AAS

Our inaugural meeting was on the 8th Nov 2010 and we officially formed in Feb 2011.
AAS holds monthly meetings, often with guest speakers.

All guests are welcome!
No knowledge necessary, just a curious mind.

We are able to provide assistance with setting up your telescope or just helping to find your way around the night sky.

We host discussions on subjects as varied as "finding your way around the sky" to "Dark Energy".

Come along and get a new perspective on the universe in which you live!

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Starting stargazing

We have recently had a patch of dry sunny weather with clear skies, let’s hope it continues.  If you want to do a bit of stargazing but really do not quite know where to start you may find the following document helpful.  It is not for the experienced observer but for those that feel like having a quick go from the back garden and to give them a start.  So now you have no excuses, loads of spare time and simple instructions, no equipment needed (binoculars are a bonus) – so what are you waiting for? Happy stargazing and stay safe and healthy by not going out (other than the back garden!)

learning-stargazing.pdf

Globe at Night, measuring light pollution

Light pollution is the scourge of amateur astronomers and lovers of a beautiful starry sky alike.  Now you can take part in a global survey where no experience or special equipment is required.  Simply click on the link below to find out more details about the survey and how you can get involved and the link below that to get to the online app to help you easily classify your local sky.

Globe at night instructions

Globe at Night Webapp

The app is able to determine your location, you simply click on the picture that most closely resembles your sky condition and that is it  – you have made an observation (weather permitting of course!).

Next meeting on the 23rd March is cancelled

Owing to the present situation concerning the COVID-19 (Corona) virus it has been decided to cancel the next meeting of the Abergavenny Astronomy Society that was due to take place on the 23rd March. The next meeting after that should be on the 27th April, after Easter. Members will be advised near the time if that meeting will also be cancelled.

Are we living in the Matrix? CANCELLED

Unfortunately this event has been cancelled owing to concerns over the Corona virus.

This is the intriguing topic of a lecture by Professor David Tong from the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University.  The lecture is at 3:00 pm on Friday 20th March 202 in the Taliesin Arts Centre in Swansea University.  No booking is required and the auditorium can hold 350, all are welcome.

Further details can be found by following the link below:

David Tonk lecture

Abergavenny AS AGM 9th March 2020

The 2020 AGM of the Society will be held in the King’s Head at 7:30pm on the 9th March 2020.  The agenda for the meeting and the minutes of the last meeting can be seen by clicking the links below:

AAS AGS

2019 AGM minutes

The AGM is the place to discuss what members want from the society and the kind of activities that they wish to be involved in, so come along and let us have your ideas.

We are always looking for people to help in any way they can with the Society, it you have have some time please let us know, particularly if you would like to be nominated for one of the posts.  The time requirements are not onerous and it can be fun.

Time permitting we will also have a practical session on how light curves from supernovae are obtained.  Supernovae are stars that for various reasons have reached the end of their lives and produce absolutely huge explosions, having light outputs that are briefly brighter than their host galaxies.  In the past these explosions had to be seen by individuals often by chance, today there are orbiting space telescopes that makes a far more thorough job of finding them.  Observations of their spectra and the way the light output fades can tell astronomers a lot about the nature of the exploding star.  In this practical session we will look at some data from the Gaia satellite to find out how such curves are produced.

Next Meeting : 24th Feb., 2020

Our next meeting will be a presentation by Dr Matthew Smith from the Astronomy Group at the Cardiff School of Physics and Astronomy.

Dr Matthew Smith : Cardiff School of Physics & Astronomy

 

Dr Smith’s research is focused on dust and gas (basically any stuff between stars!), and how they relate to star-formation in the galaxy.  He works with data from many facilities (including ALMA, VLA, Arecibo, Mopra), in particular is leading a new large JCMT survey, a 275 hr survey to map the entire Andromeda galaxy at 450 and 850 microns.
His research also relies on data from the Herschel Space Observatory, where he has leading roles in the HELGA survey of Andromeda, H-ATLAS, the Herschel Reference Survey (HRS) and the Herschel Virgo Cluster Survey (HeViCS).
He is also on the executive committee for JINGLE the largest survey with the JCMT, a member of the MeerKat Fornax Survey and Mongoose MeerKat surveys.  (note: nothing to do with zoos or insurance!!).

Come along and learn a bit more about our universe.  No knowledge necessary!

All are welcome.  Usual time and place, The Kings Head, Abergavenny, at 7:30pm

 

National Astronomy Week 2020

It has been brought to my attention, by Gavin, that the Federation of Astronomical Societies is holding a “National Astronomy Week” from the 14th to the 22nd November, 2020.
Despite the coincidence this week has not been arranged to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the AAS (8th Nov, 2010) but rather to mark the closest approach of Mars to Earth until 2033. 

Further info from the Federation of Astronomical Societies website HERE.

Should AAS consider doing something; for our 10th anniversary and/or the NAW?? 

Meeting Monday 10th February – back to basics series

Nick Busby

Making sense of information – Modern astronomy, both professional and amateur has data processing at its heart.  Observatories such as LIGO and the  Atacama Large Millimeter Array down to a humble webcam taking pictures of the moon in a backyard all rely on very sophisticated data processing techniques.  A radio telescope is capable of producing a data stream greater than that of the entire global internet and even an amateur taking astrophotographs can generate files many 10s of gigabytes in size, how can we handle such vast amounts of data and produce a useful output?  The same technology is used in mobile phones and digital cameras and in fact in many more places than most people realise.

This talk will explain the basics of how data is handled and processed in non-mathematical language.  There will also be some practical demonstrations.

Next Meeting Monday 27th January

Dr Mikako-Matsuura School of Physics & Astronomy

Dr Mikako Matsuura, a Senior Lecturer and STFC Ernest Rutherford Fellow, from the Astronomy Group at Cardiff School of Physics and Astronomy is coming to give us a talk.
Dr Matsuura’s research interest is observational astronomy at infrared, sub-millimetre and millimetre wavelengths.
Particularly, the main targets of my research are dust and molecules in evolved stars and supernovae, with a focus on how and how much dust and molecules are formed in these stars, and what is their contribution to the global dust budgets of the interstellar medium of galaxies. 
Recently, our observations with the Herschel Space Observatory found a significant mass (~half a solar mass) of dust in the supernova 1987A. Furthermore, we also found cold (<120K) molecules from this supernova.
Presently, I am investigating how the dust and molecules have been formed in supernovae, by using Herschel, ALMA, SOFIA, VLT and potentially JWST.

Come along and learn that there is much much more to dust than you may have thought!

All are welcome.  Usual time and place, The Kings Head, Abergavenny, at 7:30pm

 

Reminder: Next Meeting Tomorrow – Monday 13th Jan, 2020

Quick reminder:- The next meeting, tomorrow, is an open discussion meeting.

Suggested topics on the website. HERE.

Everyone is most welcome. Come along and join in, no expertise required!

Usual time and place: 7:30pm at the Kings Head.