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! WELCOME TO THE MAS WEB SITE
COVID-19 UPDATE. All meetings are being held on-line using the 'ZOOM' conferencing system until further notice
MEMBERS visit the members area for the Meeting ID: 'link'
Visitors, please visit the 'contact us' page and use the email link at the bottom of the page
MEMBERS see MAS LOGO Fleeces
(Note on General Data Protection Regs. moved here)
Annual Photo Competition 2020. Postponed to 1021 due to Covid. Entries are now open for the 2021 competition, winners will be announced at the AGM. You have to be a member to enter. Next closing date 31st October 2021. Further details in the Members section. If you have problems logging in, contact the Membership Sec. or Webmaster
Friday, 7th May 2021 Milestones in Astronomy (Rod Hine (ZOOM on line meeting))
During COVID-19 restrictions, all meetings are held on-line using ZOOM. Normally, 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 (or for an invitation to a ZOOM meeting), 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, 4th September 2020
Two eyes are better than one (Stephen Tonkin (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 5th February 2021
Space Vehicles (Graham Bryant (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 2nd October 2020
Is there anyone out there (Bob Mizon (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 5th March 2021
Tour of the Universe (Jane Green (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 6th November 2020
The Monster in the Crab (Gary Poyner (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 2nd April 2021
The Red Sun (Lyn Smith (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 4th December 2020
Xmas Quiz (set by members (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 7th May 2021
Milestones in Astronomy (Rod Hine (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 8th January 2021
The Astronomer's Toolkit (Dr Lee Anne Willson (ZOOM on line meeting))
Friday, 4th June 2021
TBA (ZOOM on line meeting) ( )
Members :- Please log-in to the Members Only section for details of our next members only Event
Next Public Event
10 Jun 2021 Solar Eclipse - (partial from UK)
10 June 2021, 10:12, annular Solar Eclipse of which only 23% is visible from UK
The full annular Eclipse will be visible from Canada and Siberia
This note last modified: 22nd Mar 2015 16:00.
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)
4 Mar 2021 1st Maidenhead Sea Scouts - (Outreach)
4th March 2021, 1st Maidenhead Sea Scouts
Presenters:- Robin, Andy and Adrian (report by Adrian)
Like many other groups, the Sea Scouts have moved their regular meetings on-line using Zoom. The Outreach team joined their meeting on this occasion to give short talks aimed at helping them earn their Astronomer Activity badges. 16 scouts and several leaders attended.
After introductions, Robin started with a presentation using Stellarium to explain the idea of the Celestial Sphere that we use to visualise the night sky (since we have no perception of the true distances of objects.) Robin described the ecliptic, the celestial equator and poles, and how we use right ascension and declination to navigate the celestial sphere in a similar way that we use longitude and latitude on Earth. He then demonstrated what we mean by circumpolar stars and concluded by illustrating some of the constellations visible in the sky at the moment.
Andy then gave a slide presentation to explain how the gravitational pull of the Moon causes the bulges and dips in the oceans that we experience as high and low tides. He showed how the tides appear to move around the surface of the Earth as the Earth rotates while the bulge in the oceans remains aligned with the Moon. Andy went on to explain why the tides are 50 minutes later each day at any one place, due to the Moon's changing position as it orbits the Earth. He then described the additional (smaller) influence of the Sun and how that causes spring and neap tides at different phases of the Moon.
There was a short break during which the scouts showed the astronomy projects they had been working on at home. They were impressive and ranged from paintings and models of the Solar System, to a working telescope!
Adrian concluded the evening with a talk about why we see seasonal changes in the constellations visible in the night sky. He demonstrated the effect using Stellarium then used slides to show how the Earth's orbit around the Sun explained it. He also showed how this gives rise to the idea of solar time and sidereal time. Adrian went on to explain the (astronomical) significance of the zodiac constellations, showing why the Sun and planets always appear to be 'in' one of the 12 constellations and not in other parts of the sky.
We allowed plenty of time for questions at the end of each talk and, as always, we were challenged with some interesting and tough ones!
This note last modified: 9th Mar 2021 14:29.
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
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