Upcoming Events

Tue 13

Telescope Workshop

December 13 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

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To join the Flamsteed Astronomy Society, click on this link.

The Flamsteed is an amateur astronomy society at the Royal Observatory and National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, London SE10. It has around 350 members who represent the full range of interests and experience in astronomy. Many are beginners. It is named after the first Astronomer Royal, John Flamsteed.

The Society was founded in 1999, and is part of the membership organisation of Royal Museums Greenwich.

Our lecture meetings are held once a month between September/October and May/June, usually on a Monday evening, in the lecture theatre of the National Maritime Museum, or in the Peter Harrison Planetarium at the Royal Observatory Greenwich (ROG). The Society regularly holds observing evenings using members’ own telescopes.  In addition the Society stages viewing sessions with the ROG’s Great Equatorial Telescope, the largest of its kind in the UK, and seventh largest in the world.

We are an affiliated society of the British Astronomical Association and members of The Federation of Astronomical Societies.The Federation of Astronomical SocietiesBritish Astronomical Association

The start of our observing session, with the added backdrop of the Blackheath funfair!

An excellent session started off rather dubiously as a not so familiar obstacle threatened our stargazing night. It wasn’t the clouds this time but a funfair, just several yards away from us! Admittedly, a rush of childhood nostalgia swept over me and I was tempted to go in, head for the bumper cars and demonstrate […]

Professor Lewis Dartnell

Astrobiology, said Professor Lewis Dartnell, is “the science of hunting for aliens”! That may conjure up images of Martian death rays, wielded by tripods come to invade the earth. But if our next door neighbour planet ever did have an environment that was suitable for the origin of microbial life on the surface, the environment […]

Andy on the Flamsteed stall

Once again, the Flamsteed were delighted to be invited to participate in the Shrewsbury Park Summer Festival this year, set on top of Shooters Hill with fabulous views over London, Kent and Essex. In fine weather this is a perfect spot for astronomy, and our plan was to provide several solar telescopes for people to […]

Matt Taylor at the Flamsteed

For the final lecture of our 2015/16 season, Flamsteed members were given a real treat when Dr Matt Taylor from ESA came to talk about the Rosetta mission. Matt is the Project Scientist for this mission, working as the interface between the scientists responsible for the experiments on the mission and the ESA mission operation […]

P1190135

The Flamsteed Radio Astronomy Group continues to make good progress. At the last meeting on Tuesday 7 June 2016, the group had 5 VLF (Very Low Frequency) receivers up and running in an attempt to compare performance. A Very Low Frequency (VLF) Receiver is designed to record Sudden Ionospheric Disturbance (SIDs) induced by solar flares. […]

Professor Ray Sharples

Many great breakthroughs in astronomy have come as the direct result of the applications of new technology. In this talk, Ray will review the development of astronomical technology over the last 300 years and look forward to a new era of giant telescopes and multi-wavelength facilities which will come on-line in the early part of […]

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Don’t know one end of a telescope from the other? Not sure what type of telescope you should buy? Confused by the different types of mounts and eyepieces? If so, this workshop is for you. In this workshop, we will explain the different types of telescopes and mounts. We will cover some basic telescope theory, […]

GL Blackheath 90-Web

We will be running a Blackheath Observing session on Friday 16 December (or Saturday 17 December, if the weather is poor on Friday evening) from 7.30pm until around 11pm. We look forward to seeing you there. Please bring a telescope if you can, the more the merrier! If not there should be at least three […]

British Oak, Blackheath

December 19th, Monday 8.00pm Flamsteed Pub Evening at the British Oak, 109 Old Dover Road, Blackheath SE3 8SU.  All are welcome.

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Martin and Jane have very kindly offered to run a viewing session from their observatory on Thursday 29 December (with a weather back-up date of Friday 30 December). For the benefit of newer members, Martin’s observatory (a shed, but not as most of us know sheds) is very well equipped including a permanently mounted 14-inch […]

The following is a statement from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden on the passing of Sen. John Glenn: from NASA

NASA researchers will present new findings on a wide range of Earth and space science topics at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union, Dec. 12-16 in San Francisco. NASA-related briefings will be carried live on the agency’s website. from NASA

NASA now is sharing its best images on official Pinterest and GIPHY accounts, providing visitors an out-of-this-world journey through animated GIFs and images of Earth and beyond. from NASA

NASA has awarded a contract to a.i. solutions, Inc., of Lanham, Maryland, to support the agency’s Launch Services Program (LSP) in providing end-to-end launch services for NASA and NASA-sponsored payloads on commercial expendable launch vehicles. from NASA

NASA has selected a first-of-its-kind Earth science mission that will extend our nation’s lead in measuring key greenhouse gases and vegetation health from space to advance our understanding of Earth’s natural exchanges of carbon between the land, atmosphere and ocean. from NASA

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Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconDecember 7, 2016 at 3:38 pm

Those are some funky hexagon-shaped jet streams!

Facebook Picture
Cassini Beams Back First Images from New Orbit

saturn.jpl.nasa.gov

Cassini is one of the most ambitious effort in planetary space exploration ever mounted. A joint endeavour of NASA, ESA and the Italian space agency, Cassini is a sophisticated spacecraft exploring the Saturnian system since 2004.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconDecember 7, 2016 at 3:37 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared a link.

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Cassini's First Ring-Grazing Orbit A Success - Universe Today

universetoday.com

The Cassini mission has begun its final phase and has completed its first ring-grazing orbit around Saturn.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
December 5, 2016 at 9:36 am

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared Thomas Pesquet's photo.

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Thomas Pesquet

Sunrises. We experience 16 sunrises every 24 hours on the International Space Station as it takes us 90 minutes to do a complete orbit of our planet flying at 28 800 km/h. Of course we don't notice most of the sunrises as we are working inside, but every now and again I can take a picture.

Des images de levers de soleil tels qu’on les vit depuis la Station spatiale. Sur 24 heures, on peut en voir 16 ! À 28 800 km/h, il nous faut en effet seulement 90 minutes pour effectuer une orbite complète autour de la Terre. Avec notre emploi du temps chargé, on n’a pas l’occasion de tous les admirer, mais j’ai quand même le plaisir de capturer un de ces levers du soleil en photo de temps en temps. Et jusque-là je ne m’en lasse pas !

https://flic.kr/p/PTooZ6

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconNovember 18, 2016 at 2:04 pm

Our Blackheath Observing event is CONFIRMED ON for tonight (Friday 18 November).

Meet from 7.30pm, at our usual location, north of Talbot Place on Blackheath.

All are welcome to attend. Please make sure you wrap up warm... it will be very cold this evening!

See http://flamsteed.info/event/blackheath-observing-friday-18-november-or-saturday-19-november/ for location details and a list of our proposed targets.

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Blackheath Observing – Friday 18 November or Saturday 19 November

flamsteed.info

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place Friday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast looks better for Friday so we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session. PLEASE NOTE: The event starts at the earlier time of 7.30pm now we have da...

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconNovember 16, 2016 at 8:34 pm

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place Friday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast looks better for Friday so we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session.

PLEASE NOTE: The event starts at the earlier time of 7.30pm now we have darker skies.

As we get nearer the end of the year, more objects are becoming visible to us. During the early part of the evening the Summer Triangle comprising the bright stars of Vega, Deneb and Altair will still be in view. Amidst these three stars in the centre we will be able to see the colourful double star Albireo. To the right of this between the stars Sulafat and Sheliak is M57 the famous Ring Nebula. Heading up above Vega we can see the binary system known as the 'Double-Double' or more technically Epsilon 1 Lyrae and Epsilon 2 Lyrae. Moving left of this system between Deneb and Vega we can see Delta Cygni, a triple star system consisting of green-blue and yellow-white stars although you will only be able to see the extremely close binary pair.

Early on in the evening Mars will just be visible in the south but probably hidden by the trees. Stretching across the horizon from East to West will be Uranus and Neptune which will be followed by the M45, The Pleiades. On the Western horizon will be M13, The Hercules Cluster. To view this it is best to target it early before the lights of the city begin to drown it out.

From about 9.30pm we should be able to start observing the objects around the constellation Orion. The most visible of these will be the bright Nebula M42 and the double star Sigma Orionis. In addition to M42, many imaging targets exist around Orion, notably NGC 1909 the Witch Head Nebula to its right, the well known IC 434 Horsehead Nebula above and the dominantly H-Alpha NGC 2244 Rosette Nebula to the left.

The Moon will begin to appear during our observing session but should not brighten the sky too much until around 10pm in the evening at which time it will be another object to look at. As it will be 75% illuminated many features should be visible along the terminator.

Filming

Some students from the University of the Arts London are filming a short documentary about the Flamsteed and they will be on site at Blackheath. The film crew will not be using lights, just a hand held camera. They will be as unobtrusive as possible. If there is any reason why anyone attending does not wish to appear in the background of any shots, please speak to one of the Flamsteed Committee members on site.

We look forward to seeing as many of you there as possible. Please bring a telescope if you can. If not there should be at least three scopes available to take you on a tour of the sky.

As normal a go / no go announcement will be made at the earlier time of 4pm on Friday.

Blackheath is quite exposed and the forecast suggests a temperature range of only 2-4 degrees so wrap up warm!

We will meet at our usual spot just north of Talbot Place at 7.30pm. Talbot Place is the first left off Goffers Road after the Tea Hut. Parking is free after 6.30pm. A map of the site can be found here: http://flamsteed.info/event/blackheath-observing-friday-18-november-or-saturday-19-november/ .

Facebook Picture
Blackheath Observing – Friday 18 November or Saturday 19 November

flamsteed.info

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place Friday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast looks better for Friday so we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session. PLEASE NOTE: The event starts at the earlier time of 7.30pm now we have da...

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconNovember 14, 2016 at 3:04 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society added 2 new photos to the album: Astrophotography.

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Astrophotography
Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconNovember 14, 2016 at 9:03 am

About the Chubbier Moon :)

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Behold November's Super-Duper Supermoon - Sky & Telescope

skyandtelescope.com

This coming week, we'll experience the closest full Moon that's lit the land since 1948. Here's what you'll need to know to enjoy it to the max.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
October 27, 2016 at 5:35 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's photo.

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ESA - European Space Agency

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter - High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) imaged the ExoMars Schiaparelli module’s landing site on 25 October 2016, following the module’s arrival at Mars on 19 October. The zoomed insets provide close-up views of what are thought to be several different hardware components associated with the module’s descent to the martian surface. These are interpreted as the front heatshield, the parachute and the rear heatshield. Full details and hi-res version via http://www.esa.int/edm_hardware (pic: NASA/JPL/Caltech/Univ. Arizona)

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
October 22, 2016 at 10:17 pm

Excellent evening of observing on Blackheath tonight. Good attendance, good company and some lovely sights to see in the sky. Thanks to all who came along.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconOctober 22, 2016 at 2:05 pm

Blackheath Observing session is CONFIRMED ON for tonight (Saturday 22 October). Meet from 7.30pm at our usual location on Blackheath.

See http://flamsteed.info/event/blackheath-observing-friday-21-october-or-saturday-22-october/ for details.

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Blackheath Observing – Saturday 22 October

flamsteed.info

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place either Friday or Saturday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast looks better for Saturday so we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session. PLEASE NOTE: The event will start at the earlier time...

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
October 20, 2016 at 11:01 am

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's post.

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ESA - European Space Agency

Essential data from the #ExoMars Schiaparelli lander sent to the TGO during the module’s descent to the Red Planet’s surface yesterday has been downlinked to Earth and is currently being analysed by experts. Early indications suggested the module had successfully completed most steps of its 6-minute descent through the martian atmosphere. This included the deceleration through the atmosphere, and the parachute and heat shield deployment, for example.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
October 20, 2016 at 11:00 am

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's post.

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ESA - European Space Agency

Watch the replay of the #ExoMars media briefing this morning, providing updates on the TGO spacecraft's arrival at the Red Planet and the status of #Schiaparelli, the entry, descent and landing demonstrator module.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconOctober 20, 2016 at 9:45 am

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place either Friday or Saturday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast looks better for Saturday so we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session.

PLEASE NOTE: The event will start at the earlier time of 7.30pm now we have darker skies.

As per last month the Summer Asterisms in the Milky Way will be visible. The most notable of these is the Summer Triangle comprising the bright stars of Vega, Deneb and Altair. Amidst these three stars in the centre we will be able to see the colourful double star Albireo. To the right of this between the stars Sulafat and Sheliak is M57 the famous Ring Nebula. Heading up above Vega we can see the binary system known as the 'Double-Double' or more technically Epsilon 1 Lyrae and Epsilon 2 Lyrae. Moving left of this system between Deneb and Vega we can see Delta Cygni, a triple star system consisting of green-blue and yellow-white stars. In this area of the triangle are also a number of nebula (the North American NGC7000, Pelican IC5070 and Gamma Cygni IC1318), however these are more imaging targets and not really visible unless at a dark sky location.

Early on in the evening Mars will be visible in the south but probably hidden by the trees. Stretching across the horizon from East to West will be Uranus and Neptune which will be followed by the M45, The Pleiades. On the Western horizon will be M13, The Hercules Cluster. To view this it is best to target it early before the lights of the city begin to drown it out.

The night will be moonless during our observing session and weather permitting, looks set to offer a great opportunity to see many different objects.

We look forward to seeing as many of you there as possible. Please bring a telescope if you can. If not there should be at least three scopes available to take you on a tour of the sky.

As normal a go / no go announcement will be made at the earlier time of 4pm on Saturday.

Blackheath is quite exposed and the forecast suggests a temperature range of 5-7 degrees so a good coat and hat is advisable.

We will meet at our usual spot just north of Talbot Place at 7.30pm. Talbot place is the first left off Goffers Road after the Tea Hut. Parking is free after 6.30pm. A map of the site can be found here http://flamsteed.info/event/blackheath-observing-friday-21-october-or-saturday-22-october/

Facebook Picture
Blackheath Observing – Saturday 22 October

flamsteed.info

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place either Friday or Saturday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast looks better for Saturday so we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session. PLEASE NOTE: The event will start at the earlier time...

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
October 19, 2016 at 7:09 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's post.

Facebook Picture
ESA - European Space Agency

Press release on today's ExoMars arrival at the Red Planet.
Further updates in a livestreaming from ESA's control centre in Darmstadt, Germany, on 20 October at 10:00 CEST.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
October 19, 2016 at 7:04 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's photo.

Facebook Picture
ESA - European Space Agency

TGO IS IN MARS ORBIT: The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter is confirmed in orbit around Mars. This image shows the acquisition of signal. Flight Director Michel Denis says, "We have a good spacecraft in the right place."

The ground control team at ESA's space operations centre are going to work all night to analyse the data on the ExoMars Schiaparelli lander. More at the press conference tomorrow at 10:00 CEST.

Andy Sawers
October 12, 2016 at 10:22 pm

Interesting newly-digitised collection of material, much of it from Royal Observatory Greenwich, relating to the 1874 transit of Venus.
https://www.theguardian.com/science/the-h-word/2016/oct/10/astronomy-expedition-history-hawaii?CMP=share_btn_fb

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconSeptember 30, 2016 at 11:48 am

https://twitter.com/IamComet67P/status/781820270181027841

Comet 67P on Twitter

twitter.com

“Hi @ESA Slight problem up here Rosetta parked in my SHORT-STAY crater 🚀🅿 Not my LONG-TERM one So she could get TOWED 🚜〰〰🚀 #CometLanding”

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconSeptember 30, 2016 at 11:33 am
Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconSeptember 30, 2016 at 11:26 am

https://twitter.com/chrislintott/status/781816757975715840

chrislintott on Twitter

twitter.com

“Can exclusively reveal @mggtTaylor's first words after landing: 'Bugger'. Tears and hugs here #GoodbyeRosetta”

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
September 30, 2016 at 11:22 am

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's photo.

Facebook Picture
ESA - European Space Agency

LOSS OF SIGNAL #LOS ESA - European Space Agency confirms end of contact with Rosetta Mission. Operations complete at 720 million km from Earth.

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
September 30, 2016 at 11:21 am

Loss of signal from Rosetta Mission, so sad and exciting at the same time!

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
September 30, 2016 at 10:35 am

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared ESA - European Space Agency's live video.

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ESA - European Space Agency

UPDATE: Mission Completed! Rosetta Mission's controlled impact took place 11:18 UTC (13:18 CEST). Watch the replay here. Thanks for all your congrats and farewell wishes!

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconSeptember 23, 2016 at 3:10 pm

Our Blackheath Observing session is CONFIRMED ON for tonight (Friday 23 September). Meet from 8.30pm at our usual location, north of Talbot Place, on Blackheath.

See http://flamsteed.info/event/blackheath-observing-friday-23-september-weather-back-up-saturday-24-september/ for details.

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Blackheath Observing – Friday 23 September – CONFIRMED ON

flamsteed.info

THIS EVENT IS CONFIRMED ON Our next scheduled observing event will take place on Friday 23 September. The event is planned to begin at 8.30pm although from next month we will be starting an hour earlier. Our first observing session of the new season will allow us to see a wide range of old favorites...

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
Facebook IconSeptember 22, 2016 at 5:43 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society added an event.

Facebook Picture
Blackheath Observing

Blackheath Observing

Our next scheduled observing event is proposed to take place either Friday or Saturday of this week, depending on the weather. Currently the forecast is looking promising for Friday evening so currently we will schedule this as the likely date for the observing session

The event is still planned to begin at 8.30pm although from next month we will be starting an hour earlier.

Our first observing session of the new season will allow us to see a wide range of old favorites as the Summer Asterisms in the Milky Way are now more visible in the darker sky. The most notable of these is the Summer Triangle comprising the bright stars of Vega, Deneb and Altair. Amidst these three stars in the centre we will be able to see the colourful double star Albireo. To the right of this between the stars Sulafat and Sheliak is M57 the famous Ring Nebula. Heading up above Vega we can see the binary system known as the 'Double-Double' or more technically Epsilon 1 Lyrae and Epsilon 2 Lyrae. Moving left of this system between Deneb and Vega we can see Delta Cygni, a triple star system consisting of green-blue and yellow-white stars. In this area of the triangle are also a number of nebula (the North American NGC7000, Pelican IC5070 and Gamma Cygni IC1318), however these are more imaging targets and not really visible unless at a dark sky location.

While the triangle is high overhead there will be several planets potentially in view allowing for the tree line. Stretching across the horizon from East to West will be Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Saturn. However I think at least one of then will be a quite hard to see!

The night will be moonless during our observing session and weather permitting, looks set to offer a great opportunity to see many different objects.

We look forward to seeing of many of you there as possible. Please bring a telescope if you can, the more the merrier! If not there should be at least three scopes available to take you on a tour of the sky.

As normal a go / no go announcement will be made at 5pm on Friday.

Blackheath is quite exposed and although the forecast is for a pleasant 10 degrees, please bring a coat!

We will meet at our usual spot just north of Talbot Place at 8.30pm. Talbot Place is the first left off Goffers Road after the Tea Hut. Parking is free after 6.30pm. A map of the site can be found here

http://flamsteed.info/observing/stargazing-events/blackheath-stargazing/

Flamsteed Astronomy Society
September 5, 2016 at 8:15 pm

Flamsteed Astronomy Society shared BBC News's post.

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BBC News

It's official ... the little robot Philae has been found!