3-D Tours Of Smithsonian Aircraft Now Online

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If you haven't yet had a chance to visit the Smithsonian's new Udvar-Hazy Center near Dulles Airport, in Virginia, now you can view a few historic aircraft and cockpits in detail on the Internet. The cockpits of the Concorde, the Boeing 307 Stratoliner, the SR-71 Blackbird and more can be viewed in seamless, intricate detail from any vantage point. Exterior shots of the J-3 Cub and a Monocoupe 110 can be rotated to view the airplane from either side, front or back, and anywhere in between. The high-resolution digital photos were shot last year as the aircraft were moved into the new facility, and before they were put on exhibit, a rare opportunity existed to access the aircraft before they become inaccessible. More than 100 aircraft and spacecraft were photographed during the first phase of this project, and more are planned. About a dozen of the images are now posted at the National Air and Space Museum's Web site. Viewing the images requires Quick Time software, which is available free on the Internet.