The observatory was painted by a German professor, who loves Star Wars and gives Star Trek lectures on his free time.
A German science-fiction loving professor has painted an observatory to make it look like a giant version of Star Wars robot R2-D2.
Hubert Zitt, who teaches at the Zweibrücken University of Applied Sciences in eastern Germany, finished painting the Zweibrück Observatory of the Natural Science Association in September 2018.
He was helped, not by Jedis, but by some of his students as well as his father-in-law, Horst Helle, and the master painter Klaus Ruffing.
Since the project was completed, the observatory has caught the eye of Star Wars fans all over the internet. Even the actor Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, tweeted his admiration, with the caption "R2-D2 Observatory Transformed Germans Into Giant Nerds":
Back in 2010, the Goodsell Observatory at Carleton College in Minnesota, USA, already showed its love for R2-D2. But the project was temporary and involved covering the observatory with painted fabric, instead of painting it:
Zitt has been teaching computer science at the University of Applied Sciences in Zweibrücken since 1999.
In his spare time, he also writes science fiction and gives lectures about Star Trek, both in the academic field and at science-fiction conventions (his first one was the University's 1996 Christmas lecture... about Star Trek, of course.) In 2008, he taught the course "Physics of Star Trek" as a visiting professor at the University of the Incarnate Word, San Antonio, Texas.