Gorgeous '70s concept art shows NASA's dream of our space future

In the days when the Apollo program was still going strong and our future in outer space seemed bright, NASA was dreaming about a life beyond our Earthly bonds. By the '70s, they were already researching what humanity would need to permanently live in space on a large scale, and they hired concept artists to visualize their work. The result is a gorgeous view of the future.

As the Apollo missions continued to take more and more men to the surface of the moon, NASA's Ames Research Center looked beyond lunar landings and began to explore what it would be like when NASA could finally send whole communities and even whole cities into space.

The artists involved in the project began to visualize just what would be needed for such cities in the sky to exist. Some of their designs are reminiscent of Hollywood space stations—massive structures designed to rotate to simulate gravity. Others employ a more expansive design in an effort to allow for all the natural beauty we might get on Earth. Some of these stations feature trees, fields, hills and even rivers.

Today, the images can seem a little like a retro, "Tomorrowland"-style fantasy, but they're also an inspiring example of man's optimism about the future of space. And hey, we're not done up there yet. Some of these could still be real someday.

(Via The Mail Online)

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