Taipei Astronomical Museum first opened in 1996 with the aim of giving the public and in particular the youth of Taipei, the opportunity to learn about astronomy via a positive learning environment and a wide variety of demonstrations and models, as well as explanations thereof. The museum's primary tasks are research, accomplished using their very own observatory, and education, achieved via their exhibition platforms, as well as through more immersive means such as their IMAX Dome Theatre.
PART I: SOLAR SYSTEM MODEL
- Meteorites do not burn up in the atmosphere of Mercury, creating many craters which will not fade due to the lack of atmosphere and wind activity.
- Venus has active volcanoes which contribute to many greenhouse gases trapping heat in its thick atmosphere, creating an environment of high temperature and pressure.
- Mars appears red due to the soil containing iron oxide (rust) formed in the iron-rich soil. Mars is most similar to Earth regarding the sustainability of life, although still not enough to support life on its own.
- Jupiter Is a gas giant which contains a 400-year-old storm called "the Great Red Spot". It has many cloud bands of different colours, differing in materials it consists of.
- Saturn appears to have the ring formation as most of its planets have ice on it.Thus when light from the Sun is reflected back, it created the ring effect.The ring particles are made almost entirely of water ice, with a trace component of rocky materials.
- Uranus and Neptune appear blue due to high concentrations of methane. Methane tends to absorb light of redder wavelengths, leaving the reflected light to be between green and blue.
PART II: TORNADO DEMONSTRATION AND SIMULATION
The Tornado Demonstration is a miniature version of the actual tornado that is common in countries such as US and Canada. The exhibits feature a cylinder which has several fans located around. Fans are located at the top, and the four corners of the cylinder and mist are sprayed up from the base and therefore forming a tornado-like effect.
PART III: TAIWAN ASTRONOMICAL MUSEUM OBSERVATORY
The observatory houses a 20 cm diameter reflector telescope. There was a demonstration of the reflection of the sun's light onto a white sheet of paper. A white surface was selected to avoid burns on a dark paper as solar luminosity may start a fire. This telescope can resolve stars and DSOs up to a magnitude of 12, which is very impressive. This telescope is used for public outreach only, and not usually used for research and discovery purposes.