By Amy Cavanaugh
Museum of Science and Industry
Hours: Daily, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Unless you work in the science field, chances are your days of conducting cool experiments are over. Go back to class with “MythBusters: The Explosive Exhibition,” which opens March 15 at the Museum of Science and Industry.
Derived from the Discovery Channel show of the same name, “MythBusters” aims to dispel scientific myths and discover why certain things happen (like toast always landing butter-side down). The exhibit features hands-on experiments, videos, and other media to help increase your science IQ. We recently talked with Chris Wilson, project director for “MythBusters,” about what to expect.
CBSChicago.com: How did this show come together?
Chris Wilson: We had been talking about doing the “MythBusters” show here at the museum since late 2006. It’s such a strong idea for a science museum that dovetails well with what science museums are talking these days. We’re the premiere institution for the tour, and it will be traveling around the country. The show was designed in Chicago by a number of partners both inside and outside the museum.
CBSChicago.com: What are some of the hands-on activities?
CW: My favorite is the airplane conveyor belt, which tests whether a plane can take off if it’s on a conveyor belt moving in the opposite direction. It can, because an airplane moving forward has nothing to do with the wheels, but the propellers. We have a big circular turntable we’re using as a conveyor belt and a model airplane with a 20-inch wingspan. Visitors can change the speed of the belt and make the plane land and take off.
CBSChicago.com: What else can visitors expect from the show?
CW: We look at the science behind a particular phenomenon. There are a few pieces hosted by the “MythBusters” scientists, and there are props from the show.
CBSChicago.com: What ages is the show best for?
CW: All ages. I think one of the great things about the show is that you can engage with it from wherever you are.