Love space? Explore Grand Universe, the Westfield space center for every science lover

If you or your child loves science, you will certainly want to explore Grand Universe, the coming Westfield space center sure to inspire future scientists. Launching on a mission to foster discovery and curiosity in children and youth, the space center will bring immersive STEM education to the forefront in Westfield, Indiana.

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center

Where is Grand Universe?
The world-class space, science, and technology campus will be located on the eastern border of Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield near Highway 31 and 191st Street.

 

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center Rendering of campus 

When will the Space Center Open?
Grand Universe Center for Science and Space Exploration will break ground sometime after the solar eclipse. The completion date for the space center is expected in early 2026.

The Largest Space Science Center in the United States
Greg McCauley, President and CEO of Grand Universe, shared that the innovative venue will be the largest space science center in the United States. Encompassing a campus of 78 acres of science education facilities, Grand Universe will be larger than NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

The Grand Universe main building alone will span 190,000 square feet, on a campus accompanied by other buildings such as the Indiana Center for Robotics and a Universal Studios-style resort hotel. The grounds incorporate a portion of the Monon Trail, and Grand Universe intends to add scenic areas and ponds around the campus for families to enjoy.

On a Mission to Inspire Future Scientists
The heart behind Grand Universe is to inspire kids to experience science in a whole new way and encourage the pursuit of careers in science, technology, engineering, and math. Ultimately, this focus on STEM education advances high-tech careers in our workforce in Indiana and the country.

In the development process, McCauley brought his experience as a former NASA scientist from the Apollo mission days coupled with his volunteer educational outreach with the Link Observatory in Martinsville. He remembered his childhood fascination with space during the space race and knew that he wanted to be part of launching something great and far-reaching for the youth of tomorrow.

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center Rendering Kids looking at a telescope

What Would Disney Do?
“What would Walt Disney do if he was going to build a space center to inspire kids to pursue careers in chemistry and technology, electronics and medicine, those kinds of things?” asked McCauley. It is with that creative design in mind that propelled much of the vision for Grand Universe as a hub of discovery, a place for learners to explore, experiment, and imagine.

“We want to touch the lives of young people and their families all over Indiana and all of this country.” McCauley knows the impact of Grand Universe is vast, anticipating 2 million visitors per year.

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center Mr Greg McCauley

Lifting Off with State of the Art Hands-On Science Education
The goal is to allow students to engage with science in a variety of hands-on ways. “We won’t settle for anything less than the best,” McCauley states regarding the world-class amenities at Grand Universe.

Some noteworthy features that your kids will love:

  • a fully operational NASA Mission Control replica

  • Solar science laboratory to study the science of the sun

  • Virtual reality theater

  • Largest planetarium in the Midwest (and most advanced in the world!). It will be America’s first-ever flat-screen 8K LED dome theater

  • Observatories with solar and deep-space smart telescopes

  • One of the largest public engagement observatories in the country

  • Rocket Garden (similar to the one at Kennedy Space Center) but with SpaceX rocket boosters

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center Groundbreaking Rendering of Main Building

Your Kid Doing Real NASA Science Reports
At Grand Universe, McCauley shared that students will have the opportunity to learn how to use real NASA scientific data to evaluate and assimilate information.

The data from orbital and planetary resources comes in faster than scientists can analyze it, by the terabyte every day. By teaching students at Grand Universe how to analyze the data, kids can participate in the scientific process and create science reports to give back to NASA. Students can observe solar mass coronal ejections with the solar laboratory, plotting and tracking dangerous solar radiation and providing NASA with that information.

At Grand Universe, kids will be involved in student-powered authentic research and ultimately help NASA with real projects.

Maybe your kid will be the one to find a new exoplanet orbiting around a star!

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center kid looking in telescope

Robots & Drones
At the Grand Universe lab, learners can develop skills in a variety of computer science projects such as designing and coding robots, and working with AI and augmented reality.

Grand Universe classes will teach kids to fly commercial drones to help local farmers in Westfield or surrounding areas. The drones use multispectral imaging and will be used to study farm fields to evaluate for signs of drought, fungus, or other hazards to crops. Kids will study agricultural science and provide free analysis of crops to the farmers.

Giant Leaps with Purdue University and NASA
Purdue University CATALYST has partnered with Grand Universe to develop and promote STEM education for K-12 students aligned with state science standards as well as provide courses directly to middle and high schools across Indiana. Educational programming is set to include a broad variety of STEM-related summer camps, field trips, special events, workshops, and so much more.

Additionally, Grand Universe has earned the credit as an official member of the NASA Museum and Informal Education Alliance.

Get ready, central Indiana, for the launch of Grand Universe!
Grand Universe will announce their groundbreaking date soon! Stay in the know about all things regarding the coming Grand Universe by following their Facebook page here.

Grand Universe Westfields Space and Science Center Groundbreaking

  

 

Source: Indy with Kids

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