StarFest 2015 Dates and all Events

This year StarFest will held over the October long weekend. Tickets on sale now.

Friday 2nd October (Science in the Pub)

All proceeds from this event go to supporting

Westpac Copter

Saturday 3rd October (Open Day at Siding Spring Observatory)

Saturday Night 3rd October (Sidewalk Astronomy with Donna Burton)

Saturday Night 3rd October (Milroy Star-B-Que)

Sunday 4th October (Bok Lecture)

A not to be missed event with Prof Victoria Meadows, NASA’s Search for Life Beyond the Solar System (entry by gold coin donation (all donations go to the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service, book your seat now)

Open Day – Sat 3rd Oct 2015




October 3rd 2015 – 9:30am till 4pm

Can’t make Open Day but would like to see the talks? We will be streaming the talks live. Virtually attend Open Day!


Siding Spring Observatory (we have the Mud Map and Program to help you plan your day). Remember to pick up your What’s On booklet on the day!


There’s a whole day of activities – view the Mud Maps for Open Day, Page 1 and Page 2

*Tour the telescopes

*Hear talks by world famous astronomers in the AAT Dome (see Talks Program 2015 AAT)

*Talks designed for children in the Exploratory (see Childrens Talks Program 2015)

*Enjoy activities for the whole family (see the full Program for more details)

*See the science displays

*Eat at the newly refurbished Exploratory cafe, or grab a sausage sizzle on the way round

*And much much more


There’s tons of it – drive on in

Do I Have To Book?

No! Just rock on up – we would love to see you!

Life Beyond the Solar System? Bok Lecture with Professor Victoria Meadows – Sun 4th Oct

Professor Victor Meadows

Professor Victoria Meadows


Sunday October 4th, 2015 – 11:00 am (Please note Daylight Savings starts 2am Sunday Oct 4th, clocks go forward an hour)


Coonabarabran Bowling Club


Victoria Meadows is a Professor in the Astronomy Department and Director of the Astrobiology Program at the University of Washington, Seattle.  Since 2001 she has been the Principal Investigator for the NASA Astrobiology Institute’s Virtual Planetary Laboratory Lead Team. She has worked at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Caltech, and served as the Solar System Observations scientist for the Spitzer Space Telescope.  She has a B.Sc. in Physics from the University of New South Wales, and a Ph.D. in Physics from the Astrophysics Department of the University of Sydney.    Dr. Meadows’ primary research interests are in the challenging area of using modeling and observations to determine how to recognize whether a distant extrasolar planet is able to harbor life. Her NAI Virtual Planetary Laboratory team develops innovative computer models that can be used to understand the terrestrial planet formation process, test planetary dynamical stability and orbital evolution, and simulate the environment and spectra of present day and early Earth, other Solar System planets, and plausible extrasolar terrestrial environments. This research group can assess the stability and habitability of newly discovered planetary systems and use their models to produce simulated data for extrasolar planet environments, and explore signs of life from alternative biospheres, to assist the design and development of future NASA planet detection and characterization missions.

What is the Subject?

“NASA’s Search for Life Beyond the Solar System”

One of the grandest and most enduring questions in human history has been whether we are alone in the Universe.   While previous generations could only speculate about the possibility of life around other stars, in the coming decades NASA will develop and deploy the telescopes required to begin exploring the environments of distant worlds.    But getting these challenging observations alone is not enough – we also need an improved understanding of what we should be looking for, and research that will allow us to interpret what we observe.     In this talk I will give an overview of current and upcoming NASA missions that will study potentially habitable planets and search for signs of life.   I’ll also highlight work being done by the NASA Astrobiology Institute’s Virtual Planetary Laboratory to guide this search – including understanding the factors that lead to a planet being able to support life, and how we might recognize signs of alien life on a distant world.


To book your seats is free but a gold coin donation is appreciated on the day. Book your seats at Sticky Tickets NOW! Bok Lecture with Prof Victoria MeadowsBook Now