making astronomy accessible to all
EVENTS www.midkentastro.org.uk/events

 
All meetings are open to members and visitors. Click here for further details
Print Public Meetings (Bredhurst) Outreach Events
DATEDETAILS
28-Apr
DETAILS

Family Space Night
Bredhurst Village Hall, 8-10pm

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
• Make a Planisphere to use for spotting the stars and constellations
• Make a crater or an entire Galaxy
• Talks on the Planets and Space
• Moon rock and Meteorites - Hold a piece of the Moon!!
• Telescopes for StarGazing, if weather permits
• Hear the latest news on our GP20 Telescope and Space Centre projects
PLUS
• Telescope Workshop: bring your Telescope and we will show you how to use it
• Raffle, Tea, Coffee 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

05-May

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
12-May
DETAILS

Dr Paul Armitage: Asteroid Mining - Will it happen? Why and how?
Bredhurst Village Hall

Currently, terrestrial mining is the only means of acquiring natural resources for materials and energy. While this includes exciting new projects to mine the ocean floor, there is growing interest in the exploitation of resources in solar system objects. Space resource companies are already in existence and are funded by serious private investment.

Do we really need more raw materials than Earth can provide? How will targets in space be selected? What are the big ideas behind space transportation, resource estimation, ore extraction and processing? This talk will outline the theories, plans, evolving technology, and potential pitfalls. Some ores will be shown to those present as examples of the metals we need.

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



19-May
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
26-May
DETAILS

Dr Robin Catchpole: Are We Star Dust or Nuclear Waste?
Bredhurst Village Hall

Every thing around us, apart from hydrogen and helium, was made inside stars. The Earth and Sun contain elements made in generations of stars that were born and died before the birth of our Sun and planets. The story of the birth and death of stars is the story of the battle of matter against the force of gravity.
In this talk Robin will tell this story and show how gravity always wins, as stars die with either a whimper or a bang.

Dr Robin Catchpole

Currently works at the Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge University.
Retired as Senior Astronomer at the Royal Observatory Greenwich in September 2003.
Joined the Royal Greenwich Observatory (RGO) in 1962. After obtaining a BSc at University College London, he was posted to the Royal Observatory at the Cape of Good Hope, S Africa (now the South African Astronomical Observatory) and spent the next 24 years, working first in Pretoria and then Cape Town.
Obtained his doctorate at the University of Cape Town. In 1991 he returned to the RGO in Cambridge, until it closed in 1998, when he moved to Greenwich as Senior Astronomer.
Has authored and co-authored over 120 research papers and articles and used a number of telescopes around the world including the Hubble Space Telescope. Research interests include, the composition of stars, exploding stars, the structure of our Galaxy and galaxies with black holes at their centres.
Has given numerous popular lectures and radio and TV interviews.
Originated the design of the 33 ton bronze truncated cone at the new Astronomy Centre in Greenwich, completed and opened by the Queen, in 2007.
Is currently part of the team intending to build the Solar Pyramid, which will be the largest sundial in the world.
In 1981 Robin married the sculptor Gill Wiles (1940-2014)


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

Nik Szymanek: A Tale of Two Observatories
Bredhurst Village Hall

Nik is well known for his amazing astro-photographs of the night sky.
But Nik recently moved house... and consequently moved his Observatory. Not a simple task.
He will talk about the trials and tribulations of such a mammoth task especially the dismantling and reassembly of the dome, showing photos of the journey and the amazing results.

The talk is suitable for all and will of course feature lots of new pretty pictures.

Nik Szymanek

Nik Szymanek is an amateur astronomer based in Essex. He is a keen astrophotographer and regularly travels to dark sky observatory locations abroad, such as La Palma, Hawaii, Spain and Tenerife. These sites are perfect for deep sky astrophotography and Nik has also liaised with observatory staff to produce public-relations pictures taken with the professional telescopes at those locations. Back in the UK, Nik is a regular monthly columnist for Astronomy Now magazine and has appeared on the BBC's 'The Sky at Night', 'Inside Out' and 'The Final Frontier' television programmes.

Other interests include lecturing to astronomical, photographic and science societies. Nik is a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Hertfordshire's Centre for Astrophysics Research and a Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. In July 2004 he was invited to Berkeley, California, to receive the prestigious Astronomical Society of the Pacific's Amateur Achievement Award for 2004.

Recent projects include the installation of a remote robotic telescope in the mountains of southern Spain. Nik is the author of 'Shooting Stars' a book designed to help people get started in astrophotography. He has also written a book including many great images called 'Infinity Rising'


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

Summer Social
Bredhurst Village Hall



07-Jul
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
14-Jul
Bredhurst Village Hall



21-Jul
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
28-Jul
Bredhurst Village Hall



04-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
11-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
18-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
25-Aug
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
01-Sep
Herstmonceux Astronomy Festival: 1-3 Sep
Observatory Science Centre, Herstmonceux

For details, see:
http://www.the-observatory.org/astronomy_festival_2017


01-Sep
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
08-Sep
DETAILS

MKAS at the USA Total Solar Eclipse
Bredhurst Village Hall

Some photos and stories from our MKAS members who went to the USA to see the Total Solar Eclipse

09-Sep

Will Adams Festival
Gillingham Park, Canterbury St, Gillingham »

MKAS will be supporting this event with a display stand and solar telescope

15-Sep
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
22-Sep
DETAILS
Public Observing Open Evening
James Irwin Observatory, Canterbury
29-Sep
DETAILS

Rolf Williams: Never mind the Shuttle, look at the wildlife
Bredhurst Village Hall

Did you know that there were people who went to see a Shuttle launch, but looked in a different direction at liftoff? Why? They went to see the wildlife and what happens to the them during a launch.

Kennedy Space Center is filled with a great variety of wildlife species and Rolf will share what effect they have on the Space programme.

Rolf Williams




 


Public Meetings

Public meetings are held on the second and last Friday of each month, except August and at Christmas, when there are no meetings. Meetings normally start at 7:45pm for 8pm.

All Public meetings are held at Bredhurst Village Hall unless otherwise stated.
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.

These meetings are 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.

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.

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.
 


Observing Open Evenings

The James Irwin Observatory is
Currently Closed
and Due to Reopen

on 5th May 2017

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

On the Fridays when we do not hold our public meetings at Bredhurst, and depending on the weather, we open our James Irwin Observatory in Canterbury for those who wish to do some observing.

We first meet at the Victoria Hotel from 8pm (Oct-Mar) / 8.30pm (Apr-Sep). Thirty minutes later, you will be escorted to the Observatory. Venue details are found on the left of this page.
 


Outreach Events

MKAS often get asked to hold Astronomy events for various schools, councils, scout groups and other groups. The committee and other supportive members are very actively organising and holding events from small shows or talks to Spectacular Events where several thousand members of the public typically attend.
 


Member Events

We organise various astronomy-related events and trips for our members. These are often subsidised.
 


Other Events

Members may also be interested in other astronomy-related events, run by other groups and societies, that our members are welcome to attend.



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

If you wish further information on MKAS or any of the meetings, events and activities of the Society, please contact us, using the details on the CONTACT page.


Use this link or QR code for quick access to this page on your phone:


www.midkentastro.org.uk/mobile




»EVENTS
»Public Meetings
»Observing Open Evenings
»Outreach Events
»Member Events
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The James Irwin Observatory is
Currently Closed
and Due to Reopen

on 5th May 2017

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


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)





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