Hampshire Astronomical Group

Established 1960, Online since 1998

Observatory Accessibility

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Hampshire Astronomical Group welcome you!

Formed in Portsmouth in 1960 the ‘Hampshire Astronomical Group’ has grown into one of the finest 'amateur astronomical groups' in the UK.

Our extensively equipped Observatory is situated within the South Downs National Park dark skies reserve on the border of Clanfield and Horndean villages in Hampshire.

The Group hold regular Open Evenings at the Observatory from autumn through to spring; giving visitors the opportunity to view the night sky through our very large telescopes or, if cloudy, a tour of the facilities followed by a lecture on an astronomical topic in our modern (heated) clubroom facility.

Furthermore we hold Solar (sun) observing events where visitors can observe our nearest star the 'sun' viewed through our specialist solar viewing equipment  during  daylight hours in the summer months.

We also host group visits and run astronomical courses for the public at the observatory.

We have a long-established association with the University of Portsmouth where their undergraduates and students can avail themselves of our facilities and knowledge base for furthering their studies.

There is a full programme of monthly public lectures, with eminent guest speakers, held at the Clanfield Memorial Hall where non members are more than welcome to attend.

Access and Information to all our activities (which are supported voluntarily by our very active and enthusiastic membership) are shown on this website.  So please feel free to browse, it is constantly up-dated; so why not bookmark us in your browser and visit regularly.

Clear Nights and Dark Skies.

Richard Judd FRAS
President:  Hampshire Astronomical Group - Clanfield Observatory

What's on in the next month...

Friday,
9th June
2017
Space Warps: Citizen Scientist Powered Gravitational Lens Discovery
A talk by Dr Aprajita Verma
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Saturday,
17th June
2017
Sun Live at the Clanfield Observatory Sold Out!
- start time 1:00pm

More details...

Astronomical Events for May 2017

Moon

2 May – evening – The Moon will be 4.75° south of M44 (the Beehive Cluster).

Planets

7-8 May – Jupiter can be found close to the southern limb of the Moon during the evening of the 7th and morning of the 8th May, with 90 arcseconds separating the two.

9 May – It may be possible to observe the bright hemisphere of Saturn’s moon, Iapetus when it will be at mag. +10.2.

11-12 May – 23:05-03:04 BST – Transit of the shadows of Io and Europa across the disc of Jupiter.  The transits begins with Europa at 23:05 BST on the 11th May.  The shadows of Europa and Io will be on the disc at the same time between 02:58 and 03:04 BST.

13 May – 23:45 BST – Saturn will be 2.3° south of the Moon.

15 May – Jupiter’s moons can be seen strung out in a line above the planet this evening.

17 May – Mercury reaches greatest western elongation and is visible in the morning sky.

22 May – 10:00 BST – Venus will be 4.2° northeast of the Moon and can be seen due south.

24 May – Mercury will be 3.2° above the Moon in the morning daylight sky.

27-28 May – 19:13-03:26 BST – The shadows of Io and Ganymede make a double transit of Jupiter.  The occultation of Europa can also been seen during this time.

Comets

14 May – early hours – Comet C/2015 V2 Johnson will be 0.5° from Alkalurops (Mu Boötis).  The comet is predicted to be at mag. +7.0.

19 May – Comet C/2015 V2 Johnson will be 1.3° from Delta Boötis during the early hours.  As the Moon will be out of the way, this is a good time to view the comet.

28 May – morning – Comet C/2015 V2 Johnson will be 1.7° from Izar (Epsilon Boötis).

29 May – Comet C/2015 V2 Johnson reaches its peak predicted brightness of mag. +6.7.

30 May – Comet 71P/Clark is 2° east of Antares.  The comet will be at mag. +12.

Occultations

5 May – 00:20 BST – The Moon occults 49 Leonis which is a double star, so it is unlikely it will disappear instantaneously.

Meteor Showers

5-6 May – Peak of the Eta Aquariid meteor shower with a ZHR of 50 meteors an hour.  Starting watching during the evening of 5 May and morning of 6 May.

Misc

21 May – It may be possible to observe noctilucent clouds which can be seen in the northwest 90-120 minutes after sunset, or in the northeast 90-120 minutes before sunrise.

Jupiter & Mercury Images Credit: NASA
Comet Image Credit: Steve Futcher

A Chance to Win Tickets for an Open Evening


Here is your chance to win 2 tickets to the Open Evening on Friday 29th September 2017 @ 7.15pm. 

Targets for the night: Moon & Saturn

Only one entry for this draw per household.To enter the prize draw please email 
steve.knight@hantsastro.org.uk with the words Prize Draw in the subject line and then put your Name, Email and Phone Number in the email you would like to be contacted on if you should win.

A random number generator will be used to pick the winner.

Closing date for entries will be midday on the 1st July 2017.

The winner will be contacted on the 2nd July 2017 via email.

Good luck 

We offer no cash alternative for non-cash prizes and prize winners must accept prizes in the form offered for the Open Evening Friday 29th September 2017 @ 7.15pm. See http://www.hantsastro.org.uk/openevenings/bookingform.php for full terms and conditions.

Southdowns Planetarium


The South Downs Planetarium is a registered educational charity, which is run by a small team of experienced and dedicated volunteers.
The Planetarium operates throughout the year, but is not open every day.

Members of the public are welcome to visit the Planetarium at the show times listed on this website.

Public Shows and Dates

Monday 29th May - 3.30pm - All Aboard - A Tour of the Planets

Wednesday 31st May - 3.30pm - Hubble's View on the Universe FULL DOME SHOW

Friday 2nd June - 7.30pm - One Small Step for Major Tim, A Giant Leap Towards Mars FULL DOME SHOW

Sunday 4th June - 3.30pm - Hubble's View on the Universe FULL DOME SHOW

Friday 16th June - 7.30pm - Springtime Stars and Galaxies

Sunday 18th June - 3.30pm - Violent Sun and Space Weather

As seats sell out fast, it is essential to book your seat.

Admission Prices: £7.00 for adults, or £5.00 for children 6 to 16yrs. Cash or Cheque Only

The South Downs Planetarium Trust is a Registered Educational Charity No. 1096869.

For further information about all South Downs Planetarium activities, contact: 

The South Downs Planetarium and Science Centre
Sir Patrick Moore Building

Chichester High School Campus
Kingsham Farm
Kingsham Road
Chichester
West Sussex PO19 8RP

For Sat Nav Users:-

Enter PO19 8AE

Tel: 01243 774400
Ticket hotline: 07818 297292



e-mail: sdownsplanet@btconnect.com

http://www.southdowns.org.uk/

What's on between next month and 6 months...

Friday,
14th July
2017
Brave new worlds: the planets in our galaxy
A talk by Professor Giovanna Tinetti
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
22nd July
2017
Sun Live at the Clanfield Observatory
- start time 1:00pm

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Saturday,
2nd September
2017
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon & Saturn
- start time 7:45pm

More details...
Sunday,
3rd September
2017
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon & Saturn
- start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
29th September
2017
Public Open Evening - Autumn Moon Watch Sold Out!
Moon & Saturn
- start time 7:15pm

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Saturday,
30th September
2017
Public Open Evening - Autumn Moon Watch Sold Out!
Moon & Saturn
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Sunday,
1st October
2017
Public Open Evening - Autumn Moon Watch Sold Out!
Moon & Saturn
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
13th October
2017
15 million degrees: journey to the centre of the Sun
A talk by Professor Lucie Green
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Saturday,
28th October
2017
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon - M15 - Albireo/M57/M71
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
29th October
2017
Public Open Evening
Moon - M15 - Albireo/M57/M71
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
10th November
2017
Could Life Exist Elsewhere in the Solar System?
A talk by William Joyce
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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After Dark at Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium

After Dark: adults only

Wednesday 24th May, Wednesday 21st June & Wednesday 19th July.

Visit the planetarium and play about in the exhibition after the kids have gone home. Activities run throughout the evening so no problem if you cannot get here for 6pm or if you need to leave early.

Ticket price: £10/£8 including one planetarium show and entry to the centre. Add the other show for just +£2.

Teachers: free entry (includes one show); send requests in advance by email using your school/college email address.

Online booking (if you want to see both shows, add the second on the next page)

Telephone bookings (01962) 891925. Please have your credit/debit card ready. If the front desk is too busy for staff to answer your call straight away you can leave your number and they will call you back.

Strictly ages 18yr+ (if you're lucky enough to look younger, please bring ID).

For more details of the events please check out After Dark

Winchester Science Centre & Planetarium Lecture Series

Adult evening lectures on the second Wednesday's of the Month at 4.30pm and 6.30pm, each follow by a short Planetarium Show about the months sky.

Wednesday 14th June 2017 -- When Galaxies Collide -- Talk by Professor Carolin Crawford (University of Cambridge)

Wednesday 12th July 2017 - The Medical Implications of Space Flight - Talk by Steven Cutts FRCS

These events often sell out so pre-book or call to check on (01962) 863791

For more details on the talks and tickets please visit the Intech web site

What's on after the next 6 months...

Saturday,
25th November
2017
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon - M15 - Albireo/M57/M71
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Sunday,
26th November
2017
Public Open Evening
Moon - M15 - Albireo/M57/M71
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Friday,
8th December
2017
The Oldest Light in the Universe
A talk by Dr Chris Pearson
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
12th January
2018
Title TBA
A talk by Michael Maunder
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
9th March
2018
Title TBA
A talk by Dr Samantha Penny
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
11th May
2018
The Day They Launched a Woodpecker!
A talk by Jerry Stone FBIS FRAS
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
8th June
2018
Title TBC
A talk by Dr Poshak Gandhi
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...
Friday,
9th November
2018
Title TBC
A talk by Dr Paul B Rimmer
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...

Astronomy Festival

Come and join SolarSphere for a relaxing camping weekend in the countryside under dark skies where you can bring your scopes to observe (or look through volunteers scopes)!  There will be Astronomical talks, workshops, planetarium and live music with a little comedy thrown in too!

A family friendly, relaxed yet educational weekend with plenty of time to chill out and enjoy the beautiful setting of the countryside!

BTW!!!!  For those who purchase tickets before April 30th, you will be entered into a prize draw to win your very own 'Personal Planetarium Device' courtesy of Universe2Go.  These retail at around £85!  More info here: Click Here 

To buy your tickets for this event please go to the SolarSphere Website

Future Learn Free Astronomy Courses

FutureLearn is a leading social learning platform, enabling digital education through conversation.  FutureLearn offers free and paid for online courses and degrees from world-leading UK and international universities as well as courses from companies, centres of research excellence and specialist education providers.  FutureLearn partners with over a quarter of the world’s top universities and organisations such as Accenture, Microsoft, the British Council, European Space Agency, Houses of Parliament, Raspberry Pi and Cancer Research UK.   

FutureLearn provides a range of free online courses from some of the world's leading educators. Courses are created by UK and international universities, as well as cultural institutions and global centres of excellence in a range of subject areas, like the British Council and the European Space Agency.

A number of Astronomy courses are listed in the website's Science, Engineering and Maths category. Recent titles have included 'Moons' and 'In the Night Sky: Orion', both from The Open University. The lead educator on the Orion course, Professor Monica Grady, CBE, worked as part of the project team that successfully landed the Philae probe on a comet last November.

An added advantage of FutureLearn is its focus on 'social learning', whereby learners from all over the world can have conversations about the topics covered during a course with one another, and with the academics leading the course.

FutureLearn adds courses throughout the year and repeats popular titles, so the easiest way to keep up to date is to register on the website. Details on upcoming Astronomy courses will also be listed here.

Next Free Online Astronomy Courses:

Moons: - Starts 30 October 2017 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

In the Night Sky: Orion - Starts 8th January 2018 for details to book yourself onto this course click here