Planetarium to travel the universe

Charles Rudison

The Georgia Southern University Planetarium plans to leave spectators in awe during tomorrow’s event with its new Digitstar 5 full dome planetary system.

“Digistar 5 is the most advanced planetary system to date,” Becky Lowder, NASA volunteer and astronomy lab coordinator at GSU, said.

The event will be held Friday, and there will be six 30-minute shows from 6 – 8:30 p.m. The event will be located in the planetarium inside the Math/Physics Building. The event is the Planetarium’s second of the semester and is a part of GSU’s fall family weekend. Students are invited to bring family and friends.

The shows are free. Ticket pickup will begin at five, although students are encouraged to arrive early due to a limited number of seats.

“The Digistar 5 plays full dome movies, filling the entire dome with spectacular images and videos. You will feel as if you are actually inside the universe exploring the stars. I am excited to see the crowd’s reaction,” Lowder said.

The event will consist of presentations given on Digistar 5 by Dillon Marcy and Julian Hershey, astronomy students.

“My display will contain black holes, constellations, a digital journey to one of the discovered exo-planets and much more,” Hershey said.

“My display will consist of Greek mythology and how it correlates to the stars,” Marcy said, “Our hope is that you will be able to point out stars from your dorm room by the end of the presentation.”

The comet of the century, Comet ISON, will also be discussed. Comet ISON is predicted to be visible to the naked eye around late November. Details will be given on how to spot it.

Bookmarks, stickers and lithographs will be handed out to those who want them.

“It will be a good way to enjoy the universe, even while you are home.” Lowder said.

If the skies are clear then telescopes on top of the roof will be available after the show for attendees to enjoy, Lowder said.

The planetarium will collect cans and non-perishable foods. The organization will donate the cans to the Statesboro food bank for those in need.

Lowder said, “I am very excited about our event and it will be a good way to expose and share space science and astronomy with the community. With the presentations you will see that Statesboro is a tiny dot in the grand scheme of the universe.”