California Science Center Foundation Receives $25 Million Gift from Korean Air to Name New Aviation Gallery of the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center

Korean Air’s Chairman and CEO, Walter Cho, poses with the President and CEO of the California Science Center, Jeffrey Rudolph, at the site of the future Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center.

LOS ANGELES — The California Science Center Foundation today announced an extraordinary gift of $25 million from five-star airline, Korean Air, to name the Aviation Gallery – one of three major educational exhibit galleries comprising the new Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center, currently under construction. Korean Air’s generous commitment is the single largest corporate contribution to the California Science Center.

“We are deeply grateful to our colleagues at Korean Air for their tremendous generosity and partnership in creating a world-class science learning experience that will not only benefit the children and youth of our shared Los Angeles community but will inspire visitors from across the globe,” remarked Jeffrey Rudolph, President and CEO of the California Science Center. “Korean Air’s $25 million gift commitment is unparalleled among our corporate funders, and we are honored that the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center will bear the Korean Air Aviation Gallery name in recognition of this meaningful investment in the California Science Center’s educational mission to stimulate curiosity and inspire science learning in everyone.”

This gift substantially advances the California Science Center Foundation’s EndeavourLA Campaign, with progress to date totaling nearly $350 million toward its $400 million goal in support of the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center project. This 200,000-square-foot addition will integrate a diverse collection of aircraft and spacecraft with immersive experiences and the California Science Center’s signature hands-on educational exhibits. Its three major galleries – Aviation Gallery, Space Gallery, and Shuttle Gallery – will double the Science Center’s space for educational exhibits and provide a greater launchpad than ever before to inspire the next generation of scientists, engineers, and explorers.

The $25 million contribution will name the Korean Air Aviation Gallery in the future Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center, which will demonstrate how the pursuit to master the sky involves tradeoffs among four principles of flight – lift, thrust, drag and weight – that affect every aircraft ever built, whether it flies high, low, fast, or slow.

“The Los Angeles area has welcomed our airline and it’s an honor to give back to this great community,” said the airline’s Chairman Walter Cho. “Los Angeles was Korean Air’s first U.S. destination and we’re proud to be an integral part of its aviation story and history. This facility will provide learning opportunities and hopefully inspire young people to be more curious about aviation and its impact on society. The 747 exhibit will showcase the transformative technology and ongoing impact of the iconic aircraft.”

The Korean Air Aviation Gallery will feature a diverse collection of approximately 20 authentic aircraft, exhibited both on the floor and suspended in mid-air, illustrating unique characteristics and capabilities. Highlights will include: a replica of the Wright Brothers’ 1902 Glider; a Harrier T4 jump-jet; a historic F-100 Super Saber; and the forward 50-feet of a real Korean Air-operated Boeing 747 commercial airliner fuselage, which will serve as the centerpiece of the Aviation Gallery.

The 747 Exhibit Experience will showcase the transformative technology and ongoing impact of this iconic aircraft. Guests will marvel at the Queen of the Skies’ scale and elegant design, explore the innovations that allowed the 747 to revolutionize air travel, and take a simulated flight from Los Angeles to Seoul, Korea in a theater on the airplane’s main deck. Throughout the experience, exhibits link science and engineering concepts with the 747’s global influence and aim to inspire young visitors to see themselves in the diverse roles of the people who contribute to the aircraft’s success and legacy.

Examples of additional hands-on experiences in the Korean Air Aviation Gallery include the Wind Tunnels Exhibit, providing an opportunity to experiment in a wind tunnel lab to understand the forces that make planes fly; and the Design a Plane Exhibit, offering a unique lesson in aircraft design and engineering.


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