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Severe Storms Day - March 18, 2012

For Immediate Release:
February 16, 2012

Media Available
Contact:
Jenny Slafkosky (415) 528-4367
images@exploratorium.edu

Severe Storms Day - March 18, 2012

NOAA Severe Weather Experts in Residence the Exploratorium
March 8 – 25, 2012
Severe Storms Day: Sunday, March 18, 2012

[caption id="attachment_5316" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Image courtesy of NOAA/Severe Storms Laboratory"]Image courtesy of NOAA/Severe Storms Laboratory[/caption]

Join the Exploratorium for a special Severe Storms Day on Sunday, March 18, 2012.  Highlights of the day will include demonstrations, film screenings and talks about extreme weather events with scientists from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Severe Storms Laboratory.  Visitors can also see one of the “storm-chasing” cars used to study tornados, thunderstorms and hail, watch lightning and weather demos with Explainers, and see images of severe weather. All these events are included with admission to the Exploratorium. The NOAA scientists will be in residence at the Exploratorium from March 8-25, 2012.

Severe storms and weather disasters dominated the news in 2011: the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) tracked a record-setting 14 weather and climate disasters that each totaled more than $1 billion in damages, and together claimed more than 300 lives.

Severe Storm Scientists in Residence at the Exploratorium
With weather disasters seemingly on the rise, it's increasingly important that scientists better understand these severe storms and that communities are prepared for them. At the forefront of this research is NOAA's Severe Storms Laboratory (NSSL) in Norman, Oklahoma  - and visitors to the Exploratorium will have a chance to learn more about severe storms when the museum hosts three NSSL scientists from March 8-25. Floor programs will begin on March 14 until the 25th, with a Severe Storm Day on Saturday, March 18, 2012. The scientists will be partnering with Exploratorium Explainers for electricity demonstrations, public talks in the McBean Theater, and tours of a "storm-chasing" car used to study tornadoes and thunderstorms.

The Scientists-in-Residence include Dave Rust, a weather-instrument tinkerer and lightning expert. Recently retired from NOAA, Dave is world renowned for his inventions and skill at using un-tethered balloons and his hand-built devices to delve into the mysteries of lightning. Susan Cobb is a meteorologist by training and works for NSSL's communication department as a writer and educator. Susan is a recent participant in a community workshop in Norman as part of NOAA's Weather-Ready-Nation program to improve communication and help communities better prepare for disasters. Sean Waugh is a graduate student at the University of Oklahoma and was part of NSSL's VORTEX 2 project. More than 100 scientists, students and staff from around the world were dispatched to the Great Plains during tornado season in 2009 and 2010 to collect weather measurements around and under a supercell thunderstorm.  VORTEX2 teams used a fleet of 10 mobile radars, and 70 other vehicles all equipped with cutting-edge communication and computer technologies. Sean will be bringing the storm-chasing car, known as the mobile mesonet, that he drove for VORTEX2 out from Oklahoma, where it will be displayed near the Exploratorium's iconic tornado exhibit.

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Links to NOAA's 2011 weather events page.

http://www.noaa.gov/extreme2011/

National Severe Storms Laboratory:
http://www.nssl.noaa.gov/

Hours of Operation & New Evening Hours
Tuesday-Sunday 10am-5pm;  every Thursday evening adults only (ages 18 and up) 6pm-10pm.

Admission
$25 for adults, with lower rates for SF Bay Area residents, youth, seniors, students, teachers and the disabled. Tickets available at the door and advance tickets available online at www.exploratorium.edu/visit/tickets.

Getting Here
The Exploratorium is easily accessible by public transit. Convenient parking is available nearby. For more information, visit www.exploratorium.edu/visit/location-directions

About the Exploratorium
The Exploratorium is the global leader in informal learning, igniting curiosity and inspiring creativity in people of all ages. The world-renowned science museum creates original, interactive exhibits, on display at more than 1,000 science centers, museums and public spaces around the world. Dedicated to education reform in and out of the classroom, the Exploratorium is a premier professional development center for educators and a creator of award-winning educational resources. Since 1969, the Exploratorium has influenced generations of entrepreneurs, artists, scientists, teachers, students, children, museum professionals and everyday doers, reaching nearly 180 million people annually from around the globe. On April 17, 2013, the Exploratorium opened at Pier 15 in the heart of San Francisco's Embarcadero, where it will celebrate a new era of experiences that encourage critical thinking and awaken wonder for generations to come. For more information, visit www.exploratorium.edu/visit.

Exploratorium
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California 94111
(415) 528-4444 telephone
media@exploratorium.edu
www.exploratorium.edu

Contact Us:
Jenny Slafkosky (415) 528-4367