T minus one week

Digital Services Tuesday, February 14, 2012 - 08:07

Only one week until the City of Light event, celebrating 50 years since Perth left their lights on for astronaut John Glenn as he orbited the Earth.

City of LightSo much has happened over the last two weeks. After reviewing all of the competition entries, and then speaking to a number of the entrants that were shortlisted, the winners were announced – 10 lucky young people who will get to speak to an astronaut currently onboard the International Space Station!

We have done some testing of the link between the Northbridge Piazza and NASA (some people who were at the Piazza at the time were no doubt confused by all the references to “Mission Control” coming out of the PA system there), but we’re now ready to do this “for real” on the 20th. Telecommunications technology in WA has certainly changed and grown since John Glenn’s flight in 1962!

We’ve had emails from many people overseas and interstate who are unable to be in Perth on the night, so we’re excited that Iinet have agreed to stream the event live onto the Internet.

And we were absolutely thrilled to receive a video message from John Glenn for the people of Western Australia on the occasion of this golden anniversary! We’ll be playing that on the big screen on the night, so make sure you’re there from 5pm to see that as well as a display of archives and memorabilia from the original event in 1962, radio and optical telescopes setup by ICRAR, presentations from WA’s Chief Scientist Lyn Beazley and the WA Museum’s head of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Dr Alex Bevan. There will also be some fun activities for younger children including a kit to make your own model of the Friendship 7 capsule.

So many stories have been sent to us, and so many more will be captured on the night – we look forward to adding these to our archival collection where they will no doubt be found in another 50 years for the centennial celebration of this event.

Meg Travers
Digital Archive Support Manager