Planetarium Projector
Planetarium Projector For Portable Domes

Planetarium Projector For Portable Domes

Astronomy outreach programs finally have an affordable option for a full-featured planetarium projector: the Digitarium Alpha.

The Digitarium Alpha, created by Digitalis Education Solutions, is a digital planetarium projector designed specifically for portable domes. It provides an unmatched combination of price and performance, allowing education outreach programs to take the capabilities of a fixed planetarium on the road.

This revolutionary new projector allows any outreach program to upgrade to full-featured equipment. All the features of fixed planetarium projectors are here: annual motion; projection of the entire celestial sphere, including the Milky Way; exact latitude, longitude, and date setting; celestial reference lines and grids; and more.

Unlike traditional starballs, users can easily show constellation line drawings and art, label objects of interest, and zoom in on any object for a closer look-with just one piece of equipment. Zooming in on Jupiter, for example, one can watch the Galilean moons orbit. Users can then zoom in further on each Galilean moon for more detail, if desired. There are about 100 images of actual deep space objects that can be labeled in the sky and magnified. All this from a projector that weighs under 35 pounds, and is approximately 14 inches in each dimension. A remote control with back lit buttons makes it easy to operate the projector from anywhere inside the dome.

Set up is as easy as plugging it in and turning it on. The projector starts up in just over one minute to the user's default settings for latitude, longitude, sky time, and more. Stars, planets, the moon, and other objects are positioned automatically, saving valuable time. It's so straightforward you don't need to be an astronomer to run it.

At $13,900, the Digitarium Alpha is the first planetarium projector-fixed or portable-capable of demonstrating annual motion for less than approximately $60,000. It can also be used in small fixed domes, providing all the features at a tiny fraction of the cost of fixed dome projectors. The Digitarium Alpha opens up a whole new world of topics that can be covered outside of a large institution.

"The Digitalis projector is a true innovation for portable planetaria," says Elizabeth Wiles, Community Education Supervisor at Pacific Science Center in Seattle. "It is compact, one-piece and easily transported -- no more multiple cylinders, no more tiny planet pieces or moon magnets. The software it contains increases a hundredfold (maybe more) the capacity of topics we can do in the portable planetarium."

For more information, about projectors and digital projection devices see multimedia projectors.

Author Notes:

Shayda Fraser contributes and publishes news editorial to  An online look at projectors, home theatre and accessories; such as digital, video, screens and slides.

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