Exploratorium home Exploratorium home Explo.tv
Browse programs by:
Search 
00:06:46
With a roll of thin plastic diffraction grating and some "stolen" sunlight, artist and exhibit developer Pete Stephens transformed the interior of the Palace of Fine Arts into a dazzling riot of spectral color. As he works to recreate the effect at the new Exploratorium at Pier 15, Stephens recounts the challenges—and the inspiration—of this expansive experiment in light.

00:09:30
There’s no mistaking the distinct voice—whether throbbing, singing, or screaming—of an electric guitar. How does one instrument produce so many different sounds? We visit with Bay Area electric guitarists Ava Mendoza and Henry Kaiser, plus Subway Guitars’ very own Fat Dog, to explore the components of this versatile instrument, getting down to pick-ups, “pots,” and pedals that make it sing.

00:12:40
For our first episode in a new season of "Science in the City," we explore the creation of a bell for the Exploratorium’s new home at Pier 15. Artist Nick Diphillipo has been designing and casting bells and other objects for over thirty years. He teaches bell making at The Crucible in Oakland, California, as well as other foundry-related subjects.

00:04:45
How do brewers turn a handful of simple ingredients into the frothy, delicious beverage we call beer? Patrick Horn and Bryan Hermannsson from San Francisco’s Pacific Brewing Lab take us inside their testing facility and show us how a new beer is born.

00:07:03
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.

00:06:20
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.

00:04:05
On the cliffs above San Francisco's Ocean Beach perches a landmark observatory—a giant camera obscura. Step inside with Robert Tacchetto and see how this centuries-old technology creates enchanting images of the outside world.

00:03:27
Remember those pneumatic tubes at the drive-up bank? Finessed by modern engineering, this technology is alive and well at Stanford Hospital, where pressurized tubes deliver critical payloads—from medications and specimens to blood for transfusions.

00:06:27
Admit it: Hasn't the Godzilla inside you always wanted to grab the Golden Gate Bridge and shake it silly? Finally, you can. In honor of the iconic span's 75th birthday, Exploratorium exhibit developer Dave Fleming presents a dynamic model of the Golden Gate Bridge. What happens to the bridge during an earthquake? How about strong winds and heavy traffic? The model dances and wiggles realistically, displaying the same vibrational modes and motions that occur in the actual bridge.

00:05:00
Take a stroll in Golden Gate Park at dusk and if you’re lucky, you’ll hear a sound perhaps unexpected: the hooting of wild owls. Jessie Bushell of the San Francisco Zoo debunks some common myths about owls while introducing us to several rescued owls currently living at the zoo—from a 3-ounce northern saw-whet owl that was hit by a snowmobile to a 10-pound Eurasian eagle owl confiscated from a smuggler.