Final Day of World Space Week 2013 Marks One-Year Anniversary of Discovery Center
At a private reception on Oct. 10, the Space Foundation celebrated the one-year anniversary of its Discovery Center, the region's first and only space, science and technology attraction. The evening featured a special performance by the student orchestra from the Thomas MacLaren School in Colorado Springs.
The Discovery Center is located at Space Foundation World Headquarters, 4425 Arrowswest Drive, Colorado Springs, and is open to the public from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.
The Discovery Center, which houses the Northrop Grumman Science Center and the El Pomar Space Gallery, is the site of Science On a Sphere® and Sphere-based education courses, made possible through a generous donation by Northrop Grumman.
Northrop Grumman Science Center
Northrop Grumman donated $375,000 to create the science center and teaching lab at the Space Foundation Discovery Center that is being used for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education programs for teachers and students, and for community education outreach.
The centerpiece of the Northrop Grumman Science Center, Science On a Sphere (SOS), is a spherical projection system that uses special software and satellite imagery to depict full motion views of the Earth, Sun, moons and planets. Developed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), SOS graphically illustrates complex science principles in an easy-to-understand format.
El Pomar Space Gallery
In addition to the Northrop Grumman Science Center, the Space Foundation Discovery Center also features the El Pomar Space Gallery, which houses a sampling of the Space Foundation's extensive artifacts collection. The initial exhibit, "Launch to the Moon," primarily displays artifacts related to the U.S./Soviet race to the Moon in the 1960s and early 70s.
A few of the current exhibits include:
- A Moon rock that was part of the largest sample brought back from the lunar surface by Apollo 15 astronauts is on display at the Discovery Center
- NASA's first major visiting exhibit "Space Shuttle: Conquering Low Earth Orbit"
- The Scott Carpenter Station, and underwater habitat, developed by NASA for use during the summers of 1997 and 1998 to demonstrate and teach about life support concepts for space missions
- The Lunokhod lunar rover - one of only a few ever to be displayed outside of the former Soviet Union - was part of the Luna program, a series of experiments that sent nine unmanned remote-controlled robot spacecraft into lunar orbit and to the surface of the moon
- Soviet and U.S. space suits
- Scale model rockets
- The Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, America's next generation spacecraft that is designed to take astronauts beyond Earth orbit on missions to explore deep space
For details about Discovery Center exhibits, fees and group events, visit www.spacefoundation.org/visit.
For more about Space Foundation education programs, click here.
Pictured top: The Thomas MacLaren School orchestra performing at the Space Foundation Discovery Center in Colorado Springs
Pictured middle: Science On a Sphere® at the Discovery Center
Pictured lower: The hands-on traveling NASA exhibit at the Discovery Center, "Space Shuttle: Conquering Low Earth Orbit"