Merrillville Community Planetarium
Bringing the Universe to the Merrillville Schools and Northwest Indiana

Star Projector

Star Ball   Planet Cage

This is our star projector — a System 512 from Spitz, Inc. It can project approximately 1,400 stars onto the planetarium dome with realistic location, brightness, and color. The lower half of the projector contains seven analog computers — one each for the sun, moon, and five naked-eye planets (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn). The computers calculate the locations of those objects and they can also be projected onto the dome.

The System 512 star projector was part of the Planetarium when it opened in 1973. During the renovation of Pierce and the Planetarium between 1997 and 1999, the star projector was returned to the Spitz factory for a complete refurbishing.