The Norwegian company Snøhetta is known for its cutting-edge projects such as the world's first underground ship tunnel or Europe's first underwater restaurant. The new venture of this startup is the modernization of the Solobservatoriet observatory, which is located north of Oslo. On the site of the outdated scientific complex, an innovation center will be built to "familiarize with astronomy" a wide range of visitors.
The idea is based on two components, the first of which is integration with the environment. There will be no towers with telescopes, and the planetarium dome will hide in an artificial hill with complex architecture. Most of its outer surface, which is 1, 500 square meters, is planned to be covered with soil and planted with heather, blueberries and mosses, so that in a couple of years it will become one with the nature around it in all respects.
The second important part of the project is that visitors must find themselves in the atmosphere of another world space, virtually leave the Earth in order to touch space. For this, guest rooms for 118 people are divided into "large planets" and "small satellites", whose relative position corresponds to the principles of astronomy. The design of each cluster of "celestial bodies" is designed in an individual style, and the central hall is designed like a spaceship, from where guests are sent on "flights."
The planetarium itself is relatively small, it is smaller than the open terrace for live observation of the starry sky, the sky, broken around it. But it is interactive - here visitors will be shown not only the movement of stars, but also an imitation of real phenomena such as the aurora borealis, flyby of comets and solar flares. The construction of the complex will begin in 2019, and the launch is scheduled for 2021.