Hertfordshire university celebrates World Space Week

Dr Mark Gallaway is keen to encourage others to look to the skies.

Dr Mark Gallaway is keen to encourage others to look to the skies. - Credit: Archant

A university has is hoping to inspire people to look at the stars as World Space Week launches today.

Astronomer Dr Mark Gallaway, who is the lead at the University of Hertfordshire’s Bayfordbury Observatory, wants to encourage more youngsters to take up astronomy.

He said: “Astronomy is one of the most accessible sciences, it is one that can really get kids into science.

“It is the default science gateway for kids, basically when you are 10 there is space or dinosaurs, and you can do astronomy at home.

“Most of them won’t stay in astronomy and that’s fine, but it gives them the enquiring scientific mind - so when they go onto other things that remains.”

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And amateurs can still find undiscovered planets and stars with the right equipment, something that sets astronomy apart from other disciplines.

In a bid to try and encourage an interest in astronomy the observatory hosts open evenings where visitors will be able to see the university’s eight telescopes that can scour the sky for stars.

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*For more information, see the Welwyn Hatfield Times newspaper.

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