Virgin Galactic wants you to get up close with SpaceShipTwo rocket motor Virgin Galactic wants the world to see the rocket motor that brought SpaceShipTwo to space.Richard Bransons commercial spaceflight company made history with the craft, named VSS Unity, when it skimmed the edge of space in December.The rocket motor was donated to the Smithsonians National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, the company announced on Monday, and itll be exhibited in its Future of Spaceflight gallery.Unfortunately, that gallery doesnt open until 2024 so the motor will be displayed at the museums Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, for now. Its likely the Smithsonian will gather items from other private spaceflight companies, like Elon Musks SpaceX and Jeff Bezos Blue Origin, in the meantime."The desire to explore space has been an inspiration since time began and, in recent decades, an incredible catalyst for innovation," Branson said in a release."I hope our donation will also play a small part in inspiring the thousands of visitors as they pass through the new gallery in years to come."Virgin Galactic ultimately plans to take up space tourists, with Branson saying last summer he intends to be one of the first passengers. We also know that theyll be wearing Under Armor gear.The test flight in December put Virgin Galactic a step ahead in the private space tourism race. SpaceX has ambitious plans tocarry passengers around the moonandBlue Origin is conducting rocket tests, but both rival companies have yet to carry humans into space.First published Feb. 11, 2019, 8:51 a.m. PT.Update, 12:48 p.m. PT: Adds more background information.