Science Demonstrations

Live Science Programs

Watch entertaining and educational live science demonstrations performed right before your eyes by one of our science educators. Discover the magical world of bubbles, learn about space and aeronautics, uncover the “shocking truth” behind electricity and more. Daily science demonstrations and programs are free with paid general admission and can be found in the exhibition galleries throughout the building. View the current listing of live presentations below, and check the Science Center’s in-house daily visitor guide for specific times.

Big Science Shows

Witness a large-scale spectacle of science as our wild and wonderful staff educators launch rockets, send two-million volts of electricity through their bodies, implode oil drums with just air pressure, make HUGE clouds of liquid nitrogen that envelop the crowd and perform incredible experiments that defy gravity…and common sense!

  • Strange Science—A medley of big, messy and wild experiments that take science to the extremes! See a giant oil drum get crushed, watch as one of our courageous staff gets onto a bed of nails and see a Mentos and Diet Coke explosion!
  • CryoBlast—Our coolest Big Science Show—and by using all that supercold liquid nitrogen in the show, we mean this literally! Have a real “blast” where freezing, breaking, launching and exploding stuff is the norm! 
  • Electric Madness—This “shocking” electricity show featuring Tesla Coils builds up to the spectacular finale where one of our staff attaches themselves to the one-million volt machine and makes sparks arc directly off their fingers. 
  • Liftoff!—The first step in space travel is getting off the ground, and dramatic displays of chemistry and physics principles are the stars of this show. From simple pressure rockets that show basic thrust, to actual fuel-burning “boosters”, things will go up and come down, fly overhead and go flash…and bang!

Science Demos in the NASA Glenn Visitor Center

Look for special space and aeronautics–themed live presentations on our Discover Stage, or enjoy informal encounters with one of our science educators near our NASA exhibits and artifacts.

  • Liftoff!—See our popular space-themed “Liftoff!” Big Science Show performed in the NASA Glenn Visitor Center.
  • Living in Space—How do astronauts adjust to life in space?  What do scientists and engineers need to think about when designing for space travel?  You may be surprised what we take for granted on the ground!
  • Mission Briefings—Learn the latest about NASA’s missions from the International Space Station, the Curiosity rover and more.
  • Capsule Chats—Join us for an informal chat about our Apollo Command Module and the Skylab mission.
  • Walk-up experiences—Look out for staff educators on the floor with hands-on activities.  Watch what happens in a vacuum, see and touch some real hardware from NASA and check out some real space food.

More Live Science Programs

Want to see more? Check the in-house daily visitor guide to see if these demonstrations are happening during your visit.

  • Bubblemania!—Become “Bubbleologists” and discover what makes bubbles good, clean fun and explore how bubbles work. This show is popular with our youngest visitors, but is sure to please visitors of all ages!
  • Under Pressure—Air is all around us, and moving air has special properties. Push air and predict how air will push back!
  • BioMedTech gallery activities—Explore microsurgery with real surgical instruments, build a double helix, learn about diabetes and more at one of our staff-led informal floor programs.