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Experience POPnology

This summer POPnology opens at Mi-Sci. This unique experience features rare pop culture artifacts that blend Hollywood, science and technology into one amazing, 8,000 square foot exhibit. With more than 30 interactive exhibits that celebrate and explore the greatest works of innovation and imagination in pop culture history, there is truly something for all ages!

The exhibit include replicas of famous icons of pop culture such as R2-D2, E.T., Hal 9000 and the DeLorean as well as interactive stations throughout the exhibit where guests can play games and complete challenges. There are also opportunities to explore Mars, play arcade games, 3D printing displays, and areas to learn about current and future technologies. As if that wasn’t enough, there will also be photo ops with your favorite pop culture artifacts throughout the exhibit!

Get your tickets now to visit this 8000-square foot exhibit running through September 30 in Mi-Sci’s special exhibition space up on the fourth floor! The exhibit is included in Mi-Sci’s general admission tickets and is free for members.

MiSci is a Blue Star Museum

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The Michigan Science Center will rejoin museums nationwide in the Blue Star Museums initiative, a program that provides free admission to currently-serving U.S. military personnel and their families this summer. The 2022 program begins on Armed Forces Day on May 21 and ends on Labor Day, Sept. 5. Blue Star Museums is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in collaboration with Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and participating museums nationwide. 

The program offers free admission for military families (including up to five family members):

  • Proof of active military duty is required (Geneva Convention common access card, DD1173, or DD1173-1).
  • Family is defined as spouse, child, aunts, uncles, grandparents, etc.
  • An active duty member does not need to be present.

The free admission program is available for those currently serving in the United States Military—Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard as well as members of the Reserves, National Guard, U.S. Public Health Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps. Since proof of active military duty is required, discounts will only be offered for walk-in guests.

Now Showing

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Add a theater experience to your visit today.

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Asteroid Hunters

Venture into deep space for a fascinating look at asteroids, their cosmic origins and the potential threat they pose to our world with the IMAX original film Asteroid Hunters.

Narrated by Daisy Ridley, Asteroid Hunters introduces asteroid scientists – the best line of defense between Earth and an asteroid’s destructive path – and reveals the cutting-edge tools and techniques they use to detect and track asteroids, and the technology that may one day protect our planet. 

Show times: 11:00 AM, 1:00 PM, 3:00 PM

Theater: IMAX®

Ticket pricing: $6 non-members, $3 members, FREE Premium members

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Laser Movie Madness

Turn down the house lights and turn up the nostalgia. “Movie Madness” is a glimpse into the greatest music of the movies, theater and television. From Judy Garland to John Williams, brilliant laser animation is set to some of the most memorable music of all time.

The Michigan Science Center has partnered with Laser Fantasy International to bring the world’s largest, high quality laser show library to our dome theater! Laser shows bring together art, music, science, and engineering into an entertaining experience for the whole family.

Show times: 12:00 PM, 2:00 PM

Theater: IMAX®

Ticket pricing: $6 non-members, $3 members, FREE Premium members

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One World, One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure

Join Big Bird and Elmo and their new friend Hu Hu Zhu as they explore the night sky and journey to the Moon and back!

Show times: 10:30 AM, 2:30 PM

Theatre: Planetarium

Ticket pricing: $6 non-members, $3 members, FREE Premium members

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Volcanoes: The Fires of Creation

Earth is a planet born of fire. For billions of years, volcanoes have helped forge the world we know. From the continents to the air we breathe and even life itself, all have been shaped by volcanic energy. 

Show times: 12:00 PM, 2:00 PM

Theatre: Toyota 4D Engineering Theater

Ticket pricing: $6 non-members, $3 members, FREE Premium members

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Other Worlds: There’s No Place Like Earth

Join us on our spaceship of the imagination as we journey through our solar system and beyond to explore the unique other worlds in our galaxy. Other Worlds is recommended for ages 10 and up.

Show times: 11:30 AM, 1:30 PM

Theatre: Planetarium

Ticket pricing: $6 non-members, $3 members, FREE Premium members


Earth is a planet born of fire. For billions of years, volcanoes have helped forge the world we know. From the continents to the air we breathe and even life itself, all have been shaped by volcanic energy. These processes have created extraordinary ecosystems and wildlife habitats. With over 500 active volcanoes, the Earth is bursting at the seams with these forces of mass construction. The story of volcanoes is the story of the planet’s creation and the story of us.

With intrepid explorer Carsten Peter, dodge boulders at the edge of an active volcano in Indonesia, descend to a lava lake in Vanuatu and visit incredible acid ponds, geysers and mineral deposit fields in Ethiopia. Travel across the globe to see the archeological ghost town of Pompeii, hydrothermal vents at the bottom of the ocean and witness the devastating effects of the 2018 Kilauea eruption in Hawaii. 

We are thrilled to bring this dynamic film to our guests in our Toyota Engineering 4D Theater, with generous support from Toyota.  

Earth. Wind. Weather.

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Earth. Wind. Weather. sponsored by General Motors, features 10 new interactive exhibits that put guests in control of some of nature’s most powerful and impressive phenomena. Create avalanches and geysers, explore Jupiter’s otherworldly atmosphere, command ocean waves, reach into a powerful tornado, transform desert landscapes, and more with this immersive new experience!

Earth. Wind. Weather. is included in the general admission price and is a part of MiSci’s new virtual field trip program with select classrooms in Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD). DPSCD third through fifth-grade students can connect with MiSci Distance learning educators for a live, virtual tour of the Earth. Wind. Weather. gallery, which connects to each grade level’s earth and space science curriculum. Students will suggest ways for the educators to interact with the gallery exhibits on camera, play games and participate in experiments about weather, natural resources and the forces shaping our planet. Virtual exhibit tours are reserved for DPSCD third through fifth-grade classrooms only at this time, thanks to the support of General Motors.

This experience will help learners of all ages understand how STEM concepts that shape our world, as well as highlight potential career paths in meteorology, oceanography, astrobiology and geology. Relevant STEM learning, including engaging with real world phenomena like weather and climate, helps students connect more deeply with underlying science content and relate those connections to the world at large.

Earth. Wind. Weather. is immersed in an aural soundscape featuring recordings from National Parks across America due to a generous donation from Harman International

Earth. Wind. Weather is brought to you by General Motors with additional support from the Zatkoff Family Legacy Fund, Harman International, and PLEX Systems Inc.

Evening Preview for Members on April 22

MiSci is also hosting a special free evening preview for those with MiSci memberships on Thursday, April 22. Members will catch a special showing in MiSci’s 4D theater and explore the sky through a telescope. Pre-registration is strongly recommended.

Reserve preview and general admission tickets at www.mi-sci.org. MiSci is located at 5020 John R. Street in Midtown, Detroit and is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday through Sunday.

Special Activities on April 24

Pop-up Activities Facilitated by MiSci Educators: MiSci will curate all hands-on activities from its collection of NISE Network Earth & Space Toolkit activities. These kits were designed in collaboration with NASA to address the link between science, technology, and society and feature ties to current cutting-edge research.   

  1. Tornado Spin Art – Harness the power of a vortex to create splattering spin art.
  2. Temperature Mapping – Explore how the Earth reacts to surface heating using natural materials and High-Tec tools, just like NASA scientists.
  3. Investigating Clouds – Learners can watch isopropyl alcohol vaporized under pressure to create a cloud in an empty pop bottle.
  1. Sidewalk Solar Scopes – There’s plenty of clouds in the exhibit gallery, but keep your fingers crossed for clear skies outside so visitors can safely gaze at the sun using MiSci’s solar telescope collection to learn about the composition of stars.

Science Stage Show: “Earth from Above”

Join us on the Chrysler Science Stage for a virtual trip to outer space with the help of MiSci’s staff astronomer. We’ll look at the Earth from an outside perspective to talk about weather patterns, changing seasons and learn amazing phenomena like the Coriolis effect.

MiSci will also go LIVE on Facebook periodically throughout the day to show off some of the activities.

Ten Immersive Exhibits to Fascinate Everyone

Tornado uses a large mist generator, fans and a 12-foot structure to produce a large tornado. It is intentionally de-tuned so that random air currents can cause both the creation of a tornado and its temporary cessation. The Tornado is chaotic and unpredictable much of the time, wandering off the source of the mist, slipping out of the grasp of the shearing winds and presents a delightful and ever-changing spectacle.

Aeolian Landscape presents a swirling storm of sand inside a large chamber covered by a Plexiglas top. A knob on the top of the exhibit rotates a sturdy fan set in the chamber’s base. As you turn the fan, the sand inside begins to swirl and accumulate in patterns suggestive of a desert landscape as if seen from high above. Geologists use the term “aeolian” to refer to land formations created by wind, like dunes and snowdrifts. Visitors can change the fan’s direction and notice how the shape of the miniature dunes influences the wind pattern, which affects the formation of the dunes.

Rift Zone uses air bubbling up through fine sand to suggest a small-scale geothermal landscape. By pushing a button, learners can release pockets of air that erupt through the sand and alter the landscape’s shapes and patterns. The aerators that activate the sand are arranged in a composition of three elements: a circle, a line and a dot, corresponding to the three kinds of rift zones that occur on Earth: solitary volcanoes, fracture zones such as the one spreading on the island of Hawaii, and the ring dike that forms in the crater of a volcano as the central plug cools and then a new eruption occurs around the perimeter in a circle.

Sea of Clouds creates a large pool of slowly undulating fog evocative of Jupiter and Venus’s cloud tops and condensation forming in the valleys of Mars. Generated by an ultrasonic fog machine, the cool, dense water mist flows like dry ice fog. The top surface is alive with waves and complex convection currents. Viewers will be able to run their hands through the fog and alter the currents. When left undisturbed, the fog will slowly churn and change due to its internal dynamics.

Turbulent Orb is a half-meter diameter sphere full of special, colored, flow-visualization fluid. The sphere is mounted on top of a pedestal. Visitors grasp a metal ring on the pedestal and spin the sphere choosing the direction and rotation speed. The fluid in the globe shows swirls reminiscent of the turbulent flows in planetary atmospheres.

Confused Sea mimics the wind’s action over the ocean by generating waves created with air blowing over the surface of water inside a large plastic hemisphere. The waves slowly change and build until the entire volume of water is circling as one wave. Visitors can adjust the speed of the air blower and influence the waves.

Geyser is a working model of a natural geyser. A large bowl of water is supported over a long, thin tube that runs down to a glass chamber filled with water heated by a heating element. As the water in the chamber begins to boil, air and water are shot up the tube into the air. Cool water drains back down the pipe filling the chamber, and the cycle begins again.

Avalanche explores order spontaneously arising from chaos. The exhibit consists of a wheel that turns a gear that is attached to a pole that tips a large dome of sand back and forth. As you spin the wheel, the plane that bisects the globe changes the angle of incline. The sand inside the globe falls according to the angle that the plane is tilted at, simulating conditions that might cause an avalanche on a real mountain. The plane is also dotted with dime-sized holes that can be opened or closed by turning corkscrews on the outside of the acrylic globe. If the holes are opened, sand drains from one side of the globe to the other, simulating what might happen to granular land cover if there is a sudden sink hole or snow compaction.

Fluttering Silk is a constant stream of air over a lightweight piece of free-flowing fabric that cascades up into the air. The normally invisible air current is suddenly transformed into a colorful visualization of the air stream’s complexity.

Magnetic Globe – Visitors pour magnetic sand over this earth model and observe the particles lining up, demonstrating the Earth’s magnetic fields. A compass can be held against different points on the globe, showing the relationship between the Earth’s magnetic field and the navigational properties of compasses.

MiSci Is Turning 10!

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Celebrate 10 years of MiSci with a membership! We’re celebrating our birthday all year long, and members will have the best seats in the house.

The Michigan Science Center is turning 10 in 2022, and we’re celebrating all year long with special events, films, live shows and more! Annual family memberships start at $99 and include free admission to over 220+ interactive exhibits, discounts on theater shows, reduced pricing on summer camps and birthday parties, first access to new  exhibits and experiences. Plus, our members receive reciprocal admission to over 250 ASTC science centers across the country. Give the gift of membership today and experience the best of MiSci!