Our venues

(Re)Lift-off for planetarium!

Posted on Monday 30th January 2012

World Museum’s planetarium goes digital

World Museum’s planetarium has had a major re-vamp more than forty years after it first opened in 1970. The museum has worked in partnership with German-based company Zeiss to install a new digital projection system which will transform the planetarium experience for visitors.

Instead of static images, visitors will be treated to immersive shows that bring the solar system right to their seat.

Steve Judd, Director of World Museum says,

“World Museum’s planetarium is the only free planetarium in the UK. This new technology will create mind-blowing shows and visitors will be able get up-close to the moon or the volcanoes of Mars from the comfort of their seat. I’d like to thank Zeiss for installing the equipment and working tirelessly alongside museum staff to transform the planetarium into something ‘out of this world’.”

With this new equipment comes a new show, Chronicle of a Journey to Earth. The show follows an intergalactic traveller exploring the galaxy who moves towards the sun examining dwarf and giant planets, comets and asteroids. By following the traveller’s path, the show demonstrates what today’s science has discovered about each of the components of our solar system.

As well as Chronicle of a Journey to Earth, the popular Sunshine Show will also continue. The cartoon character, Sunshine, helps children identify the colours of night and day through songs and games.

The 62 seat planetarium was opened in 1970. It has an eight metre dome and was the first to be opened in a museum outside London. The planetarium has concentric seating, a set-up not really used these days as the fashion has been geared towards IMAX style planetaria. The planetarium has welcomed more than 1.6 million people over the last 40 years. This includes famous astronomer Patrick Moore and Russian cosmonauts Dr Alexander Martynov and Colonel Alexander Volkov.

Notes for editors

About National Museums Liverpool

National Museums Liverpool comprises eight venues. Our collections are among the most important and varied in Europe and contain everything from Impressionist paintings and rare beetles to a lifejacket from the Titanic.

We attract more than 2.6 million visitors every year. Our venues are World Museum, the Walker Art Gallery, Merseyside Maritime Museum, International Slavery Museum, UK Border Agency National Museum, Sudley House and the Lady Lever Art Gallery. 

In July 2011, our eighth venue, the Museum of Liverpool, opened at the city's Pier Head, part of the city's World Heritage Site. The museum tells the definitive story of Liverpool and its people and contains more than 6,000 items. www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/mol|/