Press Release

New Planetarium in Halle to Feature ZEISS Projection Technology

The planetarium in Halle in eastern Germany will be equipped with ZEISS projectors and the ZEISS UNIVIEW Open Dome, making it one of Europe's cutting-edge planetariums.

17 August 2021

Jena/Halle, Germany | 17 August 2021 | ZEISS Planetariums

ZEISS is equipping the new planetarium in Halle with leading-edge technology for visualizing celestial phenomena and delivering 360-degree video projection. The domed hall, the planetarium's centerpiece, will soon boast a 12-meter diameter and will accommodate upwards of 100 visitors.

A ZEISS SKYMASTER ZKP 4 planetarium projector stationed in the middle of the auditorium will simulate a realistic night sky, while six ZEISS VELVET LED projectors along its perimeter will project digital images on the dome. The True Black hybrid planetarium system combines the opto-mechanical projection power of the ZEISS ZKP 4 star projector with the high-contrast projections delivered by a variety of planetarium functions on the ZEISS VELVET projectors. The ZEISS VELVET LED projectors are special as they deliver pitch-black image backdrops – meaning the brilliance of the artificial night sky is retained even when accompanied by superimposed images, thus reinforcing the illusion of an object floating in space. ZEISS uses hybrid controls to ensure that both systems work in sync. And it's set to transform planetarium events into an extraordinary experience for all.

The former gasometer is currently being repurposed to create the new planetarium in Halle. It will soon be equipped with cutting-edge projection technology from ZEISS. Photo: Halle, Germany / Thomas Ziegler.

What's more, the planetarium in Halle is one of ZEISS' first customers to use UNIVIEW Open Dome, a technology that permits any content to be projected directly from a laptop or PC onto a dome in real time. And it does this in the high resolution of up to 4,096 x 4,096 pixels. In the future, the planetarium in Halle will be able to project content from external sources onto its dome through Plug & Play. This includes videos, presentation apps like PowerPoint and astronomy apps, as well as its own visualizations, VJ applications and even content from the web. "UNIVIEW Open Dome is opening up a whole new age for planetariums. For the first time ever, technology imposes no limits on what can be projected onto the dome," says Martin Kraus, Head of Planetariums at ZEISS.

"One of our primary aims here at the planetarium is to share knowledge. With that in mind, we'll be running programs that demonstrate just what a state-of-the-art planetarium is capable of," says Dirk Schlesier, head of the Halle planetarium. "It's not merely about stargazing – we also want to create a cultural space, and ZEISS' projection technology fits right in with that."

"The technology from the planetarium in Halle is currently being put through its paces in our factory dome," says Kraus. "In a matter of months, Halle will be opening one of Europe's cutting-edge planetariums and we hope that this hub of education and culture will leave many visitors thoroughly impressed." The planetarium is scheduled to open in spring 2022.

The new facility is a new build that will replace the former planetarium located on Peissnitz Island, which was sadly damaged beyond repair by the flooding it succumbed to back in 2013. The new location will also feature exhibition spaces, an observation and event terrace, and an observatory.

Press contact Beatrice Weinberger

ZEISS Planetariums


ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. In the previous fiscal year, the ZEISS Group generated annual revenue totaling 6.3 billion euros in its four segments Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology, Industrial Quality & Research, Medical Technology and Consumer Markets (status: 30 September 2020).

For its customers, ZEISS develops, produces and distributes highly innovative solutions for industrial metrology and quality assurance, microscopy solutions for the life sciences and materials research, and medical technology solutions for diagnostics and treatment in ophthalmology and microsurgery. The name ZEISS is also synonymous with the world's leading lithography optics, which are used by the chip industry to manufacture semiconductor components. There is global demand for trendsetting ZEISS brand products such as eyeglass lenses, camera lenses and binoculars.

With a portfolio aligned with future growth areas like digitalization, healthcare and Smart Production and a strong brand, ZEISS is shaping the future of technology and constantly advancing the world of optics and related fields with its solutions. The company's significant, sustainable investments in research and development lay the foundation for the success and continued expansion of ZEISS' technology and market leadership. ZEISS invests 12 percent of its revenue in research and development – this high level of expenditure has a long tradition at ZEISS and is also an investment in the future.

With over 34,000 employees, ZEISS is active globally in almost 50 countries with around 30 production sites, 60 sales and service companies and 27 research and development facilities. Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany. The Carl Zeiss Foundation, one of the largest foundations in Germany committed to the promotion of science, is the sole owner of the holding company, Carl Zeiss AG (status: 31 March 2021).

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