Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals
Visitors to the Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals will be bedazzled by more than 450 specimens on display. These include a gigantic 2,000+ carat blue topaz, the Ausrox Gold nugget, and many more. With case after case of bejeweled treasures, guests can experience some of nature’s most dazzling masterpieces.
Wiess Energy Hall.
With its recent renovation and expansion, the Wiess Energy Hall welcome visitors to a new and improved experience. This exhibit focuses on the technology and science behind hydrocarbon energy, and is one of the most robust such exhibits in the world. Much of the information contained in the exhibit is also available online, including information on the lifecycle of hydrocarbons, as well as a survey on alternative energy sources.
Herzstein Foucault Pendulum
What may at first appear to be a simple exhibit is actually a fascinating visual experience of the rotation of the Earth. Although the pendulum appears to be slowly changing direction throughout the day, in actuality the planet is moving beneath it. This mesmerizing exhibit was first showcased at the 1851 World’s Fair in Paris, and is named for its French physicist inventor, Jean Bernard Leon Foucault.
Lester & Sue Smith Gem Vault
Visitors to the Lester and Sue Smith Gem Vault will find themselves surrounded by breathtaking gems. Building on the Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals that showcase stones as they occur in nature, the Gem Vault displays the ways in which humans cut, polish and mount such gems in beautifully artistic ways. Many of the items on display were commissioned by the Museum, cut to exact specifications and then displayed in magnificent original jewelry pieces.
John P. McGovern Hall of the Americas
Items in the John P. McGovern Hall of the Americas pay homage to the work of indigenous cultures of the Americas, stretch from Alaska all the way to Peru. Such items include pottery, rugs, jewelry and more, representing over 50 different cultures. In addition to taking in the vast collection on display, visitors to this exhibit can also participate in crafts and activities that enhance the experience and education of the exhibition.
Fresnsley/Graham Hall of African Wildlife
This exhibit, which harkens back to the Museum’s roots in the Houston Zoo, presents the wildlife of the African continent with an eye on ecology and conservation. Rather than displaying each animal separately in its own mock environment, the exhibit takes visitors through seven biomes, with the appropriate wildlife showcased together in each. These biomes include the Congo Basin, the Serengeti Grassland, the Lowveld Region, the Saharan Desert, the Okavango Delta, and the West African Tropical Forest and Ethiopian Realm.
Welch Hall of Chemistry
After undergoing refurbishment and re-imagination, the Welch Hall of Chemistry creates an engaging experience for visitors of all ages and all levels of experience with chemistry. The attraction involves interactive exhibits that do more than just ask guests to press a button or read a plaque. From molecular dynamics simulations, to a Chemistry Crime Lab, to state of the art computers illuminating chemistry on the molecular level, this exhibit provides immersive interaction. Designed in partnership with leading scientific institutions in the area, including the Houston Medical Center, Rice University, the University of Houston, as well as the Houston chemical industry, the Welch Hall of Chemistry is bound cause interesting reactions in every visitor.
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