We made a trip to NCAR with the homeschool group a few weeks ago. They were talking about the sun and the light spectrum. The kids also got to tour the facility which is open to the public everyday. NCAR is set up on the foothill overlooking Boulder and wow is it beautiful up there. I wish I would have taken a picture looking out the other way because you can see pretty much all of Boulder and beyond. They have a trail up there for hiking which is nice as it’s right next to the Flatirons.
Here’s the main facility with the backdrop of the mountains just to the right.
Inside there was a cloud making machine and it kept the kids entertained before the tour began and for probably an hour after!
This is a CRAY-1. I had no idea what this machine did, but when I showed the picture to my husband afterwards, he said “Wow! They have a CRAY-1?!” Apparently, it was a supercomputer that calculated vast quantities of information back in the 1970’s.
This was also an old relic that was shot up into the atmosphere to collect data on the composition of atmospheric gases.
Looking out of their library and down onto Boulder. Down below the red rocks area he said was the vacuum room where they tested the satellites before going up into orbit.
They have a wall of fossils and meteorites from many millions of years ago.
And a Ponderosa Pine tree whose rings show years of drought, years of precipitation and even the fungus caused by the beetles that caused it to be cut down.
The kids got to talk to the guide about the sun and how we need to be sun safe by wearing sunscreen and hats when the sun is bright. Everyone got to make a bead bracelet that turns colors in the sun as it reacts to ultraviolet light. It’s an indicator for how much sun they’re receiving while out playing.