July 17 - Aug. 5, 2020
Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida
Feb. 18, 2021
Jezero Crater, Mars
At least one Mars year (about 687 Earth days)
NASA's Mars 2020 Rover is heading to the Red Planet.
Submit your name by Sept. 30, 2019, 11:59 p.m. ET, and fly along!
NASA News: May 21, 2019
NASA Invites Public to Submit Names to Fly Aboard Next Mars Rover
All Aboard for Mars 2020: Members of the public who want to send their name to Mars on NASA's next rover mission to the Red Planet (Mars 2020) can get a souvenir boarding pass and their names stenciled on chips to be affixed to the rover.
Sign up at go.nasa.gov/Mars2020Pass.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech. Full image and caption ›
Although it will be years before the first humans set foot on Mars, NASA is giving the public an opportunity to send their names — stenciled on chips — to the Red Planet with NASA's Mars 2020 rover, which represents the initial leg of humanity’s first round trip to another planet. The rover is scheduled to launch as early as July 2020, with the spacecraft expected to touch down on Mars in February 2021.
To read more about this exciting new mission Mars please go to:
I had a lot of fun with the children who came along for the two astronomy and space sessions for Easter at the shopping centre. We put up lots of space posters to make the community room all spacey and had lots of hands on space items for the kids to touch and look at :-)
The children enjoyed learning about our amazing Solar System and hearing all about the different spacecrafts out there exploring the planets, my mother Pam came along to help me…thank you Mum Xxx
Runaway Bay Centre Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/runawaybaycentre
Have you ever wanted to know all about this amazing Universe that you live in?
Then come along to Runaway Bay Shopping Centre during the Easter holidays for some fun Astronomy and Space talks and activities.
We will learn all about the stars, planets and our beautiful Moon, and other mysteries things like black holes, galaxies and are there really aliens out there in space!
Learn all about the different spacecraft exploring the other planet in our solar system and how one day we may be on a journey to Mars…its all so amazing.
When: Wednesday the 10th April, 2pm - 3pm.
When: Monday the 15th April, 2pm - 3pm.
Ages: 6 – 12years.
Book at the Customer Service Desk outside Big W.
Presented by Noeleen Lowndes the co-ordinator of the Stardust Junior Astronomy Club at the Runaway Bay Library and member from the Southern Astronomical Society on the Gold Coast.
Omega Centauri is a stunning globular star cluster made up of millions of stars, it’s approximately 16,000 light-years away from us and an amazing 150 light-years in diameter, it’s the largest globular cluster in our Milky Way galaxy and it’s on show now for you to enjoy high up in the southern sky.
It’s one of my favourites objects to observe at this time of the year :-)
This image was taken at my Stardust Observatory at Leyburn in April 2019 with a Meade 80mm refractor telescope and a Canon 70D camera. 15 images with exposures of 90 second and ISO 800, plus 5 dark frames were stacked in DSS, and processed in PS CS4.
The Stardust Junior Astronomy Club has just celebrated its 8th birthday on the 4th April 2019 at the Runaway Bay Library and all the children had a wonderful day.
They learnt all about why stars have different colours, then we played pass the parcel and enjoyed some yummy space food that included a ‘Star Cake’ that I made…we all had a great Starlight Party :-)
Here in the southern hemisphere we know that winter is on its way when we see the Southern Cross (Crux) and other celestial wonders riding high up in the southern sky at midnight.
I have an observatory at a place in western Queensland where we have extremely dark skies and I'm able to capture the beauty of our night sky with just a camera and wide field lens on top of a tracking telescope.
This image shows the pointers to the cross known as Alpha and Beta Centauri, then the Southern Cross (Crux) in its entirety and then the pretty pink nebulous stellar area around the star called Eta Carinae known as the Eta Carina Nebula.
This star is in the end throes of its stellar life and it’s pumping out astronomical amounts of gas (excuse the pun J) as it fights its gravitational battle, many astronomers worldwide are keeping a close eye on this star as its one that will eventually go Supernova!
At the bottom of the image is an unusual dark streak known as the Doodad nebula, I was very happy to have captured this funny named object too :-)
This image was taken at my Stardust Observatory on the 10th March 2019 with a Canon 70D camera and a 18-400mm Tamron lens set at 23mm and F4.5 (the image is slightly cropped).
There were 12 x 3 minutes images stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and ISO1600. The camera was being tracked on top of a larger telescope set up in the observatory.
I used my Meade LX200 10inch to track the camera piggybacked on top of the telescope which was at a very difficult angle (upside down) so it was a bit of back breaking work to focus the camera.
But it was worth it as I got the pictures :-)
The sky was perfectly clear last month at Leyburn at my Stardust Observatory to capture these pretty galaxies in the constellation of Leo.
This group of large spiral galaxies are about 35 million light-years away and are well seen even in quite a small telescope. You can find them by running a line of sight between the stars Regulus to Denebola, and closer to Denebola the galaxies are located between the stars Cherton, Theta Leonis and Iota Leonis.
If you would like to find out more about these galaxies in Leo please go to this excellent website
for Messier objects at:
The images were taken with a Meade 80mm refractor telescope and a Canon 70D camera, which was tracking on top of a Meade 10inch LX 200 telescope, 15x4 minute subs and 5x4 minute darks were captured
and stacked in DSS and processed in PS CS4 :-)
I’m at my Stardust Observatory at Leyburn this weekend taking images of the night sky. I was just about ready to go to bed when I looked out at the dawn sky and saw this magnificent view of the planets all aligned up the eastern horizon at 4.20am with the gorgeous colour of daylight.
It was still dark enough to see many stars including the constellation of Scorpius with the stars from the Milky Way just starting to fade, it was very beautiful to see and very tranquil after a whole night up taking pictures of galaxies :-)
I took the image with a Canon 70D camera and a Tokina 11-16mm wide lens @12mm on a camera tripod, ISO 800 with a 13-second exposure.
(Pictures of the Leo Triplet of galaxies coming soon when they are processed)
~ Update posted 2nd January 2019 ~
I just love being under the heavens, come on a journey with me and I’ll share some of the amazing wonders of the Universe with you. Noeleen :-)