Workers weld steel to form the skeleton of the Ralph Mueller Planetarium dome during construction in 1958.
Construction of the planetarium, located in Morrill Hall and part of the University of Nebraska State Museum, began in 1957 - the same year the Soviet Union launched Sputnik, the world's first artificial satellite.
The ensuing space race benefited Mueller Planetarium as it opened to campus and the public in 1958. The planetarium has showcased a wide variety of educational entertainment since it opened.
Ralph Mueller, an engineering pioneer and NU alumnus, donated funds to build the 95-seat facility. Among Mueller's top inventions is a simple alligator clip, which revolutionized the field of electronics. Mueller earned a degree from the university in 1898. He was also later given an honorary doctorate of engineering.
From the Archives is a regular feature of the Scarlet. The Mueller Tower image was provided by University Archives. If you have an item for this feature, call 472-8515 or send e-mail to email@example.com.