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  • Satellite Evolution

New Home Planet gallery opens on Earth Day, celebrating satellite's impact on saving our world

The National Space Centre’s Home Planet gallery has officially opened today, 22 April 2022, 62 years after the first Earth Day. It will explore how satellite data is vital for managing our relationship with the air, water and land of our home in space.

The new gallery aims to inspire visitors to consider how we can all live more harmoniously with our home in space following their visit to the Centre by telling the story of the human impact on the environment.

Kevin Yates, Head of Exhibition Design at the National Space Centre, said: "It’s been a privilege to work with such dedicated and creative teams, both here at the Centre and the businesses and organisations we have engaged with throughout the development. They have pulled out all the stops to deliver this highly interactive Home Planet gallery in the most challenging of times. Of course, the vision we had for this project is only now a reality because of the generosity and support of our amazing funders.

“We’ve designed the gallery to take visitors on a journey aimed at deepening our appreciation for the beauty and wonder of this living planet. On that journey we face the reality of what human activity is doing to the natural environment, and how satellite technology is vital for helping us better manage our relationship with our home in space.

“The journey concludes on an aspirational note, with visitors considering the individual and collective changes they are willing to make to live more harmoniously with our Home Planet."

The gallery features an interactive projection floor featuring ice, water, and sea creatures that respond to visitor movements, whilst a large screen above displays the many wonderful habitats and forms of life on our home planet.

The main show will introduce the theme of rising global temperatures with a timelapse running from pre-industrial times through to present day. As the video plays, a giant thermometer in the area near the audience responds according to the temperature portrayed at points during the show.

An art installation by local artist Michelle Reader based on the ‘Great Wave off Kanagawa’ but made entirely from recycled materials will highlight the human impact on the environment.

Visitors will discover the health status of the planet through hands-on displays and infographics, many based on satellite data obtained by observing the air, water and land of our planet.

The Marble Run Pledge will use an interactive cartoon to outline individual and collective choices we can make to invest in a better future and live more harmoniously with our home in space. Visitors will then be given an opportunity to make pledges that will benefit the natural environment. Pledges that demonstrate a high level of commitment are rewarded with an Earth Marble being released into a spectacular marble run, which will add to a cumulative count of visitor pledges. A display to the right will inform visitors of actions the National Space Centre is taking including the over 700 solar panels on its roof.

The Centre’s old WeatherPOD has received an upgrade. The new VideoBooth will place visitors at the heart of a news production reporting on environmental action from the past, present, and future, presenting a vision of the future we must choose to help our Home Planet.

Project Marble is responsible for the development of the Home Planet gallery, education and community engagement programmes, planetarium show, Changing Places accessible toilet facility, new Schools Learning Centre (the POD) and new audio-visual system. It helped sustain jobs when the Centre was closed and create new jobs for new programme development.

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