-52 Story - June 8 through December 29

Join us as we tell the story of the longest-serving aircraft in United States military in the special exhibition, “BUFF: The B-52 Story,” on display June 8 through December 29, 2019. This temporary exhibition explores this iconic Boeing aircraft’s past, present and future as an American strategic bomber.

Learn More
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