Located at the heart of the University of Arizona campus the Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium explores our universe from earth to space and everything in-between, bringing science alive for young and life-long learners alike. Changing exhibits through the year focus on biology, energy, optics and more, weaving in ground-breaking UA research and revealing the world of science careers for budding scientists.
Sit back, relax and experience an amazing immersive science journey in the Eos Planetarium Theater – Southern Arizona’s only planetarium. Recently renovated with state-of-the-art projection technology, sound system, and seating, it’s an experience you don’t want to miss.
The Flandrau observatory features a 16-inch telescope with free viewing where our volunteer astronomers can show you Saturn's rings, the cloud belts of Jupiter, the Andromeda galaxy and other stunning and beautiful images that will forever transform the way you see our own world. Because the Observatory is entirely volunteer-run, please call ahead to see if the observatory is open (generally Thursday – Saturday 7pm – 10pm)
The University of Arizona Mineral Museum on the lower level of Flandrau houses one of the top-5 gem and mineral collections of the world. With a core collection dating back to 1892, the Mineral Museum now holds more than 26,000 specimens. The Mineral Museum's permanent exhibit of over 2,000 specimens includes stunning minerals and meteorites from Arizona, Mexico and around the world.
Flandrau also offers science-themed summer and day camps called “Fusion Camps”, birthday parties, private events for special occasions, group visits, Science Cafés, and more.
Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium got its start with a 1972 bequest from the estate of Grace H. Flandrau, noted author and frequent winter visitor to Tucson. The University decided to use the generous gift to fund a facility that would increase public understanding and appreciation of science.
Originally known as The Grace H. Flandrau Planetarium, the facility was part of the UA Department of Astronomy. Its location on campus, near the Astronomy Department, Optical Sciences Center, Lunar and Planetary Laboratory and historic Steward Observatory, reflects its continuing connections to the research community.
The Planetarium was designed by Tucson architectural firm Blanton and Company and opened its door to the public in 1975. You can learn more about the history of Flandrau here.
The Next Chapter
The spirit of generosity allowed for a new vision for Flandrau’s planetarium to take shape. In Summer 2014 thanks to gifts from the Tucson Foundations, Wells Fargo and The Eos Foundation, the planetarium received a technological upgrade to its projection system. This first phase of renovation featured A SCISS Colorspace projection system, complete with 4K resolution fulldome projection, dynamic planetarium software, and 18,000 watts of Dolby 5.1 sound, bringing the experience into the realm of cutting edge planetariums worldwide.
In the summer of 2016, Flandrau completed the second phase of the renovation to the planetarium theater – the largest renovation to Flandrau since opening its doors in 1975. A complete renovation to the planetarium theater involved removal of the original seats and star projector and installation of all new theatrical lighting, carpet and acoustic treatments, and an entirely new seating arrangement with new chairs. Thanks to the generous gift of the Eos Foundation – The Eos Foundation Theater was born and opened to awestruck audiences on August 27, 2017.