University of St Andrews   School of Physics and Astronomy Astrophysics Group

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The University of St Andrews' Mobile Planetarium is run entirely by Astronomy PhD students. Our shows recreate the sky as it would look on the night of the show and can be tailored to suit the age range of the audience. For children in P5 and above, we cover subjects including, but not restricted to, the following categories:

For younger audiences, we have a story and sing-along show where the children are encouraged to help us find the biggest bear in the sky who will only appear if they sing the "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" nursery rhyme.

Technical Details

Our Starlab Mobile Planetarium is an inflatable dome of silver-coloured, plastic-coated fabric. Inside, a simulation of the night sky is projected onto the dome. The projector is tilted to account for the latitude of the show's location and can accomodate anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere. It is also motor-driven to show the apparent motion of the sky as the Earth rotates.

We can come to you...

Our Mobile Planetarium can come to your school! Please visit our FAQs page to find out about our requirements or, if your querey is not covered, feel free to email us.

To find out when we can visit your school, please take a look at our availability page.

...Or you can come to us

If you would like a show for just one class, or you do not have the space to accomodate the Mobile Planetarium, you can visit us at the School of Physics and Astronomy in St Andrews. It must be noted that this option is only available outwith University semesters due to room availability. To find out when you can visit the School of Physics and Astronomy, please take a look at the term dates section of the availability page.

If you prefer this option, we can also give a tour of the University of St Andrews' Observatory as part of your visit.

The History of the Mobile Planetarium

The University of St Andrews' Mobile Planetarium was first obtained as part of the "University of St Andrews' Astronomy Road-Show" in 1996 with funding from the Scottish Higher Education Funding Council. It was part of a joint initiative at the Universities of Glasgow, Edinburgh and St Andrews, organised by the Astronomer Royal for Scotland, Professor John Brown.

The Mobile Planetarium is currently funded by:

The University of St Andrews