Weston Family Lab for Earth and Space Exploration

The Weston Family Lab for Earth and Space Exploration, a stunning new exhibition and laboratory classroom set in a beautiful glass gallery on the second floor, is now open.

The lab features Science on a Sphere, the brainchild of researchers at NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). The sphere is a six-foot suspended globe, which turns the space into a dynamic and engaging classroom. Every day, LSC STEM educators trained in atmospheric and space science deliver programs for K-12 students and guests tracking real-time conditions on the globe anywhere on Earth’s surface with HD images uploaded directly from NOAA and NASA. For instance, Earth images of tectonic plate motion, melting sea ice, volcanoes, and hurricane paths can be viewed in real time by students and visitors.

Science on a Sphere also demonstrates processes on the other planets and moons in our solar system using the latest data from NASA probes such as New Horizons and Juno. Because the data and information are received live from NASA and NOAA, both agencies have a vested interest in the success of Science on a Sphere and are constantly working to enhance the experience and assist in the development of hands-on learning programs employing the data. The technology also allows us to monitor in real time tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes, tropical storms, and volcanoes and is an excellent tool for conveying vital information about ocean and atmospheric phenomena to the public.