Miami, FL, USA — The new Patricia and Phillip Frost Museum of Science, opening 2015, will showcase science and research with global implications, as well as cutting-edge technology that helps us understand our world and improve our lives. The building itself is even an exhibit of sorts, with green design features and smart technologies incorporated throughout, and right now, all of this is under development and under construction. Museum staff used a DJI Phantom, which is an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, or “drone,” to soar high above the construction site (more than 150 feet up) and give whole new views of what is to come. This drone has intelligent orientation control, remote control unit, high intensity LED lights, the ability to travel 22 miles/hour and reach more than 2,000 feet in the air, and even the capability to automatically return “home” on autopilot, in the event of a communication failure.
In the video below, you will take off and fly up alongside the spherical structure that will become the new planetarium. As you gain altitude, you can see the two rectangular buildings on either side of the planetarium. About 1 minute into your journey, you will find yourself above the plaza area, with its planters, looking west. You will see one of the rectangular parts of the building on the right (the planetarium is behind), and a curved wall that is the beginning of the building that will house the 500,000 gallon Gulf Stream aquarium tank. As you turn around and face the bay (at about 1:30 minutes), you will see the science museum’s neighbor, the Pérez Art Museum Miami, across the plaza. Your journey quickly takes you now to a view directly downward on the building that will house the aquarium features. You can see the square tube of the elevator shaft, and (at about 1:55 minutes) the support structures for the tank reaching up in 6 beams forming a hexagon. At 2:50 minutes, you are back at the planetarium sphere, and will see the public transportation track alongside US-395 that will drop visitors right at the Museum after it opens. Now you will circle around (at 3:10 minutes), to see all of the museum’s future neighbors: the American Airlines Arena and the Miami Heat to the south, the bay and Port Miami to the east, and the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts to the north. Prepare for landing as you descend more than 150 feet to the ground. The video was shot February 11, 2014.