The Museum of Planetary Sciences in Prato is a museum designed for teaching about the wonders of the universe in an accessible and captivating way. Here, astrophysics, astronomy and geology, the studies of minerals and the planets, become enjoyable for everyone thanks to a route that keeps in mind the varied needs of all its visitors.
The exhibition winds through thematic rooms, designed as a journey that ranges from the elements closest to us to the infinity of distant space. Through images, short films and multimedia stations, visitors can learn about the Solar System and the universe, with models of planets and a special depiction of the Milky Way. Amongst everything the sky offers, there are also the so-called impactites, which add to the museum with a large collection of meteorites, fascinating fragments of space that have reached our hands and among which is the largest of its kind in Italy, weighing more than 270 kg. The collection is truly impressive, with more than 100 objects on display coming from various parts of the world, gathered mostly through dedicated expeditions organized by the Foundation that manages the museum.
The mineral collection is also note-worthy, counting 4,500 pieces, only 130 of which are on display. The pieces selected for display are meant to represent all of Tuscany as best as possible, with pieces coming from the Apuan Alps and the Amiata, as well as Elba and the coast.
A unique feature of the museum, in addition to the extensive program of educational workshops, exhibitions and conferences, is the quadrisfera, a space that immerses the visitor like a kaleidoscope, with mirrors, sounds and images, designed to narrate events that range from the formation of the universe to the birth of life on our planet.