On Friday, Nov. 10, the Atomic Museum will launch a new display featuring the 1958 Ford Nucleon scale model in celebration of Formula 1 coming to Las Vegas. On loan from The Henry Ford museum in Dearborn, Michigan, the 3/8-scale model of the concept car showcases how the future of nuclear energy might have affected the future of automotive design.
To be located across from the Atomic Museum’s ever-popular pop culture display, guests will soon be able to view the six-foot-long by three-foot-wide scale model produced by the Ford Motor Company up close. Although the concept car was never manufactured, the Ford Nucleon was designed to be powered by a rear-mounted, self-contained nuclear reactor. At the time of its unveiling, the atomic automobile idea assumed issues with nuclear safety would eventually be resolved and the size and weight of nuclear reactors would eventually be reduced.
In addition to the 3/8-scale model, the Atomic Museum will also display a brochure for the concept car titled “Nucleon, a Glimpse into an Atomic-Powered Future” from 1958. Museum visitors will be able to read about the Ford Motor Company’s vision of creating a vehicle capable of traveling 5,000 miles or more, depending on the size of the nuclear reactor core, without recharging.
“This iconic piece of automobile history represents a fusion of science, engineering and innovation, mirroring the spirit of Formula 1 racing,” said Rob McCoy, CEO, Atomic Museum. “We invite visitors to join us on this incredible journey through time and technology as we bring together the worlds of atomic energy and high-speed racing.”
The Ford Nucleon 3/8-scale model and brochure will be on display from Friday, Nov. 10 through mid-January 2024. Regular museum hours are daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.