Digital STARLAB® Projectors

The Digital STARLAB is a portable digital planetarium. Think of how convenient it would be for you to have your very own planetarium, instead of being at the mercy of someone else's schedule. You could do tailored lessons when and where you want, entirely under your own discretion. With the inflatable dome, you can set up the Starlab when you need it, and put it away when you don't. When you compare the price, performance, and ease of use, you can't find a better portable planetarium projector anywhere.

What does all of this mean for you? It means that you can take a giant leap forward in your astronomy or earth science education. Imagine what you could do if you could set up your own personal universe and make it do whatever you want.

The Digital STARLAB is available in three packages to maximize your budget! Choose between Ares, Saturn, and Scout. All packages are named after heavy lift launch systems.

Projection Specifications

  • Custom, contrast-enhancing fisheye lens Our custom designed lens does not distort the star shape near the horizon, allowing for accurate sky images. Our lens is also designed to prevent the "rainbow" effect common at the horizon using other lenses. Our lens projects at 190 degrees, unlike the 155 degree projection angle of some competing systems. This allows for a far more immersive environment.
  • Resolution - 1200 pixel diameter image size = full high definition projection across the dome interior. This resolution is among the best to be found on any planetarium system.
  • Brightness - 4000 ANSI Lumens

Digital STARLAB features a custom fisheye lens (patent pending) capable of depicting an accurate, high-contrast , simulated night sky with the capacity to explore a multitude of motions and displays eliminating the need for additional slide projectors, video projectors, sound systems or computers. Covering a full 190º on the dome, the small bright stars remain spherical right down to the horizon. Its superior brightness makes star images even more realistic. There are no cutouts or blind spots along the horizon. The projector is compact and lightweight and is therefore easily transported and/or stored. The lens is rigidly locked in place by a strong aluminum mounting system. Additionally, the lens is adjustable via a collection of set screws. This allows the alignment and focus to be very precisely dialed into position, and then locked into place. We do all of this for you, so all you have to do is teach.


Digital STARLAB in Action, Courtesy of Mobius Science Center

Using a laptop interface, powered by a customized version of the renowned Starry Night software from Simulation Curriculum called Starry Night Small Dome, users can choose from a set of K-12 pre-scripted, national standards-based lessons. In addition, each Digital STARLAB incorporates two additional curriculum modules included with the purchase: Astronomy of the Americas and Orders of Magnitude based on the Powers of 10. Please visit our Curriculum and Standards page for more information.

Digital STARLAB encourages interactivity and hands-on, minds-on learning through its curriculum, activities and programs. This exciting new digital planetarium system for STARLAB and other portable and small fixed domes has the capacity to go beyond our solar system to investigate stars, galaxies, deep sky objects and cultural constellations. Professionally-produced, interactive educational units and lessons present dynamic, remarkably realistic interdisciplinary programs to large numbers of students.

Full dome images with 360 degrees of high definition output!

Projection System Features

  • A compact, manually-operated planetarium projector with custom fisheye lens (patent pending) designed to produce the best quality starfield images of any projector in its price range
  • Full Dome Coverage - a 190° hemisphere down to a 36" eye-level horizon
  • Powered by customized Starry Night Small Dome software based on the user-friendly, point-and-click, Spitz Starry Night Dome software on a laptop computer
  • Laptop can be either Mac or Windows, depending on preference. Unlike other systems, the user does not have to learn linux.
  • Superior contrast and star shape, 16 million colors with minimized color aberration
  • Beautifully realistic deep sky objects, planets and moons, plus visually realistic star projections at the horizon with undistorted star shapes (1:1 star aspect ratio)
  • An easy-to-follow method of navigating the sky (HTML-based) that allows users to determine their level of interactivity
  • The ability to display slides or movies to complement the curriculum
  • Available separately or as part of a complete system including dome and accessories
  • Projector is built with a heavy frame and metal components, making it extremely durable. This contrasts with the lighter, plastic projectors used by some other systems


Starry Night Small Dome Software Highlights

Software is a scaled down version of the powerful package used by full scale, fixed planetariums. No other portable planetarium in the world is able to offer a software package with this level of power! Find out more about our software.

  •  Complete 3D Hipparcos, Tycho 2 and database of 16 million stars
  • Thousands of famous deep space objects with detailed descriptions from Messier and Caldwell catalogs, Herschel catalog of 400 deep sky objects, and corrected NGC/IC catalogs with over 13,000 deep sky objects
  • Comprehensive database of known satellites, comets, asteroids, meteor showers, and extra-solar planets
  • Display of planets and all known solar system moons as quality textured, accurately placed 3D objects
  • Accurate annual motion of planets, sun and moons over a +/- 100,000 year span
  • Constellation overlays, equatorial, galactic and ecliptic grids
  • Automatic navigation to any selected planet, moon, comet, asteroid or satellite
  • Customizable high-resolution 360-degree panoramas
  • "Find" command to locate any celestial object
  • Software will "speak" the names of hard to pronounce bodies
  • Can use the internet to interface with Live Sky, Google Earth, and automatically update positions of bodies.
  • Split menus, allowing the program to run on the projector while the computer is used for other things. For example, you could start a simulation, then use the internet to look up the answer to a question a student might have posed. The teacher is the only person aware of this process
  • Compatible with Starry Night desktop versions


Digital STARLAB Projection System Includes

  • Projector with Custom Fisheye Lens and Remote Control
  • Case/Portable Stand
  • Laptop Computer with 3-year AppleCare Protection or extended warranty
  • Starry Night Small Dome Software
  • Speakers
  • 12 National Standards-based Lessons (adaptable for any grade as well as public use)
  • 1-year Warranty on All Parts. Computer and projector come with three year warranties.
  • Lifetime technical support from Science First



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