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Planned and Completed Planetarium Upgrades


Planned Upgrades

Planned upgrades and additions include

  • install separate air conditioning in the computer room
  • carpet the planetarium walls with dark carpet for appearance and acoustics
  • add a curved shelf to finish off the front of the operator's console
  • add dimmable edge lighting under the curved shelf
  • darken the roof structure behind the perforated dome to minimize spurious reflections
  • acquire several tables for entrance handouts and for workspace in ASTR 1L classes
  • add a scrolling electronic message and donor recognition board outside of the planetarium
  • acquire and mount a glass display case outside the planetarium for announcements
  • acquire and install a high definition video projector for projecting movies on the dome
  • acquire a high definition Blu-Ray player to augment the current DVD player
  • acquire additional educational full-dome video shows

Completed Upgrades

In the summer of 2007 track lighting including dimmable fluorescent with some incandescent bulbs were installed. In early 2008 the PowerPoint projector was permanently installed at the back of the dome. After years of planning the permanent theater seating was installed on February 29, 2008. Special thanks go to Wayne Okerman of Sierra School Equipment Company for all of the guidance and advice he gave on this job, and to the installers who did a professional and clean installation. The installation is documented below.

Photo of old planetarium seating


The non-permanent tablet arm chairs in place in the planetarium from August 2006 until late February of 2008. Note the PowerPoint projector on the portable cart. The projector has now been permanently mounted at the back of the dome.

Planetarium with no seats


The planetarium with all of the non-permanent tablet arm chairs removed prior to the installation of the permanent theater seating.

Layout of seating arcs


The seating installation crew chalking layout lines delineating the arcs of the rows of seating on the floor.

Drilling holes


The crew drilling holes in the concrete underneath the carpet and vacuuming the dust out of the holes.


Marking holes and pre-punching carpet


Marking bolt holes to drill and pre-punching the carpet prior to drilling holes.

Attaching seat standards


Attaching seat side standards with bolts to the floor. The standards were pre-assembled at the factory.


Installing the seatbacks


Preparing the seatbacks for installation to the standards. The front rows have already had their seatbacks attached.

Finished Seating from the back


The finished seating as viewed from behind. The seatbacks are done in black and the foldable tablet arm is done in a speckled black.


The finished seating from above


Overall view of the finished seats from above. The seats are Irwin Seating Company's Galaxy model.


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