Day 3

What is a planetarium? It’s a building with a domed roof onto which we can project a simulated display of the night sky, study the stars and learn the positions of the constellations. It’s a bit like a cinema, with comfy seats, but instead of looking at a flat screen, the viewer sees the stars at night, projected onto the concave ceiling. It’s quite a magical experience. Here’s what Saffron saw when she explored the planetarium at Astro Station.

In The Planetarium

“(The auditorium was)… a perfect circle, topped by a domed roof, on which the constellations of the northern hemisphere were depicted on a sapphire ground, and which mimicked the night sky. Inside the white rim at the top of the circular wall, a border of recessed lighting shed soft light upwards and inwards making the stars seem to glimmer. Saffron found the spectacle very pretty.

The floor underneath was thick red carpet, luxury for her, whose feet had spent most of their lives on hard stone and wooden surfaces. Display cases and interactive units bordered the entire rim (except for two more entrances) and a ring of cream-coloured armchair seating ran one metre in, parallel to the walls, creating an aisle all the way round. The circle of floor inside the seating was clear, except for a low dark wooden podium with a conductor’s stand on it and she guessed experts gave talks from it.”

The London Planetarium

You can read more about how a planetarium works here:
The London Planetarium

Read Saffron and Nate’s story in Far Out available on Kindle.

Next time we’ll be in the Observatory, so keep your eyes peeled for the next post.

Credits: Thanks to Coffee ‘n Characters for hosting the Summer Blog Hop.

First published July 2013