Interview with Dr Joseph Roche on stellar eclipses, Mars and science education

20 Mar 2015

Dr Joseph Roche (centre) at the solar eclipse event at Trinity College Dublin

Astrophysicist Dr Joseph Roche caught up with to talk about events on Mars and how solar eclipses don’t just affect those on Earth.

While the weather for the solar eclipse viewing at Trinity College Dublin (TCD) may not have gone according to plan, what with Ireland being bathed in clouds, the excitement down at the event to mark the solar eclipse was quite palpable.

And as one of the team down in the main square, Dr Joseph Roche, astrophysicist and lecturer at TCD, was busy explaining not just to the public there, but the country at-large, about how events such as these occur, the next of which won’t be for another 11 years.

It’s certainly been a busy week for Dr Roche, not just in terms of the build-up to today’s solar eclipse, but his speaking-out in a piece written in Medium about his concerns with the Mars One project, something which he has been deeply invested in for some time now.

However, not wanting to talk project itself, it has been an eventful period on Mars itself in recent times with the discovery of not just a mysterious, giant Martian dust cloud, but the additional discovery of a vast aurora, similar to the northern lights, at its own northern pole.

“Mars remains fascinating,” said Dr Roche, “the discoveries been made on Mars will continue to blow us away.”

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic