ACE Cultural Tours – Northern Lights 2014

Photo Gallery (With Thanks to Inger Carter)

Welcome Talk

Evening of February 4th at the Radisson Blu [Slides]. I gave a summary of our trip to come, and the current state of space research and exploration.

Lecture #1: The Aurora

Morning of February 6th on board MS Finnmarken [Slides]. A quick tour of the Solar System and a description of the Sun’s connection to the Earth – and the nature and origins of the aurora.

Lecture #2: The Earth’s Orbit

Afternoon of February 7th on board MS Finnmarken [Slides]. The Earth’s path around the Sun – spinning on its axis all along – defines much about our world’s climate, and our daily lives.

Lecture #3: Citizen Science

Afternoon of February 8th on board MS Finnmarken [Slides]. How astronomy is part of a movement to engage the wider public in science. I am part of a team that build crowdsourced science websites, asking for volunteers to help analyse datasets that are too big for researchers.

Aurora Websites and Forecasts:

Tromsø all-sky camera where you can view the sky over Tromsø in near real time.

Geophysical Institute’s aurora forecast page

Live solar data in multiple wavelengths from the NASA/ESA SOHO mission. – news and updates on Solar activity, aurora and sunspots.

Books, Apps and Websites You Might Find Useful:

Usborne First Encyclopaedia of Space – sometimes it’s best to start with the kids books – they’re fun too!

A Short History of Nearly Everything – Bill Bryson’s wonderfully relatable history of modern science.

Bang! A Complete History of the Universe – by Patrick Moore, Brian May and Chris Lintott

Zoo in the Sky: Beautiful book that balances make-believe, poetry, and facts perfectly. Just lovely

Zooniverse – citizen science across many research domains.

RedShift for iOS – comprehensive planetarium and star-spotting app for iPhones and iPads.

Solar System for iPad: Interactive tour of the planets and moons, with beautiful photos and rich descriptions.

Spot the Station: Get email alerts for the International Space Station (ISS) going over your location.

Heaven’s Above: A website that lets you determine spotting-times for satellites, the planets, comets and more.

You can contact Inger on ingermcarter [at] – and myself on robert.simpson [at] or via Twitter @orbitingfrog.

Create a website or blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: