Hampshire Astronomical Group

Established 1960, Online since 1998

Observatory Accessibility

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Hampshire Astronomical Group welcome you!

Formed in 1960 in Portsmouth the ‘Hampshire Astronomical Group’ has grown from strength to strength since our formation. Our home is now based at the Clanfield Observatory, one of the finest and largest amateur astronomical observatories in the UK.

Located on Hinton Heights on the edge of the South Downs near the villages of Clanfield and Horndean (between Petersfield and Portsmouth) you will find a superbly equipped Observatory and reasonably dark skies - measured as 20.6mag/arc2. Our night sky has noticeably darkened since the relighting of Hampshire.

We have a full program of monthly public lectures held at the Clanfield Memorial Hall, South Lane, Clanfield, which are open to all. The Group also hold regular Open Evenings from the autumn through to spring and Solar Observing events during the day in the summer months.

We also host private visits and run astronomical courses for the public at the observatory. All of the above is voluntarily supported by our very active and enthusiastic membership.

Details of all the above are on our website so please feel free to browse, it is constantly up-dated, so why not bookmark us in your browser under ‘favourites’? and visit often.

Clear Nights and Dark Skies.

Richard Judd - President
Hampshire Astronomical Group

What's on in the next month...

Saturday,
10th September
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & Saturn
- start time 7:45pm

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Sunday,
11th September
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & Saturn
- start time 7:45pm

More details...

Astronomical Events for September 2016

Moon

2 September – 20:10 BST – The Moon is 1.75° from Jupiter and they will be low in the west; Venus can be seen 6° west of Jupiter.

16 September – Penumbral eclipse of the Moon. The full Moon rises while inside the Earth’s penumbral shadow and the shadow will leave the Moon’s disc at 21:55 BST. This event is best recorded using a camera.

21 September – The Moon will be approximately 24 arcminutes from Aldebaran, with the closest approach occurring at 22:45 BST.

Planets

1 September – 21:00 BST – Mars, Saturn, and Antares form an equilateral triangle. They can be seen low down in the south-southwest.

2 September – Neptune is at opposition and can be found in Aquarius.

3 September – 10:58 BST – Venus can be seen 15 arcminutes south of the Moon. Look for them 20° above the horizon in the east-southeast. 3.5° will separate them just after sunset.

8 September – 21:45 BST – Saturn will be 3° south of the Moon and can be seen low in the southwest.

9 September – Mars will be 7° below the Moon and can be seen low in the south-southwest. Start looking for them as the sky begins to darken.

19 September – Vesta, a minor planet, is in Gemini and will pass 40 arcminutes to the south of NGC 2392 (the Eskimo nebula).

28 September – 21:00 BST – Mars can be seen 1.5° south of M8 (the Lagoon Nebula). Use binoculars to view them low in the south-southwest when Mars will be 6° above the horizon.

28 September – Mercury reaches greatest western elongation when it will be 18° from the Sun.

29 September – 10:00 BST – Mercury will be 1° from the Moon’s northern limb and they should be visible in daylight in the southeast, but take care when looking for them as the Sun will be close by.

Occultations

15 September – Although it won’t be possible to see the start of the occultation of Neptune by the 98% lit Moon, it will be possible to see its reappearance. Start observing from 19:50 BST.

30 September – 17:15 BST – Occultation of Jupiter by an almost new Moon, and as this occurs during daylight hours it will be a challenge to observe. For safety reasons this event should be imaged using a high frame rate camera as Jupiter and the Moon will only be 3.75° from the Sun when the occultation starts. See page 51 of the BBC Sky at Night magazine for more information.

Misc

22 September – 15:21 BST – The Sun crosses the celestial equator marking the Autumn Equinox.

26 September – 05:00 BST – Good time to view M44 (the Beehive Cluster) which will be 5° north of the Moon. Use binoculars to find M44 in Cancer.

27 September – 01:30 BST – M31, the Andromeda Galaxy, reaches its highest point in the sky.

Moon Image Cedit: Steve Knight
Saturn & Mars Images Credit: NASA

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

Friday,
7th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Saturday,
8th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

More details...
Sunday,
9th October
2016
Autumn Moon Watch Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Mars & M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
14th October
2016
William Herschel and the Rings of Uranus
A talk by Dr Stuart Eves
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
5th November
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Pleiades, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
6th November
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Pleiades, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
11th November
2016
Mysteries of the Solar System
A talk by Dr Chris North
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Saturday,
3rd December
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Orion, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Sunday,
4th December
2016
Public Open Evening Sold Out!
Moon, Orion, M13
- start time 7:15pm

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Friday,
9th December
2016
Herschel’s Incredibly Cool Universe
A talk by Dr Chris Pearson
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
13th January
2017
Protecting Space for Future Generations
A talk by Professor Richard Crowther
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
10th February
2017
Isaac Newton and the Surrey Pumas
A talk by Mike Frost, BAA Historical Section Director
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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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

Friday 16th September - 7.30pm - Shine on Harvest Moon

Saturday 17th September - 1.30pm to 4.30pm - COURSE - How to Choose and use your new Telescope

Sunday 18th September - 3.30pm - Summertime Stars, Moon and Planets

Friday 23rd September - 7.30pm - The Northern Lights

Sunday 25th September - 3.30pm - The Northern Lights

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

Admission Prices: £6.00 for adults, or £4.00 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
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/

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 Sept 2016 -- Aurora Borealis: Mystery on our cosmological doorstep -- talk by Derek McKay-Bukowski (STFC)

Wednesday 12th October 2016 -- The Origins of Thermonuclear Supernovae -- Talk by Dr Michael Childress (University of Southampton)

Wednesday 9th November 2016 -- Sun Dogs and Blue Moons -- Talk by Prof Don Kurtz

Wednesday 14th December 2016 -- Dark Matter -- Talk by Prof Justin Read (University of Surrey)

Wednesday 11th January 2017 -- A Universe of dwarf galaxies -- Talk by Samantha Penny

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...

Friday,
10th March
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Michael Maunder
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
21st April
2017
TItle TBA
A talk by Professor Jocelyn Bell Burnell
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
12th May
2017
Astrobiology : Tour of the Solar System
A talk by William Joyce
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
9th June
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Dr Aprajita Verma
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
14th July
2017
Title TBC
A talk by Professor Giovanna Tinetti
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

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Friday,
13th October
2017
Title TBA
A talk by Professor Lucie Green
Clanfield Memorial Hall - start time 7:45pm

More details...

After Dark at Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium

After Dark: adults only

Thurs 15th Sept, Tues 11th Oct, Tuesday 22nd Nov & Mon 19th Dec.

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

Future Learn Free Astronomy Courses

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, Maths and Technology 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:

Earth Observation from Space: the Optical View: - Starts 12th September 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

How to Survive on Mars: Starts 24th October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here

Moons: - Starts 31st October 2016 for details to book yourself onto this course click here