Fifty years since the first space probe landed on the moon, Ri Lates will be exploring space, from the rocket fuel that propels us and the life of an astronaut to the scientific advances our journeys in space have given rise to. What’s life like on the ISS? How do our modern lives depend on results from the space race? And when will we be building a civilisation on Mars?
The 2015 CHRISTMAS LECTURES are all about how to survive in space - now the adults can join in, try out demos from the Lectures and hear from experts in space science and cosmology. Listen to talks in our theatre and explore the rest of the Ri for hands-on activities and demonstrations, in celebration of space exploration over the ages.
What do you need to consider when planning a spacecraft launch? How do you protect people and vehicles from the immense changes in temperature? Join Vicki Lonnon, quality assurance engineer for the European Space Agency, for a demo-filled talk all about spacecraft design.
The story of space debris
When attempting to live in space,orbiting our world, you are certainly not alone in your trajectory around Earth. Millions of pieces of space debris are currently orbiting the Earth, and only the 20,000 largest pieces can be tracked. Dr Stuart Grey, lecturer at University College London, tells the story of where it all came from, what it is made of, and what might become of it all as our plans to get into space are only developing further.
Living in space pushes the human body and mind to the limits. How do they respond to the extreme isolation and confinement of living in space? And what stressors might impose themselves on astronauts? Concordia Station in Antarctica was set up in 2005 and is one of the best Earth-based replicators of life on long-term space missions. Join ESA-sponsored medical doctor Beth Healey as she explains what research she was doing there last year, and how this might impact space medicine.
Level up human7.00 – 7.45pm and 8.15 – 9.00pm
Have you ever thought life would be so much better if you had more tentacles or a prehensile face? Could we adapt ourselves to life elsewhere in the Universe? Combining gene splicing, medical advancement, biology and ambition, Level Up Human takes a light-hearted look at what it means to be human, and what the alternatives might be. Join Simon Watt and guests for the live recording of an exciting new podcast series.
Ri Tour7.00pm, 7.45pm, 9.15pm, 10.00pm
Hear from our Curator of Collections, Charlotte New and the Heritage team as they take you on a 30-minute tour of our collections. Get close up to an early edition of Principia, get your hands on a meteorite and learn why this notebook from 1903 is so radioactive.
Drop in activities
There will be plenty of activities to have a go at throughout the night so here is a little taster:
Rocket PowerWhat makes a rocket go? Could you be taking a holiday in one soon? Are they the only way to get to space? Find out from scientists and engineers from UKSEDS, and get your hands on real life rockets capable of breaking the sound barrier.
TardigradesHave a closer look at the hardiest creatures on Earth, with Science London.Find out how they could survive in space and what we might have to deal with if we wanted to compete.
Build a spectroscopeHow do we know anything about the environment on Mars? What might be helpful if we want to have a human mission there? Join Simon Foster from Imperial College to make your own spectroscope and find out about the elements around you.
MicrometeoritesSmall objects pose a real danger to astronauts while they are on a space walk. Fire our small objects as fast as you can to discover why.
This event is for over-18s only. If you look younger than 21, you may be asked for ID at the door.