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Destination Space

What happens to an astronaut’s wee in space?

What is life like as an astronaut?

How do you move around in space?

Come along and find out more!

From this month, the Observatory Science Centre is launching DESTINATION SPACE, an exciting programme of family shows and drop-in activities taking place. Our new live astronaut show launching during the local half term holidays will explore life in space, with fun experiments, explanations and a bang (or two)!

Take the robotic arm challenge and see how astronauts use them to perform tasks in space. See an actual thermal tile from a Russian space shuttle. Learn about how you move around in space, demonstrated by our special hovercraft. All this, plus other drop in activities that will give you the chance to explore and find out more about human space flight and what it’s like to be a member of the space crew.

See the replica spacesuit which is a life-size copy of ones worn by astronauts on the flight to and from space and the suits worn day to day around the International Space Station.

Tim Peake, the European Space Agency’s first British Astronaut, is due to blast off this December to spend six months living and working aboard the International Space Station.

To celebrate this fantastic event and the wonders of human space flight, the DESTINATION SPACE programme has been designed to inspire everyone all about space flight and what it’s like to be part of the space crew who support the missions.

The Observatory is delighted to be one of the 20 science centres across the UK taking part in this programme, funded by the UK Space Agency and supported by the European Space Agency.

The DESTINATION SPACE activities are free with standard admission.

12 - 13 December pre-launch celebration weekend.

A weekend packed full of fascinating facts about rockets and life in space. Come and see a replica of the space suit that Tim Peake will be wearing when he blasts off into space and when he returns next year. Weather permitting there will also be rocket launching workshops.

Saturday 12 December

11am Fantastic, fun Destination Space Family show about an astronaut’s journey into space.

2pm "Astronaut on the International Space Station" a talk with Robin Mobbs an expert from the National Space Academy (see below for further details).

Rocket launching workshops will be confirmed on the day.

Sunday 13 December

11am "Astronaut on the International Space Station" a talk with Robin Mobbs an expert from the National Space Academy (see below for further details).

1pm Fantastic, fun Destination Space Family show about an astronaut’s journey into space.

Rocket launching workshops will be confirmed on the day.

A Note about the speaker and the talk: Robin Mobbs who is an Advanced Skills Physics Teacher in Hertfordshire and a Lead educator for the National Space Academy.

On December 15th British astronaut Tim Peake is due to launch in a Soyuz rocket to the International Space Station from the Baikanor Cosmodrome in Kazakhastan for his six month mission.  This talk will explain how astronauts prepare, launch, work, live and return from the ISS.  What is it like in microgravity?  How do you sleep? What do you eat? What is it like to do a spacewalk? What about the toilet?  The mission will be explained with pictures, video clips and demonstrations as well as insights gained from several astronauts that have been there.  It will also explain how to follow Tim’s mission and see the ISS as it orbits two hundred and fifty miles above the planet travelling at seventeen thousand miles per hour!

* Times subject to change. There is no extra charge for these activities. They are included with the normal admission price.

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