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Exhibit Developer Jessica Strick gives us the run-down on how the Exploratorium’s shop keeps humming. The Exploratorium’s new home has an ace up its sleeve for the next big earthquake—a single seismic joint, 300 feet long and two feet wide, will isolate the entire pier structure from the rest of San Francisco. Watch here as the bulkhead at Pier 15 is readied for the installation of the seismic joint. In this historical video from 1996, which was originally made for a museum floor installation, we learn about both the Palace of Fine Arts and the roots of the Exploratorium. This piece mixes footage from films in the Exploratorium's collection and interviews with historians, architects, and museum staff. In 1997, the Exploratorium opened the Phyllis C. Wattis Webcast Studio on the museum floor, linking Internet users to live museum events and to live events at remote locations. In this video you can explore the early days of webcasting at the Exploratorium. Riotously colorful bacteria and mobile mosses meet carnivorous plants and rotting carcasses in this impressionistic journey through the Life Sciences area at the Exploratorium. Southeast of San Francisco, on the way out to California's Central Valley, thousands of wind turbines dot the landscape of Altamont Pass. Mounted both in rows and individually, machines with large propellers catch the wind, turning round and round at different speeds. Learn how wind energy is generated and stored for use in this most peculiar area, and its impact on living things both near and far. At our last After Dark in our current home, the theme was Mars! On display the museum has a full-scale model of the Mars rover Curiosity, which arrived on the red planet Sunday, August 5. At After Dark, we had Martians, robots, and extraterrestrials in the crowd! There were Martian themed lectures, a live webcast, and activities like the Egg Drop, where visitors practiced landing a homemade Rover safely onto the ground. Red skies at night offer fun and delight. How do you work with a robot millions of miles away to make scientific discoveries on a planet you've never set foot on? How do scientists and engineers begin to "see like a rover"- and what can this tell us about who we are as meaning-making creatures? Find out how, by studying the team behind the rover mission, we learn about more than just the surface of Mars. Take to the skies on board the zeppelin Eureka with pilot Andrea Deyling of Airship Ventures and get a crash-free course in lighter-than-air flight: What’s the difference between an airship, a blimp, and a zeppelin? How do they stay aloft? How high and how fast can they fly?
Airship Ventures operates the only commercial passenger airship operation in the United States. To find out more go to www.airshipventures.com. What would it be like on Mars? Get a sense of Martian living with Exploratorium scientist Paul Doherty. He'll introduce the capabilities of the new rover and demonstrate what the planet would look, smell, and feel like to someone on the ground. Learn how things would fall, how they'd burn, and the shape a Martian snowflake should take in a snowstorm.