The Moscow planetarium is one of the favorite places of recreation in Moscow, combining educational, entertainment and scientific components.

The idea to build it arose in 1927. After the presentation of the project at a meeting of the Moscow city Council, unthinkable money was allocated from the city budget at that time — a quarter of a million rubles. It was decided to buy equipment for the planetarium from the famous German manufacturer Carl Zeiss (especially since it already had experience in building such facilities from scratch and on a turnkey basis). The authors of the project “optical scientific theater” were M. Borsch and M. Sinyavsky.

The design was based on the egg as one of the ideal natural forms (the geometric style of the building was emphasized by the architectural elements placed outside the dome-spiral staircases, entrance groups, and others). The project assumed the presence of a hall with 1,400 seats and a roof in the form of a 27-meter dome. For the convenience of organizing the work of the planetarium, it was decided to divide the input and output streams of spectators among themselves, providing for this purpose different entrances and exits from the building. It was assumed that near the planetarium will be built later, another building housing an astronomical Museum and barns, but the continuation of the project was not destined to be implemented, although the planetarium was opened in plan — November 5, 1929.

The first reconstruction of the planetarium took place only in 1977, when new software-controlled equipment was purchased. All Soviet cosmonauts were trained at the planetarium, many of whom gave lectures here on their return from space flights.

In the nineties, visits to the planetarium were restricted due to the emergency condition of the building of the latter. The owners tried to start the reconstruction, but they did not have enough money to complete the work, they started having problems with loans, followed by lawsuits and the seizure of property. They were able to continue the reconstruction only after the bankruptcy of the company and its transfer to the balance sheet of the city of Moscow.

Today, the planetarium building includes several levels that house a 4D movie theater, a Small (for lectures) and a Large star hall, interactive museums, a large Observatory, and an astronomical platform “sky Park”. The projector of the Great star hall today allows you to see more than nine thousand celestial objects.


Author: Nadezhda Pushkina

Location : Moscow, Russia

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