OUR SOLAR SYSTEM
Enjoy the night sky each week, as we give you the latest on stargazing.
SEE WITH THE NAKED EYE
SEE WITH BINOCULARS AND TELESCOPE
Of course none of the planets make light of their own, what we see are the features of each planet illuminated by the light from the Sun that gets reflected by our Solar System companions.
After dark adaption and under the very best observing conditions, the average limiting magnitude of the human eye is about magnitude 6.5.
Milky Way’s centre is flanked by Jupiter and Saturn and visible at sunset high in the northern part of the sky, the edge of our galaxy is towards the constellation Orion visible in the morning sky.
Bright stars on the ecliptic are Regulus in Leo and Spica in Virgo and Antares in Scorpius.
If you wish to attend a detailed presentation about the night sky, come every first Tuesday of the month to Astronomy on Tap. During these evenings we extend our live sky presentation and go deeper into space. This is a great opportunity to share thoughts and findings with other people interested in space over a refreshments and nibbles.
Simon Morris from Radio New Zealand talks to Geoffrey Batchen and to our Senior Science Communicator Haritina Mogoșanu. Art historian Geoffrey Batchen has curated Live from the Moon selecting from images that were transmitted to Earth from the Moon.
There are beautiful objects you can see in the night sky, some are circumpolar and some are seasonal.
From Wellington it is always a great time to learn the main asterisms (groupings of stars) that make the main constellations since our light pollution does allow us to observe only the brightest stars.
You can also observe craters on the Moon – here is a comprehensive map of it by Google Moon.
Milky Way’s centre is now rising around 2:00 PM and it will be visible after sunset. In September, in the evenings, you will find the Southern Cross in the south western part of the sky. So just after sunset is at 3 o’clock position heading down followed by The Pointers. Canopus would be at the same time grazing the southern horizon so hard to see from hilly wellington. Achernar and the two Magellanic Clouds would be in the south eastern part of the sky.
On average, the Moon rises or, if it’s already in the sky, sets about 50 minutes later than the previous day, every day.
New Moon: Sunday 29 September 07:26:33AM
First Quarter: Sunday 6 October 05:47:24AM
Full Moon: Saturday 14 September 4:32:40 PM
Last Quarter: Sunday 22 September 02:41:10 PM
Data compiled with Sky Safari Pro
Keep an eye out for our astronomy and space courses coming up, details are in our What’s On section. We will start another Stargazing 101 course in the last quarter of the year. If you wish to attend, contact Space Place and put your name on the waiting list.
At Space Place, we open our telescope for viewings every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday night if the weather is on our side. Alternatively, the planetarium live shows is a great place to see our current night skies. Let us know how it went, or if you have any questions by visiting our Facebook, or Instagram.
Clear skies for the week ahead!
Open 3 Late nights & weekends
Tuesday: 4pm – 11pm*
Friday: 4pm – 11pm*
Saturday: 10am – 11pm*
Sunday: 10am – 5:30pm*
*Last entry is 10pm and 5pm
Last entry at 5pm and 10pm
Closed Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
School bookings available Monday-Friday during school hours.
Closed on Christmas day
During school holidays we are open 7 days
Gold Card Holder / NZ Student (NZ ID required): $12
Child (4-16 years): $9
Preschool Child (0-3 years): Free
Family (2 adults and up to 3 children): $45
Friends of Museum Wellington: Free
Please note that children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
Bookings are essential for all schools and tour groups.
Parking is available at Skyline car park, located on Upland Road (charges apply). There are limited parking spaces outside Space Place reserved especially for mobility permit holders.
T: +64 4 910 3140 E: email@example.com
40 Salamanca Rd, Kelburn, Wellington 6012 located at the top of the Cable Car, just a short stroll from the terminus.