South Dakota Air and Space Museum — Ellsworth AFB

The South Dakota Air and Space Museum, operated by the 28th Bomb Wing of the Air Force, is home to a large collection of aircraft and missiles. Nearly 30 are on display outside the Museum and represent military aviation from the close of WWII through the present day. Each connects to a rich history of national defense, human experience, and technological innovation.

Studio Tectonic led the interpretive planning, content development, and design of a new wayside system to provide a glimpse into their relevance. The work was based on careful audience segmentation, including Ellsworth Airmen and their families, the local community, and a broader general public. Visitors’ baseline understanding varies widely – from deeply expert to no prior knowledge. Interpretive approaches provide access and interest to this large audience. Airmen’s experience in flying and maintaining the aircraft takes center stage in the interpretation. Stories about technological and military significance go beyond the expected facts of payload, size, and range.


South Dakota Air and Space Museum


Sioux Falls, SD


Cultural History



Science | Natural History | Technology

Wayside | Interpretation


Post Modern Company:
Contract Lead

Historic details about people, places, and machines build connections between the visitor and these artifacts of metal, rubber and glass, answering the question of why these aircraft and missiles continue to matter.