I was so excited to get my first telescope as a child. Growing up in Wales it was often too wet and cloudy to use it, but I will never forget the first time I looked at the moon – I was hooked.
I still have my (slightly battered) telescope ready for those clear winter nights. This month it’s National Astronomy Week (1-8 March) and I hope it will inspire a lot more people to look up at the sky!
The star of the show (although not literally) is Jupiter. The giant planet will be at a high point in UK skies so, if you’ve got the kit, you might be able to take some really good photos. Ever wondered what Jupiter sounds like? I hadn’t even thought about it, but apparently it goes something like this.
Working at the Science Museum I get to be around an amazing array of astronomical objects – from an 18th Century telescope used by the first professional female astronomer Caroline Herschel, to sensors from the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn (currently sending back some spectacular images).
In the Exploring Space gallery you can also find Helen Sharman’s space suit – the first Briton to go into space in 1991. Helen was measured in 54 different places to ensure the perfect fit of her protective suit (not exactly something you can grab off the peg!).
We’ll also be tweeting about many of our space objects on Tuesday at 1pm. Follow #CosmosTour to discover more about our curator’s favourite objects.
Right now I’m busy (and excited to be) organising a FREE festival called Beyond Earth, which will take place at the Science Museum from the 7th-9th March 2014.
You’ll be able to meet scientists and engineers who develop and use the latest technology to explore the vast expanse of space. Find out how their research is helping us to understand the universe we live in, what they have discovered and how you can be a part of it.
Come along to a talk, watch a demonstration or drop in to our Space Station activities and get crafty making a Sputnik Satellite or have a go launching your own Vostok Rocket. Check out the full festival programme here.
I hope to see you there!