Get excited about the Australian space industry folks because the Australian Space Discovery Centre is now open to the public. Bring the kids and get hands-on with some of the amazing space technology and science being developed in Australia - for free!
Located in the McEwin building on North Terrace, the ASDC is the inspirational public face of the Australian Space Agency. This world-class discovery centre is not a museum nor is it a staid promotional display. It's filled with things to see and do with different spaces to explore, learn, and collaborate.
There are four main spaces in the centre:
A careers hub showcasing jobs in the space industry.
The Endeavour Room – a place for the space industry to meet the public and run programs and meetings.
The operational mission control centre is operated by Saber Astronautics, who perform vital space monitoring work live in front of a theatrette. The theatrette hosts orientation sessions for guests on arrival, live space events and guest speakers against a commanding technical backdrop.
A space gallery with over 20 hands-on experiences.
The space gallery will be an incredibly popular attraction for many people. It's filled with interactive installations where you'll actually have fun learning about space propulsion systems, identifying objects in space in real-time, the potential for eliminating space junk, life in space, the work of a rover on Mars, and how signals are transmitted around the planet in space. There's plenty more screens to explore questions around environment, governance, and ethics in space. There's heaps of models and displays too.
Kids and adults will find heaps of opportunities to learn about the ingenuity and sheer technical prowess involved in the space industry. Qualified staff are on hand to explain and assist in understanding and enjoying all the things the room has to offer.
Potentially how to clean up space junk. Image by author.
All up, there's more than 20 different experiences in the space gallery to try, so no visitor to the centre will find the time to be bored. It's more likely that you'll find yourself spending much more time exploring the gallery than you'd planned to.
The Australian Space Discovery Centre is open to the public from Wednesday to Sunday from 10 am to the last session at 4 pm. Bookings are essential as timed and ticketed sessions run for one hour. Tickets are not available at the door and must be pre-booked (including babies and children). Tickets are FREE (a small fee applies for school groups and events). Book early for this experience, as sessions are filling up fast and many dates are already fully booked. Get your tickets here.
The Australian Space Discovery Centre is super accessible. Entry is off North Terrace, right by the Botanic tram stop. Limited on-site parking is available but many city carparks are nearby and the site is well served by nearby bus routes.
Kids will be fascinated by the moving parts, the lasers, the knobs and buttons, and the huge interactive touch screens. Adults will marvel at the technology on display and be absorbed in all the information about cutting edge space technologies and endeavours.
Everything you need to know about human exploration of space and the application of space technology to everyday life is at the Australian Space Discovery Centre. The best thing is that it's all free!