Digital show for science lovers

May-end date for planetarium launch

By Our Correspondent
  • Published 7.05.16

The state's first digital planetarium is all set to start at SK Science Centre.

The facility awaits an approval nod from the National Council of Science Museums and might be inaugurated by May end or the first week of June.

The planetarium has been developed at a cost of Rs 5 crore and is equipped with Carl Zeiss digital projector system and 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround System. As per centre officials, four to five shows (30-minute duration) would be telecast at the planetarium on a daily basis. There are 49 seats in the planetarium.

"The ticket price will be something between Rs 30 and 40 but concession will be given to students if they come in groups," said SK Science Centre curator Swarup Mandal. "The shows will be different and interesting than that at Patna planetarium because of the digital projector and sound systems. Patna planetarium uses opto-mechanical system in which films are pre-loaded and can't be changed easily. They are forced to screen the same show over and over again for the past few years. The shows can easily be changed at SK Science Centre as the system depends on computers. We have decided to change shows at the planetarium every six months. We will introduce interesting shows, like full solar eclipses happening in other part of the world, at the centre."

The Innovation Hub and Funfine Gallery, which are part of the planetarium, are also ready. While students can learn about the basics of robotics and take up practical classes of physics, chemistry and biology at the innovation hub, science related exhibits are present at the Funfine Gallery.

Apart from a conventional sky show in which moon, stars and planets are shown, the planetarium would also showcase a film, Back to the Moon.

"Students will also be taught how to make various things at the innovation hub. There will be a monthly or annual registration fee for students who want themselves to enrol in the classes," said Mandal.

"The Funfine Gallery explains various science related theories with help of exhibits such as crack shoot, smart basket ball, acrobatic stick, energy ball and floating ball among others," Mandal added. "The exhibits in the Funfine gallery run with the help of electronic sensors. Pedal power, an exhibit, works when pressure is exerted on the pedal to make a ball rise in a transparent pipe attached to the bicycle. The ball rises according to the pressure exerted. An air blower is attached to the bicycle. Another exhibit, where a ball floats constantly because of continuous air pressure, has been put up."