Chris Bramley's blog

Judging the IAPY Awards 2016

The judges gather to pick the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year

Editor Chris Bramley looks forward to judging the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year awards with the rest of the adjudicating panel.

Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year judges prepare for a day of debating the best of the year’s astrophotographs in the Endeavour Room.
© National Maritime Museum, London.

Film review: Interstellar

We review the latest space epic from director Christopher Nolan

Some time in the near future, Earth undergoes ecological changes that make food production non-viable: crops are dying and dust storms envelop the planet, leaving humanity facing a bleak future.

A former test pilot and engineer called Cooper (played by Matthew McConaughey) finds himself drawn into a black-ops plan to voyage to another galaxy and locate a habitable exoplanet to which the population of Earth can evacuate.

Art interrogates science

Caroline Corbasson, 'We Colonised the Moon, Frigoris (USGS maps)'

An artistic vision of space at BREESE LITTLE gallery provides great insight ahead of judging the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2015 competition  


The art of space

Artist Giles Alexander takes a break from his studio in Sydney, Australia, to talk about his upcoming London exhibition, E=mc2

Giles Alexander and his work Eye on the Heavens: Portrait of Professor Brian Schmidt
Credit: Giles Alexander


Giles Alexander is hard at work painting his preoccupation – space. He takes a break from his studio in Sydney, Australia, to talk to me about his upcoming London exhibition, E=mc2, at the Fine Art Society in London.

Astronomy on stage


Going Dark, examining the effects of blindness on an astronomer


In the latest evidence of the rise in popularity of astronomy, news has reached Sky at Night Magazine of an intriguing play, set in a planetarium and investigating the relationship between an astronomer, his son and his sight, which he is gradually losing.

Stargazing LIVE, a night of discovery at Lacock

The Stargazing LIVE Discovery Night at Lacock, Wiltshire was a chance for 1,500 visitors of all ages to be entertained and informed by astronomy and the night sky.

Some of the 1,500 people who attended the Stargazing LIVE Discovery Night in Lacock

Image: Kev Lochun


Light pollution – or night pollution?

Light pollution – or night pollution?

The City Dark is a thought-provoking new film about the disappearance of darkness that asks, what do we lose, when we lose the night?

Times Square, New York – no place for stargazing

Image: Wicked Delicate Films


Landscapes on the Moon and Mars

The Moon's 2,000m-high Sculptured Hills looks deveptively low

Landscape panoramas imaged by robotic eyes on Mars show a world with the visual cues that humans have come to rely on here on Earth


When the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Opportunity trundled to the edge of Endeavour Crater back in August, it was the end of a three-year journey from its last major destination, Victoria Crater.

The fact that the distance between the two craters is 21km shows how carefully Opportunity takes it.

But, as the scientists and engineers on the MER say, when you’re an average of 225 million km from home you want to take it slowly, partly not to miss anything interesting and partly to avoid hazards.

Harvesting full Moon names

The Harvest Moon

There are many names for full Moons, and just as many reasons behind them


I’ll be keeping an eye out for the Harvest Moon in September. It’s quite a sight – the full and golden orb rising above the horizon through the gathering dusk – and one of the few times when I’m not wishing the Moon was less illuminated.

Why is it called the Harvest Moon? Well, the full Moon closest to the autumn equinox rises close to sunset for several days either side of being full, instead of rising around 50 minutes later each day, as is normally the case.

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