Dynamic space showcases transformative and exciting world of STEM
DETROIT, May 22, 2017 – Today, Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) and the Michigan Science Center (MiSci) unveiled the new Toyota 4D Engineering Theater (TET). The theater is designed to inspire the next generation of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) learning. Through exciting programs and engaging films, the TET will showcase the fun and dynamic world of STEM and provide a resource for future generations of STEM professionals.
“We’re thrilled to be a partner with the Michigan Science Center and help them nurture future innovators,” said Group Vice President of TMNA Research and Development Jeff Makarewicz. “Toyota is committed to playing a role in building the future STEM workforce. Exposing children to engaging STEM experiences like those in the TET are critical in fostering innovative thinking.”
The all-new TET is prominently featured on the lower level of MiSci. The exterior of the theater features an interactive wall that allows visitors to engage in unique STEM activities. Once inside, the TET delivers a unique four-dimensional experience that engages multiple senses. It houses a state-of-the-art HD projection system with 3D viewing capabilities and enhanced space and lighting for a more immersive experience. The TET is the only theater in Michigan to incorporate “spark” effects without heat, smoke or pyrotechnics. Additionally, advanced viewing technology enables MiSci to live stream video footage to and from virtually anywhere in the world bolstering the facility’s distance learning programs.
“We’re focused on empowering and enriching all children and all communities with STEM,” said Dr. Tonya Matthews, Michigan Science Center president and CEO. “Our partnership with Toyota, and the TET, with its new technology, will help reach communities across Michigan and build a legacy and inspiration of STEM education for students, schools, and families.”
Toyota has made Michigan its hub for North American automotive research and development. Through its Ann Arbor-based, state-of-art product development facility, the company has access to a talent pool of experienced engineers. “Because of places like the Michigan Science Center, there will be a good number of students who are inspired to go into science, inspired to think to the future and do great things,” said Detroit native, Chris Reynolds, executive vice president of Corporate Resources, chief diversity officer & managing officer at Toyota Motor Corporation.
The theater’s public grand opening is Saturday, May 27. To celebrate, MiSci is offering free general admission and TET tickets for the entire weekend to the world debut of the National Geographic film “Extreme Weather 4D,” exclusively produced for MiSci. The film is an interactive experience that transports visitors as they discover the dynamic and complex forces shaping our planet – and the surprising connections that help us understand and adapt to our ever-changing weather. Pre-registration is required and can be found at Mi-Sci.org.
“We are excited to open our doors and allow the community to experience this one-of-a-kind experience for free and want to thank Toyota for their continued support,” added Matthews.
About the Michigan Science Center
The Michigan Science Center inspires nearly 300,000 curious minds of all ages every year through STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) discovery, innovation and interactive education in Detroit and across the state of Michigan. As the STEM hub of the state, we focus on developing and introducing expanded education programs, exhibits, and initiatives that enable us to empower and enrich all children and all communities with STEM. Through our Traveling Science Program and distance learning initiative, we are expanding beyond our Detroit-based facility, with a goal of reaching all 83 counties of Michigan. With Toyota’s 4D Engineering Theater, live stage shows, Michigan’s only IMAX® Dome Theatre, a Planetarium, lab activities, 250+ hands-on exhibits, and more, there are dozens of ways to customize your MiSci visit. The Michigan Science Center is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and does not receive support from the city of Detroit or the state of Michigan. For more information, please call 313.577.8400 or visit the website, Mi-Sci.org.
Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in the U.S. and North America for 60 years, and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands.?During that time, Toyota has created a tremendous value chain as our teams have contributed to world-class design, engineering, and assembly of more than 33 million cars and trucks in North America, where we operate 14 manufacturing plants (10 in the U.S.) and directly employ more than 46,000 people (more than 36,000 in the U.S.).? Our 1,800 North American dealerships (nearly 1,500 in the U.S.) sold almost 2.7 million cars and trucks (2.45 million in the U.S.) in 2016 – and about 85 percent of all Toyota vehicles sold over the past 15 years are still on the road today.
Toyota Motor North America Research & Development (TMNA R&D) aims to redefine next-generation cars as not simply a form of transportation, but as a fully connected vehicle. In fact, Toyota is the leader in automotive patents, including autonomous vehicle patents (over 2,000). Centered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Toyota puts the brightest thinkers from all across America together to focus on letting people live more safely and comfortably. Globally, Toyota spends approximately $1 million per hour on R&D to ensure that Toyota rapidly and continuously develops cutting-edge, high-quality, and appealing vehicles.
To date, Toyota has contributed more than $900 million to American nonprofit groups. For more information about Toyota’s contributions in the U.S., visit http://www.toyota.com/about