Van Allen Probes: Maryland Science Center Partnership

Program Element / Activity Title:
Van Allen Probes: Maryland Science Center Partnership
E/PO Project Name:
Van Allen Probes
Contact Information:
The Johns Hopkins University
Applied Physics Laboratory
11100 Johns Hopkins Rd, MS-200-E181,
Laurel, MD 20723
Program Element / Activity Website:
Short Description:

SpaceLink at the Maryland Science Center is an informal education and public outreach partner for the Van Allen Probes mission. An instructional PowerPoint was produced for distribution to informal educators at museums, science centers and planetariums across the U.S. with the purpose of providing content information about the Van Allen Probes mission and science objectives, and to help educators in communicating the mission to their audiences. 

Material and activities focusing on the Van Allen Probes mission were provided by the Maryland Science Center to support the pre-launch educator workshop.  The Center’s observatory hosted special event days featuring the Van Allen Probes mission and the current solar maximum (e.g., Solar Plasma Fest); safe solar viewing by several means (white light and hydrogenalpha filtered telescopes and a Sun Spotter) as well as Sun-related activities were provided.  To interact directly with the public, Van Allen Probes mission scientists and E/PO specialists supported the events. The Solar System Exploration Wall, designed and fabricated by the Maryland Science Center and located in the Davis Planetarium queue space, features NASA exploration of the solar system and Sun-Earth connections.  Interactive exhibits are included in the queue area, one activity challenges visitors to arrange the planets in order and size.  Large panel monitors are being programmed with images relating to the Van Allen Probes, with both stills and video.  A spacecraft search activity will encourage visitors to find various spacecraft displayed on the wall mural. 

Program Element / Activity Status
Audience Metrics
Who is the primary audience of your program element / activity?:
Who is the secondary audience of your program element / activity?:
National Priorities and Coordination Approaches as Articulated in CoSTEM:
  • Increase and Sustain Youth and Public Engagement in STEM
Have your evaluation findings / impacts been published? If so, where?:
Not yet. The overall evaluation of the Van Allen Probes E/PO effort is ongoing. The report will be published at the conclusion of the overall project.