Pre-university Academy

Peter Barthel became the first director (Rector) of the Pre-university Academy (Scholierenacademie) of Groningen University, in 2005. This Academy, which recently celebrated its 12.5 years of existence, is now an important tool in the outreach towards secondary school students. The Science Hub Northern Netherlands (Wetenschapsknooppunt Noord-Nederland), targeting elementary schools was added in 2010. Many Children’s University (Kinderuniversiteit) lectures and lots of other inspirational activities have been offered since 2005. The picture below shows a lecturer (Dutch astronaut), director Peter Barthel, and Academy coordinators Arjen Dijkstra and Douwe van der Tuin.

Secondary education (astro)physics

Peter Barthel was member of the (2005-2011) NiNa (Nieuwe Natuurkunde: New Physics) committee revising the national secondary education physics curriculum.  The revised curriculum now offers elementary astronomy and astrophysics within the HAVO and VWO exam programs. A short description as well as relevant documentation (in Dutch) can be found here.


Peter Barthel made an audiobook (“luisterboek”) on the Moon, with six separate lectures/chapters, for the age group 9-90. The audiobook (in Dutch) can be ordered as CD or download..

Mozart’s Jupiter Symphony

At Peter Barthel’s initiative, Mozart’s last symphony, #41, KV 551 “Jupiter”, was performed in the central hall of the Faculty of Science and Engineering building, end of 2009, to mark the end of that year – the World Year of Astronomy.