This page is being shown in PC (desktop) mode. If you are using a Smart Phone or Tablet, sorry, but our website did not detect your device. To manually switch to Tablet mode click here. YOU MUST RETURN to the [Home page], to switch to desktop mode
! WELCOME TO THE MAS WEB SITE
(Note on General Data Protection Regs. moved here)
Members Annual Photo Competition 2022
Postponed from 2020 due to Covid. Entries are now open for the 2022 competition. You have to be a member to enter. Further details on the Photo Competition page and in the Members section. If you have problems logging in, contact the Membership Sec. or Webmaster
MEMBERS see MAS LOGO Fleeces
Friday, 10th June 2022 MAS 65th AGM (NOTE 2nd Friday)
We have now moved back to indoor meetings (starting with the September 2021 meeting). These run from 7.30 to 10pm in the Church Hall, St James-the-Less, Stubbings, Maidenhead, SL6 6QW (for directions, see our About & Contact page)
Meetings are normally on the first Friday of the month, September to June. There are no indoor meetings in July or August (unless indicated)
Beginners and visitors are always welcome at our indoor meetings (you don't have to join, however a £2 contribution toward the costs of the hall hire would be most welcome !)
To contact the society between meetings, please complete the on-line General Enquiry form
If you would like to receive, by email, advanced notification of our free public events, or you would like further information about the Society please use the Enquiry form mentioned above - or just turn up at any meeting and speak to any member of the Committee.
We also have a page on the Maidenhead Arts Council web site (where you will find details of other local clubs and societies if, for some inexplicable reason, Astronomy fails to fire your imagination and seize your interest :-) )
(download printable guide PDF )
Friday, 3rd September 2021
How we reached the Moon (Jerry Stone)
Friday, 4th February 2022
What Astronomy Tells Us About The Origins of Life On Earth (James Hough)
Friday, 1st October 2021
Dark Nebulae (Owen Brazell)
Friday, 4th March 2022
Update on the Exploration of Mars (Jim House)
Friday, 5th November 2021
CANCELLED (Hall closed)
Friday, 1st April 2022
Saturn (Michael Foulkes)
Friday, 3rd December 2021
Christmas Quiz set by members (followed by Social Evening)
Friday, 6th May 2022
Gravitational Waves (Joshua Pooley)
Friday, 7th January 2022
Telescope Parade and informal equipment discussion (by Members)
Friday, 10th June 2022
MAS 65th AGM (NOTE 2nd Friday)
Members :- Please log-in to the Members Only section for details of our next members only Event
Next Public Event
25 Oct 2022 Partial Solar Eclipse
25 October 2022, 09:57, partial Solar Eclipse of which only 16% is visible from UK
This note last modified: 9th Mar 2015 15:07.
See our Events page for more information about all our Events
Monday, 9 May 2016: Transit of Mercury, members of MAS gathered in Ockwells Park to show the Transit to the public. For more details, see report on Events page
WARNING: never look at the Sun through a normal telescope !!
Doing so, WILL BLIND YOU !!!
Most recent Event Report
Details of all our planned and past activities can be found on the Events pages.
Note that Outreach events are not usually open to the public, so are reported here only AFTER the event (Members can see planned Outreach dates in the Members Only section, Activity planning pages)
18 Mar 2022 21st Maidenhead Scouts - (outreach)
18th March 2022 - 21st Maidenhead Scouts - outreach
Presenters:- Andy, Adrian, Robin, Steve (report by Steve)
We all arrived before 6:30 for the 7pm start only to find the hall still in use by the previous users. Noting that the sky was clear, although not quite dusk yet, Adrien convened a quick meeting to decide if it was worth observing. Since our visit would contribute to the Scouts Astronomy Badge, and actual use of a telescope was part of the requirements, we decided we should do so if at all possible.
Step one was to decide where the telescopes might be sited. In front of the hall was a small car park, overlooked by the public road and street lights, less than ideal. The small outdoor area to one side of the building was little better, with the hall on one side and tall trees on the other 3 sides.
Launching Stellarium on my smart-phone I discovered that Orion would rise above the main entrance, whilst there was little of note to be seen from the area beside the hall. The Moon was near the horizon to the east, to the left when looking towards Orion, but hidden by the trees on that side of the car park.
Both Robin and I were keen to place our telescopes at the front, so Adrian put together a slightly revised program.
As Robin set up his telescope, we gathered with the 21 Scouts in the hall for the raising of the flag.
They then split into two groups, one inside with Adrian and Andy and the other outside for observing. The indoor group watched a short presentation explaining the idea of the celestial sphere, equator and poles. This was followed with a demonstration of why the constellations change with the seasons, then a quick game to help understand the scale of the Solar System.
Meanwhile, outside, Robin did a quick talk about constellations, using his laser pointer to indicate the Pole star, pointing out Ursa Major, Cassiopia, Gemini, Tarus and Orion. They found it just about about possible to see the nebulosity of the Orion Nebula. Of course it was too dim to activate the colour receptors of our eyes, so Robin urged the scouts to look at images on the internet to show the red colouration.
As he was doing so, I noted that the Moon was just starting to become visible behind the trees, so quickly moved my Dobsonian into a new position. The outdoor group then split into two halves, with one observing Orion's belt through Robins telescope and the other the Moon through mine. The two sub-groups then swapped over.
It seemed to be only a few moments before the two main groups were swapped over and Robin went through his talk again. This time he was a little quicker, giving the Scouts more time for observing.
I moved my telescope out of the way as Robin started to pack up. I got back inside just in time for Adrian to announce the Solar System layout challenge.
The Scouts split into their their 4 sections and I handed each section leader the scale chart. This lists the scale of the planets by size and orbital radius, relative to the Earth.
Before I knew it, they were all selecting Planets from the box of balls on the table and using various ways to measure orbital distances along the length of the hall.
I am pleased to say that all the sections selected a good set of planets to reasonable relative scale sizes,, although one section had to be prompted to check the size of the baseball representing Jupiter before they realised that it was 22 cm not 11, so the Earth would be 2cm rather than 1cm.
All got the correct relative orbital distances, although the end section, next the main door, chose a greater scale than the others so shud have placed Neptune outside the door in the car park !
Amazingly we finished early, something that was even more unusual than getting weather good enough for observing. As soon as the planets were packed away, I nipped outside to pack my telescope whilst the the Scouts had a quick game of a slightly revised version of Musical Chairs using carpet tiles.
The evening ended with a group photo (see at top) !
This note last modified: 28th Mar 2022 20:48.
If the fancy Twitter button doesn't appear above, you can exit to Twitter using this old fashioned URL link :-)
We now have our own Facebook page !
Maidenhead Astronomical Society may use Laser Pens as a pointer during outreach events and talks. Any such use will comply with our Laser Pen Policy, which may be downloaded from here (.pdf)
Essentially, only responsible adults pre-approved by MAS are allowed to use a pointer at an outreach event. Children under the age of 18 and non-approved adults are not be allowed to use the laser pen at any time. Any member of the public bringing their own device (without pre-approval) is asked not to use it during one of our events (and will be asked to leave if they are not willing to comply with this request).
Robotic Telescopes (MAS Links page)
Where we meet (MAS About page)
'Frequently Asked Questions' (FAQ, MAS Beginners page)
exit to: Maidenhead Arts Council (MADAC) MAS web page
exit to: Tim's list of Asteroid Occultation observation opportunities
exit to: European Asteroidal Occultation Network
exit to: Space Weather
exit to: Heavens-Above - times of everything passing overhead, especially ISS, satellites and Iridium flares
exit to: The Astronomer on-line - magazine for the advanced amateur
exit to: BAA (British Astronomical Association)
exit to: SPA (Society for Popular Astronomy) - especially suitable for younger stargazers !
Benefactors and Supporters
Maidenhead Lions, Platinum Award (2022, celebrating the Queen's 70 years on the throne)
O2 goto our O2 award report page
Baylis Trust Cash-for-the-community
Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead (Lottery Grant)
Mr B.Smith of Shottesbrooke
The Telegraph newspaper
exit to Oregon Scientific
exit to Telescope house