History of Baader Planetarium

Baader Planetarium is situated near Munich, Germany. The company was founded in Munich in 1966 and has produced over 15000 school type planetaria since then, as well as 350 observatory domes of all sizes. In Germany, Baader Planetarium acts as importer for Astro Physics and SBIG instruments and services Carl Zeiss Amateur Telescope Products by contract with Carl Zeiss Jena.

The history of the name Baader in Astronomy, however, dates back to the year 1852, when Michael Baader opened an Optical Manufacturing Company in the middle of Munich, after having worked since 1838 in the optical glass works company of "Martin Woerle" and being married with Woerle's daughter. Woerle had gained deep knowledge in the production of optical glass and the secrets of production and testing of achromatic lenses under direct supervision of Josef von Fraunhofer, one of the founders of modern optics and inventor of the "German Mount".

More than 600 Achromatic Refractors up to 5" aperture had left the "Optische Fabrik M. Baader" in the time from 1852 to 1870. Baader Telescopes won prizes for excellent optics and mechanical workmanship at a number of International Industrial Fairs of that time from Berlin to Paris. Seven telescopes of Michael Baader are still to be seen at the present company as well as the prize awarding documents.

.."Ingeniously engineered and constructed in Germany, this unit is without doubt the most sophisticated tellurion ever made available on a mass-produced basis .....The Baader instrument's most novel contribution and most spectacular effect has been achieved by enclosing the tellurion within a semiopaque plastic shell representing the celestial sphere. The motorized solar machine is readily viewed through the near side of the plastic shell; but the near and far sides combined appear virtually opaque, thus giving the remarkable effect of a darkened hemispherical canopy of stars regardless of the direction from which the mechanism is examined."

Throughout these 35 years, countless students in all the world have had their first encounters in "heavenly mechanics" with the aid of the "Baader Planetarium".

In 1995, after the passing of our founder, the "AG" (German Society of Professional Astronomers) assigned Minor Planet 5658/1950DO the name "clausbaader", in honoring his lifelong work and achievements for astronomical education.

Over the years, the fine mechanical skills required for the elaborate gear systems in various sizes of Baader Planetarium Instruments (the largest being 1,3 Meter in diameter, with all nine planets and moons in their correct, geared orbits) have lead to producing a whole family of astronomical accessories to increase the capabilities of many astronomical telescopes.

Besides this, another branch inside the company already had produced huge numbers of projection domes for the Baader school type planetarium, which, 25 years ago, eventually led to producing astronomical domes as well.

Today, some of these domes serve as remote controlled robotic observatories under world,s most adverse climactic conditions. One of our domes is situated at 2965 Meter (~ 10000 feet) above sea level, right at the very top of the "Zugspitze"- Germany's highest mountain. Another one serves at Europe's highest observatory at 3700 Meter above sea level at the "Jungfraujoch" in Switzerland, just beside the famous "Eiger-Northface". Both locations endure wind loads of measured 300 km/h (185 miles/h).

Whatever your requirements are in this wide field of Astronomy, we try hard to make your task a little easier and we give greatest care to our products, to have them made - not as cheap, but as good and affordable as ever possible.

You surely know about our patented "Baader AstroSolar Safety Film" - it is a good example of what we are constantly trying to achieve.

Try us - and be thanked for your trust.

Thomas Baader
Baader Planetarium GmbH
Mammendorf/Munich Germany

Products from Baader Planetarium

Copyright © 2004, Baader Planetarium - All Rights Reserved
This page was last modified: April 26, 2004

Astro-Physics, Inc.
11250 Forest Hills Road, Rockford, IL  61115, U.S.A.
Phone: 815-282-1513   Fax: 815-282-9847