JR Lighting Design Supplies Adler Planetarium's New Theater

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Samuel C. Johnson Family Star Theater at the Adler Planetarium. Photo: Brian Hatlen.CHICAGO - JR Lighting Design, Inc. provided Chicago’s Adler Planetarium with a mix of design, lighting and special-effects elements for the recently renovated Samuel C. Johnson Family Star Theater installation. LDs Jason Reberski and Eric Price used a mix of technologies to achieve a cohesive vision.

More details from JR Lighting Design (www.jrlightingdesign.com):

Reberski - president of the design sales, consultation and installation firm - notes, “From the outset it was clear that this project was on a fast-track with only a couple of weeks until full-speed installation was underway. The architects (Gensler) already had several brilliant concepts and renderings, which were helpful in determining a design approach, and the contractor, Troop Contracting, had already worked with the Adler team and designer, Eric Price on prior projects.”

Reberski and Price co-designed the project with Reberski managing logistics, equipment specification and programming, while Price managed the installation team, integration and commissioning of the lighting systems.

“There are no conventional light sources in the entire complex; everything that we specified and installed is solid state,” says Reberski. “We knew that maintenance and power consumption were huge factors and as a result, we installed over 120 iColor Cove MX fixtures from Philips Color Kinetics, more than 500 feet of RGB Flex Tape and numerous LED Drivers from Elation Professional, and 18 custom RGBW-configured Altman Spectra Cyc 200s, along with nine Blisslight Star Projectors (also with custom-colored LED nebula effects). Even the ellipsoidals used are LED-based Altman ME3 units. A Doug Fleenor Design data network was installed and the programming was performed on a High End Systems Hog 4 console.”

The Samuel C. Johnson Family Star Theater, used for immersive 3-D films, reopened in November and immediately hosted a panel discussion with astronauts Jim Lovell and Eugene Cernan of Apollo 13 and Apollo 17 fame respectively.

Reberski notes, “We had the pleasure of working with a wonderful team including the Adler Planetarium’s creative and project management staff, Gensler and Troop Contracting.”

He credits Co-Designer Eric Price for his tireless dedication to finishing the project on time.  “We are confident that the Samuel C. Johnson Family Star Theater will be enjoyed by thousands of people over the coming years,” he says.