The breathtaking Space Show, Cosmic Collisions, narrated by award-winning actor, director, and producer Robert Redford, concluded its three-year run at the Hayden Planetarium in the Frederick Phineas and Sandra Priest Rose Center for Earth and Space on July 3, 2009.
A spectacular immersive theater experience, Cosmic Collisions launches visitors on a thrilling trip through space and timewell beyond the calm face of the night skyto explore cosmic collisions, hypersonic impacts that drive the dynamic and continuing evolution of the universe. Groundbreaking scientific simulations and visualizations based on cutting-edge research developed by Museum astrophysicists, scientists at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and other international colleaguesmany seen for the first timedepict the dramatic and explosive encounters that shaped our solar system, changed the course of life on Earth, and continue to transform our galaxy. The new show explores the full range of space collisions, past, present, and future.
Viewers will witness the violent face of our Sun, imaged by NASA satellites, that produces enormous ejections of material from our star towards our planet. The resulting subatomic clashes, as streams of charged particles from the Sun strike the Earth's magnetic field, produce the eerie glow of the aurora borealis and the aurora australis that fill the Hayden dome. Cosmic Collisions will also show the creation of our Moon some five billion years ago when a wandering planetoid struck Earth; the violent meeting of two stars at the edge of the galaxy; and the future collision of our Milky Way galaxy with our closest neighbor, the Andromeda spiral galaxy, a cosmic crash that will produce a new giant elliptical galaxy billions of years from now.
Audiences will feel the ground shake beneath them as they experience a thrilling recreation of the meteorite impact that hastened the end of the Age of Dinosaurs 65 million years ago and cleared the way for mammals like us to thrive. Another dramatic sequence highlights a frightening future scenario where humanity desperately attempts to divert the path of an oncoming "doomsday" asteroid headed on a collision course with Earth.
Space Show times are as follows:
Monday - Friday: Every half hour, 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. except Wednesdays (first show on Wednesday begins at 11:00 a.m.)
Saturday - Sunday: Every half hour, 10:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Hours are subject to change.
Cosmic Collisions was developed by the American Museum of Natural History, New York, in collaboration with the Denver Museum of Nature & Science; GOTO, Inc., Tokyo, Japan; the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum.
Cosmic Collisions was created by the American Museum of Natural History with the major support and partnership of NASA, Science Mission Directorate, Heliophysics Division.
Graphics processing technology provided by NVIDIA.