Science Center of Iowa Announces New Traveling Exhibition Has Landed

Science Center of Iowa Announces New Traveling Exhibition Has Landed

  • Wednesday May 11, 2022

NASA’s “Roving With Perseverance” Roadshow

NASA’S Jet Propulsion Laboratory team members onsite opening weekend

May 11, 2022

As part of NASA’s “Roving With Perseverance” roadshow, the Science Center of Iowa (SCI) is set to open its latest traveling exhibition. Full scale models of NASA’s Perseverance rover and Ingenuity Mars helicopter will be on display in downtown Des Moines starting Thursday, May 12, 2022.

As big as a car, with its camera “head” rising high, Perseverance’s six-wheeled lookalike towers over most visitors, while Ingenuity’s double highlights just how small the history-making rotorcraft is.

“While the real Perseverance is roving on Mars, we are thrilled to be able to have it and Ingenuity’s twin here at SCI,” said Curt Simmons, SCI president and CEO. “This is an incredible opportunity to share with our visitors an up close look at the spacecraft. Advancing our mission is critical as we engage and inspire lifelong learners. We are also grateful for the partnerships and support of organizations like the Iowa Space Grant Consortium, who help enhance our commitment to space, science and exploration.”    

Since landing on Mars on Feb. 18, 2021, Perseverance has been hunting for signs of ancient microscopic life in order to collect and store samples of Martian rock and sediment to be retrieved by planned future missions for closer study on Earth. After hitching a ride to Mars on Perseverance’s belly, the Ingenuity helicopter has completed more than two dozen short flights, not only proving that powered, controlled flight is possible on Mars, but even helping scout potential locations for Perseverance to explore.

NASA’s Mars Rover Perseverance and Helicopter Ingenuity models are on display now through August 26, 2022. Visitors can also engage with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory team members who will be onsite Thursday, May 12 through Sunday, May 15, 2022. The exhibit is included with SCI general admission ($13 for children and adults and free for children under 2).

SCI is currently open Thursdays through Sundays, and visitors are encouraged to purchase advance discounted tickets online at www.sciowa.org.

Mars 2020 Rover Member Preview event
– Exclusive members only event – Thursday, May 12 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Explore SCI’s new traveling exhibit highlighting the innovation of NASA’s Perseverance and Ingenuity. This event is free to members but registration is required.

Lost In Space event – For adults 21 years and older - Friday, May 13 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Celebrate new discoveries in our universe. Programs in the Star Theater will highlight the things NASA’s newest space telescope, JWST, is set to investigate. Members of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory team will also be onsite to talk about current Mars exploration, and experts will be onsite to discuss SCI’s newest traveling exhibit. Tickets must be purchased online.