Look closely at the face ...

 

Presentations on Astronomy and Space Exploration
by Jerry Stone FBIS

Aldrin on the Moon

 
The exploration of Space has been described as Mankind's greatest achievement

I have been giving talks about space for over 45 years! No, that's not an error!  I gave my first talk on space at school when I was 14. That was back in 1969 - now I do this traveling all over the UK and abroad. My presentations are not just for astronomical and scientific societies, but for any group that would like an interesting and entertaining presentation on some aspect of space. I have spoken to schools, Scouts & Guides, U3A, Rotary Clubs and at local festivals, plus some rather prestigious venues, as listed below.  The presentations are highly visual and can be adapted for different ages and for length.

Here are brief details on my popular topics.  If you don't see what you want, then ask for a talk on a subject of your choice.

Scroll down to see what people have said about my presentations.

Click on "More" for additional details.

      * * * Next public presentation * * * It could be for your organisation.  Contact me! * * *


 

Now booking - Nell, Esther and Aunt Effie
The story of the world's first liquid-fuelled rocket

On 16 March 1926, Robert Goddard launched the world’s first liquid-fuelled rocket. Celebrate the 90th anniversary of this historic event with a new presentation from Spaceflight UK.
Goddard’s work laid the foundations for the rockets that took astronauts to the Moon and enabled us to explore the solar system.
Discover the significance of Nell, Esther and Aunt Effie!


 

NEW - Time for Space
The link between astronomy and time

Our measurement of time is derived from our study of the skies. Astronomy is the oldest science in the world, and gave us our day, month and year. Yet these divisions don't last as long as most people think! In addition, simple astronomical observations and timings can tell us remarkable things about Earth's orbit around the Sun.  Take a journey into time and space and find out how they are intertwined.


 

Most popular in 2015 - Is Pluto A Planet?
Just how many planets do we really have?

The International Astronomical Union re-classified Pluto as a Dwarf Planet, along with various other objects. What does that actually mean? How many planets do we really have in the Solar System? Are there 8, 13, 14 ... or maybe only 3?
This controversial presentation looks in detail at the new definition of a planets, and some of its unexpected - and unintended - consequences.


 

The Way to the Stars
Our search for a starship!

Science fiction is full of ships flying between the stars. From the C-57D in "Forbidden Planet" to the USS Enterprise in "Star Trek". What about reality? In fact we do have spacecraft that are on their way to the stars, though the Pioneers and Voyagers won't arrive for thousands of years... Take a journey through our search for a starship, from imagination to reality, showing how we really might reach the stars.


 

How We Reached The Moon
Celebrate Mankind's incredible achievement

American commercial organisations may be responsible for missions to the Moon in the 2020s, and the Chinese and ESA's Aurora project also plan flights, but this will actually be a return to the Moon, around 50 years after the last man stood on its surface. Here is a chance to see how it was done originally, with contemporary video, images and artists' impressions - plus a Moon globe on which you can feel the craters, and a four-foot Saturn V rocket!   More


 

Starry, Starry Night
The Wonders of Astronomy

How big is the universe and what is it composed of? Take a journey outward from your home town to the planets, stars and galaxies. Learn about the scale of the universe and how astronomers observe its contents. See some of the wonders and phenomena of the sky, including stars and galaxies, nebulae, meteor showers and eclipses.


 

Visiting the Lord of the Rings
The Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan

The Cassini spacecraft is currently orbiting the planet Saturn after a journey of more than 7 years. It carried the Huygens probe which separated from Cassini in December 2004 and descended to the surface of Titan – Saturn's largest moon – in January 2005. Hear about the exploration of Saturn from before we knew it had rings, up to the latest results.


 

Life in the Universe
Is there life elsewhere and how might we communicate with it?

Arthur C Clarke said "Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. In either case, the answer is staggering!"  We have already detected planets circling other stars, but could there be life on other worlds? Is it possible to communicate with other beings in space? A fascinating and thought-provoking look at this remarkable topic, featuring songs by Dr Stephen Baird.   More

Take the Contact Challenge and see if you can decode a space message!


 

Let’s Go To Mars!
A practical way to reach the Red Planet

The USA and Europe both have plans to reach Mars, but don't expect to do so before the year 2037. Yet if we started now, we could get there in about 10 years, without it costing a fortune. Hear about a new way of reaching Mars, and what the Mars Society is doing to prepare us for the trip.


 

The Day They Launched A Woodpecker
An alternative history of space exploration

Did you know … That America once sent 50 elephants to the Moon? About the lunar fork-lift? What about Zambia's manned lunar landing programme? Or the rocket that was given a knighthood?
Jerry Stone draws on his many years of following the space programme to present a slightly twisted view of space exploration with an amazing collection of true stories, many of which are unknown to the public, including of course, The Day They Launched A Woodpecker.    More

This is my most popular presentation, and is unlike anything you have ever heard before about space.


 

We’re All Going To Die!
The threat from Near-Earth Objects

It came from space! It was 10 km across and it killed nearly all life on Earth! That was 65 million years ago. When might it happen again? The Earth was actually hit by minor asteroids in 1908 and 1947, and recent studies suggest that there are more such objects than previously thought.
The threat is real – it isn't a case of "if", but "when". So what can we do about it ...?

Download my NEO Wordsearch here. Find the hidden message and send it to me!


 

The Earth in Space
Our place in the Universe

Look up at the sky and it appears that the Sun and Moon, the planets and the stars all revolve around the Earth. So it is not surprising that we used to believe that our planet was the centre of everything.
See how the advancement of astronomy and space exploration has shown us the truth and how the Earth really its into the grand scheme of the Universe.


 

Views of the Moon
Our nearest neighbour in space

We have watched the Moon for thousands of years, but now we can have amazing views through relatively inexpensive telescopes. We can see its craters and mountains and watch as the view changes from night to night. Learn about our closest companion in space through stills and video of the Moon, including views of lunar and solar eclipses.


 

The Total Eclipse - The Total Experience
The total eclipse of the sun, as seen from Turkey in March 2006

In March 2006 I led a group to watch a total eclipse of the Sun in Turkey. This presentation not only shows the amazing spectacle of this rare astronomical event, but also describes the experience of "being there" and enjoying the eclipse with friends – those who traveled on the trip and the new friends that we found in Turkey. Find out just what it was like to stand in the shadow of the Moon.


 

Colonies in Space
A new home - a quarter of a million miles away

In the late 1970s, a study group concluded that a planetary surface is not necessarily the best place for a civilisation to flourish. Further work produced designs for space colonies 20 miles long, and if space activity had progressed as planned, they could have been under construction today. Building these new homes for mankind would help solve our energy crisis here on Earth. How could this be done? How would these colonies be constructed, and what would it be like to live on them?    More


 

Would You Believe - We Put A Man On The Moon!
Did we really fly to the Moon, or were the landings faked in a studio?

Some people have suggested that the Apollo astronauts did not land on the Moon; instead, their activities were filmed in a studio on Earth, possibly at the infamous “Area 51”. How much truth is there in these claims? Were the Moon landings an outrageous hoax, or truly mankind’s greatest achievement? Here is an opportunity to find out the truth.    More


 

The Discovery of the Moons of Jupiter - The Truth!
The history books are wrong!   What did Galileo really see?

In 1610, Galileo turned his new telescope towards Jupiter and found that it had companions. According to standard accounts, he discovered 3 moons on January 7, and the 4th, Ganymede, on the 13th.
My research shows that this is not true!
Find out what Galileo really saw. It's time to re-write the history books - 400 years after the event...


 

The Apollo Missions

Through 2009 to 2012 I gave a series of presentations at the British Interplanetary Society marking the 40th anniversary of the Apollo missions to the Moon. From our first voyage to another world with the astronauts of Apollo 8, to the final landing in the dramatic Taurus-Littrow valley, here is a chance to recall the thrill of lunar exploration, or - for younger audiences - to discover it.


 

Apollo 13 - Survival In Space

One of the presentations from the series described above.
NASA's third lunar landing turned into a dramatic life-and-death struggle as thousands of people on the ground worked tirelessly to help ensure the safe return of the Apollo 13 crew.
Relive the drama through contemporary TV and radio broadcasts that kept the world up-to-date with the plight of the astronauts.


 

The Next 50 Years In Space
A look at potential space activities of the future

October 4 2007 marked the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the Space Age, which started with the launch of Sputnik 1, and April 12, 2011 marked the 50th anniversary of the first man in space. Predicting the future isn't easy – all kinds of people have failed to foresee achievements that we now take for granted. But they have also predicted things that have not taken place – bases on the Moon, humans on Mars, and holidays in space.  Here is a personal view of what the future may hold for us.


Download a flyer with details of my presentations here

 "Fantastic"      "The most inspiring lecture we have ever had."      "Fabulous"
"As though he worked on the mission himself!"    "Visually stunning!"
"A wonderfully entertaining talk"        "The best lecture I have heard"
"A very informative, highly interesting and entertaining talk"
"Your presentation was the highlight of our year"  "Highly entertaining and informative"
"A stage presence I haven't seen since Kate Humble on Tomorrow's World"
"Your lecture yesterday evening was fantastic"
"Thank you for another absorbing talk"
"A splendid evening's information entertainment that we probably won't see again for a while"

"You are by far the most professional, organised and helpful speaker I have dealt with."

"Awesome!" - Audience verdict at the Edinburgh Festival


Special Offer: You could have your presentation for free! I also present a range of space workshops for schools, scouts & guides and other youth organisations - see the separate page for more details.
If you can arrange for a workshop at a local school on the same day as your presentation, your presentation fee will be waived.  Alternatively, a school booking for the following day means you can have your presentation at half price. There is a benefit for schools, too.   If a school books a workshop, they can have an evening presentation on the same day (for parents and the public) for free. 
A win-win situation. Contact me for details.


I have spoken at all kinds of venues across the UK and abroad, including . . .

Astronomical societies all across the UK
The British Festival of Space
The British Interplanetary Society
The Catalyst Science Centre, Widnes
Daresbury Laboratory, Warrington
The Edinburgh Festival
The Farnborough Air Show
The Federation of Astronomical Societies' convention
The Institution of Engineering & Technology
The International Astronomy Show
Mars Society conferences in the UK, Europe and the USA
Oxford University
The Palace of Westminster

The Royal Institution
The Royal Observatory, Greenwich
Sci-Fi-London
"Standon Calling" Rock Festival, Hertfordshire
Stargazing Live
The UK Space Conference
UKSEDS Conferences
Welwyn Garden City Library
The Whirlpool Star Party at Birr, Ireland
The World Science Fiction Convention
Meetings of the U3A, Rotary groups and many more


BIS Catalyst Science Centre Daresbury Laboratory Edinburgh Festival logoFarnborough Airshow logo Federation of Astronomical SocietiesInstitution of Engineering & Technology International Astronomy ShowThe Mars Society The Palace of Westminster Rotary International Royal InstitutionRoyal Observatory Greenwich Sci-Fi-LondonStandon Calling Stargazing LiveU3A UKSEDS University of Oxford Welwyn Garden City LibraryWomens Institute World Science Fiction Convention Seacon '79
 
If you are interested in arranging a presentation,
contact me at info@spaceflight-uk.com
 
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