We went last night with friend Wes Tritter and cousin Christine Anderson to see the latest offering at the IMAX theatre. The IMAX is located in the same building as the Royal BC Museum and a very nice day can be made of combining a visit to both. If you don’t know the format, IMAX is really big screen. I don’t know what that acronym means, maybe something like ‘eye maximum’ or some such thing. I saw my first IMAX at Expo 86 in Vancouver and was blown away. The typical IMAX screen is about 10 times bigger than a conventional theatre screen. The one here at the RBCM is 70 feet wide and about 6 stories high. In other words, really bit.
The show we saw was called ‘Hubble’. The show takes you through the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope through 2 shuttle launches to repair it and install new equipment. The images are absolutely breathtaking. So see our planet from so far up in space and in such crystal clear images brought tears to my eyes a number of times. And we see the astronauts out in space, walking, as they do repairs on the Hubble. And our very own Canadarm is featured prominently (even though it’s owned by an American company).
While I loved the show, I couldn’t help thinking about the amount of money that is spend on space exploration. There are villages around the world that don’t have any running water and many with no water at all. These highly trained, intelligent, brave astronauts fly up into space and then walk in an environment of no air and no gravity and then use extremely sophisticated tools to change sophisticated parts in space telescopes. I wondered if there is any way that we would use their expertise, and some of their money, to help make the world a better place for the people who are living here.
There are usually 4 shows on at any one time, at different hours during the day. Please consult their web site for details http://www.imaxvictoria.com/index.cfm.