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'Star Trek' and NASA: A Mind-Meld of Science Fiction and Fact in Pictures

NASA and Star Trek

NASA | Chris Cohen.

NASA and "Star Trek" are both committed to exploring the final frontier, so it's no surprise they have teamed up occasionally. Take a look at some great NASA-Trek moments over the years, including this one from 1976 when NASA's space shuttle Enterprise rolled out of its manufacturing facility and was greeted by NASA officials and cast members from the "Star Trek" television series. From left to right: NASA Administrator James Fletcher; DeForest Kelley, who played Dr. "Bones" McCoy on the series; George Takei (Mr. Sulu); James Doohan (Chief Engineer Montgomery "Scotty" Scott); Nichelle Nichols (Lt. Uhura); Leonard Nimoy (Mr. Spock); series creator Gene Roddenberry; U.S. Rep. Don Fuqua (D-Fla.); and Walter Koenig (Ensign Pavel Chekov).

Uhura at NASA

NASA

Actress Nichelle Nichols (Uhura in Star Trek) toured Johnson Space Center in Houston on March 4, 1977, while Apollo 12 lunar module pilot and Skylab II commander Alan Bean showed her what it felt like inside the Lower Body Negative Pressure Device and showed her how the Shuttle Procedures Simulator operated.

Uhura Opens Shuttle Comms

NASA

Actress Nichelle Nichols (Uhura in Star Trek) toured Johnson Space Center in Houston on March 4, 1977, while Apollo 12 lunar module pilot and Skylab II commander Alan Bean showed her what it felt like inside the Lower Body Negative Pressure Device and showed her how the Shuttle Procedures Simulator operated.

Spock in Space!

NASA

Astronaut John Creighton shows the on board Graphical Retrieval Information Display (GRID) computer, which displays a likeness of Mr. Spock aboard STS-051G, June 18, 1985.

USS Endeavour Crew

NASA

The STS-54 crew of the space shuttle Endeavour in their official "gag" photo are costumed as the bridge crew of the Enterprise as depicted in the movie "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan."

A Keyboard, How Quaint!

NASA

Actor James Doohan (who played engineering genius Montgomery Scott in Star Trek) sits in the commanders seat of the Full Fuselage Trainer while astronaut Mario Runco explains the control panel during a tour of Johnson Space Center on Jan. 18, 1991.

NASA Sends Off Star Trek: Enterprise

NASA

Scott Bakula, who played Captain Jonathan Archer on Star Trek: Enterprise, stands with astronauts Terry Virts and Mike Fincke on set. The two astronauts made guest appearances on the series finale episode “These Are The Voyages …” March 2005.

Trek Reboot, NASA-Style

NASA

The crew of NASA's STS-134, the next to last shuttle mission, in their version of the 2009 Star Trek movie poster.

Expedition 21 and Enterprise

NASA

The crew of Expedition 21 aboard the International Space Station also made a Trek-themed poster in 2009, wearing uniforms from Star Trek: The Next Generation with the Enterprise NX-01 silhouette in the background.

NASA and the Replicator

NASA

NASA referenced Trek lore overtly with its Star Trek Replicator Challenge, which called on the next generation of starship engineers to create 3D-printed designs for things astronauts need in space.

Oh, My!

NASA

While visiting Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas, George Takei (Hikaru Sulu on the original series) had the chance to exchange Vulcan salutes with Robonaut on May 29, 2012.

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