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NASA to Bring Moon, Mars Experience to Nashville, Tenn., April 20-23
Kim Newton
Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.
(Phone: 256.544.0034)

News Release: 06-051

Experience a "journey" to the moon and Mars when NASA brings its interactive exhibit -- the Exploration Dome -- to the Southern Women's Show at the Nashville Convention Center in Nashville, Tenn., April 20-23.

The dome is intended to carry visitors' imaginations to the farthest reaches of our solar system, as they embark on a "journey" into space. The exhibit also features the many benefits NASA technology has brought to every day life.

The 95-square-foot hexagon-shaped exhibit will share NASA's Vision for Space Exploration, which includes returning to the moon and traveling to Mars and beyond. While taking the "journey" in the Exploration Experience Dome and talking with NASA experts at the exhibit, visitors will learn about technologies being investigated and developed by NASA and its partners in industry, academia and other government agencies.

People who enter the dome will find themselves in a three-dimensional theater, featuring a five-screen presentation. Hidden video projectors are mounted throughout the structure, turning the dome's interior into a seamless floor-to-wall-to-ceiling display of other worldly destinations. This allows "explorers" to see themselves in space and experience environments in other parts of our solar system -- giving participants the illusion of stepping on various surfaces of Earth, the moon and Mars.

Visitors will learn that their lifestyles of tomorrow will change as NASA develops advancements in power, computing, nanotechnology, biotechnology, communications, networking and robotics. Visitors also will see how other advanced technologies will increase safety and reliability of space transportation systems, while also reducing the cost of space travel.

Included in the exhibit will be many examples of "spinoffs" -- technologies NASA has developed that people use in their day-to-day activities along with new ideas on the horizon to change the way we live and work. An early version of the hand-held cordless vacuum that many people use at home for quick clean-ups got its trial run on the moon to collect moon dust. The rechargeable battery developed for the vacuum then became the same technology used in many cordless items for the typical American home.

Another NASA spin-off technology comes from the world of cosmetics. The imaging software cosmetics companies use to demonstrate the "before and after" when testing the look of their products was developed by NASA to map out the moon.

Other industries and products improved through NASA's technology transfer program include tempur foam bedding, NASCAR, exercise equipment, school buses, anti-fog goggles, golf clubs and even solar powered refrigeration.

The Exploration Experience Dome will be open to the public during show hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 20; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. April 21; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 22 and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 23. The dome is handicapped accessible. There is an admission fee to the Southern Women's Show, but no additional fee to visit the Exploration Experience Dome.

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