Future Flight featured at Super Bowl LI fan festival

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Super Bowl LI in Houston will take you out of this world!

The Wow Factor is an interactive experience that each Super Bowl host city presents for the fan festival. When the event took place in Arizona, a rock climbing mountain was added to feature the Grand Canyon. For Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco, there was a technology zone to bring attention to the area’s top economic sector.

What was revealed as The Wow Factor for Houston? Your feet will leave the ground for this one. As the city of the future hosting the Super Bowl of the future, it only makes sense to get some help from NASA.

“So, you know, how do you take people on a journey to Mars?,” asks Sallie Sargent, president and chief executive officer of the Houston Super Bowl Host Committee. “So, the best way we came up with was a 90-foot drop tower but then you add virtual reality to it and so with NASA, partnering with them, and getting all of this great footage, so you really get to go on a journey to Mars and then plummet right down to the 50 yard line inside NRG Stadium.

It’s a virtual reality adventure that simulates a ride to Mars on a drop tower.

“The imagery of Mars actually comes from our Curiosity Rover, NASA's Curiosity Rover,” explains astronaut Dr. Ellen Ochoa.

This edition of The Wow Factor is named Future Flight, but it will be far from the only wonder on display at Discovery Green for Super Bowl week. NASA will also be demonstrating several other technological innovations, such as the MRV, a robotic omnidirectional car.

For Houston as the Super Bowl host city, it is all about changing perception and inspiring others throughout the world.

A leader of cities that is inspiring the next generation of space exploration in just a couple of decades when man will explore Mars.

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