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This After Dark event featured a special installation of the Cubatron by Bay Area artist and engineer Mark Lottor. A visually stunning favorite of music and art festival audiences, the Cubatron is a 3–D light sculpture made from 8–x–8-foot modular cubes, each containing 1,000 individually programmable RGB LEDs. Viewed from any direction—even underneath—the Cubatron’s thousands of programmed pixels paint exquisite arrays of color that cascade in spectacularly dynamic patterns. Join A, K. C. Cole, author of Something Incredibly Wonderful Happens: Frank Oppenheimer and the World He Made Up, in conversation with Exploratorium Director Dr. Dennis Bartels, eminent San Francisco Chronicle science writer David Perlman, Cinema Arts Director Liz Keim, and Exploratorium physicist Thomas Humphrey. A question-and-answer session followed the panel discussion.
Produced by Thorne Films, this very early 1972 film details some of the history and thought that went into the creation of the Exploratorium as told by its founding director, Frank Oppenheimer. Geologist Chistina Riesselman explains how studying 3-million-year-old sediment from Antarctica is providing a glimpse of what our planet's climate might look like if atmospheric carbon dioxide continues to rise as projected. In May 2009, the ROV Jason captured these images of violent explosions of the West Mata volcano near Fiji. At almost 4,000 feet underwater, this is the deepest erupting volcano ever witnessed and captured on video. It's also the first time anyone has ever observed the formation of deep-ocean seafloor as it's happening. We speak with biologist David Ainley, who has been studying Adelie penguins in Antarctica for more than 25 years Our Exploratorium team talks to scientists from POLENET (Polar Earth Observing Network). In this interview from in front of the Canada Glacier in Antarctica’s Taylor Valley, Hassan Basagic from Portland State University describes the essential role of polar glaciers in supporting the bare-bones ecosystems in the Dry Valleys. We tour the NOAA Atmospheric Research Observatory at the South Pole where scientists are monitoring carbon dioxide levels, CFCs, solar radiation, and the ozone hole. Meet marine biologist George Matsumoto from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute and learn about the floating ecosytems that thrive around icebergs in Antarctic waters.