New ESO Supernova Partner: Evans & Sutherland

Constellation partnership signed with global planetarium company

10 October 2016

Evans & Sutherland (E&S) has signed a three-year partnership agreement with ESO as a Constellation Partner in the ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre. Having developed advanced computer graphical technologies for over forty years, E&S was the world’s first computer graphics company, and now specialises in a world-leading digital planetarium system, Digistar. The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre is 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 runs the facility.

Through their collaboration with ESO, E&S will be providing this cutting-edge planetarium technology for use in the forthcoming ESO Supernova, and will be the first to receive daily astronomy news and data directly from research carried out in observatories around the world through the Data2Dome project. Data2Dome, which ESO is spearheading with support from the International Planetarium Society's Data and Visualization task force, is being developed and refined in a close collaboration between the two organisations, in order to provide E&S planetariums worldwide with the most up-to-date astronomy information.

The ESO Supernova is due to open on the ESO Headquarters site just outside Garching, Munich in November 2017, and construction work is currently nearing completion. Collaboration between ESO and E&S is already ongoing, however, as developments advance in the Digistar Cloud service — Digistar’s revolutionary built-in cloud sharing capability that will connect Digistar customers worldwide.

Companies, institutes and individual donors who wish to support the ESO Supernova and give back to the local community by supporting educational programmes aimed at encouraging young people towards STEM careers, may do so via several types of partnership. The partnerships bring with them corresponding levels of benefits, ranging from name and logo exposure in our centre, on print products, during planetarium shows and more to private use of parts of the building. In-kind contributions and individual donations are also possible. Both partners’ and donors’ contributions help us to ensure that the ESO Supernova can remain a free resource.

More Information

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre is a cutting-edge astronomy centre for the public and an educational facility, located at the site of the ESO Headquarters in Garching bei München. The centre hosts the largest tilted planetarium in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and an interactive exhibition, sharing the fascinating world of astronomy and ESO to inspire coming generations to appreciate and understand the Universe around us. All content is provided in English and German and entrance is free, but requires prior booking. For more details visit:

The ESO Supernova Planetarium & Visitor Centre is 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 runs the facility.

ESO Supernova is proudly supported by: Evans & Sutherland and Energie-Wende-Garching.


The Klaus Tschira Stiftung (KTS) was created in 1995 by the physicist and SAP co-founder 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 Heidelberg Institute for Theoretical Studies (HITS gGmbH) was established in 2010 by the physicist and SAP co-founder Klaus Tschira (1940-2015) and the Klaus Tschira Foundation as a private, non-profit research institute. HITS conducts basic research in the natural sciences, mathematics, and computer science, with a focus on the processing, structuring, and analyzing large amounts of data. The research fields range from molecular biology to astrophysics. The shareholders of HITS are the HITS Stiftung, which is a subsidiary of the Klaus Tschira Foundation, Heidelberg University and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). HITS also cooperates with other universities and research institutes and with industrial partners. The base funding of HITS is provided by the HITS Stiftung with funds received from the Klaus Tschira Foundation. The primary external funding agencies are the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the German Research Foundation (DFG), and the European Union.


ESO is the foremost intergovernmental astronomy organisation in Europe and the world’s most productive ground-based astronomical observatory by far. It is supported by 16 countries: Austria, Belgium, Brazil, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, along with the host state of Chile. ESO carries out an ambitious programme focused on the design, construction and operation of powerful ground-based observing facilities enabling astronomers to make important scientific discoveries. ESO also plays a leading role in promoting and organising cooperation in astronomical research. ESO operates three unique world-class observing sites in Chile: La Silla, Paranal and Chajnantor. At Paranal, ESO operates the Very Large Telescope, the world’s most advanced visible-light astronomical observatory and two survey telescopes. VISTA works in the infrared and is the world’s largest survey telescope and the VLT Survey Telescope is the largest telescope designed to exclusively survey the skies in visible light. ESO is a major partner in ALMA, the largest astronomical project in existence. And on Cerro Armazones, close to Paranal, ESO is building the 39-metre European Extremely Large Telescope, the E-ELT, which will become “the world’s biggest eye on the sky”.



Tania Johnston
ESO Supernova Coordinator
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 320 061 30
Cell: +49 170 867 5293

Oana Sandu
Community Coordinator & Communication Strategy Officer
Tel: +49 89 320 069 65

About the Announcement



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