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General Interest Shows

Apollo 11 Tribute
Length: 5 Minutes

Apollo11flagArguably, the Apollo 11 Moon landing over 40 years ago was one of the most significant and historic events of the 20th century. Dreamt about for 2,000 years, it became reality on July 20, 1969 when Neil Armstrong took that stunning step onto another world. The immersive Planetarium production "A 40th Anniversary Tribute to Apollo 11" will re-live the impactful day and take a look at what future space explorers might come to expect in the next 40 years!

Back To The Moon For Good
Length:  25 Minute

Back to the Moon for GoodThe show opens with the first era of space exploration in the late 1960s and early 1970s. We see what that era of landers and orbiters taught us about our nearest neighbor including the discovery of the Moon’s origin, composition, structure and the accessibility of raw materials on its surface.  The Google Lunar XPRIZE is designed to democratize space and create new opportunities for eventual human and robotic presence on the Moon. We see the engineering and innovation steps taken by the internationally distributed teams competing to land a spacecraft on the Moon and vie for additional prizes.  We highlight the human spirit of competition and collaboration as teams take on this audacious challenge. Who will win the $30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE? The audience is taken through a successful launch, landing and lunar surface travel. The show ends with a stunning glimpse of a plausible scenario for our future on the Moon. 

Bad Astronomy
Length:  40 Minutes

BadAstronomyLearn about the Cosmos while debunking common misconceptions about the Universe! Interesting for astronomers of every age, and this show will make "good" astronomers of us all!

Black Holes
Length: 37 Minutes

BlackHoles10annivBlack Holes takes you on a fully immersive journey through one of the most mystifying, awe-inspiring phenomena in the universe: a black hole. Where do they come from? Where do they go? How do we find them? Is there one on Earth’s horizon? What was Einstein’s connection to them? Learn all about these mysterious objects using the latest in full-dome, 3D animation visualization technology.

Chasing the Ghost Particle
Length: 20 minutes

ChasingtheGhostParticleDeep in the ice at the heart of Antarctica, IceCube, the biggest and strangest detector in the world waits for mysterious messengers from the cosmos. Scientists are using tiny and elusive particles called neutrinos to explore the most extreme places in the universe. These ghostly neutrinos give us an exclusive way to study powerful cosmic engines like exploding stars and black holes. In this show, stunning simulations of the most energetic places in our universe, and the galaxies around us, are the prelude to a thrilling journey inside IceCube, looking for traces of neutrino collisions in the ice. From one of the most remote locations on Earth to the unexplored regions of the cosmos, “Chasing the Ghost Particle: From the South Pole to the Edge of the Universe” will take you on a journey you won’t forget.

Cosmic Castaways
Length: 20 minutes

CosmicCastawaysThere are places where the night sky has no constellations. No Orion, no Big Dipper, nothing but a few lonely, far away stars and a few faint, ghostly patches of light. Most stars lie within the crowded boundaries of galaxies, travelling with their brothers and sisters in a vast galactic family. But some find themselves on their own, deep within voids between the galaxies. These are the cosmic castaways. This show is an original production of the Ward Beecher Planetarium and is based on the research of YSU’s resident astrophysicists Dr. John Feldmeier and Dr. Patrick Durrell.

Cosmic Origins Spectrograph
Length: 28 minutes

CosmicOriginsSpectrographCosmic Origins Spectrograph is a 28-minute fulldome look at the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph instrument installed on the Hubble Space Telescope in 2009 during Servicing Mission 4, as well as the science behind its utility. The show covers the basics of spectroscopy at a high level, and touches on the processing of galactic and extragalactic gas. Other topics include the use of quasars as background light sources, cosmic evolution, and the development of large scale structure.

Cosmic Journey
Length: 37 Minutes

Cosmic JourneyCosmic Journey tells the story of the universe in a touching, personal way. Drift through images from the Hubble Space Telescope and other NASA Great Observatories in a fulldome experience like no other.

The Cowboy Astronomer
Length: 40 Minutes

Cowboy AstronomerJoin cowboy poet Baxter Black as he investigates the night sky with the planetarium show Cowboy Asronomer. Take a tour of the night sky, pausing at the important constellations, listen to the various modern and native american stories behind those constellations and find an understanding of the motions of the sky.

The Dark Matter Mystery
Length: 40 minutes

DarkMatterMysteryWhat keeps Galaxies together? What are the building blocks of the Universe? What makes the Universe look the way it looks today? Researchers all around the world try to answer these questions. We know today that approximately a quarter of the Universe is filled with a mysterious glue: Dark Matter. We know that it is out there. But we have no idea what it is made out of. This planetarium show takes you on the biggest quest of contemporary astrophysics. You will see why we know that dark matter exists, and how this search is one of the most challenging and exciting searches science has to offer. Join the scientists on their hunt for Dark Matter with experiments in space and deep underground. Will they be able to solve the Dark Matter Mystery?

Distant Worlds, Alien Life
Length: 53 minutes

DistantWorldsAlienLifeThe night sky is a view of infinity. Does alien life exist out there? Nothing we can ask about the universe is so important for our understanding of the world. In the show we examine the conditions for a habitable zone starting the journey in our own solar system. Then we imagine a tour to some of the recently discovered exoplanets orbiting other stars in the Milky Way. What might be essential for life on distant moons or planets and how could we detect it? We get an impression of the importance of telescopes, Mars rovers like “Curiosity” and space probes for these challenging studies.

Flight to the Moon - LRO/LCROSS
Length: 9 minutes

Flight to the MoonSalt Lake City's Clark Planetarium and NASA have partnered to create a mini-show about NASA’s LRO and LCROSS missions to the Moon. In 2009, two unmanned spacecraft, the LRO (Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter) and LCROSS (Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite) launched together to explore the Moon in new ways. The LRO spacecraft continues to map the moon in unprecedented detail. LCROSS delivered the Centaur impactor into a shaded lunar crater (called “Cabeus”) near the lunar south pole, creating a plume for the spacecraft to fly into and collect data to look for water. This post-impact version has been updated to include results from the LCROSS mission and orbital photography from LRO.

From Earth to the Universe
Length: 32 minutes

From Earth to the UniverseThe night sky, both beautiful and mysterious, has been the subject of campfire stories, ancient myths and awe for as long as there have been people. A desire to comprehend the Universe may well be humanity’s oldest shared intellectual experience. Yet only recently have we truly begun to grasp our place in the vast cosmos. To learn about this journey of celestial discovery, from the theories of the ancient Greek astronomers to today’s grandest telescopes, we invite you to experience From Earth to the Universe.
Length: 45 Minutes

GalaxiesWritten and narrated by renowned astronomer and author Timothy Ferris, "Galaxies" is a journey through the Milky Way and the universe beyond. This show demonstrates the overall structure of our universe on the grandest of all scales. Incorporating spectacular photography from observatories around the world, "Galaxies" looks at the interactions between galaxies, the varied structure of galaxies, galaxies with very active star forming regions, and much more. Also investigated are super-massive black holes, the birth and death of stars, and the age of the universe. The program also includes a look at the stars and constellations visible in the summer sky, including a glimpse of the stars as seen from Earth's southern hemisphere.

Galileo: The Power of the Telescope
Length: 30 minutes

GalileoTPOTTTwo eyes and two pieces of glass revolutionized human understanding 400 years ago. The eyes belonged to Galileo Galilei, and the curved pieces of glass were the lenses of his telescope. In Galileo: The Power of the Telescope – a Daniel M. Soref Planetarium original production – you'll learn Galileo's personal and powerful story, and explore how his discoveries displaced long-held views about the universe.

Travel back in time to Pisa, Italy, to experience Galileo’s early experiments with gravity and the laws of motion, his advocacy of the idea that the Earth revolves around the sun (still an absurd notion to many in the 1600’s), and his work with early telescopes. Learn how his keen observations culminated in The Starry Messenger, an early masterpiece in which Galileo described all his dazzling discoveries in a straightforward, easy to understand way. Narrated by Dava Sobel, author of the award-winning biography Galileo's Daughter.

The Hot and Energetic Universe
Length: 30 Minutes

HotandEnergeticUniverseThe planetarium documentary “The Hot and Energetic Universe” presents with the use of immersive visualizations and real images the achievements of the modern astronomy, the most advanced terrestrial and orbital observatories, the basic principles electromagnetic radiation and the natural phenomena related to the High Energy Astrophysics. High Energy Astrophysics plays a key role in understanding the universe. These radiations reveal the processes in the hot and violent universe. High Energy Astrophysics probes hot gas in clusters of galaxies, which are the most massive objects in the universe. It also probes hot gas accreting around supermassive black holes in the centers of galaxies. Finally, high energy radiation provides important information about our own galaxy, neutron stars, supernova remnants and stars like our Sun which emit copious amounts of high energy radiation. 

Length: 32 Minutes

IBEX"IBEX: Search for the Edge of the Solar System" details the IBEX spacecraft's exploration of the outer solar system using energetic neutral atom (ENA) imaging to create the first global maps of interactions between the million mile-per-hour solar wind and the low-density material between the stars, known as the interstellar medium. Using these data, researchers will examine the structures and dynamics of the outer heliosphere and address a serious challenge facing human exploration by studying the region that shields Earth from the majority of galactic cosmic ray radiation.

The Incredible Sun
Length: 11 Minutes
Every second the Sun emits million times more energy than the world consumes every year. Where does such a huge amount of power come from? Discover our star through the breathtaking timelapses. Thanks to the real images taken by the Solar Dynamics Observatory and processed by advanced mathematical methods, you will experience the true nature of the Sun and find out that it is far from being as calm as it seems at first glance. The Sun’s activity, pronounced by terrific solar flares, sunspots and coronal mass ejections, influences our planet, by producing impressive auroras but also by damaging distribution networks and communication satellites. Is it a threat to us, then?

Journey to Mars
Length: 11 Minutes
Journey to Mars
 Prepare your students for STEM-related career opportunities in the future. Interest them in pushing the boundaries of technology and innovation. NASA's fleet of Mars robotic explorers are paving the way for human exploration of the Solar System in the coming decades. Have your students join NASA in preparing for a monumental journey of a lifetime – to Mars!

Out There: The Quest For Extrasolar Worlds
Length: 31 Minutes          
For thousands of years, mankind thought that the Earth was the center of the Universe. Thanks to our curiosity, imagination and urge to explore, we now know that planets like our Earth are nothing special in the cosmos. The Sun is just one ordinary star among hundreds of billions in our galaxy, the Milky Way. With the world’s most powerful telescopes, we are able to explore more and more of the Universe. What we have found so far has surpassed even the wildest expectations of scientists as well as authors of science fiction. Most stars have planets — it turns out they are more common than we thought. A huge diversity of different worlds is out there, just waiting to be discovered.

Phantom Of The Universe
Length: 28 Minutes

PhantomOfTheUniversePhantom of the Universe is a new planetarium show that showcases an exciting exploration of dark matter, from the Big Bang to its anticipated discovery at the Large Hadron Collider. The show reveals the first hints of its existence through the eyes of Fritz Zwicky, the scientist who coined the term “dark matter.” It describes the astral choreography witnessed by Vera Rubin in the Andromeda galaxy and then plummets deep underground to see the most sensitive dark matter detector on Earth, housed in a former gold mine. From there, it journeys across space and time to the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, speeding alongside particles before they collide in visually stunning explosions of light and sound, while learning how scientists around the world are collaborating to track down the constituents of dark matter. From the journey of protons racing through the world’s largest particle collider in Europe to up-close views of the Big Bang and emergent cosmos, Phantom of the Universe will immerse you in the search for dark matter.

The Pluto Story
Length: 7 Minutes

PlutoStoryA look at the popular ex-planet and why it was reclassified ans a dwarf planet.

Relics of the Big Bang
Length: 36 Minutes

RelicsoftheBigBangRelics of the Big Bang is a show designed and produced by researchers in the Michigan State University Department of Physics and Astronomy and the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory in conjunction with Abrams Planetarium staff, with the assistance of MSU students in many fields including graphic design, narrative writing and sound engineering.  Funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation, Relics of the Big Bang explores the still-mysterious beginnings of our universe and the effect which current research (much of which involves MSU researchers) is having and will have upon the unravelling of these mysteries.

The StarGazer
Length: 37 Minutes
TheStargazerCome along on a journey to the stars with University of Illinois astronomer Jim Kaler. Nichelle Nichols and Dr. Kaler narrate this three-part personal look at astronomy. The show begins with a child's curiosity, moves on to the science of gravity, light, the spectrum, and how they help us decipher the lifestyles of the stars, then ends with reflections on the deeper meanings of astronomy in our own lives.

The Sun: Our Living Star
Length: 25 Minutes
TheSunOurLivingStarThe Sun has shone on our world for four and a half billion years. The light that warms our skin today has been felt by every person who has ever lived. It is our nearest star and our planet’s powerhouse, the source of the energy that drives our winds, our weather and all life. The passage of the Sun’s fiery disc across the sky — day by day, month by month — was the only way to keep track of time for countless past civilizations. Don’t be fooled by the terminology; although it is a typical dwarf star, the Sun consumes 600 million tons of hydrogen each second and is 500 times as massive as all the planets combined. Discover the secrets of our star in this planetarium show and experience never-before-seen images of the Sun’s violent surface in immersive fulldome format.

Length: 20 Minutes

SunstruckOur Sun produces the energy that makes life on Earth possible. How does it do this? What is the Sun comprised of and how does it affect the Earth in other ways? Solar storms are a threat to our very existence, and the eventual death of the Sun will mean the end of our planet. How is this similar to the lives and deaths of stars throughout our galaxy? Discover the wonders of our sun. Its incredible energy has supported life on earth for millennia, but is now threatening our technology and way of life. Travel to the distant future to discover our sun’s connection to the universe’s cosmic cycle of life and death.

Two Small Pieces of Glass
Length: 25 Minutes

Two Small Pieces of GlassIn 1608, a German-Dutch spectacle maker named Hans Lippershey aligned a pair of lenses—one in front of the other—and noticed objects viewed through the device looked larger than when viewed with the unaided eye. The following year, Galileo Galilei built an instrument that magnified ten times, and directed his telescope to the Moon. Two Small Pieces of Glass puts you in the middle of a modern star party, discovering the wonders that even a small amateur telescope can reveal and learning about the scientists that made such views possible.

Written in the Stars - Chinese Art in the Sky
Length: 35 Minutes

WITSDiscover a new way of appreciating the stars in this spellbinding show created by the ThinkTank Planetarium in collaboration with the Birmingham Chinese Community Centre, Hong Kong Space Museum, Macao Science Centre and Birmingham City University. See beautiful original artwork by local Chinese artist Pak-Keung Wan and marvel at the most ancient celestial symbols known to humanity. Be magically transported to Dunhuang (China) to re-live the thrill of a dragon devouring the Sun during a total solar eclipse.