Kent State University Planetarium is maintained by the Department of Physics for use in astronomy courses, as well as for presentation of shows to groups outside the department.
The spherical star ball is capable of reproducing on the dome most stars visible to the naked eye from anyplace on earth. The Milky Way is shown, in addition to the planets out to Saturn, the Moon and the Sun. Complex motor-gear system allow the speeding up of time to show Earth rotation, Sun's movement, and planetary motions, as well as the Moon's position and phase as we see them from Earth. An auxiliary projection orrery lets us see the Solar System in motion from a point outside and above it.
Teaching aids that can be projected on the sky include various coordinates, the meridian and ecliptic. The entire sky can be revolved as if the audience were turned in their seats to make viewing all parts of the sky easier. The fiberglass bucket-type seats tilt back for overhead viewing. Seating capacity is about 125.
Kent State University Planetarium normally presents dozens of shows per year. Shows presently available for programs include Introduction to the Night Sky, which introduces the viewer to constellations and interesting objects to look for in the night sky, and Springtime of the Universe, which discusses the astrophysical evolution of the universe. In addition, the Planetarium usually presents annually a series of four public shows, primarily for small groups and individuals, which includes our Christmas show (The Star of Bethlehem ) and The Search for Extra-terrestrial Intelligence.
Planetarium shows can presently be arranged for youth, educational, and civic groups of 25 or more persons. For reservations or more information, contact the Physics Office, at (330) 672-2246 or the planetarium director Prof. Brett Ellman, at (330) 672-9575.
Last updated on September 09, 2014.