Dr. Jose Mena-Werth
UNK- Nebraska’s newest planetarium will present “Planetarium on Parade” on Friday, May 14, in the University of Nebraska at Kearney Bruner Hall of Science.
The 45 minute show, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 7 p.m. Seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis. An encore show will be presented at 8 p.m. if there is an overflow crowd.
“All shows are free-of-charge. However, we will graciously accept any donation of dry or canned goods for the UNK Campus Kitchen,” said Dr. Jose Mena-Werth, planetarium director.
The UNK planetarium is a fully accessible 60-seat public science theater that replaces an older facility formerly located in the Bruner Hall basement.
“‘Planetarium on Parade’ takes a behind-the-scenes look at the new UNK planetarium,” Dr. Mena-Werth said. “During the show, we explain how the projectors and sound systems are used to produce a star show.”
“The UNK planetarium is currently the most modern planetarium between Chicago and Phoenix,” he added.
“Each of the 6,000 stars is individually projected on the dome with fiber-optic technology,” he said. “The space and time functions of the projector are completely computer controlled. We can navigate to any place in the world, and any date in the past or future, with the push of a button.”
A $600,000 NASA grant helped fund the new planetarium, which features a state-of-the art projector, the Zeiss Skymaster ZKP4. According to Dr. Mena-Werth, the UNK planetarium is one of the most advanced theaters in the Great Plains.