7. GALILEO AT ARMAGH OBSERVATORY: THE LIFE OF GALILEO", by Bertolt Brecht, Performed in the Armagh Observatory.
The Greenwood Players and the Armagh Observatory are presenting in the Armagh Observatory from 22nd to 24th February 2013 the first performance on the island of Ireland of the play "The Life of Galileo" by Bertolt Brecht in a new version by David Hare.
The story of the Life of Galileo and its central drama of the conflict between science, religion and authority is one that resonates today. As remarked by Ian McDonald, author and Executive Producer with the Greenwood Players, "The Life of Galileo" is a story that needs retelling every generation, especially in a 21st century when we seem to be moving away from science to an authority and belief-based worldview.
There will be five performances of the play: two matinees at 2.00pm on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th February, and three evening performances at 7.00pm on each of 22nd, 23rd and 24th February. Tickets, which are strictly limited, cost 12 pounds and are available from 14th January 2013 at http://galileoattheobservatory.eventbrite.co.uk/.
For more information, see: http://star.arm.ac.uk/press/2013/galileo/
8. Sir Patrick Moore: commemoration. It is now certain that the public commemoration event for PM will not be held before late April or early May. There is going to be an event at Selsey on 4th March, but that will be a Selsey village event, organised by and within Selsey, for Selsey residents only (who are very keen to celebrate the life of Patrick as a long-time Selsey resident) - so that's not intended as a 'national' event. It is still planned to have a bigger public event, probably in London, bit nothing is final yet.
There is an obituary feature in the March issue of Sky & Telescope, on p. 16 "Alas no Moore". I was interviewed for that piece, so I get a little mention.
The MARS 2013 simulation kicked off on February 11th 2013 at 10:40 CET with Flight Director Alexander Soucek, head of the Mission Support Center in Innsbruck, giving the command: "You are GO for SIM!"
Out in Morocco, 'Mars' astronaut Daniel Schildhammer wearing the Aouda.X experimental spacesuit said, "It is a mistake to believe that a small group of dedicated people cannot change the world. In fact, it is the only way it always happens."
However, Mission Support back in Austria had to wait to hear this communication - a time delay is an intrinsic part of this field mission. "During MARS2013 a time delay of ten minutes is embedded in the communication between Innsbruck (Earth) and Morocco (Mars), which is decisive for a successful Mars simulation and allows us to learn a lot," explained Soucek.
Soucek added, "Currently the Morocco Mars Simulation is the only simulation in the world that incorporates a time delay. The one-way transmission time is 10 minutes, which means, we will receive an answer to our question from the team on Mars after 20 minutes."
The lag-time for communications simulates the delay induced by electromagnetic waves travelling the distance between Mars and Earth. Depending on the position of the planets on their orbits around the Sun,
this can vary anywhere from 4 to 22 minutes. The radio interchange between Earth and Mars is hence complicated and can lead to problems in executing procedures and commands. The Morocco Mars simulation wants to uncover these potential issues to guarantee the safety and a smooth execution of future manned-Mars missions.
More information about the Morocco Mars Mission of the OeWF and experiments as well as current pictures of the Mars camp in Morocco can be found online: http://www.oewf.org/cms/press-media.phtml