We meet every Thursday during term-time in Q12 in the Poynting physics building from 7:30pm. All talks are to start at 8:00pm and may be held in the Small or Large Lecture Theatres for external speakers. Open lectures are held on Wednesday mornings at 11.00am, in the West Lecture Theatre in the Physics West building.

We encourage anyone who is interested to attend - our events are open to all members of the University, not just limited to physics students or members of Astrosoc. Members of the public are also welcome to join us for any of our public events.

This Term's Events

January 2007

January 18th: Sam and Kym will be heading to London to recieve the award for best student society that Astrosoc recently won in the Insitute of Physics awards scheme. Meanwhile Heather will be leading an observing session back here in Brum.

January 25th: Tonight will host the Astrosoc AGM. This is your chance to air your views on the society and what can be done to improve how the society is run. The current committee will have to stand down during this meeting and a new committee will be elected. If you want to get involved you need to be at the meeting, which will be in Q12 in the Poynting physics building as usual.

Open Lectures

February 7th: Prof. Louise Harra (MSSL) will be talking about SOlar Physics

March 7th: Dr. G. Swalloew from Loughborough university will be talking about the Acoustics of Bells and Cymbals

March 14th: Dr. Nick Roberts from Manchester will be giving a talk titled "Seeing the World in a Different Light: Optics and Biology"

March 21st: Dr. Alan Dalton from Surrey will be talking about Nanotechnology

Want to know what we have been observing?
Our observing sessions are recorded in the log, updated by Heather Audley, our Equipment & Observing Officer.
Astrosoc AGM
The big upcoming event is the AGM. See the committee pages for infomation on what the postions entail if you are interested in joining the committee.
Past Events

January 2006

January 19th: Astrosoc AGM and Balti (starting at 8pm sharp in Q12).

January 26th: A talk by Dr. Somak Raychaudhury: Where we are going in the Universe (8pm start in the Poynting large lecture theatre). This will be followed by a trip to the Guild for society sensation.

February 2006

February 2nd: Observing and Joes. We will begin by observing Saturn, which ofers us some spectacular views at the moment. When everyone gets chilly we will nip to Joes for one or two swift beverages.

February 9th: A talk by Chris Evans from the Wolverhampton Astronomical Society: Gamma ray bursts.

February 16th: Orbiter and Observing. We will bring along some software which you can have a play with and try to get various spacecraft into orbit, including the space shuttle. If it is clear we will also head to the roof to stare into the yonder. If all else fails there is Joes.

February 23rd: Astrosoc Annual Dinner. This will take place at the Plough and Harrow Hotel, on the Hagley Road in Birmingham. A menu and more details can be found here

March 1st : Film Night - We will be watching serenity in the coffee lounge of the Poynting physics building.

March 9th: Saturn night. If the weather is clear we will be observing Saturn - as the weather wasn't good last time, and Sam will be giving a brief talk about Saturn aswell.

March 14th: There is a lunar penumbral eclipse on this evening, and we are holding an event in consortium with the Barber institute of fine arts, here at the university. There will be a talk, organized by the Barber Institute, given by Professor Manuel Grande of the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Didcot, which is titled, The new moon. Prof. Grande is the principle investigator for one of the mission aboard the SMART - I spacecraft, currently in orbit around the moon. The Barber Institute's page on this event can be found here . Following this talk astrosoc will be leading an event outside the institute, supplying telescopes and binoculars for people to view the moon during the eclipse. This should prove to be a fun night.

March 16th: Talk by Dr William Edmonson at the Think Tank, at Millenium point. The talk regard his research in the computer science department at the University of Birmingham into how we can search for extraterrestrial life. This should provide an interesting view on approaches, and Dr Edmonson has consorted with Dr Ian Stevens from the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University, on one of his papers on this subject.

March 23rd: There will be the traditional end of term quiz, with prizes for the winners (probably chocolate). I hope to see you all there.

March 25th: We will be visiting the Birmingham planetarium that has recently opened in the Thinktank at millenium point. We will watch one of their normal shows and then we will be given a special viewing showing the capabilities of the new planetarium, and any questions about the facility will be answered. You will then be free to roam the thinktank museum. Cost for this event is 5.50 each and we will meet outise the Poytning building.

March 29th: Term is over but that doesn't stop the sky from providing us with some spectacualr events. On the 29th of March there will be a partial solar eclipse viewable in the UK (total in North Africa), and we will get around a 20% eclipse. We have special solar viewers available for people to watch the event, and we will be projecting the eclipse using our telescsopes. If you are in Birmingham then come along at around 10am to view the event taking place. The maximum eclipse will occur at 10:11UT, but as we have now crossed into BST this is 11:11 BST, and our best views will be at around 11:30BST providing it isn't cloudy.


September 2006

Sept 27th: Freshers Physics + solar observing

Sept 28th: Freshers Guild

Sept 30th: Sept 30th: FAS Convention, 10, Birmingham Midland Institute - speakers include "John Dobson, Allan Chapman, David Whitehouse, John Brown,Ishwara Chandra"

October 2006

Oct 5th: Astrosoc "Space and Things" Freshers Quiz

Oct 7th: Society for the History of Astronomy Conference, BMI

Oct 12th: Observing the Moon

Oct 17th: IOP/WMPTC Lecture: Dr Anna Horleston, "Earthquake!"

Oct 19th: Astrosoc vs PPS charity football tournament

Oct 20th: Astrosoc October Balti

Oct 21st: Orioinid Meteor Shower, possible observing

Oct 26th: What you want to know about constellations?

November 2006

Nov 2nd: Our New Solar System

Nov 7th: IOP/WMPTC Lecture: Dr Somak Raychaudhury "21st century implications of Einstein's Relativity"

Nov 8th: Transit of Mercury, not visible in UK

Nov 9th: David Gregory PPARC Talk

Nov 16th: Children In Need Fundraising Event, Catch a shooting star

Nov 17th - 19th: Leonid Meteor Shower

Nov 18th: Wast Hills Observatory Trip

Nov 23rd: Observing Planetary, Clusters + galaxies

Nov 28th: IOP/WMPTC Christmas Lecture, David Peters, Cadbury Schweppes "Pleasure Perfected - How the Physical properties of chocolate provide exactly what the lady loves" - tickets needed - see Lynne Long / committee

Nov 30th: Film Night: TBC

December 2006

Dec 7th: John Brown PPARC Talk

Dec 13th - 14th: Geminid Meteor Shower

Dec 14th: Tycho Brahe Birthday / Xmas Party... (b 1546)

Want more info?
If you came along to one of our talks and would now like more information, help is at hand. If you have any questions then please contact us and we will hopefully be able to answer your query (or know someone who can!). All talks given by the society are reproduced on the website (see the multimedia section)
Find Us!
Want to come along but unsure on how to find us? If so please see our Find Us page or e-mail us at:

This site is maintained by Steve Spreckley, Webmaster. Site originally designed by Emma Robinson.

Last updated: 12/03/2006

© The University of Birmingham Astronomical Society, unless otherwise stated. Email: