By Michael Banks
Fancy running through the entire solar system while out for a jog?
Well, soon you can, thanks to a free smartphone app from the British Science Association (BSA), which is set for release in early March. Run the Solar System is an “immersive running app” with the solar system scaled down to a 10 km virtual race.
As you run, the app uses the phone’s in-built GPS to gauge your distance. As you pass from planet to planet, you’ll hear – through your headphones – factoids from broadcaster Dallas Campbell as well as clips from the NASA archives.
The team that made it – Six to Start – also formed the brains behind the hit fitness app Zombies, Run!, in which people have to complete missions by running away from virtual zombies and collecting supplies along the way.
The new Run the Solar System app will be available in early March, with the virtual race planned for British Science Week, 10–19 March. The app and race entry are free but for a one-off donation of £15, entrants will receive a medal and one year’s free BSA membership.
There will also be a live Run the Solar System 10 km race on 11 March in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London with a “space-themed” race village. For a £15 fee participants will receive a race number, a medal and a goody bag (including a special race T-shirt).
Sounds like time to dust your trainers off and join the space race.