JERSEY CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — The Liberty Science Center is about to get a room-sized, high-tech display of Earth.
CBS2s Elise Finch got a sneak peek Wednesday.
The suspended globe is called “Science on a Sphere.” Its a round screen made of carbon fiber, weighs 50 pounds and is suspended by cables. Four high-definition video projectors create seamless images of planetary data on it.
“Its this six foot sphere that has real data thats coming in that can show us the weather, can show us whats happening to our climate, can show us earthquakes, tsunamis,” Liberty Science Center CEO and President Paul Hoffman explained. “Its our best learning classroom and lab at Liberty Science Center.”
“Science on a Sphere” was developed by researchers at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Together with NASA, they provide most of the satellite images, pictures and videos that let students track thinks like tectonic plate motion and weather events – current and past.
Housed in a theater adjacent to Liberty Science Centers planetarium, students who visit will enjoy an iPad-run, interactive lesson about atmospheric events in the galaxy.
“I like the moon, that one, and I liked the sun,” said 5-year-old Lucia Dover-Villaron.
The high-tech science display is loaded with more than 500 images, including all the planets in the solar system. But its primary purpose is to inspire students to explore all the wonders of planet Earth.
“This brings it to life. Its one thing reading about it in books and hands-on activities, but bringing them here today Im so happy because were doing the planets and they recognize the colors, the shape and it looks really real,” Lydia De Los Santos, a teacher at JW Wakeman School, said.
“I like to learn new things,” said 4-year-old Cayden Jones.
“Very happy that he finds interest in something other than toys,” parent Corey Jones added.
There are 150 installation of “Science on a Sphere” around the world, but this is the only one open to the public in the Tri-State Area.
It promises to bring Earth science to life for kids of all ages and, hopefully, inspire the next generation of scientists.
The installation opens this weekend to coincide with Astronomy Day on Saturday and Earth Day on Sunday.