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The U.S. Air Force Academy Planetarium is temporarily closed to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus. Please CLICK HERE for updates.
With state-of-the-art projection technology and immersive surround sound, the Academy’s Planetarium enhances our K-20 STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Outreach and cadet education.



Hubble Telescope’s Anniversary Activities

Did you know Hubble has orbited the Earth nearly 165,000 times in its 30 years? That’s a lot of discoveries!

Our planetarium was selected by The Space Telescope Science Institute as one of a limited number of planetaria and science museums to receive the Hubble 30th Anniversary embargoed image!

Compass image for Cosmic Reef - NASA

In 2020, the Hubble Space Telescope achieves its 30th year in orbit. Hubble’s unique design, allowing it to be repaired and upgraded with advanced technology by astronauts, has made it one of NASA’s longest-living and most valuable observatories, beaming transformational astronomical images to Earth for decades.

Although many planned anniversary celebration activities have been postponed due to COVID-19, there are some great resources available:

Deep Field: The Impossible Magnitude of our Universe: This film will be published to Facebook for a Facebook Live Watch Party at 10 am MT on April 24. The film is a first-of-its-kind collaboration between Grammy® award-winning composer & conductor Eric Whitacre and scientists from the Space Telescope Science Institute. The score and film paint the incredible story of the Hubble Deep Field. Turning its gaze to a tiny and seemingly dark area of space (around one 24-millionth of the sky) for an 11-day long period, the Hubble Space Telescope revealed over 3,000 galaxies that had never previously been seen, each one composed of hundreds of billions of stars. Click here

YouTube Live Stream: To participate in Hubble’s 30th anniversary, The Space Telescope Science Institute is hosting a YouTube live stream event on April 24, starting at 11 am MT. Dr. Frank Summers and Dr. Elena Sabbi will give a quick Hubble overview, share the 30th anniversary image and visualization, and take questions. Click here

Space Telescope Science Institute’s Hubble 30th website resources: Click here

Art Activity: Parents, Kids, and Hubble Fans Everywhere! Did you know that Friday is the Hubble Space Telescope’s 30th Birthday? Wish Hubble a Happy Birthday by creating your own version of a favorite Hubble image and posting a birthday card for our amazing telescope! Display your creation in a window for neighbors to enjoy. Share on facebook and twitter
Need ideas? Check out a few of Hubble’s iconic images. Click here

 


Science at Home

Our doors are temporarily closed but the curiosity and fun can continue.  We can’t wait to welcome you back to the Planetarium and STEM Center when circumstances allow it but, in the meantime, we’ll be here to ignite wonder and curiosity from our dome to your home.

Science is everywhere and can be done anywhere! While you’re at home, we encourage you to explore the science around you with your research team (a.k.a. your family). Whether you’re in the kitchen or in the backyard, there are lots of opportunities to ask questions, make observations and test theories.

Thanks to our membership in the Giant Screen Cinema Association, we are bringing you the following resources.  You can stream films, meet experts through Facebook Live and YouTube Live events, access science demonstrations, and find activity kits online.

Fun, educational content

Enjoy free, family-friendly films—Dinosaurs Alive!Mummies: Secrets of the Pharaohs and Wild Ocean—in English, French or Spanish courtesy of our friends at Giant Screen Films and D3D Cinema. The best part? Each film comes with a downloadable education guide that includes easy, try-it-at-home activities.

Click here to watch in English

Click here to watch in French

Click here to watch in Spanish

Click here to watch in English

Click here to watch in French

Click here to watch in Spanish

Click here to watch in English

Click here to watch in French

Click here to watch in Spanish

OTHER RESOURCES:

From the CEO of TELUS World of Science Edmonton

Join CEO, Alan Nursall, for Alan’s Science at Home daily experiments on Facebook, click here

From Cosmic Pictures

Superpower Dogs star Henry took over the Superpower Dogs Facebook page in early April. The two-week takeover concluded with a very special Facebook Live featuring Henry and his trainer Ian from their cabin in Whistler, BC, Canada. The Facebook appearance can be viewed at click here

From Producer Spring Garden Pictures & Distributor BIG & Digital

This Earth Day, the star of Watermelon Magic, Sylvie Hoffmann, and the director of the film (her father Richard) will be conducting a live demonstration of how to start watermelon and other seedlings from their family’s greenhouse. Start time is 2PM MT on Wednesday, April 22. Click here

From IMAX Corporation

To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the IMAX® film Hubble and in support of museum and science center exhibition partners, IMAX will share special interviews, photos and clips for IMAX fans, space enthusiasts, educators and students. Join them on April 25 at 11:00 am MT on the IMAX YouTube channel for a crowd-sourced Q&A with Hubble experts and behind-the-scenes insights. Click here

From Producer/Distributor SK Films

SK Films is offering a free “Explore at Home” kit filled with science-based activities, entertaining and informative videos and full episodes of The Water Brothers. There’s something for kids of any age. Click here

From Producer Oceanic Research Group

If you are looking for marine science education with educator guides, check out Jonathan Bird’s show: click here

From Producer/Distributor MacGillivray Freeman Films

MacGillivray Freeman Films (MFF) partner, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), who together produced Dream Big: Engineering Our World, created a new program called “Everyday Engineering: STEM@Home.” They took some of the educational activities created for Dream Big and made an “at home” version, making it easy for parents and teachers to use. Some videos are also available to help conduct these activities at home. Explore these fun STEM activities at this link: click here

Explore all “50 Hands-on Activities” created for Dream Big at this link: click here

To help parents conduct these activities at home, another Dream Big partner, DiscoverE, put together a program to help. Visit “4 Easy Tips to Having Fun Doing STEM Activities at Home” at this link: click here

Ten short educational videos, around 5 minutes each, were also created for Dream Big and can be viewed on YouTube: click here

Planetarium Information

Free Public Shows

Shows are offered free to the public, Monday-Friday, at 12:30 and 1:30 p.m. No tickets or reservations are required. These shows are available on a first come, first served basis. There are 110 seats with additional space for wheelchairs. No pets are allowed; however, service animals specifically trained to aid a person with a disability are welcome. Food, drinks and gum are strictly prohibited at all times.

Shows are subject to cancellation without notice due to inclement weather and cadet education. The Planetarium is closed on weekends, graduation day and Federal holidays.

  Now Playing

Monday 12:30 p.m.
1:30 p.m.
Dream Big: Engineering our World
Fighter Pilot
Tuesday 12:30 p.m.
1:30 p.m.
Superpower Dogs
Black Holes
Wednesday 12:30 p.m.
1:30 p.m.
Apollo 11: First Steps Edition
Humpback Whales
Thursday 12:30 p.m.
1:30 p.m.
Robots
Astronaut
Friday 12:30 p.m.
1:30 p.m.
Volcanoes
Great Bear Rainforest

 

Student/School Shows

Elementary, Middle and High Schools may reserve shows for their students on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Shows are typically followed by a 30 minute interactive presentation with a professional astronomer. When requesting a school visit, teachers may select from one of the following shows for their students: (see video descriptions below)

  • Astronaut
  • Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity
  • Eclipses and Phases of the Moon
  • Experience the Aurora
  • Journey to the Centre of the Milky Way by ESO
  • Two Small Pieces of Glass

To book a school visit, click here. For questions, email planetarium@usafa.edu

Attention teachers: For a limited time, we are offering special showings of Dream Big: Engineering Our World for your students. Bridge-building kits and transportation scholarships are available on a first-come, first-served basis during this promotion. For more information, call Judy Cara at (719) 333-3361.


Contact Us

Judy Cara
Project Manager
U.S. Air Force Academy
2304 Cadet Drive, Suite 3100
USAFA, CO 80840-5002

(719) 333-3361
planetarium@usafa.edu

Directions

To reach the Planetarium, leave Interstate 25 at exit 156 and enter the U.S. Air Force Academy through the North Gate, which is open to visitors from 5:30 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. every day. You will need your driver’s license or military ID and proof of vehicle insurance to enter the base. Please be prepared for potential security measures such as vehicle inspections. Foreign national visitors with a passport will need to go to the Pass & Registration Center, just outside the South Gate, to obtain a pass. For more information, click here.

Once on base, continue driving straight on Academy Drive for 4 miles and then turn left to park in the visitor lot for Arnold Hall and the Cadet Chapel. For an interactive campus map, click here. To the north of the visitor parking, there’s a building with a white dome – that’s the Planetarium! Please follow the steps to the front door or use the winding path to the left of the steps for handicapped access.

DO NOT USE A GPS SYSTEM TO REACH THE PLANETARIUM SINCE IT WILL LEAD YOU TO A RESTRICTED AREA.