Planetary scientist Phil Stooke takes a quick look at missions in progress around the solar system and others we can look forward to in the next few years when he speaks at Nanaimo Astronomy Society’s October meeting. Photo submitted

Solar system roundup planned at next Nanaimo Astronomy Society meeting

Oct. 24 meeting guest speaker explores current and future missions to the planets

Those attending Nanaimo Astronomy Society’s meeting this month might want to have some probing questions ready for the evening’s guest speaker.

Phil Stooke, a planetary scientist with a PhD from the University of Victoria, will present a round of up the Solar system and discuss interplanetary missions in progress, including missions to the moon and Mars and new missions on the horizon.

From rovers on the moon and Mars and efforts to bring back samples from asteroids to orbiters around Venus and Jupiter, there is a lot of scientific exploration happening in and around Earth’s planetary neighbours with more exciting missions on the horizon.

Stooke, who has returned to the West Coast after working 30 years at Western University in Ontario, has worked to help map asteroids, find spacecraft landing and impact sites on the moon and Mars and helped depict the history of lunar and Martian exploration.

Jim Slater, society director, will also give a short presentation about the constellations and astrology.

The meeting happens Thursday, Oct. 24, 7 9 p.m. at Beban Park social centre.

The society will also hold a silent auction for one of its loaner telescopes.

To learn more about the upcoming meeting and the Nanaimo Astronomy Society, visit the society website at www.nanaimoastronomy.com.



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