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Live Updates

By Ruth Levis

All times stated are UK

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  1. A Room with a View

    Now this is what we call an office. The Control Room at Jodrell Bank (and our makeshift studio this week), with the Lovell Telescope keeping watch on the dark skies above us.

    Control Room at Jodrell

    Tomorrow, BBC News will be covering Tim Peake's space walk live - go to BBC Science News to follow all the action from the morning onwards.

    And at 9pm, Stargazing will be on BBC Two for an extra programme with Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield as our special guest to look back on a remarkable day in space history.

    But that's all from us tonight. Keep looking up at those stars...

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  2. Watching Stargazing Live under the stars

    A hardy band of space fans have braved the cold this evening to watch Stargazing Live on the giant screen in Millennium Square...

    People watching Stargazing on the Big Screen in Bristol
    People watching Stargazing on the Big Screen in Bristol
  3. The perils of space walks

    A vast amount of training and preparation has gone into getting ready for tomorrow's space walk. But sometimes, things do go wrong. 

    In 2013, Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano was on a space walk when a tiny water leak in his space suit turned potentially fatal.

    Speaking to the BBC from the International Space Station about his experience, which prevented him from being able to hear or speak, Parmitano describes the "long minutes" leading up to his rescue.

    BBC News, 25 September 2013: Astronaut Luca Parmitano 'always confident' of survival

  4. ESA animation of Tim Peake's tasks

    The European Space Agency has released an animated video of Tim Peake's tasks during tomorrow's space walk...

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  5. Tim Peake's historic space walk

    Tim Peake and Nasa astronaut Tim Kopra are scheduled to step outside the International Space Station at 12:55 GMT when they will replace a faulty part on the outside of the ISS, 

    Read the BBC News article:Tim Peake set for historic space walk

  6. The sounds of silence

    Probe in orbit of Saturn
    Image caption: A probe flying past Saturn

    Tomorrow, Tim Peake goes on his first spacewalk. The International Space Station is moving at around 17,000 miles per hour, the Earth's surface is 250 miles below him. 

    The world will be watching and cheering him on - but apart from the voices of colleagues on the radio, outside of his spacesuit will be no noise at all.

    See Tim Peak's guide to the sounds (or lack of) in space

  7. Spin cycle complete

    John Bishop has completed his spin in the centrifugal chamber, enduring 3 minutes at 2G. Most astronauts train for 20 minutes at a time.

    Quote Message: It's like my own brain catching up with my body and meeting it on the way back
    John Bishop in the centrifugal chamber
    John Bishop in the centrifugal chamber
    John Bishop at the end of his spin in the chamber
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    View more on twitter
    View more on twitter
  8. Pulsars - watching the watches of the Universe

    Pulsars are Pulsating Radio Stars, called pulsars for short. They're very dense and formed from the remains of a supernova which is a neutron star that's collapsed into a compact ball. They are incredibly dense - just one teaspoon of pulsar material would weigh as much as a mountain - a billion tonnes.

    Quote Message: Imagine a star 1.4 times the mass of the sun, squashed into a ball the size of Manchester from Professor Chris Lintott
    Professor Chris Lintott

    When something's really dense, it gives off radio waves. These waves shoot out in two beams at the magnetic poles of the pulsar and, because the pulsars spin very fast, we can detect the radio beam flashing on and off as it sweeps past us - this lets us measure time incredibly accurately.

    These flashes are incredibly important for our study and understanding of space-time across the universe.

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    View more on twitter
  9. Wave detectives

    GReenbank telescope
    Image caption: Green Bank Telescope

    There's a town in in America where people go without their smartphones, wifi and even microwave meals - all for the sake of science.

    That's because Green Bank, West Virginia, is home to the Green Bank telescope which is trying to detect something that no-one's ever detected before: gravitational waves.

    Gravitational waves are ripples in space-time, but nobody knows for sure that they exist. However, we do know that massive objects, like black holes, distort space-time.

    At Green Bank, they're listening to the light waves from a spinning pulsar that's been converted into sound. The tone doesn’t change – unless something disturbs the pulsar... like a ripple in space-time.

    The gravitational waves, as they’re moving through space, compress space-time. That stretching and compressing causes a change in the tone. And if a change in pitch in the pulsars can be spotted, that will mean they have detected a ripple in space-time. And for the very first time, there will be proof that gravitational waves exist.

  10. Tim Peake's favourite views

    Tim Peake has been talking about how he's constantly amazed and surprised by the views of Earth from the ISS - cities lit up at night, storms, cloud formations...

    Earth from space
    Tim Peake's view from the ISS
    Tim Peake's view from the ISS
    Quote Message: The most amazing thing about being on board the international space station is the view of planet Earth from Tim Peake
    Tim Peake
  11. Whispering Stars

    Whispering Stars

    Whispering Stars is an experimental astronomy project from BBC Science that lets you write messages on stars and share them privately or publicly via email or social media.

    We’ve chosen over 50 stars and planets that you can interact with and set them among hundreds of other stars in a live 3D star map. Whispering Stars works in a browser – no app required!

    The stars, planets and Sun should all appear in their correct relative positions in the 3D star map, but for the moment our interstellar clouds are an artistic flourish.

    Find out more at Whispering Stars

  12. The name's Bishop, John Bishop

    Surviving the centrifugal chamber

    Both John Bishop and Tim Peake are following in the footsteps of James Bond in Moonraker (1979) by going for a spin in a centrifugal chamber. Bond, then played by smooth operator Sir Roger Moore, survives an assassination attempt in the chamber thanks to the intervention of NASA scientist Dr Holly Goodhead...

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  13. How do you stay alive in space?

    ISS floating in space
    Image caption: The International Space Station floating above the curvature of the earth.

    Astronauts often complain of feeling sick during the first few weeks on the ISS and the body usually takes a little time to adjust.

    Even after adjusting, living in space has its challenges. Life in space has been described as being a bit like standing on your head. With less gravity pushing down on you, fluids tend to pool in the upper parts of your body, which is what gives astronauts a puffy, red face. 

    Here,Tim Peake guides you through the many things that have to be considered to keep him alive in space. 

    See Tim Peake's BBC Bitesize guide here

  14. How do you go to the loo in Space?

    Click on the play button at the top of this page to find out Tim Peake's answer to this very important question, and other info about his day-to-day life in Space.

    Space toilet
    Image caption: Space Toilet The Emerging Museum of Science and Innovation in Japan
  15. The sounds of pulsars

    During last night's show, we got a brief earful of space noise when they turned up the volume on what the Lovell telescope was receiving.

    Back in 2010, Sir Patrick Moore visited the Jodrell Bank Observatory to listen for himself.

    Watch the clip here:

    Video content

    Video caption: Patrick Moore listens to pulsars at Jodrell Bank.
  16. Pulsars - putting Einstein's theories to the test

    Video content

    Video caption: Jocelyn Bell Burnell explains how pulsars tested Einstein's theory.
    Quote Message: It was only following the discovery of pulsars that it was possible to test Einstein’s ideas about gravity from Jocelyn Bell Burnell
    Jocelyn Bell Burnell
  17. What are pulsars?

    Jocelyn Bell Burnell explains what pulsars are and how a journalist helped them get their name.

    This video also features great footage of Patick Moore managing his hair in the wind.

    Video content

    Video caption: Jocelyn Bell Burnell explains what they are and how they got their name.
  18. The Eureka moment

    Professor Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell describes how she discovered pulsars.

    Video content

    Video caption: Jocelyn Bell Burnell talks about her career and the links between religion and science.
    Quote Message: It finally scotched the little green man hypothesis because it’s highly unlikely there’s two lots of little green men on opposite sides of the universe, both deciding to signal to a rather inconspicuous planet Earth at the same time, using a daft technique and a rather commonplace frequency….
  19. Live forever?

    Did you know our Sun shines 85% brighter than most other stars?

    But this can't last forever. Professor Lucie Green is exploring the future of our Sun right now - click on the play button to find out more.

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