Star Lab Topics


Starfield Astronomy

The Starfield Cylinder now includes an extraordinarily precise depiction of the Milky Way based on the beautiful and highly accurate all-sky panoramas created by Dr. Axel Mellinger. From July 1997 to April 2000 Mellinger used specialized tracking cameras and Kodak film to take 51 wide-angle photos of the northern and southern hemispheres. These precise images have been carefully adapted to the cylindrical starfield projection creating a night sky so detailed, one can easily pick out features like the Coal Sack and the Milky Way center, as well as the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds and Andromeda Galaxy.

The digitally-produced starfield simulates the night sky at any time, season or location on earth. Over 3,000 stars are projected to a limiting magnitude of 5.5 with the brightest stars individually lensed to produce intense pinpoint images. Star locations are accurate to within 1 minute of right ascension and 6 minutes of declination. Betelgeuse, Rigel, Antares, Spica, Arcturus, Capella and Pollux appear in full color. Twelve apertures show the position of the sun throughout the year. For beginning and advanced astronomy.

Solar System & Galaxy- Astronomy

This exciting cylinder projects scaled representations of the sun and the principal bodies of the solar system in color with tables of basic statistics. The enormous distances between the planets are shown to scale. The cylinder also features a colored depiction of the Milky Way Galaxy, complete with spiral arms and a scaled distance line. Full supporting curriculum and suggested lesson plans are included. An indispensable aid for the teaching of astronomy for middle school and up!

Earth- Earth Science

This cylinder is a projection of the entire terrestrial globe including all of the earth’s land and ocean masses. Longitude is displayed at intervals of 15º, latitude is displayed every 10º, with a scale of projection of 1 inch = 40 miles. It is superior to flat maps in its total elimination of distortion, and is useful for studying weather patterns, ocean currents, time zones, social studies and current events. For the study of geography, earth science, geology and navigation.

Native American Mythology- Mythology

This cylinder includes colorful outlines of figures from Native American folklore such as Long Sash, the Great Bear, First Man and Woman, Spider God and many others. An identification key contains legends drawn from the Navajo, Shoshoni, Blackfoot, Cherokee, Tewa, Hopi and Algonquin tribes. Excellent for use with K-6 students studying astronomy, social studies or language arts.

Navajo Skies- Mythology

This cylinder features over 30 extraordinary constellations of the night sky as visualized by the Navajo Indians of the American Southwest. An identification key contains traditional stories of the Sun, Moon, and stars including Revolving Male, Revolving Female, Coyote Tossing the Stars into the Sky, Bear and Thunderbird, and others. An accompanying curriculum guide explains the unique relationship the Navajos have with the stars, including the moral codes for a harmonious life. Useful for all grade levels studying astronomy, Native American cultures, social studies, and language arts.

Lewis & Clark Celestial Navigation- Social Studies

In celebration of the 200th anniversary of the expedition of Lewis & Clark, this cylinder projects the Celestial Equator, the lines of right ascension and declination, the ecliptic, the zodiacal constellations, the Precession Circle and constellations, and the North Celestial Pole and shows either the position of the sun at the equinoxes and the solstices, or the moon phases (new, full or quarters) in relation to the sun. Twenty-six student activities demonstrate how Lewis and Clark used celestial navigation to determine their location in the uncharted territory of the mid and northwest United.States.

Transparent Cylinder with 4 Pens- Earth Science

Let your imagination go wild! Create your own STARLAB cylinder with this clear film cylinder and set of four colored pens (blue, green, red and black). The drawings can be easily wiped off and the cylinder used again and again. Includes a 44-page curriculum guide with tips, curriculum ideas and sample art. Unlimited applications. Shown above “Nature at Night” and “Pond Life” created by the Hamilton County Park District in Cincinnati, Ohio.

For most sessions a combination of cylinders will be used.  2-3 cylinders will be shown in a 30 minute session.  Please notify Star Lab facilitator of interest areas.

Wicoie Nandagikendan has the Classic Standard Dome

  • Diameter: 16 ft (4.9 m)
  • Dome with Tunnels: 18 x 21 ft (5.5 x 6.4 m)
  • Height: 10.5 ft (3.2 m)
  • Minimum Room Size: 21 x 21 ft (6.4 x 6.4 m)
  • Seating: up to 25-30 people (depending on ages)