Ishbel, Neamh and Ruaridh write about stargazing in the Atacama Desert, in northern Chile.
The Stars in San Pedro de Atacama by Ishbel MacNeil
On Sunday 23 October 2016 we got on a minibus and drove to a star observatory. When we got out the minibus we were covered in darkness except the twinkling stars and planets. It was amazing!
There were two astronomers, one speaking Spanish and the other English.
There were four activities. First we studied star charts. It was really interesting. I felt so happy and stunned.
We were taught how to use the telescope. We saw Venus. It was rainbowy and very bright. I saw Saturn but not the ring. It was yellow, brown and golden. I saw Mars, as well. It was my favourite. It looked like a small black ball on fire. It was red and orange. I definitely liked mars the most.
Then there were other interesting things, like the left over supernova (a dead star). We saw the centre of the Milky Way. There was a star which looked like one from our vision, but in the telescope it was two, one blue and one yellow. The blue one is hotter than the sun. The most interesting one is the star which looked like one but is two.
I loved that night and will never forget it.
Ishbel 9 (aged 9)
Blue stars are hotter than the sun by Ruaridh MacNeil
I sar a stars and we saw planets. They wor byootful. We looked at the telscops to see the stars and the planets.
I saw Venus and Mars and Satoon. Venus was the britos. And the bloo stars are hotter than the sun.
Ruaridh (aged 5)
What I did when I was star watching! by Neamh MacNeil
I saw stars, planets and the Milky Way. A yellow star is not hot but a blue star is hot. The stars were beautiful. I felt like I was in space.
The planets we saw were Venus, Mars and Saturn. Venus was yellow and brown when we looked through the telescope but when we didn’t it was just yellow. Mars was yellow and orange when we didn’t look in the telescope but when we did look in the telescope it was red. Saturn was white when we didn’t look in the telescope but when we did look in the telescope it was a rainbow colour.
The Milky Way was all dusty. When a star went in the Milky Way it didn’t have much light. When a shooting star went through the Milky Way it looked like a rocket.
We also saw clouds of gas in the dark. The cloud looked black and grey in the telescope.
Neamh (aged 8)