Ethiopia Preparing to Build Planetariums Featured

08 Apr 2017
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Addis Ababa  April  08/2017 Preparation for the construction of five permanent planetariums in collaboration with stakeholders is well underway, the Ethiopian Space Science Society (ESSS) announced.

This was disclosed on Saturday, during the 11th general assembly of the Society which was held in Addis Ababa.

A planetarium sometimes referred as ‘Space Theater’ is a building in which images of stars, planets, and constellations are projected on the inner surface of a dome.

Briefing journalists on the occasion General Manager of the ESSS, Abinet Ezra said the Society, established by 47 voluntary Ethiopians 13 years ago, is working to realize the plan of having planetariums.

Speaking about the progress, Abinet said, “We are launching the feasibility study for the construction of a permanent planetarium in Addis Ababa as a pilot project.”

“One of our main agenda for the past years has been building a planetarium, which is a very big project that requires a huge amount of financial investment.” Abinet added.

According to the General Manager, Bahirdar University is fully committed to do the feasibility study both in financial and professional terms. The study is expected to be finalized within few months.

ESSS is striving to involve plenty of stakeholders including the government, civic associations, NGOs and other strategic development partners to get financial support.

A permanent planetarium is estimated to cost about five million USD, while the mobile one costs about 300,000 USD.

According to Data from the International Planetarium Society, Egypt, Ghana and South Africa are the countries that have permanent planetariums.

“Ethiopia has everything what it takes to launch a space satellite, what we are waiting now is that of the international body which is concerned of the issue to grant us the permission.” Tefera Waluwa, patron of the ESSS said.

The Society have built the capacity of even the youth that are highly interested in the area right after creating awareness among them through the 20 branches of the ESSS, he stated.

Due emphasis is now given to the timeliness  necessity of space science technology in facilitating the overall development of the country in a similar track where most of developed countries are now on board, Tefera added.

Ethiopia will be able to save a large sum of foreign currencies after launching its own space satellite which the country now is paying as of a rent to the countries that own the satellites.

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