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! WELCOME TO THE MAS WEB SITE !
*** updated = MEMBERS PHOTO-COMPETITION = updated ***
You have to be a member to enter. Closing date Monday 7th May 2018. Further details in the Members section. If you have problems logging in, contact the Membership Sec. or Webmaster
Friday, 6th April 2018 Berkshire Astronomers (Kenelm England FRAS)
All our indoor meetings 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 :-) )
Friday, 1st September 2017
Gravity Waves (a recap by Martin Dyer)
Friday, 2nd February 2018
Talks by Members ( )
Friday, 6th October 2017
Observing the Sun (by MAS members)
Friday, 16th March 2018
NEW DATE Jupiter and the Juno Mission (Dr John Rogers)
Friday, 3rd November 2017
Wonders of the Deep Sky (Callum Potter)
Friday, 6th April 2018
Berkshire Astronomers (Kenelm England FRAS)
Friday, 1st December 2017
Xmas Quiz and Social (Quiz Master Tim H)
Friday, 4th May 2018
TBA ( )
Friday, 5th January 2018
Telescope and Equipment workshop (Q and A with members)
Friday, 1st June 2018
MAS 61st AGM (and Photo Competition prizes)
Members :- Please log-in to the Members Only section for details of our next members only Event
Next Public Event
27 Jul 2018 Total Lunar Eclipse
Friday July 27 2018 - Total Lunar Eclipse
After the almost perfect seeing of the 2015, Sept. 28 eclipse we can hope for more good weather this time ! Unfortunately, from UK, the Moon will be below the horizon when the eclipse starts at 6:15pm.
At totality, 9:21pm, the Moon will be only 3.5 degrees above the horizon (you will need to be on a hill looking SE for a decent view) - and on these summer nights it still won't be very dark as totality ends at 10:13pm, so the 'blood moon' effect will be rather less striking than the 2015 event. The (partial) eclipse ends at 11:19pm so at least we will get to bed rather earlier this time !
This note last modified: 29th Sep 2015 11:31.
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 2018 1st Furze Platt Brownies - (Outreach)
Friday 16th March 2018 - 1st Furze Platt Brownies (Outreach)
Present: The STAR (Steve, Tim, Adrian, Robin) team
Report by Steve
The date for this event was agreed well before the snow that caused the MAS March meeting to be postponed. Inevitably, the new date for the MAS meeting 'clashed' with this. Fortunately, a check of the timing showed that if we stuck to the schedule, we could (just) fit both in !
With a start time of 5.30pm, we planned our arrival for 5pm. Eager to get started I arrived first - even before the Leader with the gate keys ! The space at the back of the meeting hall had been 'reserved' for us, which made it very easy to unload and park. With such an early start it was way too light for any observing, however we set up telescopes in-doors for demonstration.
By about 5.40 we were introduced to 24 Brownies and 4 'helpers' by the Leader.
Robin then started us off with his Stellarium script based 'finding North' and an overview of the constellations.
In a departure from our usual approach, this was followed by a 20 minute activity for the Brownies prepared by Adrian. This consisted of completing quiz sheets to identify constellations and find the Pole Star, followed by making decorated drawings of their favourite constellations using craft materials. The Brownies were organised into their sixes and eagerly set about the task, drawing the constellation outlines on black cards then adding stick-on stars and 'gems' to complete their pictures. They would take these home and use them to research the the origins and mythology of their chosen constellations in order to complete the work for their Stargazer badges.
Those Brownies who completed this task first then had the chance to see the Moon through Tim's telescope. Unlike most instruments (which are incapable of 'focusing' on objects nearer than the field next door) Tim had set his up to focus on a large drawing of the Moon he had affixed to the wall at the end of the Hall.
Next the Brownies were split into 2 groups. Whilst Adrian, with Tim and Robin's help with a flashlight 'sun', demonstrated how the phases of the Moon are formed, I delivered a quick talk about each of the 8 planets of our Solar System. Amazingly, the Moon demonstration finished first and I had to hurry up to complete my talk. The two groups then swapped over, and I ran faster (whist the Moon talk went slower) and this time I finished first ! After a few questions, the two groups were recombined for the 'closing ceremony'.
Tim, who needed to pick up the MAS meeting speaker from the railway station, was first off. The rest of us followed at speed and we were all away soon after 7pm, whilst parents were still picking up their offspring.
I just had enough time to off-load my Dob. at home before getting to Stubbings by 7.20, in time to setup for the (postponed) March monthly meeting.
Report by Adrian
Thanks everyone for making the outreach event a success yesterday. Thanks too for bringing telescopes; even though we didn't have the opportunity to use them, the Brownies were interested. Several of them asked me about Steve's Dob. while I was up at that end of the hall and some had a chance to look through Tim's refractor at the 'Moon'.
[For some photos, see this Girlguiding Maidenhead Division facebook post]
This note last modified: 21st Mar 2018 00:14.
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
O2 (award report)
exit to Cash-for-the-community (Baylis Trust)
Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead Lottery grant
Mr B.Smith of Shottesbrooke
The Telegraph newspaper
exit to Oregon Scientific
exit to Telescope house