Museum of Technology
Ha! Man's monument to his own demise. All the garbage they displayed in there is the reason half of the world was blown to shit. That shithole is located just off the Mall. You know, that huge space in the center of the city in front of the Capitol.”— Three Dog
The Museum of Technology is one of the few more or less intact buildings in the National Mall. However, it shows clear signs of the bombings in the area; the building is crumbling, with pillars falling out of place and visible holes in the roof, and the attractions have been heavily damaged.
Several exhibits have survived the years following the nuclear firestorm of 2077. The original plane successfully flown by the Wright Brothers (the Wright 'Flyer') is the airplane that is smashed on the floor just inside the museum. Deeper inside the museum, one can find two more airplanes. Hanging from the ceiling in the same room as the Virgo II lunar lander is a Mustang. This airplane is also on display by the Capitol Preservation Society in Rivet City. In the West Wing of the museum, partially buried in the rubble is a fighter jet (the same model as the jets resting on the deck of the Rivet City aircraft carrier).
By far the biggest attraction is a Vault-Tec Corporation demonstration Vault model on the second floor, through which the player must go in order to reach the Virgo II lander. It serves as a demonstration of what Vault life would be like and displays the various technologies used by Vault-Tec in constructing the Vaults. It consists of a hallway with windows that show examples of different Vault sections. The rooms of the exhibit include a bedroom, kitchen, and classroom. Next to the windows are speakers which play recorded messages.
There is a control room to the south, up the (southernmost) stairs in the back. Its windows are visible from the entry hall, behind a wire mesh most likely installed by Derek Remmings, Maintenance Coordinator in 2077. The maintenance computer to the east has a list of log entries by Remmings as his officious plans are thwarted one by one by his fellow employees.
- A Nikola Tesla and You skill book can be found on the second floor of the atrium, in the turret control room on the right of the Maintenance computer.
- There are three Stealth Boys on display in the museum, complete with little plaques describing them: one in the main entrance of the atrium (southwest corner), and two more up the main stairs to the left in the entry room leading to the 'Halls of Today' exhibit. The Stealth Boys are much bigger than normal Stealth Boys found out in the wasteland.
- There are two hidden areas in the room with the multi-level staircase surrounding the Delta IX rocket. Starting from the lower floor, go up the stairs to the second floor, you will see two consoles that say 'Activate Delta IX rocket'. Just to the left of both consoles is a plaque, and to the left of that is the railing that guides its way to a thin ledge on the outside of the stairs for the third floor. At each gap, instead of going up the stairs (2nd floor stairs, and 3rd), jump up onto the room railing, then down onto the little ledge that runs along the outside of the stairs. Follow the ledge to each hidden area.
- In the planetarium office, there is a Nuka-Cola Quantum on the shelf.
In the atrium there is an unlit "Museum Information" terminal inside the translucent cowls usually used for telephones. It displays, below the usual menu items, a message from Prime to Jiggs, beginning the minor quest about a weapons cache in the security office (west of the Planetarium) safe. Properly entering codes at this terminal and two other "Museum Information" terminals activates a password which is automatically entered when the terminal near the safe is accessed, unlocking the safe. The second password terminal is in the West Wing, and the third by the rocket; see the Jiggs' Loot article for locations and passcodes.
The immediate reward inside the safe is the key to the gun cabinet in the planetarium office, containing a missile launcher, some missiles, and 2 pulse grenades. There is a further, greater, reward; Prime's corpse, with the Xuanlong assault rifle, only spawns if the three correct numbers are chosen.
Galaxy News RadioEdit
In exchange for information about your father, Three Dog requests that you do a little favor for him. You must recover a satellite dish from the Virgo II Lunar Lander in order to broaden the station's signal, as the one on top of the Washington Monument was destroyed. If successful, Galaxy News Radio can be broadcast over the rest of the Wasteland instead of it being limited to just the D.C. area.
- Occasionally, the P-51 Mustang may be found broken into pieces, some having landed on the floor and some floating in air. This may be in response to the tcl command on PC, or it may be caused by weapons damage on the plane (such as a missile launcher).
- The Virgo II Moon landing mission's lunar lander on display in the museum illustrates the gradual divergence of the Fallout universe with the real one. The lunar lander module that we see in the game is called Valiant 11, while in the real world, it was called the Eagle and belonged to the Apollo 11 Moon landing mission. Also, the design of the lander in the museum is not that of the NASA LEM (Lunar Excursion Module), but that of the Soviet LK or Lunniy Korabl (Lunar Lander). The names of the astronauts who made the first landing are different than those in our universe.
- The date Carl Bell became the first American in space is the date of the flight of the first real American in space, Alan Shepard, aboard the Freedom 7 Mercury 3 capsule. Note that Shepard did not orbit the earth and that his sub-orbital flight lasted only fifteen minutes. In our real-world timeline, the first human spaceflight was Vostok 1 on April 12, 1961 , aboard which Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin made one orbit around the Earth.
- In one of the exhibits around the rocket, we can see the American flag that was supposedly recovered from the site of the original Moon landing by the crew of the last mission to go there. The flag is not the Star Spangled Banner of our world, but rather the "Commonwealth flag", as the US was divided into 13 regional commonwealths some time between the end of the Second World War and the Virgo II's landing in 1969 and the flag was changed.
- Through the Planetarium there are 3 terminals with "Far Out Space Facts".
- The presentation Vault's door is rolled behind the Vault wall; the number is only visible through a crack; when inspected using console commands reveals it to be Vault 106.
- Several gun and armor exhibits scheduled both before and after 2077, including laser pistols and power armor and "antique" weapons, are alluded to in the Research Lead notes and Lead Curator (Security terminal) notes, and a sub-basement with three fusion generators in the maintenance coordinator's notes, but neither armaments exhibits nor the sub-basement can be found in the museum.
- In the atrium, inside the first stall of the men's bathroom, a microfusion cell trap can be found. Inside the toilet's water tank are 35 microfusion cells.
- The room with the Virgo II is divided into two halves by a big pile of rubble that cannot be traversed from where you enter the West Wing. The super mutants near the Virgo II do not spawn until you are near that half of the room via the various corridors leading to it.
- Most of the containers within the Vault-Tech demonstration vault are functional containers, sometimes containing loot.
The Museum of Technology appears only in Fallout 3. The same Museum of Technology posters from Fallout 3 can be found in Fallout: New Vegas. One can be found in the weather monitoring station in The Fort and another in a storage closet in Hoover Dam. A poster can also be found inside Doctor Mobius' house in Higgs Village in Old World Blues.
Behind the scenesEdit
- The Museum occupies the real-world site of the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum.
- On a semicircular desk in the atrium, a number of pencils and one bottle cap are arranged to form the logo of the gaming news website Shacknews.
- The narration of the curtailed planetarium show is an impersonation of the famous astronomer Carl Sagan.
- A flag on the lobby balcony references a destroyed ship named Ebon Atoll, which is likely a reference to Black Isle Studios. They note it was "torpedoed" (lit. sabotaged) by a friendly.
- There is a collection of references to L.A. death/industrial metal band Fear Factory. There are two separate computer terminals, one in the lobby and one in the planetarium, where you can access the research lead's notes. The first journal entry contains notes regarding the Archetype Model FF06 Mainframe. "FF" is an acronym of Fear Factory. "Archetype" is the title of their most popular song, while the lines "The infection has been removed... the soul of this machine has improved" are lyrics verbatim to the song "Archetype". Furthermore, the author of the notes, Research Lead "B. Bell" is a reference to Fear Factory's lead vocalist, Burton C. Bell.
- In the room with the lunar lander, there is a terminal which provides information about various exhibits. For the Flight Exhibit, it states that it is sponsored by Lockreed Industries. This is a reference to the Lockheed Martin Corporation, a company which manufactures military aircraft.
- In the atrium on the first terminal involved in the Jiggs' Loot quest, there is a list of upcoming exhibits and presentations. Among these is information on a lecture called "Oppenheimer"s Folly" being presented by a prof. R.J. Gumbie. This is a reference to a recurring group of characters on Monty Python's Flying Circus. All these characters have a first and middle initial along the lines of R.J. or R.M. and the last name Gumby, have the title of professor, wear bizarre clothing, and have very severe brain damage, leaving one to question how they got their titles in the first place. It is unknown whether the professor giving the presentation had the latter two commonalities, or if the only similarity is the name.