The Galileo shuttlecraft was revealed at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas on Wednesday. The pretend spacecraft first appeared on the "Star Trek" television series to transport Captain James T. Kirk and his crew down to foreign planets.
The Galileo shuttlecraft's first showed up on "Star Trek" in 1967 on the show's 16th episode. Before then, Capt. Kirk and the crew had to constantly have Scotty teleport them to the surface of planets. The shuttle was put in the space center's "Zero-G Diner" because of the inspiration it provided to the space program.
"The addition of Galileo adds to the rich history of space exploration as it pays tribute to the way science fiction ignites our imaginations and has inspired generations of innovators," Richard Allen, president and CEO of Space Center Houston, told Space.com. "Galileo will join the ranks of many other inspiring exhibits at Space Center Houston, including the recent space shuttle mockup addition and the biggest expansion in our history, the 747 Shuttle Carrier Project."
The unveiling was accompanied by various celebrities from revered science fiction television: Robert Picardo, "The Doctor" from "Star Trek: Voyager"; Sylvester McCoy, seventh "Doctor" from "Doctor Who"; Tracy Scoggins, "Capt. Elizabeth Lockley" of "Babylon 5" and others.
The Galileo shuttlecraft was practically discarded after its use on the show, and its wear and tear after decades showed. However, Adam Schneider, a fan of the show, bought the ship for $61,000 and took a year to restore it. He also flew from New York for the event and said he was "unbelievably proud" of the moment.
"Like sending your kid to college and having them get a job to build a successful life, because this was under our care for a year and we grew very attached," he told the Associated Press.