Welcome to the UPGRADED DuPont Planetarium!
Two Small Pieces of Glass!
Celebrate the work of those who used telescopes during the past 400 years. The largest observatories in the world use these instruments to explore the mysteries of the universe. Join two young people at a star party as they learn how telescopes continue to expand our understanding of the Universe. A local astronomer teaches them how telescopes work and how the telescope has changed from Galileo's modified spyglass - using two small pieces of glass - to the huge, space and land-based devices of today, like NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.
Appropriate for all ages
Cosmic Colors will take you on a wondrous journey across the electromagnetic spectrum. Discover the many reasons for color—like why the sky is blue and why Mars is red. Take a tour within a plant leaf and journey inside the human eye. Investigate x-rays at your doctor's office and at a monstrous black hole. Get ready for an amazing adventure under a rainbow of cosmic light!
Target audience is 5th grade and above.
NOTE: Observatory Open After Public Shows.
If it is dark, and weather permitting, the RPSEC Observatory housing the Bechtel Telescope will be open for 30 minutes after public shows. There is no cost for these public observatory sessions.
Magic Tree House: Space Mission
Travel with brother-sister duo, Jack and Annie, in their Magic Tree House as they discover a note that asks them to answer six questions about space. With the help of an astronomer, the Internet, an astronaut, books and the writer of the mysterious note, Jack and Annie go on a wondrous journey of adventure and learning. This beautifully produced show is based on the beloved Magic Tree House book series.
Target audience: Young Children
Seven Wonders - Sponsored by Dr. Rose Lee Hayes & Family
Go back in time and witness the ancient wonders of the world, as they appeared thousands of years ago. Explore the Great Pyramid, stand in the shadow of the towering Colossus and experience the rest of the world's Seven Wonders. We will investigate how these wonders were created and get a glimpse of some of the universe's greatest wonders. This show won four Telly Awards and is narrated by Sean Bean of The Lord of the Rings films.
Target audience: ages 8 and up.
Defying Gravity: It IS Rocket Science!
Join host Apollo Aurora and her science reporters as they explore the science behind rocket power, gravity on other planets, and even monstrous black holes! Robot experts Apple 1-6-8-6 and EGR-1 will also lend a few circuits to explain the force that keeps us humans all grounded. Well, some of the time!
Target audience: ages 8 and up
Come See the New Digistar 6 Planetarium System!!
We are excited to report that we upgraded our planetarium system to a Digistar 6 in September 2017. We have some exciting new shows with plans to acquire other shows. We are looking for show sponsors. Sponsors will be identified on our website and promotional materials for the planetarium. Additionally, sponsors will be identified during the planetarium shows.
The DuPont Planetarium exists to inspire others to explore the majesty of the heavens. Visitors age 4 and up attend public shows presented every Saturday. We encourage our visitors to reserve seats in advance. If you make a reservation, please arrive no later than 20 minutes before the show starts. All unclaimed reservations will be released 10 minutes prior to the show.
While most DuPont Planetarium programs focus on astronomy and encourage exploration of the night sky, one show takes visitors back in time to see the seven ancient wonders of the world and another helps young children learn about weather. All shows involve an enthusiastic presenter who is eager to share the majesty of the heavens with visitors. Digistar Special Effects shows entertain by using the power of the Digistar 6 projectors to create shapes that dance across the dome to lively music.
Each year, thousands of K-12 school children visit the planetarium during the school day for exciting programs that meet science standards. These programs are reserved and scheduled like other student programs at the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center. We also conduct specialized programs for university classes.
The RPSEC Observatory (on the roof of the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center) is open after public shows on Saturday evenings, weather permitting. The Bechtel Telescope housed in the RPSEC Observatory provides views of planets, nebulae and other celestial objects.
Private shows are arranged for educational groups such as scouts, preschools and colleges and for fun events such as birthday parties and company celebrations. To schedule a private showing for your group, see the Plan Your Visit section.