Out of this world exhibition touches down at Newcastle Museum

15 Nov 2023

Novocastrians can explore the surface of Mars and take the ultimate celestial selfie this summer thanks to the new hands-on exhibition at Newcastle Museum.

Australia in Space officially opened today featuring interactive exhibits that allow you to command a rover on the Red Planet and step onboard a space station to take a photo 'in orbit' above Australia.

Budding astronauts will be inspired by the opportunity to build their own spacesuit and discover the surprising realities of trying to sleep, wash your hair, cook and eat food in space, then use a hand-held ‘medical scanner’ to explore the harsh effects of space on the human body.

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said City of Newcastle is determined to bring world class exhibitions to the region.

"Newcastle Museum is committed to attracting engaging, high quality touring exhibitions for the Hunter Region that enrich Newcastle's cultural offering and give local communities access to national and international experiences," Cr Nelmes said.

"Developed by the renowned Questacon National Science and Technology Centre, Australia in Space has something for everybody and celebrates innovation, science and technology.

"Visitors will be inspired by the achievements, aspirations and motivations of Australians in the space sector, with the work of women and First Nations people featuring prominently."

Other out-of-this-world displays include a virtual telescope that links to iconic deep space missions and a laser-based puzzle game that shows how satellites allow over-the-horizon communications.

Team up with a friend to manage orbital traffic and tackle space junk in a cooperative computer game based on Australian technology, or simply marvel at an airport-inspired ‘Earth departures board’, drawing on real data to display details of upcoming rocket launches around the world.

Learn about space weather and discover how scientists from the Bureau of Meteorology monitor, research and predict electromagnetic storms in order to protect power grids.

City of Newcastle Director Museum, Archive, Libraries and Learning Julie Baird said Australia in Space will excite and inspire audiences of all ages, with an emphasis on school-age children.

"The exhibition is designed to welcome space enthusiasts and newcomers alike, getting all visitors on-board with Australia's vision for a vibrant and diverse space sector," Ms Baird said.

"Free science shows will also run throughout the school holidays to complement the exhibition.

"I'd encourage our visitors to make a day or weekend trip to explore Australia in Space as well as Newcastle Museum's other exhibitions, activities and collections."

Tickets for Australia in Space cost $15 for adults, $10 for concession card holders, $7.50 for children between five and 14, with children under five admitted for free. A family pass (two adults and two children) is $40.

For more information visit www.newcastlemuseum.com.au/exhibitions/special-exhibitions/australia-in-space

Australia in Space runs until Sunday 10 March 2024.