Museum of Science & Industry (Tampa)

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Museum of Science & Industry
MOSI logo hi res reverse.jpg
Museum of Science & Industry (Tampa) is located in Florida
Museum of Science & Industry (Tampa)
Location within Florida
Established 1982
Location Tampa, Florida
Coordinates 28°03′12″N 82°24′14″W / 28.053333°N 82.403889°W / 28.053333; -82.403889
Website www.mosi.org

The Museum of Science & Industry (MOSI) is a science museum in Tampa, Florida, USA. It is the location of Florida's only IMAX Dome Theatre.

History[edit]

MOSI was completed in 1980 and permanently opened to the public in 1982.

Accreditation[edit]

The Museum of Science & Industry was reaccredited in April 2008 by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM).[1]

Contributors[edit]

MOSI's funding stems from private donations and support from Hillsborough County and the City of Tampa.

Partners[edit]

The museum is located directly across the street from the University of South Florida which partners with the museum in many research fellowships.

Educational programs[edit]

Summer Science Camps. MOSI offers summer educational camps usually lasting from June through August. These camps range in various scientific topics from outdoor wild adventures to learning about sea creatures to creating animation. The camps are designed for students Pre-K through twelfth grade. MOSI's Summer Science Camp is the largest single-site science and technology camp in the United States.[citation needed] In addition to youth programs, MOSI also offers senior programs.

Community Engagement[edit]

Hispanic Scientist of the Year Award[edit]

Catering to the large, diverse community of Tampa Bay (and Florida at large), MOSI recognizes Hispanic Scientists through an annual award.[2] The scientists attend Meet the Scientists Days, and they speak to children about their paths to the STEM fields. The Hispanic Scientist of the Year Award has been awarded since 2001.

Conservation[edit]

MOSI encourages environmental conservation through exhibits, from water conservation to Florida-friendly gardens.[3]

Senior Citizens[edit]

Even though much of the programming is aimed towards children, MOSI wants senior citizens and older adults to keep learning and growing with their Life Enrichment programs.[4]

Current exhibits[edit]

Kids in Charge![edit]

The Kids in Charge! features several different learning skills to cover a number of scientific concepts. The four main exhibits, Activate, Investigate, Kids Create, and Fields to Meals are all found at Kids in Charge!.

The Kids in Charge! exhibit was headed by an advisory board consisting of 26 children. The Board included children between the ages of 10 and 17. The kids provided feedback and the innovative ideas for the exhibit.


Notable parts include the bed of nails and the tug of war exhibit. In the bed of nails, people are able to lie on the bed unharmed because the weight of the individual is evenly distributed over the nails. The tug-of-war attraction is a game of pulling of rope to one side, but the device that the rope is connected to acts as a lever, which causes one side to always be the winning side.

The exhibit hosts an annual anniversary event which features interactive educational activities and entertainment by local groups like The Garbage-Men.

Sponsors continually contribute towards the various exhibits at MOSI. The cost of the Kids in Charge! exhibit was about three million dollars.

The Gulf Coast Hurricane[edit]

Inside the wind generator

The hurricane exhibit at MOSI allows people to experience winds that range from a harmless rain storm to a Category one hurricane. This exhibit is designed to raise awareness of the intensity of a storm. The museum refers to it as a “Get Smart, Get Ready” opportunity to enlighten people on how to do just that, learn and prepare for a storm. As the wind increases, a wall chart indicates the Beaufort Wind Scale and what could be expected of the winds that are being experienced. Each wind increment is tagged with an event (i.e. you cannot hold an umbrella at a wind speed of twenty-five miles per hour).

The wind is generated above the room then brought down through vents and fans using recycled air. The maximum sustained winds top at a category one hurricane, or 74 miles per hour (119 km/h).

Bio-Works Butterfly Garden[edit]

The outside of the exhibit

The Bio-Works Butterfly Garden and Alternate Waste Treatment exhibit was added to the Museum of Science and Industry in 1996. The exhibit consists of a butterfly garden and a self-sustaining fish pond. The garden is home to over 30 different species of butterflies and several aquatic species, most of which are native to Florida. Several thousand native Florida butterflies are raised each year in a publicly viewable laboratory. These butterflies include Zebra Longwings, the Florida state butterfly, and Giant Swallowtail and Tiger Swallowtails[disambiguation needed], two of the largest North American butterfly species.

The Zebra Longwing Butterfly

The pond and large white tanks in front of the garden are part of a model wastewater treatment facility designed to purify wastewater in a simulated wetland environment. Waste water is fed through pumps into a series of underground anaerobic and aerobic purification tanks where waste particles are broken down by bacteria. The water is then pumped into a series of above ground aerobic tanks and then into a settling tank, called the clarifier, which settles remaining solids out of the water for further processing. The clean water is then chlorinated to remove remaining bacteria and then dechlorinated to remove chemicals that will be harmful to plant and animal life. Finally, the clean water is pumped back into a fish pond and the cycle continues. Of the fish in the pond, the tilapia are the most unusual. The tilapia are the third, fourth and fifth generations of descendants of the first fish born in space. This fish, named Amigo, was born on John Glenn's last space mission, STS-95, and was returned to earth so that its reproduction could be observed.[citation needed]

The Amazing You![edit]

MetLife Foundation's Amazing You! is a state-of-the-art, 13,000-square-foot (1,200 m2) exhibition about health and wellness at each developmental life stage. The exhibit informs about developmental milestones, what it takes to stay healthy at each stage, and how to return to wellness after an illness, surgery or a disability. It features medical conditions and diseases according to prevalence during each developmental stage of life.

The first phase of this permanent exhibition is located in MOSI's third floor exhibit gallery. The first phase focuses on the beginning of life to adolescence life stages. The second phase is located next to the first phase. The second phase focuses on the young adult to end of life stages.

WeatherQuest Sponsored by Bay News 9[edit]

Children participate in a mock Bay News 9 news cast

Bay News 9 Project Weather Weather Quest is an exhibit within Disasterville at the Museum of Science and Industry. The permanent exhibit features a Bay News 9 news desk and meteorologist green screen. This exhibit features 10,000 sq ft (930 m2). of interactive exhibits on the science of natural disasters, how it affects lives and property, and what can be done to minimize property damage and loss of life. The exhibition covers nine disaster genres: floods, hail storms, hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, wildfires, volcanoes, earthquakes, and tsunamis.

IMAX Dome Theatre[edit]

The outside of the IMAX Dome at MOSI

MOSI’s IMAX Dome Theatre opened on July 1, 1995. Architect Antoine Predock designed the building. The theater is one of 250 around the world, and is the only IMAX Theatre in the state of Florida with a dome screen. The picture is ten times that of a standard theater. From the center of the dome the IMAX screen completely surrounds the viewer and can be seen in all fields of vision. Because of the enormity of the presentation, with over 10,500 square feet (980 m2) of visual imagery, viewers are warned of possible dizziness, and are not permitted to re-enter the theater once the lights have gone out and the presentation has begun. MOSI’s IMAX Dome Theatre features 340 seats and an 82-foot (25 m) hemispherical movie screen housed within a distinctive 85-foot (26 m) blue stainless dome.

The Saunders Planetarium[edit]

The planetarium's current projector

The Saunders Planetarium was established in 1992 and is currently the only planetarium in Tampa. Thanks to a gift by the Saunders Foundation and construction by the R.R. Simmons Construction Corporation, the Planetarium opened its doors on October 3, 1992. In July 2009, the planitarium moved to a new location in Kids In Charge! Since then, nearly 700,000 people have seen its shows.

The planetarium shows are all educational, focusing on constellations and events related to and around upcoming holidays. On Saturday evenings MOSI plays host to “Skywatch” events. Skywatch is free to the public and allows guests the opportunity to use the museum’s telescopes to take a closer look at the Milky Way Galaxy.

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