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You are here: BBC Science > Space > The Sky at Night
Watch the show   Sir Patrick Moore   Programme History   Multimedia Tribute   Newsletter
Sir Patrick Moore

Each month, the show is broadcast on BBC One and BBC Four. Times and brief details of editions since June 2007 are at The Sky At Night's page within the area.

That page also displays which recent episodes are available to download or watch online through the iPlayer.


Watch The Sky at Night online using RealPlayer or Windows Media Player. This archive runs from December 2001 to August 2008. This permanent archive is no longer being updated.

Double Vision: August 2008

The Large Binocular Telescope in Arizona promises a revolutionary way to look at the night sky. The light from its two 8.5m mirrors will produce images of unprecedented clarity and power, offering a glimpse beyond our solar system to the very beginning of time.

Rise of the Phoenix: July 2008

After a month on the planet's surface, NASA Phoenix mission to Mars has sent back unique images of the frozen ice caps.

The battle of the giants: June 2008

Sir Patrick Moore finds out more about our two largest gas giants - Jupiter and Saturn. Dr Chris Lintott has the latest news from the Phoenix probe on Mars.

We just don't know: May 2008

Sir Patrick Moore celebrates the 666th edition of the programme.

The Sun Revealed: April 2008

It's the start of a new solar cycle, and the spacecraft Ulysses faces retirement, but solar missions Stereo and SOHO are still revealing our nearest star in a new light.

Return to the Moon: March 2008

With a new era of lunar exploration dawning as more probes are launched to try to unlock the Moon's darkest secrets, Patrick Moore finds out about British ambitions to get there. Dr Chris Lintott travels to NASA to hear about plans to blast a crater in the lunar surface and and meets the astronauts who may be the next men on the Moon.

Messenger to Mercury: February 2008

Mercury is a world of extremes and enigmas - the closest one to the Sun. The spacecraft Messenger, which has just reached it after a four year journey, now offers enthralling pictures of its hidden side, which has never been seen before. Sir Patrick Moore looks at the latest images from this exciting mission, while Dr Chris Lintott looks forward to the lunar eclipse this month.

Cosmic Debris: January 2008

Patrick Moore investigates comet tails, meteorites and asteroids and discovers the terrible consequences of a cosmic collision with the Earth.

Last Man on the Moon: December 2007

On the 14th of December 1972, Captain Eugene Cernan left the moon to return to Earth. He had no idea that, 35 years later, he would still be the last man to have left his footprints on the lunar surface. Dr Chris Lintott travels to the Johnson Space Centre to talk to the Commander of Apollo 17 about his memories of being on the moon.

Sputnik's Children: December 2007, BBC4 Special

Dr Chris Lintott finds out how British technology is leading the way in satellite science, while Sir Patrick Moore investigates the threat from space debris that astronauts face in space.

Meteor Mania: November 2007, BBC4 Special

Patrick Moore is joined by Dr Brian May and Jon Culshaw to watch the cosmic firework display known as the Perseid meteor shower.

The Grand Collision: November 2007

Sir Patrick Moore looks ahead 2 billion years when the Milky Way will collide with Andromeda, destroying stars and planets but also creating new ones.

Jodrell Bank: October 2007

Sir Patrick Moore celebrates the 50th birthday of the radio telescope at Jodrell Bank in Cheshire, created just in time to pick up the radar signal from the satellite Sputnik. It has been at the centre of radio astronomy ever since and has been responsible for the discovery of quasars, gravitational lenses and groundbreaking research into pulsars and cosmic explosions such as supernovae. Astronomer Bernard Lovell talks about how it came to be built, despite huge engineering and financial challenges.

Black Holes and Black Magic: September 2007

Sir Patrick Moore uses magic to explain the mysteries of black holes and the wonders of the Universe.

Robonet: August 2007

The sun never rises for astronomers using Robonet, the robotic network of telescopes which spans the globe and links the cosmos directly to a laptop. These telescopes can react immediately to exotic cosmic phenomena such as gamma ray bursts, which are over in the blink of an astronomical eye. Patrick Moore takes a look at this new technological dawn for astronomy.

A Sting in the Tail: July 2007

Patrick Moore reveals how to identify the summer constellation Scorpius, one of the oldest constellations, located near the centre of the milky way.

Home from Home: June 2007
Patrick Moore finds out more about a mysterious new Earth-like planet on our cosmic doorstep that has rocked the astronomical community.
Birthday Party: May 2007
Patrick Moore hosts a party in his garden to celebrate 50 years of the Sky at Night.
Time Lord: April 2007
In an anniversary programme, Patrick Moore travels back in time to see the first recording of The Sky at Night which took place 50 years ago this month. He talks to his earlier self about astronomy back in 1957, and discusses how things have changed in half a century. He then time travels to 2057 where the 'virtual' Patrick, saved in the BBC computer, is now celebrating 100 years of making The Sky at Night and talks to Dr Brian May about the discovery of life on Mars.
Stunning Saturn: March 2007
Dr Chris Lintott advises on how best to see the loveliest of planets, whilst Sir Patrick Moore finds out the latest from the Cassini mission which is currently orbiting Saturn.
Martian Adventures: February 2007
In this special extended programme, Chris Lintott goes to the USA to investigate studies of Mars carried out by NASA, whilst Patrick Moore looks into European exploration of the Red Planet.
Astronaut: January 2007
Piers Sellers talks to Patrick Moore about life orbiting the Earth and the future of the manned space programme. Patrick also previews NASA's forthcoming rescue mission to the Hubble space telescope.
The Sounds of Stars: December 2006
Stars are like bells, ringing out into space. Sir Patrick Moore finds out how scientists are making sounds and music from the changes within stars. Chris Lintott steps outside and looks at variable stars, which make up the celestial orchestra.
The Evil Twin: November 2006
Venus was once thought to be the sultry home to a mysterious race of aliens. It is now known to have searing temperatures and a thick, acrid atmosphere. Sir Patrick Moore discusses the latest findings of the European mission Venus Express which is scrutinising Earth's evil twin.
Autumn Equinox: October 2006
Patrick Moore presents a guide to the celestial sights to look for over the coming autumn months. Lucie Green visits the Autumn Equinox Star Party at Kelling Heath, Norfolk, and Chris Lintott talks to Professor Jim Gunn, one of the founders of modern day cosmology.
The Sun and Moon: September 2006
Patrick Moore talks to project scientist Bernard Foing about the lunar probe Smart-1, scheduled to finish its mission this month. Chris Lintott reports on two missions soon to be launched to explore the sun.
Return to the Red Planet: August 2006
Britain is going back to Mars on board the European Exomars mission. UK scientists have a key role designing and building many of the instruments, including the innovative 'life marker chip'. Patrick Moore discovers how we hope to find Martian life, while Chris Lintott goes in search of the rover which will be climbing the mountains on Mars.
Wandering Giants: July 2006
From the dust and gas disc of the very early solar system emerged the gas giants. Four billion years ago our solar system looked quite different to the one we see today with Uranus and Neptune much closer to the sun, regularly swapping orbits. Patrick Moore discusses how these wandering giants came to be flung to the icy outer regions of our solar system.
Bangs in the Night: June 2006
The biggest and most powerful explosions in the Universe are gamma ray bursts. With the launch of the spacecraft SWIFT, scientists now realise these exotic phenomena are far more varied than first suspected. Patrick Moore finds out about the biggest bangs since the 'Big' one, while Chris Lintott tracks down the supernovae hunters.
Glorious Galaxies: May 2006
Patrick Moore discusses how galaxies are formed and investigates how we can trace their mysterious dark matter. Chris Lintott takes his telescope outside to give advice on where to find the brightest and the best galaxies, and what to look for.
Turkish Delight: April 2006
Chris Lintott experiences a total eclipse of the sun in the Turkish coastal resort of Antalaya. Here in the UK, the moon only partially blocks the sun, but Patrick Moore hopes to catch a glimpse of one of nature's great events.
The Loveliest Planet: March 2006
Chris Lintott explains how to locate the ringed planet.
On Top of the World: February 2006
The volcanic mountain of Mauna Kea in Hawaii is home to some of the world's best astronomical observatories. Chris Lintott and Sir Patrick Moore look around the telescopes.
Journey to the Edge: January 2006
Patrick Moore talks to Mike A'Hearn, the NASA scientist behind the spectacular deep impact mission.
Celestial Zoo: December 2005
Patrick Moore celebrates the 10th anniversary of the solar satellite SOHO, with its spectacular images of flares, death-wish comets and sunspots the size of a planet.
Mars and the Ring of Fire: November 2005
Look up in the night sky and you will see Mars. It's almost as close as it can get to Earth and will not be as well placed for many years. Join Patrick Moore in his garden for a Mars party and enjoy the exceptional view of the Red Planet.
Also this month, Chris Lintott reports from Madrid where he witnessed the dramatic annular eclipse, also called the 'Ring of Fire'.
Planets: October 2005
Including a report by Chris Lintott on a recent meeting in Cambridge of astronomers from around the world to discuss the latest planetary research.
Mapping the Universe: September 2005
Man is scanning the night sky, mapping and counting stars, galaxies and other solar bodies. We discuss two of the most comprehensive surveys - 2DF and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey - and discuss what this tells us about our universe.
The Search for Life: August 2005
The search for life elsewhere in our universe has long been the Holy Grail for astronomers. Planets around distant stars have recently been discovered, and solar systems like our own could be widespread. But is life on Earth unique? With missions to Mars, Saturn's moon Titan and Jupiter's moon Europa, we could be nearing an answer.
Fallout from Deep Impact: July 2005
On July 4th NASA's impactor, from the spacecraft Deep Impact, hit comet Tempel 1. Patrick Moore talks to leading comet experts about the fallout from this destructive act and reviews how the world has witnessed this extraordinary event.
Target Tempel 1: July 2005
NASA sends a probe into the comet 9P/Tempel-1, early on the morning of July 4th. Will this unique event help us find out how comets are made? Are they balls of ice and mud, harbouring the components of life - or just solid rocks of sterile cosmic debris? Deep Impact hopes to provide the answers. But this destructive act is not without its critics. The Sky at Night explores the pros and cons of hitting a comet.
 The Shocking Sun: June 2005
Sun spots and solar flares release high energy particles and radiation which can damage satellites and telecommunications, as well as creating the beautiful aurora in the atmosphere. Patrick Moore talks to professor John Brown about the latest solar mission, Rhessi, which is observing these incredibly violent outbursts from our nearest star, the Sun.
 Eye on the Universe: May 2005
The Hubble Space Telescope has revolutionised astronomy during its 15 years, providing amazing insights into the universe. Patrick Moore, along with Professor Gerry Gilmore, looks back at Hubble's highs and lows as it comes to the end of its life.
 Star Party: April 2005
For the first time, Sir Patrick Moore hosts a star party at his house. Over two nights, amateur astronomers wait to see the night sky, but will the fog and rain disperse?
 Strangers in the Night: March 2005
Patrick Moore investigates the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud, where comets are thought to originate from. Plus, how to prepare for one of the year's best observing nights.
Unveiling Titan: February 2005
We have seen the surface of Titan, one of the most mysterious bodies in the Solar System. Patrick Moore talks to the project's lead scientist, Professor John Zarnecki, about the first results from the Huygens probe.
Lord of the Rings: January 2005
Patrick Moore discusses the spacecraft Cassini, which has been at Saturn for six months, and Cassini's probe Huygens, which was sent to Titan.
Wide Eyed: December 2004
Star Death: November 2004
Planet Quest: October 2004
Robo Scope: September 2004
Cassini at Saturn: August 2004
Moons of Saturn: July 2004
The 2004 transit of Venus: June 2004
Star Birth: May 2004
Digging for Dark Matter: April 2004
Cosmic Vision: March 2004
Mars Invasion: February 2004
Music Of The Spheres: January 2004
Cosmic Wanderers: December 2003
Jupiter And Galileo: November 2003
SMART way to the Moon: October 2003
Out of the Dark Ages: September 2003
Mars, the Next Frontier: August 2003
Space Scouts: July 2003
Highland Ring: June 2003
The Shadow: May 2003
Beagle 2: April 2003
The Dark Side: March 2003
Astro Art: February 2003
Hot Stuff: January 2003
A Royal Celebration: December 2002
Radio Revolution: November 2002
Picture Perfect: October 2002
The Long Wave: September 2002
Apocalyptic Asteroid: August 2002
Star In Your Eyes: July 2002
The Birth Of The Universe: June 2002
Southern Eyes: May 2002
Forty-Five Years Of Star-Gazing: Anniversary Episode
Twelve Men on the Moon: April 2002
A Tale of Two Bears: March 2002
Galactic Whirlpools: February 2002
The Star of Bethlehem: December 2001

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