Lightning Course: How to build a spacecraft

Coronavirus reopening

Visitor notice: All of our sites have reopened and we can't wait to welcome you back. All visitors will need to book a ticket in advance. Find out how we're keeping you safe

Essential information

Event type: 
Date and time: 
Royal Observatory, Planetarium & Astronomy Centre
Talks & courses
10% members discount

Lightning courses are currently unavailable, new dates for booking will be available in Autumn 2020.  

While much astronomy is carried out using Earth-based telescopes, even more can be learned by getting out and physically exploring space. Since launching the very first satellite into Earth’s orbit back in 1957, spacecraft have been sent to planets, moons, asteroids, and comets. Join Royal Observatory astronomer Anna Ross to learn about the science behind designing the rockets, shuttles, and probes used to explore these destinations.

The following questions will be discussed in this course:

  • What challenges do different space environments pose?
  • How do rockets work?
  • How do you design a craft to survive in deep space?
  • How can a rover withstand landing on another world?
  • What additional measures are needed to protect humans in space?