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Random tip: If 'rain prevents play', we are known to drown our sorrows at the local pub !LookingUp logo
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  Members Annual Photo Competition 2023  

Entries are now open for the 2023 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

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  MEMBERS see MAS LOGO Fleeces  

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  Next Months Meeting  


  Friday, 1st March 2024    Water in the Universe    (Prof Jonathan Tennyson)  

Our 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 :-) )

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  This seasons meetings  


(download printable guide PDF )

  Friday, 1st September 2023

  The Changing Climate of Mars   (Peter Read)  

  Friday, 2nd February 2024

  The Mechanics of Eclipses   (Sheridan Williams FRAS)  

  Friday, 6th October 2023

  Solar Space Weather SOHO   (Dr Eric Dunford)  

  Friday, 1st March 2024

  Water in the Universe   (Prof Jonathan Tennyson)  

  Friday, 3rd November 2023

  Binary Pulsars Einsteins Perfect Laboratories   (Barry Kellett)  

  Friday, 5th April 2024

  The Visible Universe   (Doctor Max Whitby)  

  Friday, 1st December 2023

  SPECIAL FEATURE Herschels Lunatick Friends   (Andrew Lound)  

  Friday, 3rd May 2024

  The Exploration of Venus   (Jim House)  

  Friday, 5th January 2024

  Telescope Parade   (and the Parker Solar Probe by Arthur White)  

  Friday, 7th June 2024

  MAS 67th AGM   (Annual General Meeting)  

(Table: http://www.maidenhead-astro.net/public/Home/index#2_bm)  


Members :- Please log-in to the Members Only section for details of our next members only Event

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  Next Public Event  


7 Mar 2025 (and 22) Major Lunar Standstill

March 7 & 22, 2025 A 'Major Lunar Standstill' is when the range of the declination of the Moon reaches a maximum (of almost 60 degrees). As a result, at high latitudes, the Moon's greatest altitude (at culmination, when it crosses the meridian) changes in just two weeks from high in the sky to low over the horizon. They occur every 18.6 years as a consequence of the (18.6 year) period in the precession of the Moon's orbital nodes. Note also that the greatest extremes always occur near the equinoxes. The last was in 2006, the next in 2025, here's a few more dates (Dec = declanation, as in RA/Dec) :- Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) Year          Minimum        Dec ()         Maximum      Dec () 2006        Mar 22  16:53   -28.725       Sep 15  01:28    28.725 2025        Mar 22  06:47   -28.719       Mar  7  15:56    28.710 2043        Sep 12  11:52   -28.703       Sep 25  14:42    28.712 2062        Mar 31  23:35   -28.700       Mar 18  10:23    28.705 2080        Sep 21  02:33   -28.695       Oct  5  09:52    28.682 2099        Sep 21  11:16   -28.686       Mar 29  02:46    28.678
For more information, see Wikipedia, Lunar standstill and U.Mass. Sunwheel
This note last modified: 11th Apr 2016 17:06.
See our Events page for more information about all our Events
Click here for MAS Facebook page
Photo: Members of MAS gather to observe the transit of Mercury
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 !!!

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  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)

6 Feb 2024 7th Windsor Brownies - (outreach)

6th February 2024 - 7th Windsor Brownies - Outreach
MAS team: Steve B, Robin O, Andy T, Adrian J (lead)
Report by Adrian
The team arrived early at 5:30 for set up at the Methodist Church in Windsor where the brownies meetings take place. The church hall is a spacious room and we were soon set up for our one-hour session which had to be indoors due to poor weather (100% cloud and light showers). Andy set up the Newtony telescope on one side of the room and early arrivals enjoyed an informal opportunity to have a look through the scope. After introductions, Adrian started the session with a slide presentation showing some easy constellations that the brownies would be able to identify on a clear night (Orion, The Plough and Cassiopeia). After the slide-show, the brownies completed a join-the-dots worksheet showing the constellation outlines then made pictures of constellations (actual or imagined !) using sticky jewels and stars on black card. The brownies cleared up the activity materials very efficiently then gathered round Steve, who tested their knowledge of the Solar System with his planets quiz. The brownies were very knowledgeable (we may need to use harder questions !). Whoever was first to identify each planet from the Steve's questions placed a model of the planet in the scale position along the string line laid out on the floor (with the assistance of Robin). Andy and Robin then gathered the brownies into the centre of the room (to represent the Earth) as they demonstrated why the Moon shows different phases as it orbits the Earth, using a white ball as the Moon illuminated by a flashlight 'Sun'. Sadly the sun failed (due to running out of fuel !) but fortunately we had a backup and the demonstration was completed successfully. With a few minutes still left, there was time for a short Q&A that Andy ran, with other team members joining in to answer some of the interesting questions about space posed by the brownies. It felt like we had packed quite a lot into the hour and the brownies and leaders thanked us for an interesting evening.
This note last modified: 7th Feb 2024 20:48.

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  Twitter  

For the latest news, follow us on Twitter (javascript must be enabled for the 'button' below to work). Our latest Twitter postings can also be seen on the Observing page

Follow @MaidenheadAstro

If the fancy Twitter button doesn't appear above, you can exit to Twitter using this old fashioned URL link :-)

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  Facebook  

We now have our own Facebook page !

exit to: Maidenhead Astronomical Society on Facebook

Maidenhead Astronomical Society

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  Laser Pens  

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).

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Links

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 !

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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)
RBWM-Education Directorate
Mr B.Smith of Shottesbrooke
Mrs P.Haymes
The Telegraph newspaper
exit to Oregon Scientific
exit to Telescope house

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