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  Members Annual Photo Competition 2021  

Postponed from 2020 due to Covid. Entries are now open for the 2021 competition (closing date is 5th November 2021). 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  


  Next Months Meeting  

  Friday, 4th February 2022    What Astronomy Tells Us About The Origins of Life On Earth ?    (James Hough)  

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 :-) )


  This seasons meetings  

(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)  

(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


  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
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 !!!


  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)

14 Jan 2022 1st Cookham Guides - (Outreach)

14th January 2022, 1st Cookham Guides
Presenters:- Andy, Robin, Steve (report by Steve) + two 'observers' from MAS (one with telescope !)
Arranged at relatively short notice, for once the weather forecast was good and it looked like we would have a clear sky. So we were all very excited at the prospect of actually seeing the stars for a change. So much so that I managed to print out an earlier version of the plan with the wrong address for the venue ! After phoning the organisers and getting the correct post code, I arrived after Andy and Robin had already set up their telescopes and started showing the Guides the night sky. Previous experience had taught us that if the weather was good, the planned star gazing should be switched to the start of the event, lest the clouds gather whilst we are talking indoors ! The back of the guides meeting hall is south facing and they have a nice dark grassed area before the car park. From here they had a perfect view of Orion, Gemini and Taurus. The light from the 3/4 full moon passing over Orion did make it hard to pick out some of the fainter stars by eye, however in the telescopes the Pleiades cluster in Taurus was perfectly visible. Then it was back inside for the model solar-system build. The guides were organised into two teams, of 6 and 5, as I recall. After a quick explanation of the need to squeeze the scale of the distances to get the compete layout into the hall, whilst expanding the scale of the planets to ensure they were big enough to see, both teams set too with a will. Both teams chose similar scaling and each laid out the planets in perfectly correct positions. Whilst not on the crib sheets handed out, I noted both teams had added a moon to the Earth and both placed a ball "on it's side" for Uranus. Following the solar system lay out, Robin used Stellarium to give a quick recap of the constellations already observed and explained how astronomers 'map' the sky using Declination (above and below the celestial equator) and Right Ascension  (east and west of the Vernal Equinox) - see here (.pdf). He explained how the sun & planets travel along the ecliptic. The meeting officially closed at 8:30 however as the weather had remained fine, many of the guides wanted another view of the stars, so we want outside again. By the time the organisers called time it was well past 9 pm !
This note last modified: 17th Jan 2022 12:08.



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exit to: Maidenhead Astronomical Society on Facebook

Maidenhead Astronomical Society


  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).



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