The Museum’s dioramas are famous for re-creating real scenes from real places. But how does one create a diorama about places beyond Earth?
The Museum’s Exhibition Department rose to the challenge when producing Beyond Planet Earth: The Future of Space Exploration, the Museum’s latest special exhibition. Throughout the show, visitors encounter a diorama of the Hubble Space Telescope repair mission, landscapes of the Moon and Mars, and a room with a model of a near-Earth asteroid approaching from overhead.
The Digital Universe Atlas, a scientifically accurate 3D atlas of the known universe assembled and maintained by scientists at the Museum’s Hayden Planetarium, gives audiences the chance to “fly” through space. On Tuesday, November 29, Digital Universe Manager Brian Abbott and research scientist Jackie Faherty will lead the Grand Tour of the Universe. The program, which starts at 6:30 pm, will take viewers to nearby stars, exoplanets, and the most distant objects known in the cosmos, revealing where Earth is in the universe and how it came to be. Abbott recently answered a few questions about his experiences presenting in the Dome.
This Saturday, November 26, NASA will launch its biggest, most advanced rover yet: the one-ton Curiosity, a mobile laboratory with a two-year mission to find out whether Mars has ever supported life. See a life-sized model of Curiosity in the Museum’s new exhibition Beyond Planet Earth: The Future of Space Exploration,then explore how Mars might be transformed into a more hospitable planet with an interactive terraforming table.
In a corner of the exhibition The World’s Largest Dinosaurs, an elegant wire outline of the head of Diplodocus longus, a sauropod that lived in the Late Jurassic period about 156 million years ago, anchors a fascinating fossil: one half of a bony braincase, its interior carefully color-coded to denote various functional structures once within it.