Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Planetarium Party and Tours

We enjoyed our working planetarium today. We watched several clips from our planetarium DVD collection, as well as one of the shows in the Planet Earth series. It was GREAT to have a functioning dome!

Tonight, four gentleman will be giving tours of the dome during parent-teacher conferences. On Thursday, five groups from the astronomy class will be giving tours to students from different courses.  They will discuss the process of building the dome, the construction, and show the students a clip from our planetarium movie collection. We also have a visitor from the local paper coming to talk to students and take pictures of the dome. We can't wait to share our accomplishments with the student body and community.

As promised, here are the final pictures!
One of our Planetarium DVDs

Our Go-Vex projection mirror

Projector and mirror during a show

The AMAZING astronomy students who built and constructed the dome.

Friday, November 4, 2011

We've been away enjoying our planetarium

Today, a group of students repositioned rivets in areas that needed tightening. The repositioning did wonders for the inside of the dome. A second group of students worked inside the dome getting all of the projection mechanisms working. They unpacked and set-up the projector, DVD player, and spherical mirror.  They did some troubleshooting in order to get the best projection. They ended up using a desk and box for the projector to sit on, positioned a little lower than the mirror, and an overhead cart for the placement of the mirror. They final got a projection they were happy with and popped in one of the planetarium DVDs we purchased with the grant money. It was one of those moments as a teacher I could see the students felt accomplished. Their eyes were glued to the dome and not a peep was heard from any of them. 

Four of the gentleman who worked incredibly hard on the dome will be giving tours and talking about the process at parent-teacher conferences on Tuesday, Nov. 8th.  Be sure to stop by if you'd like a first-hand look at this magnificent project.

Note: We will post updated pictures on Tuesday!

-Jessica Anderson, teacher

Monday, October 31, 2011

Final assembly

Today, Halloween, October 31, 2011, was the final day of assembly. Today on our cardboard planetarium we added our squares to the bottom of our dome to raise it. Then we ended up with a few larger gaps in the creases so Mrs. Anderson came up with a way to relocate rivets and fix these larger holes.We also brought in our projector and DVD player to prepare us on our awaiting spherical dome. -Reno Ward

Front View

Side view of dome

Side view

Inside view---when we take it down we will re-position some  of the rivets so there are less spaces.

Inside view with holes for the fan cut out.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Planning and building the base

We were so busy today trying to get our base built that the students forgot about blogging. No worries, Mrs. Anderson to the rescue.

Today the students began the process of building the base of the planetarium. We discussed different ways of attaching the base, but finally decided to measure the lengths of the last row of triangles, then to add three inch tabs on the top and two sides of the cardboard sheets. The base sections are close to being square units. We hope they will easily attach to the base of the triangles and be able to support the above structure. Crossing our fingers!

While we were trying to figure out the bases we dealt with collapsing sides on the planetarium. We finally resorted to sending two gentlemen into the dome to hold up the sides while we worked. We're not quite sure how putting the bases on the dome structure will work out. Our main goal will be to support the dome structure and try to lessen the tension on the rivets so they don't start popping out. It could be challenging. We will find out on Monday...

Measuring the bases

Measuring the bases

Measuring the bases

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Finally we get to start putting the planetarium together. We started by bringing all of the pieces to a different room so that we could set it up. We put the top together first because we wouldnt be able to reach the top of it after we got the base done. We had to have people stand in the middle of it and hold it up so that we could start building from the top down to the base of it. Some of the rivets started to pop out but not a big deal we got them all fixed. We got to the base of the dome today and now we have to figure out how to build the base. Currently there are desks inside and outside the dome holding it in place. Be sure to check out all of the pictures we took of today's progress. -Jessee Vasquez
Triangles in place and ready to be added to the dome

Reno and Jessee adding the first rivets
Adding sections of triangles to the top portion of the dome

Jessee working hard holding the dome up
All hands on deck

Working as a team to construct the dome

Natalie making nice use of the ladder

Another layer added

The last triangles before the base

Our custodians admiring our handy work

Final product of the day. Students are feeling very accomplished!
All layers of the dome have been added and desks put in for support. We will build the base next class and add in the remaining triangles.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Final cutting and rivets.

     Today we are finishing up on our cutting, as we are reaching our goal numbers of each type of triangle. We have started punching holes in the sides of the triangles for the rivets. At the same time, we are installing the rivets into the A and C sides to make pentagons and hexagons respectively. However, due to testing in the room to which we would like to set up the dome, we are only able to make trapezoids instead of the hexagons for better storage practices.

-Galen Bissell-

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Assembly Line Day 2

On the second day of our assembly line we have 5 groups: Two groups tracing templates onto the cardboard, one group of four cutting out the traced cardboad with razor knives, one group bending up the tabs on the cut cardboard, and one group punching holes for the rivets.

-Cheston Periman

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Assembly Line...

Today we broke into four groups and began tracing, cutting, and folding all the cardboard triangles. One group used a metal straight edge and held it against the paper to make accurate folds. Two groups are tracing the paper triangles onto the cardboard. The last group is using box cutters to cut out all of the triangles.

-Chase Higle

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Plan C

Today we cut out the triangle prototypes for our dome. To make things a little bit easier Mrs. Anderson had her husband make the prototypes on his CAD program. We cut out the prototypes and taped them to a large piece of cardstock to make them more durable when using them as a guide to cut out the cardboard for our dome.

-Cassy Graveley

Monday, October 3, 2011

Plan B

On the second day of working on our planetarium we finished cutting out the triangular pieces to make the dome. When we switched triangles we realized everyone had something incorrect. About the end of class when the entire class was trying to fix their triangles, Mrs. Anderson called her husband a drafting teacher at Tech and asked him how we should fix the problem. His Idea was to print out templates on his drafting program so they will all be exact. Then we put away our supplies  to prepare for next class with the templates.
-Reno Ward

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Plan A

On the first day of working on our planetarium we found out all of the angles we needed and the lengths of the sides. It took us a while to figure out what they were supposed to look like and how we had to make them. There was a lot of argument over all of dimensions of the triangles because we had to make sure that they were perfect.  After we got all of the templates drawn we had to make three inch tabs on each side.

-Jessee Vasquez

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The materials have been ordered!

All materials for our cardboard planetarium have been purchased. Now the real adventure begins!