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Pop Up Inflatable Planetarium in London

  • Posted by Peter Glatzer on January 29, 2015 in Science/Tech
  • We just learned today of this pop up, and can only hope there's a plan to travel this incredible installation. Last November, nestled under London’s A13 highway, was a mysterious glowing orb that invited visitors to crawl inside and look at the cosmos. They call it Osmo and it was designed by the London studio Loop.pH for the city’s annual Light Night Canning Town. The planetarium is a pneumatically-inflated cocoon fashioned from silver mylar, and it was built for people to pass through the zip-up entrance and sit beneath the stars in a brilliant, all-encompassing setting.

    Loop.pH projected the galaxy onto a 29-foot-high surface with lasers based on the perspective of the night-time view of the sky. They used a map from In the Sky, which charts 88 constellations onto a 2D rectangular map. So, the designers had the challenge of projecting something flat onto a (roughly) spherical object. The 3D modeling program Rhino and a graphical algorithm editor called Grasshopper helped them with that challenge.

    They didn't claim the installation was an exact science but reports were it was a stunning experience, even if it was an approximation Inside Osmo, visitors could look in any direction and were free from horizon lines, bad weather, and other factors - it provided a more intimate look at the stars. Bravo. We want to experience the Osmo!


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