World Space Week runs from the 4th to the 10th of October each year and this year the theme is “The Moon: Gateway to the Stars”.
Why October? You might think this week was picked as every other date has been earmarked for such special occasions as World Television Day, British Pie Week and Christmas Jumper Day. But no, the 4th of October is a special anniversary in space exploration. This was the date in 1957 when Sputnik 1, the first human-made satellite was launched into space. Happy birthday Sputnik!
Be a star-gazer
You don’t even need a telescope to see stars and planets in the night sky. With just your own eyes you can see things that are thousands of lightyears away. If you want to find out more about what you can see or would like some things to spot you can try these websites:
Jodrell Bank’s website updates every month to give you ideas of things to look for. It’s not the most exciting website ever but worth a look!
The Schools Observatory gives detailed positions of interesting features each day. This is particularly good for planet-spotting!
You may spot the International Space Station on it’s regular trip around the Earth. It looks a bit like a plane flying across the sky but it doesn’t have any flashing lights. It’s also travelling around 30 times faster than an aeroplane. Check out NASA’s Spot the Station website to find out where it is right now.