Exploring the Universe
Explore the wonders of our Universe. Discover the science behind the Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI), take a trip through a wormhole and watch the Big Bang.
Take time to look up and see the technology created here on Earth that is observing the Universe to further science and improve life on our planet.
Step into the Stellarium to see how our Sun fits into the known Universe, take your picture to become an alien, come face to face with an Alien Autopsy Roswell head or even see if you can recreate the Big Bang.
There is lots to do and discover in Exploring the Universe.
Take a tour of Exploring the Universe
“Given the thousands of Earth-like planets outside the solar system, on purely statistical grounds life almost certainly exists somewhere else” - Stephen Hawking
The Solar System is made up of the Sun (our only star), the planets, their moons, asteroids and comets.
If you look up at the night sky and see all the stars shining brightly, you’ll never be able to count them all, although you can view 525 of them in our Stellarium!
Are we alone in the Universe? Scientist Lewis Dartnell is looking at extremophiles here on Earth that survive in conditions similar to those of planets and other bodies in our Solar System. He’s been researching a bacterium called Deinococcus Radiodurans, which is the most radiation-resistant organism on the planet. It’s sometimes referred to as “Conan the Bacterium” because it can survive being desiccated, blasted with ultraviolet radiation, and zapped with ionising radiation like gamma rays! It’s a superhero of survival. Could this science prove that life can survive in the extremes of our Universe?
When it comes to exploring the Universe some of the greatest images captured have been from the Hubble Deep Space Telescope. This gallery houses everything you need to know about this amazing technology.
Hubble's two mirrors were ground so that they do not deviate from a perfect curve by more than 1/800,000th of an inch. If Hubble's primary mirror were scaled up to the diameter of the Earth, the biggest bump would be only six inches tall.