Situated on three-acres in Arizona's Santa Catalina Mountains, the world famous, Biosphere 2 is a model of the earth's ecosystem. Its mission is to serve as a center for teaching, learning and research about the earth and its systems.
Built in the late 1980s with $150 million in funding from Texas oil magnate Edward Bass, Biosphere 2 was designed as an airtight replica of Earth's environment (Biosphere 1). This 7,200,000-cubic-foot sealed glass and space-frame structure contains 5 biomes, including a 900,000-gallon ocean, a rain forest, a desert, agricultural areas and a human habitat.
The Biosphere 2 Center campus is a fascinating geological area sitting amidst 3 separate biomes, created by varying topography, temperatures and rainfall. It is an archaeologically-rich area with extensive Native American history.
Some of the early designers and managers were interested in space travel and the possibility of colonizing the Moon or Mars. By building Biosphere 2 and sealing people inside, they hoped to learn what problems would arise from living in a closed system. So it was that in 1991, a colony of 8 people set about to live inside Biosphere 2 for two years.
Admission: Adults, $12.95; $8.95 for ages (13-17); $6.00, children ages (6-12); Children 5 and under free; Plus sales tax.
Hours: Tours offered daily. open from 8:30 am every day of the year, except Christmas Day. The last ticket is sold at 5:00 pm.
Address: 32540 S. Biosphere Road
Tours presentations begin every 60 minutes, seven days a week, starting at 9:00 am, with the last tour presentation starting at the Cyber Cafe at 4:30 pm. All exhibits close at 5:30 pm. Reservations for groups under 10 are not required.
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