The Megahangar at NASA

Imagine a giant skyscraper, but hollow and filled with people making rockets. That's what the VAB is. To really get a sense of the size of this thing, look at the outline of the man standing in the distance, his body backlit by the door.

 

The VAB, or Vehicle Assembly Building, is the worlds largest single-story building, and it's where NASA assembles many of the rockets, including the mighty Saturn V. It's also the tallest building in the US that's not in a downtown area. It's situated at Launch Complex 39 at the Kennedy Space Center, and it's awesome dot com.

 

The thing is so big that it even has its own weather system. In fact, on humid days it can even rain inside the building! In my photo below, you are really only seeing part of it. Off to the right, they are fueling up the Atlantis for its upcoming mission. Staring through the girders from another angle, you can easily see the giant orange tank going through its pre-launch ordeal.

 

Getting into this place was very difficult. I felt privileged to even get through the various security screenings and get the governmental approval to go inside. They let in little groups of us from the Tweetup, and I have to thank Stephanie Schierholz for making it all happen. It's one of the mysterious places on earth I've always wanted to visit, so I was very excited to be inside. My next goal is to get back inside and get up higher... perhaps even get in while they are prepping the next rocket.

 

I have many more shots of this building that I'll be sharing in coming weeks and months... you guys know how I like to keep these threads and stories open for a long time!

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Taken on April 28, 2011