Kellie Gerardi

Not Necessarily Rocket Science

Online Event
Wed 3 Mar
17:00 UK
Free, ticketed

For our inspirational opening event, we welcome live from the US, Kellie Gerardi, author, aerospace and defence professional, and popular science communicator, whose passion for space exploration has attracted 400,000 followers on social media.

Kellie will be talking about her book Not Necessarily Rocket Science: A Beginner’s Guide to Life in the Space Age. Hailed as one of the best space and astronomy books in 2020, it tells of her non-traditional path in the space industry and her mission to democratise access to space.

From her adventures training for Mars to testing spacesuits in microgravity, she offers inspiration and guidance for aspiring astronauts of all ages and answers some of the most crucial questions about going into orbit. Will there be beer on Mars? Why do I need to do one-handed pushups in microgravity? How can I possibly lose a fortune in outer space?

Based in Washington DC, Kellie Gerardi is a Scientist-Astronaut Candidate with Project PoSSUM, a crewed suborbital research programme, and serves as a director of The Explorers Club, whose prestigious flag she carried on a crew expedition to the Mars Desert Research Station. She currently leads Special Projects for the Commercial Spaceflight Federation.

How do online events work?

Adults & young people

Unless otherwise indicated, you can watch events on our website homepage (or on the event page in the programme), or on our YouTube channel. We'll send you further information nearer the time.

Asking questions

During the event, you can ask a question by using the box on the homepage, or in the chat box on YouTube (you'll need a google account for the latter).


Unless otherwise indicated, Children's events will be streaming to the Big Wig Facebook page.

If the event is free do I need to sign up?

No. You can go to our website or YouTube channel and watch most events without registering. However, it’s still worth signing up as you will be sent a link to the event and a reminder 30 minutes beforehand.

Further information and FAQs

Catch up

Many of the events will be available on catch up.

Buy the book

Browse our festival bookshop, which has titles from nearly every event in the programme.

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