Connecticut Science Center
The Connecticut Science Center is a nine-story museum located on the Connecticut River in Hartford, Connecticut designed by César Pelli & Associates. It opened on June 12, 2009. The building has a total 154,000 square feet (14,300 m2) including 40,000 square feet (3,700 m2) of interactive exhibits consisting of videos, audios, visuals, tactile components, programs, and live demonstrations.
Planning for the Connecticut Science Center began in 2001. The Center's goals are to promote the study of science by the state's youth and to encourage urban revitalization in Hartford. The state of Connecticut provided more than $100 million of support for the $165 million center, and the balance was donated by businesses, foundations and individuals.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification
The Connecticut Science Center is the first science center to generate most of its needed power from an on-site fuel cell. This step was a major one for the Connecticut Science Center and its steps towards being a Gold Level LEED) Certified green building.
The 200-kilowatt fuel cell, built by UTC Power, a United Technologies Corp. business based in South Windsor, generates 100 percent of the electricity the science center uses. The PureCell System is fueled with natural gas and doesn't use combustion. Instead, the gas undergoes an electrochemical process that produces direct current electricity, heat and water.
Exploring Space This exhibit defies easy explanation and is truly multimedia. Visitors can examine the moon's ancient craters up close, see a moon rock, strap into a flight chair and take control of the world's first ever Mars Flyover. They can feel try out a Venture to a Black Hole and check out a supernova as they navigate their way through the galaxy.
Forces in Motion
Invention Dimension This hands-on gallery features inventions and inventors from Connecticut, where visitors can explore and demonstrate for themselves the process of invention.
KidSpace An adventure filled gallery for kids age 3–6. It features “I Spy” author Walter Wick's search-and-find activities; swirling, whooshing and cascading water play areas, plus a hands-on magnetic ball wall. It is all hands-on to invite experimentation, discovery and interaction.
Picture of Health This exhibit promotes an understanding of the latest research and technological related to health so visitors can more easily distinguish between bad health habits and good ones that can truly improve the quality of their lives. This gallery also contains a state-of-the-art Health Lab for hands on exploration of the human body professional grade equipment.
River of Life This exhibit teaches all about the Connecticut River. New England's largest river is vital to Connecticut's history, economy, ecosystems and future energy needs. In this exhibit visitors enjoy a multimedia interactive exploration of its entire 400-mile (640 km) trek. No wetsuit required.
Sight and Sound Experience This gallery is a funky mixture of art, music and science. There are exhibits where visitors can actually feel sound. There are others where they can hear light. Visitors can use lasers, sophisticated software and the movements of their bodies to create perfect harmonies in all kinds of musical stylings, plus multisensory performance art experiences. It is quite unique.
Maximilian E. and Marion O. Hoffman Foundation Science Theater
A stadium seating style theater that houses over 200 people, the Science Theater has a daily movie schedule filled with 3D films from a variety of science topics. When not running its schedule, it houses conferences, special events, film festivals, and science demonstrations among much more. It has a 30×40 ft screen, a 18,000-watt Dolby® sound system and utilizes Dolby® 3D technology and glasses.
- "Even before opening, cutbacks at science museum". USA Today. 2009-06-12. Retrieved 2009-08-13.
- "Connecticut Science Center Becomes FIRST in Nation to use Fuel Cell for the Majority of its Power". UTC Power Press Releases. Retrieved 2010-03-23.
- Connecticut Science Center official site