Subsections
Upcoming Events



Public Outreach


We are a very active society in terms of public engagement. This is due to our members very much enjoying doing this sort of activity. We have in the past run observing nights for local cubs, brownies etc... we are quite open to many ideas on this front - so drop us a mail and we can see how we can help. A good example is that back in 2004 we took 7th Solihull St. Mary's Hobs Moat group out to the University observatory for some observing.



Public Evening Lectures

We run, in collaboration with the School of Physics and Astronomy and support by a PPARC grant, a bunch of evening lectures that are aimed at the general public. This is called our "Tea, Talk and Telescope" programme. The idea is we have a talk, followed by tea and coffee with some public observing. In the past we have had talks off: Dr David Malin, Dr David Whitehouse, Mr Mario di Maggio, Dr David Gregory and Prof. John Brown please see http://www.talkandtelescope.org.uk.



Further information about these talks can be found on [public lectures page] and we also have our own minisite dedicated to these talks see [http://www.talkandtelescope.org.uk]



Sky Calendar - astronomical events for this year


Below is a list of events that will occur for the next year, to see what is going on tonight see our astronomy pages or to find out in detail from any location in the world use: [www.heavens-above.com]



JANUARY

03 Full Moon
03 Quadrantids meteors (Unfavourable due to bright Moon)
19 New Moon

FEBRUARY

02 Full Moon
17 New Moon

MARCH

02 Moon occults Saturn (Grazing from U.K.)
03 Total lunar eclipse
03 Full Moon
19 New Moon
21 Spring (Vernal) equinox

APRIL

02 Full Moon
17 New Moon
22 Lyrid Meteors Shower maximum
The Lyrids are an average shower, usually producing about 20 meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from the Lyrids will be visible from April 16 - 25. Look for meteors radiating from the constellation of Lyra after midnight.

MAY

02 Full Moon
05 Eta Aquarids Meteor Shower
The Eta Aquarids are a light shower, usually producing about 10 meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from this shower can be seen from April 21 - May 12. The near-full moon obscuring all but the brightest meteors. Look to the east after midnight.
16 New Moon
19 Conjunction of Moon and Venus
The crescent moon will appear only 1 degree from the planet Venus in the evening sky.
22 Saturn is occulted by the Moon

JUNE

01 Full Moon
06 Jupiter at Opposition
The giant planet will be at its closest approach to Earth - the best time to view Jupiter and its moons.
15 New Moon
18 Venus is occulted by the Moon
21 Summer solstice
30 Conjunction of Venus and Saturn.
Venus and Saturn will appear only 0.8 degrees from each other in the evening sky.

JULY

01 Conjunction of Venus and Saturn
The planets Venus and Saturn will appear only 0.8 degrees apart in the evening sky.
14 New Moon
28 Southern Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower
The Delta Aquarids usually produce about 20 meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from this shower can be seen between July 18 - August 18. The full Moon will mean only the brightest meteors will be seen. Best viewing is usually to the east after midnight.
30 Full Moon

AUGUST

12 New Moon
13 Perseids Meteor Shower
The Perseids is one of the best meteor showers to observe, producing up to 60 meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from this shower are likely to be seen between July 23 - August 22. It's a New Moon so this will mean even the faintest of meteors should be visible! The radiant point for this shower will be in the constellation of Perseus so take a look to the northeast after midnight.
28 Full Moon
28 Total lunar eclipse (Not visible from the U.K.)
The eclipse will be visible throughout most of eastern Asia, Australia, the Pacific Ocean, and the Americas, see [here]

SEPTEMBER

10 Uranus at Opposition.
Uranus will be at its closest approach to Earth - the best time to view this planet but it will only appear as a small dot in but the most powerful of telescopes.
11 New Moon and Partial Solar Eclipse (Not visible from the U.K.)
Partial Solar Eclipse. The partial eclipse will be visible throughout most of central and southern South America, see [here]
23 Autumnal equinox
26 Full Moon

OCTOBER

11 New Moon
15 Conjunction of Venus and Saturn
The planets Venus and Saturn will appear only 3 degrees apart in the early morning sky.
21 Orionids Meteor Shower
The Orionids is an average shower producing about 20 meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from this shower can be seen from October 15 - 29. The gibbous moon may interfere with viewing faint meteors. Best viewing will be to the east after midnight.
26 Full Moon

NOVEMBER

03 Taurid Meteor shower - normally not the best of showers
09 New Moon
18 Leonid Meteor shower
The Leonids is one of the best meteor showers to observe, with about 40 meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from this shower can be seen from November 13 - 20. The moon will set around midnight so even the faintest meteors should be visible! Look for the shower radiating from the constellation Leo after midnight.
24 Full Moon

DECEMBER

09 New Moon
14 Geminid Meteor shower
The Geminids are known for producing up to 60 multicolored meteors per hour at their peak. Meteors from this shower can be seen from December 6 - 19. The Moon will set early, allowing for an excellent viewing experience. The radiant point for this shower will be in the constellation of Gemini. Best viewing is usually to the east after midnight.
18 Mars is closest to Earth, 88 185 000km, during this year's apparition.
The red planet will be at its closest approach to Earth and its face will be fully illuminated by the Sun. This is the best time to view and photograph the planet Mars.
22 Winter solstice
24 Full Moon
24 Moon occults Mars
24 Mars at Opposition.

2008

JANUARY

08 New Moon
22 Full Moon

FEBRUARY

01 Conjunction of Venus and Jupiter.
The planets Venus and Jupiter will appear only 0.6 degrees apart in the early morning sky.
07 New Moon
07 Annular Solar Eclipse.
The path of annularity will only be visible over some parts of Antarctica. A partial eclipse will be visible throughout New Zealand and some parts of eastern Australia.
21 Full Moon
24 Saturn at Opposition.
The ringed planet will be at its closest approach to Earth.
21 Total Lunar Eclipse. The eclipse will be visible throughout most of the Americas, Africa, and Europe.

MARCH

07 New Moon
20 The Vernal Equinox this is the first day of spring.
21 Full Moon

APRIL

06 New Moon
20 Full Moon

MAY

05 New Moon
20 Full Moon

JUNE

03 New Moon
18 Full Moon
20 The Summer Solstice

JULY

03 New Moon
09 Jupiter at Opposition
The giant planet will be at its closest approach to Earth.
18 Full Moon

AUGUST

01 New Moon
01 Total Solar Eclipse
The path of totality will begin in northern Canada and move east and south through northern Greenland, Siberia, Mongolia, and central China. A partial eclipse will be visible throughout most of Greenland, Europe, And Asia.
15 Neptune at Opposition
The blue planet will be at its closest approach to Earth.
16 Full Moon
16 Partial Lunar Eclipse
The eclipse will be visible throughout most of South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia.
30 New Moon

SEPTEMBER

13 Uranus at Opposition
Uranus will be at its closest approach to Earth.
15 Full Moon
22 The Autumnal Equinox
29 New Moon

OCTOBER

14 Full Moon
28 New Moon

NOVEMBER

13 Full Moon
27 New Moon

DECEMBER

01 Conjunction of Moon, Venus, and Jupiter
The crescent moon, Venus, and Jupiter will form a 3degree triangle in the evening sky.
12 Full Moon
21 The Winter Solstice
27 New Moon