Talk by Ian Ridpath “When we walked on the Moon”

(And when will we return?)

The Moon is our nearest neighbour in space, and still the only body beyond Earth on which humans have set foot. This talk will introduce the main features of the Moon that can be seen with binoculars and small telescopes, from its ancient plains of solidified lava to craters the size of cities blasted out by meteorite impacts. We then trace the history of lunar exploration in the context of the East–West political rivalry of the time, from the first space probes to the Apollo landings. The talk summarizes the scientific findings from those missions and describes why astronomers now think that the Moon was born when another body hit the Earth billions of years ago. Finally we will look ahead at plans for returning to the Moon including NASA’s new Artemis programme.

On Wednesday 3rd May, Bath Astronomers will be joined by Ian Ridpath to give a talk on the human exploration of the Moon both past and future. The talk will be held at the Herschel Museum of Astronomy, 19 New King Street, Bath, BA1 2BL and doors open at 7:15pm for a 7:30pm start.

Non-members welcome for a £5 fee which will subsequently be deducted from membership if you decide to join. Young people are free if accompanied by an appropriate adult.

About Ian Ridpath

Ian Ridpath is an internationally renowned writer and lecturer on astronomy and space. He is editor of the authoritative Oxford Dictionary of Astronomy and author of a widely used series of night sky guides for beginners.

He was space and astronomy correspondent for BBC TV’s original Breakfast Time programme.

Ian is a member of the Royal Astronomical Society’s team of outreach speakers.