Public missions are a great way to experience a simulated space mission with your friends and family. Participants engage in hands-on activities and take on roles similar to astronauts, scientists and engineers on a mission to the Moon, Mars, a Comet or to the International Space Station.
Expedition Mars, Return to the Moon and Rendezvous with a Comet mission scenarios are geared towards ages 11 and up. The Junior Astronaut program is for participants ages six and up and accompanying adult(s).
See below for mission dates and descriptions.
May 13: Jr Astronauts, 12:30-2:30pm
June 17: Jr. Astronauts, 12:30-2:30pm
June 24: Moon, 12:30-2:30pm
July 15: Jr Mars & Planetarium, 12:30-2:30pm
July 29: Expedition Mars, 12:30-2:30pm
August 5: Rendezvous with a Comet, 12:30-2:30pm
August 19: Jr Mars & Planetarium, 12:30-2:30pm
September 16: Jr Astronauts, 12:30-2:30pm
September 30: Expedition Mars, 12:30-2:30pm
October 7: Jr Mars & Planetarium, 12:30-2:30pm
October 28: Moon, 12:30-2:30pm
November 11: Jr. Astronauts, 9:00-11:00am
November 18: Rendezvous with a Comet, 12:30-2:30pm
December 9: Jr Mars & Planetarium, 12:30-2:30pm
All public missions are two-hours and require advanced reservations.
Children 10 and under participating in the Jr. Astronauts mission must be accompanied by an adult (adult participant is also subject to the admission cost).
Call (314) 521-6205 to make a reservation.
Rendezvous with a Comet
In the not-too-distant future, a crew of astronauts is being sent on a mission to explore a comet that is approaching Earth’s orbit. The crew must complete the assembly of a probe and launch it to rendezvous with Comet Encke. Along the way, astronauts use their scientific as well as problem-solving and decision-making skills to deal with unexpected and highly unpredictable objects in the Solar System that may come their way.
Return to the Moon
The year is 2020. For the first time since the Apollo 17 mission in 1972, a crew of astronauts is returning to the Moon. Their mission is to establish a permanent base on the Moon to observe, explore and test the feasibility of off-Earth settlements. Supported by a team of people back on Earth, astronauts must construct and launch a probe to the lunar surface and select a site for establishing a permanent Moon base. All this must be completed while avoiding meteor showers, chemical leaks and other potentially damaging situations.
Voyage to Mars
The year is 2076, when travelling to Mars is no longer a distant plan–it’s become a reality. A routine flight to the Red Planet has brought the latest human crew into Martian orbit to replace the team that has been stationed there for the past two years. Crew members must utilize teamwork, problem-solving, communication and decision-making skills to build and launch a probe to one of the Martian moons, explore and analyze Martian rocks and soils, and track potentially hazardous conditions both on the spacecraft as well as on the surface of Mars.
Our newest mission, Earth Odyssey™ takes place in a futuristic time when a major coronal mass ejection (CME) causes a burst of solar winds to blast from the sun toward Earth, damaging key satellites and forcing the evacuation of the Space Station crew. As the team of scientists and engineers in Mission Control work to safely bring the crew back to Earth, they must also assess the damage done on Earth from the CME and guide astronauts in assembling a replacement satellite.
The two-hour Jr Astronauts program includes the Jr Astronauts: Mystery in Space mission AND the Mini Rockets workshop, or the Jr Astronauts: Mars Pioneers mission AND a Planetarium show.
Jr Astronauts: Mystery in Space
Students in Kindergarten through fourth-grade can participate in the Junior Astronauts: Mystery in Space mission where they will travel 230 miles above Earth to the International Space Station to investigate a mysterious object that has been spotted in space. While in space, these junior astronauts utilize their scientific, math and engineering as well as teamwork skills and are engaged in experiments and activities to help NASA learn more about our world.
Mini Rockets Workshop
As part of the Jr Astronauts program, students in grades Kindergarten through fourth-grade will work in teams to design, build and launch their very own rocket. Participants will learn about Newton’s 3rd Law of Motion, basic rocket components, and how rocket design features affect their performance.
(Note: Groups are divided into two and complete both the mission and rockets workshop.)
Jr. Astronauts: Mars Pioneers
The year is 2034…and our astronauts are about to embark on the most ambitious pioneering mission since Lewis and Clark – the first manned mission to Mars. The astronauts will begin their mission by launching from Earth and working together to achieve the mission goals. During the 48 million mile voyage, the astronauts will attend to their stations by performing the necessary work for getting the spacecraft to Mars, ensuring the safety of the crew, and conducting research along the way. As the crew reads through their instructions and completes their tasks, the spacecraft makes its final approach into Martian orbit. As they work to complete the mission, they will have to come together to overcome obstacles and challenges that may threaten their mission.
(Note: Groups are divided into two and complete both the mission and a planetarium show.)