The SSU Traveling StarLab


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People getting in a StarLabThe StarLab system is a portable teaching environment that can be brought right into the classroom. It consists of an inflatable dome, a projector, projection cylinders, and optional accessories. Easy to store and transport, the system packs down into a traveling case and two duffel bags. In fact, the StarLab system is so compact that it can be handled by one person and transported in the back of most small cars. Once unpacked, StarLab can be set up in under ten minutes.

The StarLab dome is made from a highly opaque, flame-retardant, reflective fabric. Its unique design and portability make it an ideal environment for interactive, hands-on, minds-on activities.

Technically advanced, yet simple to operate, the StarLab Projector features a high-intensity halogen cycle lamp designed exclusively for the StarLab system. It creates brilliant, precise images.

The Projection Cylinders are the secret to the versatility of StarLab. These interchangeable, computer-generated mylar cylinders fit over the projection lamp to create vivid images on the inside of the dome. They make it easy to demonstrate the night sky, the inside of a biological cell, a global projection of the earth or colorful mythological characters. For more information about the StarLabs in general please visit the StarLab web site.

StarLab Requirements

  1. The StarLab is best used in large rooms such as gymnasiums or auditoriums. The dimensions are 21 ft. long by 21 ft. wide by 11 ft. tall. When determining where to setup the StarLab be careful to watch out for hanging light fixtures!
  2. The StarLab also requires a standard 110 Volt power outlet to power the star light cylinder.
  3. The StarLab comes in two big duffle bags and two large steamer trunks. The entire lab will easily fits into midsize sedan. It might be a tight fit in an economy class car.

How to Reserve the StarLab

The StarLab can be checked out by the general public.

Rules for Checking Out the Starlab

  1. You must be 21 or older to check out the StarLab.
  2. If you are making a first-time reservation, you must be shown how to setup and use the StarLab by one of our technicians or another approved StarLab operator.
  3. The StarLab requires a rental donation that helps us maintain and improve the equipment. The donation is $60 dollars / day or, if reserved for + 1 week or more, $200 dollars / week.
  4. Please make checks out to Sonoma State University.
  5. Send the check to:

    E/PO- Jennifer Keleher
    Sonoma State University
    1801 E. Cotati Ave.
    Rohnert Park, CA
    94928

  6. Along with the check we need an invoice with your name, school, phone number, and dates of Starlab use. Here is a template invoice for your use. Replace the text in bold with your information and send it along with the check.

Picking Up and Returning the Starlab

Many teachers simply get the StarLab from the last person who had it. You can check the calendar to see who had it before and who will have it after you.

If picking up from another school, please make sure you review the checklist and that you have all the necessary parts. If not, contact the person who had it before you and then contact us (see contact info below).


thumbnail of map of SSU campus If you are picking the StarLab up directly from Sonoma State University, please call Jennifer Keleher, (707) 664-3261, the day before your scheduled reservation and set up a pick up time. To find us, we have a map to our location at SSU. You can also look at maps to the campus.

After you have used it, you must be willing to either store the StarLab in a safe place until it is checked out again or make arrangements to return it to Jennifer Keleher (keleher@universe.sonoma.edu or (707) 664-3261) at Sonoma State University in Rohnert Park.

If you have any problems please contact Jennifer Keleher either via email at keleher@universe.sonoma.edu or by calling (707)664-3261.