A new science museum is being added to the array of top quality science museums and exhibitions already in place in Tsukuba. The Geographical Survey Institute, one of the 53 national research institutes located in Tsukuba, has developed what promises to be a very interesting exhibition of areas related to the fields of surveying and map production. The more than 5000 m2 of floor space will feature permanent displays on such things as the history of maps and surveying, a wide variety of maps produced around the world, how surveying the world around us enhances our lives, and the various sounds the earth produces.
The museum is divided into three zones, with the titles "Exhibition Hall", "Earth Plaza" and "Information Service Hall", and as a kind of "grand opening" celebration, there will be special exhibits from June 1 to July 26. The outdoor "Earth Plaza" features a detailed, 200,000 to 1 scale mock up of the entire earth, and an actual airplane used in surveying.
The "Information Service Hall", as the name implies, is a place where you can actually "receive" (presumably for a price, though the pamphlet, as is usual in Japan, is vague about that) aerial pictures taken by the Geographical Survey Institute, maps (both old and new), etc.
The museum is located on the south side of the Geographical Survey Institute, which is just north of the intersection of Hiratsuka Odori (the one running through Tsukuba University) and Nishi Odori. It is open weekdays and the 2nd and 4th Saturdays from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm., and there is no admission charge. The telephone number is 64-1111.