Evans & Sutherland was formed in 1968 by Dr. David Evans and Dr. Ivan Sutherland, computer science professors at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Their collective vision made them the first to draw pictures with computers, giving birth to the computer graphics industry. Building upon this pioneering work, the professors began developing computer systems that could be used as simulators. This emphasis on simulation using computer graphics took E&S into the training market, where the company continued to develop and enhance visual systems for simulation.

The 70s

E&S established a partnership with Rediffusion, a British simulation company, which gave E&S exclusive rights to provide visual systems for Rediffusion's commercial flight training simulators. By the year 2000, approximately 80% of the world's commercial airline pilots had been trained using E&S visual systems.

In 1978, the company went public with a listing on the NASDAQ exchange.

The 80s

E&S continued to lead the simulation industry by providing the highest quality, most realistic visual systems in the world. The company also looked for new markets for its technology, such as digital projectors for planetariums and entertainment applications. Digistar, the first digital planetarium system was introduced.

The 90s

The 1990s marked a period of change for the company, as Dr. Evans retired. The company continued to lead the visual systems industry for both military and commercial simulation applications as it leveraged its technologies into entertainment, education, and workstation applications. Digistar II was released to the market in 1995, quickly surpassing the number of sales for the original Digistar product and laying the groundwork for the success of future Digistar products.

The 2000s

Digistar 3, introduced in 2003, quickly became the world's leading fulldome digital planetarium system. Digistar 3 was the first product to incorporate real-time computer graphics and fulldome video playback into a fully integrated system, setting the standard for others to emulate.

In 2006 Evans & Sutherland sold its simulation business to Rockwell Collins and acquired Spitz, Inc. These changes refocused the company's efforts on advanced digital fulldome theaters and planetariums.

The 2010s

The introduction of Digistar 4 & Digistar 5 further strengthened E&S' position in the digital planetarium market. Digistar 5 established a new industry standard with its revolutionary graphical user interface, drag and drop simplicity, Show Builder for intuitive show creation and other innovative features. E&S has also produced more than 20 fulldome shows and represents over 100 shows from fulldome producers around the world. E&S' fulldome show catalog includes over 25 giant screen films converted to fulldome. E&S leads the market as the world's largest producer and distributor of fulldome shows.

Early E&S research laboratory
Ivan Sutherland (left) and
David Evans (right) with Line Drawing System-1.
December 1969.