Office of Legacy Management

Experience Manhattan on the Mesa Exhibit in Los Alamos, NM

August 2, 2017

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The Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico is one of three sites that make up the Manhattan Project National Historical Park (MAPR). The DOE Office of Legacy Management is responsible for managing MAPR, in collaboration with the National Park Service.

The Bradbury Science Museum in Los Alamos is supported by DOE and Los Alamos National Laboratory. The museum recently partnered with New Mexico Highlands University to create new Manhattan Project exhibits. On July 14, 2017, the Bradbury Science Museum opened three new exhibits and released a video as part of a new MAPR experience called “Manhattan on the Mesa.”

“With these exhibits we help visitors to the Manhattan Project National Historical Park experience the park properties at the laboratory that are not yet open to the public,” said Museum Director Linda Deck.

Manhattan on the Mesa includes:

  • Racing Toward Dawn, a new video that examines the laboratory’s role in the Manhattan Project as part of Project Y
  • They Changed the World, an exhibit taken from a book by photographer A.J. Melnick, contains photographs and backgrounds—in a new, interactive format—of various people who lived and worked at the laboratory during World War II
  • Behind the Fence, a 360-degree immersive experience of key park properties at Los Alamos National Laboratory, includes facilities’ exteriors, interiors, sounds, and even smells
  • Large displays that give detailed information about the uses and significance of laboratory properties

The new activities are tied together by the “Secret Pass,” which encourages visitors to decode clues and find answers that relate to the Manhattan Project story. Those answers are located throughout the exhibit, and the exploration provides a deeper experience.

The new experiences were created in conjunction with New Mexico Highlands University’s Program in Interactive Cultural Technology, the National Park Service, and the Los Alamos National Laboratory’s MAPR steering committee.”

Los Alamos Pond Cabin exhibit.
The Behind the Fence exhibit gives visitors a 360-degree immersive experience of key park properties at the Lab.