Expedition Earth: Weather Satellites at the Wisconsin Science Festival

September 24, 2013 | Mark Hobson

Are you passionate about science? For the third year in a row, the Wisconsin Science Festival will raise awareness and understanding of science, inviting participants to explore the natural world that exists all around us.

And, for the third year in a row, Patrick Rowley, representing the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies (CIMSS) will take visitors on a unique journey of Earth as seen from the vantage point of an orbiting weather satellite. Patrick, with assistance from several graduate students, will introduce kids of all ages to the wonders of satellite imagery on a 3-D spherical display – everything from clouds to ocean currents. Participants will also have an opportunity to create their own tornados and snowflakes.

The CIMSS weather globe will be at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery Exploration Station on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus from 9:00am until 2:00pm on Friday, September 27th. All events will take place at the Institutes beginning on Thursday, September 26th and ending on Sunday, September 29th.

satellite dishes

SSEC satellite dishes atop the AOSS Building. Photo credit: Jeff Miller

The Festival promises to be educational and just plain fun. Whether you’re interested in the chemistry of spices or glassblowing or listening to Ira Flatow of Science Friday, there will be something for everyone. While Madison is the home base for the event, programs are planned at more than 20 sites across Wisconsin.

The Wisconsin Science Festival, which seeks to inspire, educate, and develop global citizens by raising awareness and understanding of science, is produced by UW–Madison, the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, and the Morgridge Institute for Research, with assistance from a number of other nonprofit organizations. Festival sponsors include Ballinger, Travel Wisconsin, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and Thermo Scientific.