to celebrate its 25th anniversary, Sónar is broadcasting two signals towards GJ273b, a potentially habitable exoplanet located 12.4 light years from Earth in the constellation of Canis Minor. working with the Catalonia Institute of Space Studies and METI International (Messaging Extra-terrestrial Intelligence), the project involves 33 artists linked to the festival, including Laurent Garnier, The Black Madonna, Kode 9 and Daito Manabe

the first transmission was sent in October from the parabolic steerable antenna pictured, located at the EISCAT facility in Ramfjordmoen, near Tromsø, Norway. the second will be beamed out into deep space this April, and your music could be part of it – just submit an original composition in any genre or musical style before 1 March 2018. three pieces chosen by the judging panel will be included in the broadcast and you’ll also win a pair of VIP passes to attend Sónar in Barcelona in June, which follows the festival’s second event in Hong Kong this March

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pop culture pulsar


fifty years ago today, astronomers working at the Mullard Radio Astronomy Observatory in Cambridge discovered an unusual signal coming from deep space: a steady, rhythmic pulse unlike anything seen before. the radio signal, which repeated every 1.33 seconds, seemly oddly unnatural and was soon nicknamed LGM-1 for “Little Green Men” by its discoverers, Jocelyn Bell Burnell and Antony Hewish, who briefly considered but then ruled out the possibility it had originated from some far-off extraterrestrial civilisation

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all that glitters


from the ancient Aztecs to Versace’s new Spring 2018 collection, gold has transcended fashion and culture to remain relevant across millennia. it’s one of humanity’s most enduring precious metals, but it’s taken science until this week to finally pin down exactly where it comes from

the short answer is that gold and other heavy elements are formed by the explosions created by merging neutron stars – super dense suns that weigh twice as much as ours but are only about 10km across. the long version of how we figured this out is an amazing story of cutting-edge physics, astronomy and some timely international cooperation.

read more in our new post for AnOther

space age


following on from two successful gallery exhibitions, the Vintage NASA Photographs project has just released a new set of photographs for sale, including this one of the Gemini-7 spacecraft as seen from Gemini-6. other highlights of the collection include orbital tests high above the Earth, various Apollo astronauts on the Moon and even some shots from the Voyager probes taken in the 70s and 80s

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deep space


deep down in the depths of the Earth’s oceans lies a world in many ways more mysterious than outer space. blanketed by darkness and the crushing weight of billions of tons of seawater, this alien abyss is the focus of the Parley Deep Space Program, which we recently profiled for a special insert inside Dazed Magazine…

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Cassini: a spectacular end

Wednesday 22 November 2017

after two decades in space, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has completed its remarkable mission to Saturn. orbiting the planet and its many moons, the probe captured incredible images and made a number of new discoveries before being deliberately plunged into the gas giant to keep its moons pristine and uncontaminated. although the spacecraft is gone, researchers will be studying the rich trove of data from the mission and its grand finale for years to come

join us hear Professor Michele Dougherty, the Principal Investigator for the magnetometer instruments for Cassini, discuss what new discoveries came from the probe’s long journey and ‘end of mission’ science

Second Home
68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
free for Second Home members
£3 for non-members – please RSVP here

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the cosmic sublime

Tuesday 12 September 2017

join us at The Collective Old Oak to explore the depths of the universe, learn about space telescopes and hear the stories behind astronomical photographs like Hubble’s Ultra Deep Field and the Pale Blue Dot, as popularised by Carl Sagan. how are these photographs created, and how do they help us to reflect upon our own existence?

Marek Kukula is Public Astronomer at Royal Museums Greenwich, home of the Royal Observatory and the Queen’s House art gallery. in 2015 he co-curated the exhibition dark frame/deep field at Breese Little Gallery in London to coincide with the New Horizons probe’s fly-by of Pluto. the exhibition showcased a number of works by contemporary artists alongside vintage NASA photographs, highlighting our ongoing desire to explore and map the cosmos

The Collective Old Oak
Old Oak Lane
NW10 6FF

FREE but RSVP required

seeing science


launched in September last year, Seeing Science is a year-long project at the University of Maryland that examines and documents the ways in which science is represented through the visual medium of photography

with online platforms, essays, events and exhibitions, the project looks at the ways in which science is represented as an industry and as an academic subject; the people involved and its myriad interactions with our everyday life. from Eadweard Muybridge’s pioneering studies of animal locomotion to NASA’s rich photography archive through to augmented reality goggles for surgeons, Seeing Science seeks to examine the various forms scientific images take, what they reveal and how they transform the disciplines they serve. Bobby Jewell spoke with the project’s curator and producer, Marvin Hieferman, to find out more

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deep impact

Meteor Crater by Joe King

in the first in a series of articles, we explore some of the places we’ll be visiting on our upcoming Total Solar Eclipse Expedition this August. first up is Meteor Crater, a massive hole in the ground in Arizona that helped scientists establish techniques for identifying meteor strikes…

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Caroline Corbasson artist talk and astronomy session


Monday 03 July 2017

join us for a special evening with Paris-based artist Caroline Corbasson, who will discuss her artistic practice, inspirations and new film – set at the European Southern Observatory telescopes in the Atacama Desert. her talk will be followed by session observing the Moon and planets through Ace Hotel London’s in-house 203mm Dobsonian telescope, customised by super/collider

Ace Hotel Shoreditch
100 Shoreditch High Street
E1 6JQ
free – but RSVP essential, as we expect this event to sell out quickly

see exclusive images from Caroline’s film here

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what is the Moon made of?

Louise Alexander

Wednesday 07 June 2017

join us for an evening exploring the origins of our nearest neighbour in space. Dr Louise Alexander studies the material that makes up the Moon, analysing the composition of lunar meteorites and samples collected during NASA’s Apollo missions. her current research aims to study how the flux of galactic cosmic rays has impacted the lunar surface and has changed with time

unlike the Earth, the Moon possesses an ancient surface with no atmosphere or magnetic field. the record of galactic cosmic rays can therefore be used to help with the reconstruction of the galactic environment throughout the history of the Solar System. the ultimate aim of Louise’s research project is to assess the value of the lunar geological record for galactic astronomy

Second Home
68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
free for Second Home members / £3 for non-members – please RSVP here

all proceeds from Second Home’s cultural programme go to the Kibera Hamlets school in Nairobi, where Second Home has funded the construction of a new school building designed by architects Selgas Cano

supermassive black holes

Spectacular jets powered by the gravitational energy of a supermassive black hole in the core of the elliptical galaxy Hercules A illustrate the combined imaging power of two of astronomy's cutting-edge tools, the Hubble Space Telescope's Wide Field Camera 3, and the recently upgraded Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope in New Mexico. Some two billion light-years away, the yellowish elliptical galaxy in the centre of the image appears quite ordinary as seen by Hubble in visible wavelengths of light. The galaxy is roughly 1000 times more massive than the Milky Way and harbors a 2.5-billion-solar-mass central black hole that is 1000 times more massive than the black hole in the Milky Way. But the innocuous-looking galaxy, also known as 3C 348, has long been known as the brightest radio-emitting object in the constellation Hercules. Emitting nearly a billion times more power in radio wavelengths than our Sun, the galaxy is one of the brightest extragalactic radio sources in the entire sky. The VLA radio data reveal enormous, optically invisible jets that, at one-and-a-half million light-years wide, dwarf the visible galaxy from which they emerge. The jets are very-high-energy plasma beams, subatomic particles and magnetic fields shot at nearly the speed of light from the vicinity of the black hole. The outer portions of both jets show unusual ring-like structures suggesting a history of multiple outbursts from the supermassive black hole at the centre of the galaxy. The innermost parts of the jets are not visible because of the extreme velocity of the material, which causes relativistic effects that beam the light away from us. Far from the galaxy, the jets become unstable and break up into the rings and wisps. The entire radio source is surrounded by a very hot, X-ray-emitting cloud of gas, not seen in this optical-radio composite. Hubble's view of the field also shows a companion elliptical galaxy very close to the centre of the optical-radio source

Wednesday 10 May 2017

Dr. Meghan Gray is an Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Nottingham. Her research makes use of telescopes around the world and in space to understand the largest structures in the Universe. At the centre of our galaxy, the Milky Way, the motions of stars reveal the existence of a supermassive black hole over a million times the mass of our Sun.

Far from being a rare oddity, we now believe such extreme objects lurk at the heart of all galaxies, and in fact play an important role in the formation and evolution of their hosts. In this talk, Meghan will explore our understanding of the physics behind such black holes, and how – far from being ‘black’ – in the right circumstances they can be some of the most luminous objects in the Universe.

Second Home
68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
free for Second Home members / £3 for non-members – please RSVP here

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L’Indifférence Des Etoiles

L'Indifférence Des Etoiles

88 pages / 26 × 19 cm / hardback
41 photographs / full colour offset
first edition of 500

L’Indifférence Des Etoiles (The Indifference of the Stars) is French photographer Julien Mauve’s first book. filled with juxtaposed images of deep space and our world, it is about the quest for meaning and the difficulty to live with the knowledge that we exist. somehow, the stars become a shelter for the mind and help us bear the briefness of human life

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the cosmic desert


stretching more than 7000 square kilometres across the barren deserts of Western Tunisia, Chott el Djerid is a vast salt lake that extends to the stars. an ‘endorheic’ basin, it floods in winter with rainwater and run-off from the distant Atlas Mountains, with dissolved minerals forming delicate pinks, soft greens, baby blues and other subtly beautiful colours. as spring turns to summer, crystalline structures emerge as the fierce Saharan heat turns the shallow waterways into glittering desert once more…

read more about Chott el Djerid’s cosmic connections in our latest Where On Earth column for AnOther

to dream of space


Wednesday 5 April 2017

Dr Niamh Shaw is an engineer, scientist and performer who merges theatrical performance and art with engineering and technology to tell the human story behind science. at this unique event Niamh will present her personal archive of diaries and letters, collected over a five year journey in which she tried to activate her dream of going to space. as part of our ongoing ‘Women In Space’ series at Second Home, she will blend public lecture with live theatre to convey her experience of investigating and preparing for space, interviewing astronauts and others involved in the space industry to better understand what is involved in leaving the planet

Second Home
68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
free for Second Home members / £3 for non-members – please RSVP here

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dark side of the moon


1 March 2017

due to tidal locking, the far side of the Moon was not seen until 1959 when the Soviet spacecraft Luna 3 transmitted photographs of this unfamiliar landscape back to Earth

join us to hear from astronomer Paul Hill about this once-mysterious place, how the tides on Earth and the movement of the Moon are intrinsically connected and more

what is the Moon and where did it come from? how has the Moon affected life on Earth and how has it influenced our own human evolution and culture? is the Moon crucial for life on our planet or could we survive without it?

Second Home
68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
free for Second Home members / £3 for non-members – please RSVP here

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104-page retrospective book (2006-2016)
first edition of 1000
170mm x 240mm
printed with vegetable-based inks on FSC-certified paper made from 100% post-consumer waste

in 2006 we published our first fanzine and began a journey into science and culture. from the depths of interstellar space to the limitless subatomic horizons of particle physics to the most beautiful places on our planet, we’ve been privileged to spend the past decade exploring the wonders and aesthetics of science from a creative standpoint

full of short stories and facts, ten is more than just a retrospective of our work. it’s a visual record of where science has taken us all in the last decade – told through 100 beautiful images from the worlds of astronomy, chemistry, mineralogy, physics, ecology, biology… and beyond

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the in sound from way out

GOES satellite

researchers at Queen Mary University in London are inviting filmmakers and creatives to experiment with sounds from space, as part of a new competition launched today. to find out more about these cosmic noises, we caught up with project lead Dr Martin Archer…

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the edge of the sky


24 January 2017

to start our new season of talks at Second Home, we’ll be joined by theoretical cosmologist Roberto Trotta, whose book The Edge of the Sky explains the Universe using just 1000 simple words. from the big bang to black holes, from dark matter to dark energy, from the origins of the universe to its ultimate destiny, Trotta will tell us the story of the most important discoveries and mysteries in modern cosmology in a way anyone can understand

Second Home
68 Hanbury Street / London / E1 5JL
free for Second Home members / £3 for non-members – please RSVP here

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ring world


open up Google Maps and scroll over to Canada – then zoom in and take a look to the right of the ‘Québec’ label. notice something weird? a massive, circular lake? that’s an impact crater from a 5km wide comet or asteroid that hit the area over 200 million years ago, making it the oldest known and largest visible impact crater on Earth

in our new column for AnOther, we look at Manicouagan Crater and other (potentially related) impact sites across the planet