Public art is defined by wikipedia as “ artwork that has been planned and executed with the specific intention of being sited or staged in the physical public domain, usually outside and accessible to all.” Some of the most famous examples around the world include The Gates by Christo and Jean-Claude; Big Yellow Rabbit by Florentijn Hofman; Cloud Gate by Anish Kapoo
We posit an equivalent for science: Public science = “ science outreach that has been conducted outdoors or in another type of public or accessible space such as a public park, metro stop, library etc. with the intention of engaging the public.”
Using this definition, we can go back and identify many projects that could arguably be considered public science. Here are some of our favorites. Science City: ran from June 1994 through May 1995. Created by organizers from the New York Hall of Science, "Science City" was an outdoor exhibition that utilized the street, fences, buildings and other public structures in New York City to attract the "non-museum-going" public to the science in everyday life; For Science on the Buses, city buses were decorated with large informational science posters inside or outside, taking science concepts outside museum and planetarium walls; Other sci festivals include San Diego, Philadelphia, SF
FETTU was an image exhibition project created for IIYA2009. It was grassroots project that created a digital repository of astronomical images that local organizers were then encouraged to use to make their own exhibits. Unique model for astronomy outreach: Distributed Curation Global to Local Methodology
Chicago and Atlanta airports: millions of people saw the images – they are still there. Scores of versions of FETTU in Brazil. In China, featured outside the Beijing Planetarium.
Test the sustainability of such a model with FETTSS Collaboration with our group (CXC/SAO) and NASA ’s Astrobiology Institute FETTSS is tied to NASA ’s Year of the Solar System that ran from October 2010 through August 2012. An exhibit in spain occurred in 2011: Portal de La Marina commercial centre in Ondara Spain and about 100 other sites world wide
RECORDS OF ANCIENT LIFE: For about 85% of the history of life on Earth, only microbes existed. The only large-scale evidence of their activities is preserved by stromatolites, ancient structural records of life on Earth which hold evidence both of the biology of the microbial mat communities that created them, and the nature of the environments in which they grew. They are rocky, dome-shaped structures formed in shallow water through the trapping of sedimentary grains by communities of microorganisms. When too much material becomes trapped in the mats and limits the amount of sunlight that can filter through, the organisms migrate up and form a new community on top of the old. Stromatolites are mostly found in lakes and marine lagoons where extreme conditions such as high saline levels prevent animals from grazing. One such location is the Hamelin Pool Marine Nature Reserve in Shark Bay, Western Australia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site where living specimens are preserved today. Image Credit: Mark Boyle
EXTREME COLOR: What is causing the beautiful colors in this hot spring in Yellowstone National Park? Life, that’s what! Many microorganisms live in the pools there, and because the temperatures of the springs are so hot (most are well over 100˚F), they are called extremophiles (extreme-loving). They contain molecules that absorb the damaging rays of the Sun, protecting their DNA. Those same molecules are also pigments that cause the different colors we see. Different extremophiles thrive in different temperatures, so the color of a particular area is determined by which organisms are living in it. A veritable rainbow appears as the water temperature decreases as it flows further and further away from its superheated source. Image Credit: Darren Edwards
THE LIGHT SHOW OF A LIFETIME: For many who have seen it, the Aurora Borealis is a spectacle to remember. Aurorae are caused by currents of energetic charged particles in Earth's magnetosphere flowing through the upper atmosphere. The interaction of the solar wind with Earth's magnetosphere drives these currents. The more active the Sun, especially during the peak of its 11-year solar cycle, the more charged particles flow to Earth’s magnetic poles. These charged particles eventually collide with gas molecules in the upper atmosphere, causing them to ionize and emit colored light. Since the next solar maximum will occur in May, 2013, more of these gorgeous light shows can be expected, perhaps even at lower latitudes. Image Credit: Pekka Parviainen/Science Photo Library
SPECIAL DELIVERY? Would there be life on Earth without comets? There is increasing evidence that both water and organic (carbon-containing) molecules, both needed for life to form, were partially delivered to the early Earth by comets. Comets are enriched with water ice. Studies of comet Halley in 1986 revealed it to be some of the most organic-rich material ever measured in the Solar System, NASA’s 2004 Stardust Mission to Comet Wild 2 found a range of complex hydrocarbon molecules, and NASA’s 2005 Deep Impact mission to Comet Tempel 1 discovered a mixture of organic and clay particles. Scientists think comet impacts and deliveries were a common occurrence in the early Solar System, but still question if Earth’s water was incorporated as it formed, or was a result of cometary impacts after formation was complete. Image Credit: Dan Schechter
A LUNAR ECLIPSE: Why does the Moon have a reddish hue in these images? It's the same reason that the Sun appears reddish during a sunset: scattered light. In a lunar eclipse, the Earth is situated directly between the Sun and the Moon. Sunlight reaching the Moon travels a path through dense layers of Earth's atmosphere. Atmospheric particles preferentially scatter out shorter (bluer) wavelengths leaving only the longer (redder) wavelengths to refract (bend) through the atmosphere and illuminate the Moon. Image Credit: Akira Fujii/Ciel et Espace
TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE: A total solar eclipse is a natural phenomenon that happens when the Moon passes between the Sun and Earth in just the right alignment, blocking the light from the Sun to certain places on Earth. Some people, often called “eclipse chasers,” will travel to virtually any spot on the globe to experience a solar eclipse. Totality, as shown in this montage of two separate photographs, is when the shadow of the Moon blocks the entire disk of the Sun, leaving only its outer layer (corona) visible. This solar eclipse was photographed from Turkey in March, 2006. Image Credit:Laurent Laveder/Science Photo Library
SPACE WEATHER: What is a storm on the Sun like? Most of the time when we talk about “the weather,” we are referring to the state of Earth’s atmosphere that gives us rain, wind, and temperature changes. The “space weather” produced by the Sun extends deep into the Solar System. It drives some of the greatest changes in our local space environment—affecting our magnetosphere, ionosphere, atmosphere, and potentially our climate. The Sun contains very powerful magnetic fields and they can become twisted and tangled, storing enormous amounts of energy. When the Sun becomes stormy, all that pent-up energy erupts in the form of the Solar System's largest explosions: solar flares and coronal mass ejections. These blasts of light and charged gas rip through the solar wind and sometimes impact the bodies of the Solar System. Luckily, Earth’s magnetosphere acts as a shield, and its atmosphere absorbs the dangerous radiation, protecting us. Image Credit: NASA/SDO
DUNES AT THE MARTIAN NORTH POLE: A sea of dunes, sculpted by the wind into long lines, surrounds the northern polar cap of Mars, covering an area as big as Texas. In this false-color image, areas with cooler temperatures are recorded in blue tints, while warmer features are depicted in yellows and oranges. This scene combines images taken between 2002—2004 by the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) instrument onboard NASA's Mars Odyssey orbiter. In December, 2010, Mars Odyssey became the longest-serving spacecraft at the Red Planet. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Arizona State University, Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS)
ON THE EDGE: This spectacular image taken from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) spacecraft shows Victoria Crater, an impact crater near the equator of Mars where hematite mineral deposits suggest Mars had a wet past. Layered sedimentary rocks are exposed along the inner wall of the crater, and the floor of the crater is occupied by a striking field of sand dunes. With the “Follow the Water” mantra, NASA’s twin Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, have been operating on the surface of Mars in search of answers about the history of water on the Red Planet since 2004 (unfortunately, Spirit has been quiet since 2010). Five days before this image was taken in September, 2006, the ‘Opportunity’ rover arrived at the rim of Victoria Crater, after a drive of more than 9km! It explored within the crater, staying at the site for about a year. The rover can actually be seen in this image as a small dot at the ‘ten o'clock’ position along the crater rim. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona/Science Photo Library
A MINI-SOLAR SYSTEM: Jupiter, the most massive planet in our Solar System—with over 50 known moons and an enormous magnetic field—forms a kind of miniature solar system. Jupiter resembles a star in composition, but it never grew big enough to ignite. Several of its moons are of interest to astrobiologists searching for life elsewhere in the Solar System. This image of Jupiter has been color-coded to show cloud height from high altitude (white) through mid-range (blue) to low altitude (red). NASA's Juno mission, launching in August, 2011 and arriving at Jupiter in July, 2016, will map the gravity field, magnetic field, and atmospheric structure of Jupiter, and provide key insights to enhance current theories about the early formation of our Solar System. Image Credit: Travis Rector (U. Alaska, Anchorage), Chad Trujillo and the Gemini Altair Team, NOAO/AURA/NSF
YIN AND YANG: Iapetus has been called the ‘yin and yang’ of Saturn’s moons because the surface of one of its hemispheres is dark, about as reflective as coal, while the other is much brighter. In many places, the dark material—thought to be composed of nitrogen-bearing organic compounds called cyanides, hydrated minerals, and other carbonaceous minerals—appears to coat equator-facing slopes and crater floors. This hemisphere of Iapetus appears heavily cratered, particularly in the north and south polar regions. The most prominent topographic feature is a 450km-wide impact basin, one of at least nine such large basins on Iapetus. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
URANUS: Uranus is the third largest planet in our Solar System. It was discovered by astronomer William Herschel in 1781, and shares its name with the Greek god of the sky. Most of what we know about Uranus came from the NASA Voyager 2 spacecraft’s flyby of the planet in 1986. Uranus has nine major rings and 27 known moons. This image, taken in infrared light, reveals cloud structures not normally visible to human eyes. Methane gas in the upper atmosphere absorbs red light, giving the planet its blue-green color. Uranus is spinning on its side, probably because of a collision with a large object early in the Solar System's history. Image Credit: California Association For Research In Astronomy/Science Photo Library
Researching in FETTSS & beyond Who are we attracting in these “everyday situations”? More incidental visitors than intentional visitors with public science? Less-science-initiated audience than science centers/planetariums? Do participants follow up with local science center, library or other resources? Is there any reshaping of the participant ’s identity (or non-identity) with science through public science?
*Preliminary* data analysis of 4 sites (out of 7) so far: Corpus Christi, Texas: Mall (CC) National Air and Space Museum, Washington DC: Outside on the National Mall (NASM) Central Florida University: Campus Library (CFU) Kansas City, Missouri: Union Station train station (KC)
Simultaneously, continuing research on public understanding of astronomy images with Aesthetics & Astronomy project. Papers/articles at http://astroart.cfa.harvard.edu/ Latest data analysis includes evidence for understanding the effectiveness of an astronomy exhibition in terms of gauging how much visitors have learned; what type of story format may be best for engaging the visitor/participant learning; and what type of platform may be best for implementation. To be submitted, Curator
New project: Here, There, & Everywhere (HTE) Compares phenomena on Earth to those in space Capitalize on eye-catching visuals (FETTU/FETTSS) with the power of analogy in public spaces (libraries, malls, etc.) First exhibits launched in September 2012
Light That Does Not Pass You are relaxing with a book on a nice sunny day when a friend leans over your shoulder and the page goes dark. “ Hey, you’re blocking my light!” It is a familiar experience. Any time an object blocks the light from another source, it forms a shadow.
Where the Wind Blows Winds can move particles from one place to another. On Earth, winds can blow briefly during a storm, and over long time scales, as in the jet stream. Winds have also been detected over long time scales, as in the jet stream. Winds have also been detected on other planets, in the space between stars, and in galaxies.
ZAP! You shuffle along a carpet, reach out to touch a doorknob and—zap!—a sudden flow of current, or electric discharge, gives you a mild shock. The cause? Friction between your feet and the carpet built up negative electric charge on your body. Electric discharges can occur wherever there is a large build-up of electric charge, and can create spectacular displays of sudden energy release on Earth and in space.
Atomic Light Show Atoms, the building blocks of matter, are constantly in motion, moving around at speeds that are thousands of miles per hour at room temperatures, and millions of miles per hour behind a supernova shock wave. In a collision of an atom with another atom, or with a free-roaming electron, energy can be transferred to the atom. This extra energy can then be released in the form of a light wave.
Bent Light What happens when light is bent? When light passes from one type of material to another, its path can be bent and the original image is distorted. Environments from eyeglasses to massive galaxies can cause lensing to take place.
Public science on Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_science Arcand, K.K., Watzke, M., “Creating Public Science with the From Earth to the Universe Project” Science Communication. Vol 33(3) 398–407, Sept. 2011. firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @kimberlykowal http://yourtickettotheuniverse.com
PUBLIC SCIENCE: From Earth to the Solar System
PUBLIC SCIENCEFrom Earth to the Solar System Kimberly Kowal Arcand & Megan Watzke Chandra X-ray Center/Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory Cambridge, MA USA September 26, 2012 in Madrid, Spain
Public art “ artwork that has been planned and executed with thespecific intention of being sited or staged in the physicalpublic domain, usually outside and accessible to all.”Below: The Gates by Christo and Jean-Claude; Big Yellow Rabbit by Florentijn Hofman; Cloud Gate by Anish Kapoo
Equivalent for science? Public science = “science outreach that has been conducted outdoors or in another type of public or accessible space such as a public park, metro stop, library etc. with the intention of engaging the public.”
Past examples include:• Science City (New York: 1994-1995)• Science on the Buses (UK, Canada, others)• Science Festivals: – Long tradition of these in European & other countries. – US catching on: USA Science & Engineering Festival, World Science Festival, etc.
From Earth to the Universe (FETTU) – www.fromearthtotheuniverse.org – IYA 2009 cornerstone project – Unique model for astronomy outreach: • Distributed Curation • Global to Local Methodology
FETTU results were inspiring:over 1000 locations in over 70 countries(text translated into over 40 languages.)Images courtesy of the From Earth to the Universe project
From Earth to the Solar System (FETTSS) – A collection of 90 images that cover astronomy, astrobiology, and planetary science – ~100 FETTSS sites worldwide – http://fettss.arc.nasa.gov/ for the locations map, event photos, free materials.
• Researching in FETTSS & beyond – Who are we attracting in these – Do participants follow up “everyday situations”? with local science center, • More incidental visitors than library or other resources? intentional visitors with public – Is there any reshaping of the science? participant’s identity (or non- • Less-science-initiated audience identity) with science through than science public science? centers/planetariums?
• *Preliminary* data analysis of 4 sites (out of 7) so far: – Corpus Christi, Texas: Mall (CC) – National Air and Space Museum, Washington DC: Outside on the National Mall (NASM) – Central Florida University: Campus Library (CFU) – Kansas City, Missouri: Union Station train station (KC)
• Simultaneously, continuing research on public understanding of astronomy images with Aesthetics & Astronomy project. – Papers/articles at http://astroart.cfa.harvard.edu/• Latest data analysis includes evidence for understanding the effectiveness of an astronomy exhibition in terms of gauging how much visitors have learned; what type of story format may be best for engaging the visitor/participant learning; and what type of platform may be best for implementation. – To be submitted, Curator
New project: Here, There, & Everywhere (HTE) – Compares phenomena on Earth to those in space – Capitalize on eye-catching visuals (FETTU/FETTSS) with the power of analogy in public spaces (libraries, malls, etc.) – First exhibits launched in September 2012
Light That Does Not PassYou are relaxing with a book on a nice sunny day when a friendleans over your shoulder and the page goes dark. “Hey, you’reblocking my light!” It is a familiar experience. Any time an objectblocks the light from another source, it forms a shadow.
Where the Wind BlowsWinds can move particles from one place to another. On Earth,winds can blow briefly during a storm, and over long time scales,as in the jet stream. Winds have also been detected over longtime scales, as in the jet stream. Winds have also been detectedon other planets, in the space between stars, and in galaxies.
ZAP!You shuffle along a carpet, reach out to touch a doorknob and—zap!—a sudden flow of current, or electric discharge, gives you amild shock. The cause? Friction between your feet and the carpetbuilt up negative electric charge on your body. Electric dischargescan occur wherever there is a large build-up of electric charge,and can create spectacular displays of sudden energy release onEarth and in space.
Atomic Light ShowAtoms, the building blocks of matter, are constantly in motion,moving around at speeds that are thousands of miles per hour atroom temperatures, and millions of miles per hour behind asupernova shock wave. In a collision of an atom with anotheratom, or with a free-roaming electron, energy can be transferredto the atom. This extra energy can then be released in the formof a light wave.
Bent LightWhat happens when light is bent? When light passes from onetype of material to another, its path can be bent and the originalimage is distorted. Environments from eyeglasses to massivegalaxies can cause lensing to take place.Because what happens here, happens there, happens everywhere. http://hte.si.edu/light
Public science on Wikipediahttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_scienceArcand, K.K., Watzke, M., “Creating Public Science with theFrom Earth to the Universe Project” Science Communication.Vol 33(3) 398–407, Sept. email@example.com Twitter: @kimberlykowal http://yourtickettotheuniverse.com