Mid-Kent Astronomical Society
The James Irwin Observatory is
Currently Closed
and Due to Reopen

on 19th January 2018

Check here after 19:30 on the day to get final confirmation before travelling in case clouds prevent us opening.
See EVENTS page for details

EVENTS
DATEDETAILS
19-Jan

Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury

These take place on Fridays when we do not hold a meeting at Bredhurst (except at Christmas).
Check this page or home page after 19:30 on the day to get final confirmation before travelling, in case clouds prevent us opening.
DETAILS
26-Jan

Gary Foord: The day the Moon devoured the Sun
Bredhurst Village Hall

Continuing our series of Eclipse related talks, Gary Foord takes us on his journey to the Faroe Islands to see the 2015 Total Solar Eclipse.
This multimedia extravaganza will captivate you with stunning images and videos of this remarkable and somehow mysterious event.

02-Feb
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
09-Feb

Fundraising Quiz
Bredhurst Village Hall

General knowledge quiz, with teams of 6 to 8
£6 per person, payable on the night (includes Ploughman's dinner)
Bring your own drinks and glasses
Prizes awarded to winning team, runners up and wooden spoon
All proceeds go to the GP20 Telescope fund

For further details and to book a table, please contact Bob Tollervey at
rt.toller@blueyonder.co.uk or 07568 058246


16-Feb
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
23-Feb

Nick James: Solar Eclipses
Bredhurst Village Hall

Due to the lucky chance that the Sun and Moon appear about the same size in our sky we are treated to the majestic phenomenon of a total solar eclipse. This talk will describe the history of eclipses, what can be seen during a total eclipse and why they are scientifically still very useful. I'll talk about ways to observe and image these eclipses and will look back at the lessons learned from the great US eclipse of last August.

Nick James

Nick has been interested in astronomy for as long as he can remember, certainly since the age of 8. He has been a member of the British Astronomical Association since he was 12 and is now the Director of its Comet Section. Nick is also Assistant Editor of The Astronomer Magazine. He has written many articles for magazines and books, and co-authored "Observing Comets" which was published in 2003 as part of Sir Patrick Moore’s Practical Astronomy series.

Professionally, Nick is an engineer in the space industry, leading a team responsible for implementing highly sensitive and accurate systems for receiving and processing signals from deep-space spacecraft. He is also a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) ambassador and is keen to encourage more young people to consider science and engineering as a career.

All of this keeps him pretty busy but he still finds time to travel extensively to see astronomical phenomena. He is an eclipse chaser, having seen 13 total solar eclipses and has travelled to see the northern lights, comets and other interesting objects under dark skies.


02-Mar
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
09-Mar
Greg Smye-Rumsby: Life in the universe
Bredhurst Village Hall



16-Mar
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
23-Mar
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
30-Mar

Rolf Williams: The Need For Speed
Bredhurst Village Hall



06-Apr
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
13-Apr

Annual General Meeting
Bredhurst Village Hall

Please download and review the following documents: [Not yet available]
» Agenda for the 2018 AGM
» Minutes of the 2017 AGM
» Treasurer's Report 2017-2018
» MKAS Accounts 2017-2018
» Membership Report 2017-2018
» Committee Roles and Responsibilities

The AGM is open to all MKAS Members and Visitors, however only Members are entitled to vote.

20-Apr
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
27-Apr

Family Space Night
Bredhurst Village Hall

Looking for something to keep the kids interested, look no further than space!

An exciting evening of space displays and activities, space talks and telescopes.
Suitable for kids and adults, come and learn about Space, Astronomy, and Rockets.

• Astronomical hands-on displays about Space and our Solar System
• Talks on the Planets and Space
• Make craters on the Moon
• Make an entire Galaxy
• Moon rock and Meteorites - Hold a piece of the Moon!!
• Space Shuttle and Apollo rockets
• About hardware going to Mercury
• Telescopes for StarGazing, if weather permits
• Hear the latest news on our Giant GP20 Telescope & Space Centre
PLUS
• Telescope Workshop: bring your Telescope and we will show you how to use it
• Raffle, Tea, Coffee, Squash and Biscuits

Doors open at 7:45pm for 8pm.

Everyone is welcome, £1 on the door
All funds raised will go to the GP20 Telescope project
Wrap up warm as it can get cold outside looking through the telescopes!!


04-May
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
11-May

Will Joyce: Geology of the Moon
Bredhurst Village Hall

.

Will Joyce

Will Joyce is an astronomer formerly at the Observatory Science Centre at Herstmonceux, home of many of the Royal Greenwich Observatory telescopes, where he teaches basic and more advanced astronomy and planetary science topics; provides workshops on rocketry and geology including meteorites; presents planetarium shows; and shows the night sky to the public or other groups using the large telescopes.

Will has a BSc in Astrophysics which led to research in satellite remote sensing instruments, followed by an industrial career in laboratory work, spacecraft software engineering and aerospace systems engineering. He is a Chartered Physicist and a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society.

More recently Will returned to academia and gained a BSc in Earth and Planetary Science, followed by University teaching and course materials development in geophysics and planetary science subjects. He is currently studying for a PhD in Lunar Remote Sensing at Birkbeck, University of London.



18-May
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
25-May
Peter Bassett: Stargazing in Arizona
Bredhurst Village Hall

Arizona is well known for its amazingly clear skies. This is one of the reasons one of our founder members, Peter Bassett has bought land there.
This talk will describe his experiences in seeing the Milky Way from his land, about Meteors, UFOs, the Zodiacal Light, how he built a Camera/Telescope Platform.
There will be many great photos, some in 3D, to illustrate the talk and his fascinating story.

Peter Bassett

Peter has studied Spaceflight & Astronomy from the age of five after seeing the Apollo 8 mission live on TV orbiting the moon for the first time in 1968. After a tour of the USA in 1992, he was inspired to set up a planetarium business teaching the subject up to A level. Peter also gives public lectures around the country including 'Are we Alone?' & 'Satellite Spotting from your garden'. He has performed in around 2000 different venues.


01-Jun
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
08-Jun
Nik Szymanek: Introduction to Astrophotography Part 2
Bredhurst Village Hall



15-Jun
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
22-Jun
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
29-Jun
Prof David Rees
Bredhurst Village Hall



06-Jul
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
13-Jul
Will Hughes
Bredhurst Village Hall



20-Jul
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
27-Jul

Dr Paul Amitage: Geological History of Mars
Bredhurst Village Hall

Observations of the surfaces of many Solar System bodies reveal important clues about their evolution. Martian observational and measurement resources include the landers, orbiting platforms, Earth-based observations, and Martian meteorites.

Amazing images have been returned from Mars, as good as anything we can do on Earth, and valuable data to accompany the images. Drawing on similarities and differences to Earth, this talk will outline the geological history of the red planet insofar as it has been remotely interpreted. Topics include the periods of the Martian geological timescale, impact cratering, flooding and glaciations, volcanism, mass movement (slumps and slides), the atmosphere and weathering, and the potential for life. Examples will be shown to illustrate how the interplay of geological processes has formed the Martian landscape.

Dr Paul Armitage

Dr Paul Armitage is a consultant geologist who explores for metals that make the things we use every day. After graduating with Bachelor's and Master's degrees in geology from the University of Tromsø in Norway, he completed a PhD at the University of Greenwich in Medway, and settled here. The focus of his PhD was platinum metals, a hot topic in asteroid exploration. He worked as a geologist and geotechnical engineer on tunnel projects, including the HS1 link beneath London, then took up mineral exploration in Greenland, Scandinavia, and Africa. He currently heads a project in Norway that aims to mine copper and zinc. He continues to participate in academic research on rocks formed and deformed by ancient geological events, as far back as the Late Heavy Bombardment nearly 4 billion years ago.

Paul is an active league cricketer, rugby and tennis fan, keen birdwatcher, and fluent Norwegian speaker. He joined MKAS in 2013



04-Aug

AstroCamp
Ashdown Forest

The 2018 AstroCamp will be held on Saturday 4 to Sunday 12 August.

A perfect opportunity to relax in the very picturesque Ashdown Forest, read, go on country walks, visit the local quaint shops, visit nearby Pooh Bridge and other Pooh-related places, socialise with other like-minded amateur astronomers, and do some astronomy in the darker skies of mid-Sussex.

The popular barbecue will be held on Saturday 11th, with many more people visiting just on this evening, sometimes as many as 100 people in attendance. Bring your own food and drink (alcohol permitted).

All members of MKAS are invited, along with their guests.

For details, speak to Naz Rajan.

17-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
24-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
31-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
07-Sep
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
14-Sep
Dr Rebecca Whentringhame
Bredhurst Village Hall



21-Sep
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
28-Sep
Prof Alan Aylward: The Possibilities of Interstellar Travel
Bredhurst Village Hall



05-Oct
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
12-Oct
Ian Hargraves: The Astronomy of Climate change on Earth
Bredhurst Village Hall



  
MEETING VENUES

PUBLIC MEETINGS:
Bredhurst Village Hall

Hurstwood Road,
Bredhurst, Gillingham,
Kent ME7 3JZ
(Close to J4 off the M2)
There is a car park on site.
Starts 7:45pm for 8pm.

OBSERVING EVENINGS:
James Irwin Observatory

Meet in the Conservatory at:
Victoria Hotel
59 London Road,
Canterbury, Kent
CT2 8JY
You will then be escorted to the observatory at 8:30pm (Oct-Mar) / 9pm (Apr-Sep)
BREDHURST MEETINGS VISITOR INFORMATION
Following the presentation there will be a tea break giving a chance to talk with other MKAS members and then an observing session in the field behind the hall (weather permitting) and a telescope workshop in the hall, so if you are having problems with your telescope (or just want to show it off) bring it along.

The meeting is open to non-members who are welcome to attend for free on their first visit.
Everyone of all ages and levels of expertise is welcome, including complete beginners.

There is a small entrance fee for each meeting to cover costs for tea and coffee.

Please dress appropriately for the weather, and be ready for observing, if it is clear. Remember that it can get very cold, especially in winter, so bring several layers or your warmest winter coat, as you feel appropriate.

All of our public meetings are held on the second and last Friday of each month, except August and at Christmas, when there are no meetings.
All Public meetings are held at Bredhurst Village Hall unless otherwise stated.
Meetings normally start at 7.45pm for 8pm.
Bredhurst Village Hall : Hurstwood Road, Bredhurst, Gillingham, Kent ME7 3JZ
Bredhurst is close to J4 off the M2. There is a car park on site.

See our website EVENTS page for details of our forthcoming public meetings.


All persons under 18yrs must be accompanied by a parent/guardian or responsible adult.

www.midkentastro.org.uk