The 1969 moon landing glued millions of people around the world to their TV sets 50 years ago. For Czechs and Slovaks, this historic event had a special, bittersweet, taste. Vít Pohanka spoke to two Czech journalists who had the unique opportunity to cover the Apollo flight both from the USA and Prague.
The Žižkov television tower in Prague, once voted the world’s second-ugliest building, will host a virtual space launch this Saturday evening – thanks to an ambitious videomapping project. Filip Liška, who came up with the idea, says the tower is the ideal stand-in for the real Apollo 11 launcher, from which astronauts embarked on the first Moon landing, 50 years ago.
The Žofín forest in South Bohemia belongs among the oldest protected nature reserves in Central Europe. This unique woodland, which has been protected for more than 180 years, has now become a focus of research carried out by the US space agency NASA. They want to use the data collected in the forest to compare it with measurements taken from space. That could enable them to get a more accurate picture of the Earth’s surface.
A new book of stunning photographs from Space by former NASA astronaut Leroy Chiao published by the Zdeněk Sklenář Gallery was launched in Prague this week. Chiao’s photos, shot in orbit some 400 kilometres above the Earth, were taken from four separate missions between 1994 and 2005. On the occasion of the book launch, Czech Radio’s Miroslav Krupička asked the astronaut about how the idea for the book, due to also come out in English and Chinese, came together after he and Sklenář met.
Monday marks exactly 40 years since the moment man first set foot on the moon. At that time, in 1969, Czechoslovakia was one of the only Soviet satellite states broadcasting the event. Among those relaying history live to the nation of 15 million on national TV was Antonín Vítek, one of the country’s leading experts in cosmology. He recalled the day for me in his office in the Academy of Sciences.
Welcome to Czech Science. Last week we started a short series about astronomy in the Czech lands. Our guest, the director of the Astronomical Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Professor Jan Palous, took us back to 17th century Rudolphine Prague - a time when the city hosted such famous astronomers as Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler. Only three centuries later it was Albert Einstein who spent two years in Prague and very likely formulated his general principle of relativity here. While in last week's episode, Professor Palous talked about