ASTRONOMY: A stellar day out

With a moon landing anniversary to celebrate, Leicester Space Centre offers rockets, a huge planetarium and lots of interactive fun. CHARLOTTE EADES was among the fourth form astronomy students who enjoyed the out-of-this-world experience

FOURTH form astronomy students enjoyed a real hands-on experience at the National Space Centre, a museum covering space science and astronomy

One of the highlights was a 360-degree tour of the planets in the UK’s biggest domed planetarium, named after well-known astronomer Sir Patrick Moore.

We learnt lots of facts about the planets and were quizzed throughout the show. It looked amazing and was like you were in space.

After that we explored the centre, which has a giant planet Earth you can touch and six galleries, with many exhibits about space and lots of interactive games, with buttons to press, screens to touch and switches to flick.

Afterwards, we went to the planetarium again to watch a show about astronauts and the effects of space on the body. We learnt lots of interesting facts.

We also saw the Thor Able and Blue Streak rockets inside the 42-metre rocket tower, which takes up four floors and looks like it’s wrapped in giant inflatable pillows.

The Thor Able began its life as an intermediate range ballistic missile and was used by the Americans to carry nuclear weapons during the Cold War.

The Blue Streak, Britain’s contribution to the Space Race, was first designed as a ballistic missile but then adapted to launch satellites

You can see the full scale of both rockets by riding a glass-sided lift to the viewing platform

Overall, it was an amazing trip!