ann16040 — Announcement

ESO Supernova Basic Construction Complete

A supernova as a beginning, rather than an end

28 June 2016

The construction of the concrete shell of the ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre has been completed and the exciting “double-star system” design of the building is now coming to life. The ESO Supernova will provide visitors with an immersive experience of astronomy and ESO’s scientific and technological achievements.

The building, donated by the Klaus Tschira Stiftung, has been designed by architects Bernhardt + Partner. Other companies involved in the planning and construction include Bollinger + Grohmann (support structure planning), engineering firm Hausladen (HVACR planning), engineering firm Burnickl (electrical planning), Grossmann Bau (rough construction), Frener & Reifer (facades) and more.

Over 700 completely unique formwork elements for the concrete shell have been accurately designed from the architects’ 3D model. These crucial components were designed and built by the company Doka. Surveyors checked all formwork parts were in the correct positions, maintaining the necessary millimetre accuracy of the shell, before pouring the concrete into the formwork.

In order to achieve the most economic building process, and so that the formwork could be stripped off as soon as possible, temperature sensors embedded in the walls sent text messages that allowed close observation of the chemical processes as the concrete hardened.

With its 14-metre planetarium and interactive exhibition the Centre will provide school classes and families with an unforgettable learning experience, where the most fascinating topics in astronomy are explained and visualised in an innovative way.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the ESO Supernova took place on 24 February 2015 (see ann15011), marking the beginning of the main construction phase of the facility. The facility will be finished in early 2017 and is scheduled to open to the public in late 2017.

More Information

ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre is a cutting-edge astronomy centre located at the site of ESO Headquarters in Garching bei München, providing you with an immersive experience that will leave you in awe of the Universe we live in. From 2017 the centre will provide school classes and families with an unforgettable learning experience, where even the most abstract and distant topics in astronomy and physics are explained and visualised in an innovative way.

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre is made possible by a cooperation between the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and the Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS). The building is a donation from the Klaus Tschira Stiftung (KTS), a German foundation, and ESO will run the facility.

KTS

The Klaus Tschira Stiftung (KTS) was created in 1995 by the physicist and SAP-cofounder Klaus Tschira (1940 – 2015). It is one of Europe’s largest privately funded non-profit foundations. The Foundation promotes the advancement of the natural sciences, mathematics, and computer science, and strives to raise appreciation for these fields. The Foundation’s commitment begins in kindergarten and continue in schools, universities, and research facilities. The Foundation champions new methods of scientific knowledge transfer, and supports both development and intelligible presentation of research findings. The ESO Supernova is a donation from the KTS, and ESO will run the facility.

HITS

The Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS gGmbH) was established by SAP co-founder Klaus Tschira and his foundation, the Klaus Tschira Stiftung, as a private, non-profit research institute. HITS conducts basic research involving the processing, structuring and analysis of large amounts of data in the natural sciences, mathematics and computer science. The research topics range from molecular biology to astrophysics.

Links

Contacts

Tania Johnston
ESO Supernova Coordinator
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3200 6130
Cell: +49 170 867 5293
Email: tjohnsto@eso.org

About the Announcement

Id:ann16040

Images

ESO Supernova star-roof kissed by Sun
ESO Supernova star-roof kissed by Sun
The sinuous outer shell of the ESO Supernova
The sinuous outer shell of the ESO Supernova
Panorama of the ESO Supernova roof
Panorama of the ESO Supernova roof