Jodrell Bank Live

On Saturday 2nd July I, and several thousand over people headed to Jodrell Bank for a unique event: Jodrell Bank Live. Their tagline “where music meets science” meant we’d be treated to sets from, among others, OK Go, British Sea Power and the amazing Flaming Lips, interspersed with sciency bits featuring their fancy new visitor centre and the giant Lovell Telescope (the dish that I’d happily take home with me if I could). I’ve been meaning to write about this since I got back, but I couldn’t figure out how to convey what happened. Luckily for me though they’ve made a highlights movie:

The part at the end where the crowd chant “science, science, science” came after Dr Tim O’Brien taught everyone about pulsars. It was strangely moving!

Here’s a few of my photos from the event. For more there’s the official site along with many other better photographers than me!

The stage dwarfed by the telescope

The Flaming Lips spread colour into the crowd

threw in some lasers

and ended in a confetti explosion!

Floating in space

I couldn’t resist posting the video that has the honour of being today’s Astronomy Picture of the Day. You’ve probably all seen beautiful time-lapse movies showing the rotation of the heavens throughout the night; Niall’s even writen about some particularly lovely examples, filmed at the summit of Mauna Kea in Hawaii. However, the movie below is special. It shows things as they really are – it’s not the sky that rotates, we do:

The telescopes seen in the film make up the Very Large Telescope in Chile. The lasers they fire are used to improve the quality of their observations.

Really, we’re just floating in space.