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Random tip: A hat, gloves and warm boots are recommended - UK nights can get very cold !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, 5th January 2024    Telescope Parade    (to be confirmed)  

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

  TBA   (speaker and topic to be confirmed)  

  Friday, 5th January 2024

  Telescope Parade   (to be confirmed)  

  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 Dec 2023 Bisham Brownies - (outreach)

Wednesday,  6th December 2023, Bisham Brownies (Outreach)
MAS team: MAS team: Steve, Robin, Andy, Adrian J. (lead).   21 brownies attended.
The MAS team arrived at about 5 pm and after a short wait for the earlier Rainbows meeting to finish, we started setting up, Steves Dobsonian being set up on the hard-standing at the back of the hall. There was quite a lot of thin cloud and only Jupiter was visible, so we made a quick decision to adapt our plan and hedge our bets: we would send out the brownies in four groups, each group having about 10 minutes to look at Jupiter. While each group took its turn outside, the rest of the team - supported by the pack leaders - kept those indoors entertained. Andy handed out his question and answer cards for the 'chain-question-and-answer' game which kept us going for most of the time. When we were running out of new question cards, Adrian took over with a quiz about the Solar System planets.   All the brownies were able to see Jupiter and its four bright moons, although conditions varied a little. At one point the high thin cloud did seem to thicken a little, however Jupiter remained visible. It was noted how attentive and very well behaved they all were, taking turns to look through the eyepiece. When the whole pack was back indoors, Adrian gave a short slide show about the constellations and the brownies then worked on activity sheets to join the dots and draw the outlines of the Plough, Cassiopeia and Orion, assisted by Robin and Andy. Then they made pictures of constellations using black card and sticky stars and 'jewels'. A few chose real constellations but most used their imagination to invent their own, including the Heart, the Ice Cream and the Potato constellations ! The leaders closed the meeting with some announcements and thanks (plus small gifts!) to the team for the evening.
This note last modified: 8th Dec 2023 15:10.

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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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