The RMSC Museum and Strasenburgh Planetarium are Open for Regular Hours. Plan Your Visit.

Reminder: ALL visitors, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear a mask when indoors visiting the RMSC.

Light Up the Martian City: Alternative Energy Challenge

Light Up the Martian City: Alternative Energy Challenge

Inventor Center (Engineering Design Lab) or Virtual Experience

Become part of an elite team of astronauts as you construct an energy grid for the first human settlement on Mars. Learn about a wide range of renewable energy technologies and evaluate their potential for interplanetary use. Build a functioning windmill and measure its output to supercharge the success of your Martian base! 

For digital programs, our educators will work with your classroom to determine which platform works best to facilitate this experience.

In-person capacity may be limited in compliance with public health guidelines in effect on the day of your visit.

Subjects: Engineering & Design, Physical Sciences, Earth Science, Space Science
Program Type: Engineering Design Lab, Virtual Experiences
Supporting Curriculum Materials:

Educator Guide

  • Essential Questions
  • Making the Most of Your Visit
  • Correlation to Standards
  • Facilitation (What to Expect, Floor Map)
  • Glossary Resources

NYS Standards:
  • K-2-ETS1-1.Ask questions, make observations, and gather information about a situation people want to change to define a simple problem that can be solved through the development of a new or improved object or tool.
  • K-2-ETS1-2. Develop a simple sketch, drawing, or physical model to illustrate how the shape of an object helps it function as needed to solve a given problem.
  • K-2-ETS1-3. Analyze data from tests of two objects designed to solve the same problem to compare the strengths and weaknesses of how each performs.
  • 3-5-ETS1-1. Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
  • 3-5-ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
  • 4-PS3-2. Make observations to provide evidence that energy is conserved as it is transferred and/or converted from one form to another.
  • 4-PS3-4. Apply scientific ideas to design, test, and refine a device that converts energy from one form to another.
  • 4-ESS3-1. Obtain and combine information to describe that energy and fuels are derived from natural resources and their uses affect the environment.
  • MS-PS3-5. Construct, use, and present an argument to support the claim that when work is done on or by a system, the energy of the system changes as energy is transferred to or from the system.
  • MS-ETS1-1. Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
  • MS-ETS1-2. Evaluate competing design solutions using a systematic process to determine how well they meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
  • MS-ETS1-3. Analyze data from tests to determine similarities and differences among several design solutions to identify the best characteristics of each that can be combined into a new solution to better meet the criteria for success.
  • MS-ETS1-4. Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
  • HS-PS3-3. Design, build, and refine a device that works within given constraints to convert one form of energy into another form of energy.


Where is it?

  • Museum & Science Center
  • Virtual

When is it?

Days Available: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Start Date: 09/20/2021
End Date: 06/24/2022
In-person program is only offered from 9/20/21 - 1/3/22
Program Length: 50 min. minimum; 90 min. recommended
Earliest Start Time: 10am

Who Should Attend?

Grades: 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade, 7th Grade, 8th Grade
Minimum Attendence: 8
Maximum Attendence: 30

How Much Does It Cost?

  • In-Person: $8 per person; PLUS: $5.00 Additional per person charge; 1 free adult with every 5 students; RMSC Member Adults free
  • Virtual: $150 for 1-30 students

How To Book?

Call: 585.697.1942
Reservation Lead Time: At least 3 Wks

Need More Information?

Name: Guest Services
Phone: 585.697.1942


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