ESA Opens Astrolabe Exhibition Hall in Paris HQ

9th Jan 2024
ESA Opens Astrolabe Exhibition Hall in Paris HQ

The ESA recently renovated its Paris HQ building. New features include a dynamic 125 square meter Visitor Center called the Astrolabe on the ground floor to serve as a central hub to promote and augment public engagement with ESA’s space exploration activities. The aim is to facilitate knowledge exchange between the Agency, its primary stakeholders, and the workforce. As partner Ouno Creative stated, Astrolabe’s main goals with this project are to Inform, Engage, Inspire, and Innovate.

Those visiting ESA’s state-of-the-art Visitor Center can embark on virtual reality voyages to the ISS. Moreover, they can have interactive sessions with a globe depicting Earth from space, view detailed displays of astronaut suits, and observe ESA memorabilia and launchers. Following these activities, visitors also have the opportunity to purchase souvenirs from the ESA space shop, which houses rocket models and space-related accessories among other things.

Astrolabe: ESA’s First-Ever Public Access Space for Exploring the Agency’s Breakthroughs

The “ESA Astrolabe” venue marks ESA’s inaugural space fully accessible to the public. The Astrolabe, whose name is inspired by an ancient Greek astronomical instrument, is designed to facilitate the exploration of ESA’s achievements, expertise, and knowledge. The space is open to individuals of all ages who are interested in the subject of space discovery. 

Besides holding exhibits, the Astrolabe serves as a contemporary and versatile facility for hosting talks and different events, in addition to functioning as a casual meeting space conducive to creative thinking, brainstorming, and idea sharing among co-workers. 

Future initiatives for the project involve broadening visitation opportunities to educational institutions and other groups, with plans to provide interactive workshops delivered by ESERO (European Space Education Resource Office) France. ESERO France is an educational program run in collaboration with the French Space Agency, CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales). ESERO promotes STEM education in primary and secondary educational institutions across Europe. 

Ultimately, through Astrolabe, ESA aims to inspire and incite visitors via science and technology-related activities while also imparting knowledge about the significance of the European space program. 

The venue, located at ESA’s Paris headquarters, remains open between 10:00 and 14:00 every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday and from 13:00 to 17:00 every Wednesday

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