SEE THE WORLD FROM A SATELLITE’S PERSPECTIVE IN A VIEW FROM SPACE
|Since the launch of the world’s first artificial satellite Sputnik in 1957, satellites have dramatically changed the way we study our planet. A View from Space, a new, bilingual (Spanish and English), highly interactive, hands-on science exhibit, will allow visitors to see the world from a satellite’s perspective. They can track a hurricane from space, send a satellite spinning into orbit around a model Earth, study incredible images of our planet captured by NASA’s Earth Observing System, and more. A View from Space includes numerous hands-on activity sections such as the Satellite Activity Area. This area encourages families to learn about space and satellites together through creative, open-ended play and exploration. The area features a drawing station with satellite stencils, a free-play activity table with space-themed toys, and a reading area. A posting board lets visitors to display their artwork and allows educators to share the latest news from NASA’s Earth observing satellites. Other hands on areas include “Satellite Orbit”, where with the turn of crank visitors send a satellite spinning around a rotating model Earth while an ultraviolet light from the satellite leaves a phosphorescent trail, painting a clear picture of the satellite’s path. This offers a dramatic demonstration of how satellites orbit the Earth and capture images of the entire planet. A View From Space also allows visitors a look in to the importance of satellites and how they help keep track of environmental and seasonal changes. Visitors can spin a praxinoscope and see an entire year of North America satellite data compressed into a few seconds of animation. Complex patterns of change are suddenly revealed as visitors watch cycles of drought, snow accumulation and vegetation growth across the continent. Visitors can also learn what satellites can tell us about the way human population growth and resource use are changing the Earth’s lands, oceans and climate. Three rotating cubes, featuring modern and historic satellite images, illustrate some of the important environmental changes that NASA’s satellites are tracking from space. As visitors turn the cubes, they watch the city of Las Vegas expand, the forests of Brazil shrink, and the Antarctic ozone hole grow. These are just some of the many areas visitors can enjoy in this educational and inspiring exhibit as they learn more about those mysterious “eyes in the skies.”
This exhibit would not have been possible without the generous sponsorship from Washington River Protection Solutions. A View From Space was created and is toured by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, Portland, Oregon. The exhibit was made possible with funds provided by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. (NASA).