Space is in the spotlight across Europe and Beyond as Saturday 20 July marks both the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, and the start of ESA astronaut Luca Parmitano’s second mission to the International Space Station.
From NASA’s Johnson Space Centre in Houston, USA, where Danish ESA astronaut Andreas Mogensen will be working as a capcom for Luca’s launch and docking, to events in Berlin, Paris, Milan and the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, find out how some of ESA’s astronauts will be celebrating all around the globe.
Italy – RAI Television
ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, and head of ESA director general's cabinet Elena Grifoni Winters, will be guests on the Porta a Porta programme. Airing on Italian television station Radiotelevisione italiana (RAI) on 20 July, this coverage will be split into two timeslots: one for launch and one for docking. Both will be hosted by Bruno Vespa and programming will be in Italian.
Tune in in Italy from 16:45 CEST to 18:45 CEST for the launch, and 23:50 CEST to 01:00 CEST for docking.
Berlin, Germany – Mondfest, Zeiss Planetarium
German ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst returned from his Horizons mission in December 2018 and will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing with both feet on the ground in Berlin. From 14:00 CEST on Saturday 20 July to 01:00 CEST Sunday 21 July, the Zeiss Grossplanetarium will host a programme of free lectures, exhibits, panel discussions and hands-on activities. Luca’s launch will be broadcast live from 17:00-19:00CEST and Alex will commentate the launch as it happens.
Visit the Mondfest website for further information: https://www.planetarium.berlin/veranstaltungen/mondfest
Paris, France – Mooon, Nef du Grand Palais
French ESA astronauts Thomas Pesquet and Claudie Haigneré are in for a cosmic night at the Grand Palais in Paris where public discussions will be held alongside installations and artistic performances, video projections and a musical programme all under a giant 16 m wide Moon. The celebrations run from 19:00 CEST on Saturday 20 July through until 02:00 CEST Sunday 21 July.
Mooon is a ticketed event. See the Grand Palais website for more information: https://www.grandpalais.fr/
Rome, Italy – Apollo 11 Reloaded, Maxxi Museum
Apollo 11 Reloaded is a new musical project by electronic artist Maurizio Martusciello also known as MartuxM. Dedicated to the anniversary of the first Moon landing, it builds a bridge between previous space travel and future missions.
This event takes place following the launch of Luca, between 21:00 and 22:30 CEST, and Entrance is free until capacity is reached. See the website for more information: https://www.maxxi.art/en/events/apollo-11-reloaded/
Baikonur, Kazakhstan – the launch
The main event – the launch itself – will take place at the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. From here, Luca will be launched to the International Space Station in the Soyuz MS-13 spacecraft alongside NASA astronaut Drew Morgan and Roscosmos commander Alexander Skvortsov at 18:28 CEST (16:28 GMT).
Live coverage of the launch starts on ESA TV at 17:30 CEST until 18:45 CEST and will resume for the docking of the Soyuz to the Station’s Zvezda service module at 00:00-01:00 CEST then again for the hatch opening from 02:00-03:00. Coverage will be commentated by ESA astronaut Paolo Nespoli.
Read more about the livestream and tune in via this link.
Whether you are attending an event, holding your own watch party or simply tuning in from home, make sure you follow @esaspaceflight on Twitter for regular English updates and @ESA_Italia for Italian content.
Throughout the mission, the ESA team will keep you updated via the mission blog http://blogs.esa.int/luca-parmitano/ You can also connect with Luca on social media via details on lucaparmitano.esa.int