Armagh Planetarium reopened in the summer of 2006 following a major refurbishment programme funded by the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure. The Digital Theatre has been completely refurbished with the world's most advanced digital projection system, Digistar 3. A customised sound system designed by BOSE, a state-of-the-art LED lighting system and purpose-built reclining seats have also been added to enhance the visitor's experience.
As part of the renovation project major changes have taken place in the Digital Theatre. A fantastic new Evans & Sutherland Digistar 3 multi-channel theatre system is at the centre of the renovation project which will treat audiences to a full-colour 3D experience projected over the entire dome. Armagh Planetarium is the only site in Ireland to boast this amazing technology.
You will travel to the International Space Station, outwards to Mars in our 3D stereo room and the new immersive gallery can project stereoscopic animations of Solar System exploration.
Visitors can use interactive displays to learn about the cosmos and watch the latest space news in real time. The Armagh Celestial Cathedral is a beautiful gallery of illuminated deep space images taken by the Hubble Space Telescope framed in dramatic gothic arches.
The Astropark is a scale model of the Universe where visitors can walk through the Solar System and into the Milky Way and beyond.
Our landscaped grounds are dotted with stainless steel scale models of the planets demonstrating how small our planet Earth is compared with some of its neighbouring worlds. The planets themselves are dwarfed by the great arch representing the limb of the Sun. Beyond the model planets is our Hyper-Cube, an exhibit demonstrating the principles used to fit the immensity of the Cosmos into a tiny part of Armagh.
During your visit why not design, build and launch your own rocket? Sounds impossible? Thousands of visitors have enjoyed this exciting activity and made it one of our most popular attractions.
Shows and Times
Monday to Friday
2pm Violent Universe (25 mins): Comets, asteroids, and meteors hurtling through space. Stars collapsing under their own gravity. Infernos of nuclear energy releasing their deadly radiation across the Universe. Witness the raw power of the cosmos in this thrilling show that gives you a front-row seat to watch as worlds collide! Narrated by Patrick Stewart. Full Dome Animation. No entry for children under six.
11am Little Yellow Star (15 mins): Specially produced by Armagh Planetarium, 'The Little Yellow Star' is a new show aimed at pre-school aged children. Join the Little Yellow Star on his adventure in the night sky, meeting many of the wonderful animals who make up the star patterns.
This is a free show designed to introduce pre-school children to the stars and constellations in a fun way. Live Full Dome show. Suitable for children up to age four.
12pm Secret of the cardboard Rocket (30 mins): This show features the daring exploits of a young girl and boy who make a rocket so that they can visit the Sun, Moon and Planets. The young travellers take you on an amazing journey through the icy rings of Saturn to the boiling surface of the Sun using full dome animation. This show is great for introducing children to the wonders of the Solar System.
This show is suitable for family groups and children up to 10 years old.
1pm Astronaut (30 mins): Experience a rocket launch from inside the body of an astronaut. Explore the amazing worlds of inner and outer space, from floating around the International Space Station to manoeuvring through microscopic regions of the human body. Discover the perils of space as we subject ‘Chad’ our astronaut to everything that space has to throw at him. No entry for children under six. Narrated by Ewan Mc Gregor.
2pm Ice Worlds (25 mins): Narrated by two-time Academy Award nominee for best Actress, Emily Watson, this spectacular full dome show explores the icy worlds of the Earth and Mars and the icy moons of Jupiter, Saturn and Neptune. Learn about the delicate balance between ice, water and the existence of life. Bear witness to the birth of an iceberg in the Arctic, observe whales in the Antarctic Peninsula and discover how changes in these environments affect us. Beyond Earth we fly over the polar ice caps of Mars and land on freezing Titan, a place so cold that water is as hard as rock and methane flows like water. Ice Worlds uses an innovative mix of data, satellite imagery and actual footage, alongside animated scenes to tell the story.
3pm Legends of the Night Sky: Perseus & Andromeda (20 mins): This show takes a lighthearted look at the constellations of the night sky, bringing a Greek star tale to life in a fun animated adventure. The story is filled with exciting characters including Pegasus, the winged horse; Cetus, the sea monster; Perseus, the mighty warrior; and the fearsome monster Medusa. Designed to engage and stimulate interest in learning about the night sky. Suitable for children up to age six.
4pm We are Astronomers (30 mins): Do you know what an astronomer does? Today’s astronomer is not the lone observer of past centuries. We Are Astronomers reveal the global collaboration, technology and dedication required to answer the unresolved questions of the Universe. This brand new show provides a visually stunning tour of contemporary astronomy using beautiful 360° full dome imagery. The project is collaboration between Armagh Planetarium, Centre for Life, INTECH Science Centre & Planetarium, National Space Centre, Our Dynamic Earth, Royal Observatory Greenwich, and Spaceport with funding from the Science and Technology Facilities Council. Narrated by David Tennant.
No entry for children under six years old.
Pre-booking is essential for all shows. Tickets must be colected 30 mins prior to your scheduled show time. There is no entry to the show once it has started. Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult.