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Museum Victoria

Museum Victoria is responsible for the state’s scientific and cultural collections, providing public access through three museums.

We also oversee a wide range of research programs, the continued development of the state’s collections, and run major education and research based websites.

We are the largest public museums organisation in Australia.

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Articles (1 - 20 of 41)

An interesting trio in the western sky, visible after sunset on February 21. Museum Victoria/Stellarium

Venus to pair up with Mars

Over the past few weeks, Venus and Mars have been drifting closer together in the evening sky and this weekend the two will meet low in the west. What’s more, on Saturday February 21, the thin crescent…
Artist’s impression of two white dwarf stars destined to merge and create a Type Ia supernova in 700-million years time. ESO/L. Calçada

White dwarf merger is set to prove supernova theory

Two white dwarfs found orbiting each other at the centre of a planetary nebula are now known to have enough mass that they will eventually trigger a special kind of supernova, according to research published…
A bright fireball over the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, ALMA, in Chile, marks the fiery death of a small grain of space debris, high in the atmosphere. ESO/C. Malin

Explainer: why meteors light up the night sky

Meteors have been seen since people first looked at the night sky. They are comprised of small pieces of debris, typically no larger than a grain of dust or sand, which continually crash into the Earth’s…
Jupiter’s moons in transit. NASA, ESA, Hubble Heritage Team

Jupiter at its best for 2015

This month is a great time to catch Jupiter shining brilliantly in the evening sky. And for the next few weeks it will be its best and brightest for the year. The planet reaches opposition at 5:09am on…
A group of excited observers during a peak of the Geminids meteor shower. Flickr/Tasayu Tasnaphun

Nature’s fireworks: the best meteor showers coming in 2015

Watching meteors in the night sky can be fun, although typically you only see a few flashes an hour. But there are certain times of the year when you can see many more – events known as meteor showers…
Comet Lovejoy on December 13 from the Astronomical Society of Victoria’s Astrophotography Observatory, Heathcote, Victoria. Phil Hart

A Christmas comet to be seen from dark skies

If you are away from the bustle of the city these holidays, then try your luck at spotting a faint comet in the northern sky. Comet Lovejoy C/2014 Q2 is the fifth comet to be discovered by Brisbane amateur…
Image captured December 2013 of several Geminids meteors seen from the Observatorio del Teide (IAC) in Tenerife. Flickr/StarryEarth

The Geminids meteor shower should be one of the best this year

The best meteor shower of the year should put on an impressive display this weekend – weather permitting – with the annual Geminids poised to light up the sky with bright, long meteors visible as frequently…
Farewll Philae - the little lander just after separating from Rosetta. ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

Success! Philae lands on Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko

What a success! Right on track, confirmation was received just after 3am AEDT this morning that Philae had successfully landed on Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko. It is the first time that a craft has landed…
Rosetta’s selfie with Comet 67P/Churuymov-Gerasimenko. ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

The Rosetta spacecraft ready to send Philae towards its comet

The first ever attempt to land on a comet is set to be carried out by the European Space Agency (ESA) this Wednesday evening (AEDT). It is part of an exciting and highly successful space mission, which…
The stars over Tidal River in Wilsons Promontory, Victoria. Alex Cherney

The Great World Wide Star Count

How many stars can you see at night? Right now people all over the world are being asked to go out and count them! It’s part of a dark-sky awareness campaign that’s been held each October for the past…
Spotswood primary school students build their future city using touch screen technology in Scienceworks’ Think Ahead exhibition. Museum Victoria

Visits to Australia’s museums rise on the back of a digital experience

Visits to websites of Australia’s museums now exceed the number of visitors attending exhibitions, events or programs at actual bricks and mortar museums. Across the 62 museums that make up the Council…
Artist’s impression of exocomets around Beta Pictoris. ESO/L. Calçada

Comet families similar to our own are found around another star

A detailed study of comets orbiting the young nearby star Beta Pictoris is published today in the journal Nature, and it reveals striking similarities to the comets found in our solar system. Over the…
Eclipse at sunrise over Richmond, Virginia, USA in November 2013. Sky Noir (Bill Dickinson)/Flickr

Explainer: what is a solar eclipse?

Each month, at the time of new moon, the sun and moon are together in the daytime sky. Most of the time the moon passes by unnoticed. But at least twice a year, somewhere on Earth will see the moon pass…
Meteors streak outwards from the top of Orion’s head as seen in 2012 from central Victoria. Phil Hart

See one of the year’s best meteor showers, thanks to Halley’s comet

As Earth orbits the sun, it continually ploughs through dust and debris left behind by passing comets and asteroids. On any night of the year, a keen-eyed observer might see five, or even ten, meteors…
Just before totality on a total lunar eclipse. Flickr/John Johnson

Explainer: what is a lunar eclipse?

At least twice a year, Earth comes between the sun and the moon. The result is a lunar eclipse, where we see the splendid sight of Earth’s shadow falling across the moon. Lunar eclipses are wonderful to…

Get ready for a total lunar eclipse

Look up towards the east on Wednesday night (October 8) and a total lunar eclipse will be visible from across Australia. The moon will slowly move through Earth’s shadow, as the sun, Earth and moon fall…

Catching the planets and new views of Mars

Looking west after sunset on Friday September 26, the thin waxing crescent moon forms a triangle with Mercury and Spica, the brightest star in the constellation of Virgo. You can see how far Mercury has…
Watching the sun over a nature reserve in ACT, Australia. Flickr/Andrew

Explainer: what makes the spring equinox?

It’s the time of the equinox or more specifically the spring equinox for us in the southern hemisphere. The equinox is a midpoint. It’s around now that day and night become equal in length (but more about…

Weekend planet watch

As another, hopefully sunny, weekend rolls around it’s a great time to get out and spot some planets. Around an hour before sunrise, you can catch Jupiter with the moon. The moon is a thin waning crescent…

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