Behold the World's Largest Collection of Planetarium Projectors

Owen Phairis rescues the optical relics from schools or museums, and preserves them for a new generation of science lovers.

Nestled in Big Bear, California, is the largest assemblage of planetarium projectors…well, anywhere. Owen Phairis is the owner, director, and curator of the Planetarium Projector and Science Museum, a vast collection of retired machines housed in a re-purposed military parachute. A jack-of-all-trades, Phairis first developed a passion for star projectors while visiting the Hayden Planetarium in New York City as a young boy.

In this documentary, director Greg Mitnick and producer Gregory Stefano, in collaboration with Cool Hunting, capture more than just one man’s hobby. For Phairis, it is a civic duty. He rescues the optical treasures from defunct schools and museums to “preserve them for future generations.” Phairis hopes to obtain at least one of every model before they are discarded. His favorite relics date back to the 1950s and ‘60s and originally cost over $150,000.

Also, that sweater is perfect.

For more by Cool Hunting, visit their site.

Via Vimeo Staff Picks.

Alessandra Ram is a former writer and producer for The Atlantic Video Channel. Her work has also appeared in Foreign Policy.

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