"Catch a Star" includes more than one competition, so there is something for everyone, no matter what their level. An aim of the programme is to encourage students to work together, learning about astronomy and discovering things for themselves by researching information.
Catch a Star Researchers can win major travel prizes…
Teams of up to three students should write a project about a chosen topic in astronomy, by choosing an astronomical object such as a nebula, star, planet, or moon, or a more general theme such as black holes or star formation. They research this theme, and discuss how large telescopes such as ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT), the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), and the future European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) can play a part in studying it. They may also include practical activities such as observations or experiments. The most important goal is to develop an interest in science and astronomy through investigation and teamwork. Winning entries are chosen by an international jury. For teams from Europe and Chile, there are major travel prizes such as a trip for the winning team to visit ESO’s Very Large Telescope facility on the Paranal mountaintop in Chile.
…or Catch a Star Adventurers can take part in the lottery
There is also another section in which the prizes are awarded by lottery. Again, students should write a project about a chosen astronomical topic. This part of "Catch a Star" is aimed at, but not limited to, larger groups such as whole classes working on joint projects, younger students, or students who do not wish to write their entries in English.
Catch a Star Artists can enter the artwork competition
Alternatively, send us your artwork for the "Catch a Star" drawing and painting competition, with prizes awarded with the help of a public web-based vote.
Winners of the Catch a Star 2006 from the Polaris Astronomy Club at the VLT in Chile