As Global Astronomy Month draws to a close for another year I am really struck by how popular this event is across the world! Astronomy has always been one of the most popular areas of science, but it used to be less accessible as people had to physically go to observing sessions and talks to get involved. With the advent of the internet and in particular social media that has all changed. Astronomy has come onto the online world and is reaching more people than ever before. Now we can share photos we have taken, share stories of our observing...

In a post for the 2103 GAM Blog I described a new telescope, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder ( ASKAP ), located at the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory ( MRO ) in outback Western Australia. Operated by Australia's CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, ASKAP is one of the precursor telescopes for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), an international project to build the world's largest radio telescope. Image 1: Some of the ASKAP antennas. A Mark I PAF is visible in green atop the nearest antenna. Credit: Dragonfly Media Comprising 36 12m dish antennas, ASKAP is the first radio telescope designed...

When the average person thinks of astronomy, images of the solar system, planets, stars and galaxies come to mind. Breathtaking photos such as the Hubble Deep Space field or the view of Earth from Saturn taken by the Cassini spacecraft. Many people think that astronomy is all about “out there” and doesn’t have much to do with people here on Earth. But the truth is that astronomy and culture are inextricably intertwined and have been so since people first started looking up at the sky in wonder. Image Credit: Max Alexander, STFC, SPL, Astronomy Picture of the Day There are...

Occultations in the Solar system Solar and lunar eclipses are spectacular events. Similar situations occur regularly when exoplanets move in front of their host star. Our own Moon blocks the light of many of stars at any time. The other planets are much further away and occult much fewer stars. Occultations of bright stars by the dwarf planet Pluto occur only every few years, because of Pluto’s small size and its large distance from the Earth. By carefully looking at the dimming of the starlight during such an event, it is possible to derive physical properties of Pluto and its...

In any family or community, we all have different skills and knowledge. Outreach connects us together by sharing our knowledge with each other. " If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas. ” - George Bernard Shaw. In fact, by sharing our ideas they become better and new ideas are born. So, what does outreach do? It: connects us with people lets...