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September 2018

The Search for Life on Mars by Dr Peter Grindrod and Flamsteed AGM

September 17, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Peter Grindrod

One of the most fundamental questions that we can ask is whether we are alone in the universe. This talk will make the case that the best chance of finding life remains with Mars, despite ongoing exploration of our own Solar System and recent discoveries of exoplanets. In essence, studies of water and the habitability of Mars will drive and constrain the search for life in the coming decade and beyond. There is compelling evidence that the atmosphere and climate…

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October 2018

Journey to the Sun by Dr Helen Mason

October 15, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Helen Mason OBE

PLEASE CONTACT THE BOOKING OFFICE DIRECTLY ON 020 8312 6608 IF YOU WISH TO BOOK A PLACE, AS THE ONLINE BOOKING SYSTEM IS CURRENTLY NOT WORKING The Sun, our star, is now in a quiet phase of its activity cycle. Several solar space observatories have been watching the Sun over the past couple of decades: SoHO, Stereo, Hinode and the Solar Dynamics Observatory. NASA’s Parker Solar Probe was launched in August 2018 and ESA’s Solar Orbiter will be launched in…

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November 2018

Sounds Waves and the Evolution of the Most Massive Galaxies by Professor Andrew Fabian

November 12, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Andrew Fabian

The most massive galaxies lie, surrounded by hot gas, at the centres of clusters of galaxies. The gas is kept hot by energy supplied by some of the innermost gas falling onto supermassive black holes in the nuclei of the galaxies. Professor Andrew Fabian will describe how very low-frequency sound waves may be responsible for transporting the energy through the gas. Professor Andrew Fabian is a Director of Research at the Institute of Astronomy at the University of Cambridge. Past…

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December 2018

Dynamic Skies – The Story of Our Changing Cosmos & A New Revolution in Astronomy by Will Gater

December 10, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Will Gater

Across our human lifetimes, the night sky can often feel like something of a constant. Familiar stars come and go with the seasons, but their arrangement within the vast tableau of the firmament never varies. Nebulae appear today just as they were decades ago and the galaxies that we marvel at through our telescopes seem frozen within a static, obsidian, void. Yet the heavens are anything but still. We live in a whirl of celestial activity alive with the movement…

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January 2019

Tuning in to the Radio Universe from Birr Castle by Professor Peter Gallagher

January 14 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Peter Gallagher

Astronomical objects emit light across the electromagnetic spectrum, which has led astronomers to build instruments to observe the Universe from gamma-rays to radio waves. For over 70 years from the mid-1800s, the largest optical telescope in the world was at Birr Castle in Ireland, which enabled the 3rd Earl of Rosse to see the spiral arms of galaxies for the first time. Recently, a new telescope has been built at Birr to explore the Universe at radio wavelengths. In this…

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February 2019

Ancient Egyptians and their Astronomy by Dr Pauline Norris

February 11 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Pauline Norris

The Mesopotamians and Greeks are frequently credited with developing astronomy. Indeed, Babylonian cuneiform texts show that a sophisticated form of astronomy was already being practised in Mesopotamia by c. 3000 BC. Using archaeological evidence, this talk first examines why the Egyptians became the forgotten ones in the history of astronomy and what they achieved by naked eye astronomy from c. 6500 BC at Nabta Playa to the orientation of temples by the Nile built by Macedonian and Ptolemaic rulers prior…

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March 2019

Hunting for Exoplanets by Professor Chris Lintott

March 11 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Chris Lintott

The hunt for planets that orbit stars other than the Sun is a booming astronomical industry. Results from facilities all over the world, particularly from NASA’s Kepler satellite, have shown that exoplanets are common, and have given new insight into the formation of our own Solar System. The latest planet-hunting satellite, TESS (Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite), provides a chance to find planets around brighter stars. In this talk, Chris Lintott will talk about what we know – and don’t know…

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April 2019

Mercury and the BepiColombo Mission by Professor David Rothery

April 8 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor David Rothery

We now have a joint European-Japanese mission on its way to Mercury. This is BepiColombo, launched 20th October 2018, which will start doing science from Mercury orbit in spring 2026. There is one UK-led instrument on board, the Mercury Imaging X-ray Spectrometer designed at Leicester University and funded by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) and the UK Space Agency. This will map the surface distribution of at least a dozen chemical elements at reasonable resolution across the entire…

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May 2019

21st Century Telescopes by Professor Michael Merrifield

May 13 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Michael Merrifield

Astronomical discoveries and the development of technology have always gone hand in hand. Only a few years after its invention, Galileo was using the telescope to revolutionise our view of the universe. The story is the same in the 21st century, with some truly amazing developments in technology promising some massive leaps forward in our understanding of the universe. This talk will discuss how telescopes and other instrumentation have developed to-date, and what is on the drawing boards for the…

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June 2019

The Secret Rulers of the World – the Apollo Moon Landings, Conspiracy Theories and Critical Thinking Skills in a “Post-truth” World by Professor Anu Ojha

June 10 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Anu Ojha OBE

In our technologically-driven society, the number of people who believe that the Moon landings took place in the Nevada Desert and that the 9-11 attacks either never happened or were controlled demolitions, is ever increasing, even though many of these views have little acceptance within the academic community. Why is this the case? Are scientists part of the global conspiracy or are things not quite as they appear? Who cares what people choose to believe? What are the ramifications for…

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