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National Maritime Museum

SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom

September 2017

Sputnik: Punctuating the 20th Century by Doug Millard and 18th AGM

September 18, 2017 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Doug Millard The Soviet Union’s launching of the world’s first artificial satellite – Sputnik – in 1957 delivered on the long-held expectation that one day we would enter the realm of outer space. That this was achieved by the USSR surprised many and augured an upheaval in the West’s perception of itself that has echoes for the present. This talk looks at Sputnik’s origins: the land whence it came, the people, the culture, the politics and the technology that gave…

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October 2017

Earth’s Aurora and Magnetosphere by Dr Robert Fear

October 16, 2017 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Robert Fear The Earth’s aurora or northern (and southern) lights are one of the most beautiful manifestations of the Sun’s influence on the Earth. They arise as a result of the interaction between the solar wind, the magnetosphere (the region of space surrounding Earth), and the upper atmosphere. Our understanding of both the aurora and magnetosphere has transformed from humble beginnings in the early 20th century to the modern day, yet many questions remain and they are both active…

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November 2017

The Far Future of the Sun, Earth and Life in the Solar System by Professor Ian Crawford

November 13, 2017 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Ian Crawford This talk will describe the long-term evolution of the Sun as a main-sequence star, then as a red-giant and asymptotic giant branch star, and the implications for life on Earth and other planets and moons of the solar system as the Sun evolves. Ian Crawford is Professor of Planetary Science and Astrobiology at Birkbeck College, University of London. His research mostly lies in the field space exploration, especially lunar exploration, which includes both the remote sensing of the lunar surface and…

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December 2017

Searching for the Most Distant Quasars by Dr Daniel Mortlock

December 11, 2017 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Daniel Mortlock Quasars - really the thermal glow from ultra-hot gas falling into a super-massive black hole at the centres of an otherwise ordinary galaxy - are amongst the brightest astronomical objects known, and so can be seen to great distances of billions of light years. The finite speed of light means that the most distant currently known quasars are also seen as they were when the Universe was about 5% of its current age (i.e., less than a…

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January 2018

Smashing Physics: Exploring the Energy Frontier by Dr Jon Butterworth

January 8, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Jon Butterworth This talk will explore our current state of knowledge of particle physics, the so called “Standard Model”, completed by the discovery of the Higgs Boson in 2012. This gives us a map of the invisible world of subatomic physics. But what does the map reveal, and what lies beyond its limits? Jon Butterworth is a physics professor at University College London works on the Atlas experiment at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider. He won the Chadwick prize of…

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February 2018

Exoplanets by Professor Giovanna Tinetti

February 5, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Giovanna Tinetti The Earth is special to us – it’s our home. But is it really special as a planet? Every star we can see in the night sky is likely to be orbited by planets. There are probably a thousand billion planets in our galaxy alone. In about twenty years, more than 3700 “exoplanets” have been discovered in distant solar systems. There are planets completing a revolution around their mother star in less than one day, as well…

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March 2018

How to Measure the Universe by Dr Andrew Pontzen

March 12, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Andrew Pontzen Our Universe is, at the very least, 100 billion light years across. But where does this number come from? How can we measure the distance to even the nearest star when we've never visited? And, at a time when cosmologists reckon our Universe may be just one of many in a giant multiverse, will we ever truly grasp the magnitude of what's out there? Join us on a voyage into the farthest reaches of space and time.…

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April 2018

The Volatile Universe by Professor Tim O’Brien

April 9, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Tim O'Brien To the casual observer, the heavens may seem rather unchanging: the steady procession of the constellations as the Earth spins on its path around the Sun, punctuated by the wandering of the planets, the regular cycle of the Moon and the occasional spectacular appearance of a comet. To the more discerning observer though, the sky is far from steady. Indeed with the advantage of modern technology, the Universe is remarkably volatile. In this talk, Tim will discuss…

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May 2018

ROG Instruments, Past and Present by Tom Kerss

May 14, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Tom Kerss

For the first time in over 60 years, the ROG is operating instruments for the purpose of gathering and distributing scientific data. With the installation of a new astrographic platform this spring, Tom will look back at how past projects and the telescopes used to undertake them have inspired the future of astronomy in Greenwich, and how cutting-edge techniques will challenge our expectations of what is possible in our modern urban setting. Tom Kerss is a member of the ROG’s…

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June 2018

Edmond Halley; astronomer, geophysicist, adventurer and Astronomer Royal by Dr Allan Chapman

June 4, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Allan Chapman Edmond Halley is one of astronomy's most fascinating and colourful figures. A Londoner born and bred, his genius saw him elected FRS at 22. His career spanned celestial cartography, an Oxford Professorship, a daring explorer-captaincy in the Royal Navy, service as a diplomat, and Astronomer Royal. Meteorology, geology, and the ancient, pre-human history of the Earth were early subjects of original research for him. And he possessed great charm, humour, and a love of fun. I suspect…

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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, 2019 @ 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, 2019 @ 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, 2019 @ 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, 2019 @ 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, 2019 @ 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, 2019 @ 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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September 2019

A Planet Not Our Own: The Strange Worlds of Exoplanets by Dr Elizabeth Tasker and Flamsteed AGM

September 16, 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Elizabeth Tasker

We thought we understood the planets of our Solar System until we discovered new worlds beyond our own Sun. Planets the size of Jupiter with orbits completed in Earth days, planets with two suns in the sky and others with seas of tar or endless oceans. How did these worlds form, how did we find them and could any of these discoveries be at all like our own Earth? Elizabeth Tasker is an astrophysicist and science communicator at Japan’s space…

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October 2019

Catching Gravitational Waves and Light from Colliding Stars by Professor Ofer Lahav

October 7, 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Prof Ofer Lahav

Einstein’s gravitational waves and light produced by the same event – a pair of neutron stars – were detected for the first time in August 2017, an extraordinary moment in the history of physics. The lecture will explain what gravitational waves are, and how they were discovered by the LIGO collaboration, initially for systems of binary black holes. We will then describe how optical flashes were detected in the case of the binary neutron star merger by the Dark Energy…

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November 2019

Gaia – Mapping the Milky Way from Space, by Prof. Gerry Gilmore

November 11, 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Astrometry from space has unique advantages over ground-based observations: it offers all-sky coverage, while the relatively stable and temperature- and gravity-invariant operating environment delivers precision, accuracy and sample volume several orders of magnitude greater than ground-based results. Even more importantly, absolute astrometry is possible. The European Space Agency Cornerstone mission Gaia is delivering that promise. Gaia provides 5-D phase space measurements – 3 spatial coordinates and two space motions in the plane of the sky, for a representative sample of…

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Curator-guided Tour of RMG’s The Moon Exhibition

November 18, 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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The Moon Exhibition

The Royal Museum Greenwich exhibition The Moon has been attracting critical acclaim. It charts the cultural and scientific story of our relationship with the Moon, featuring more than 180 objects, including artefacts from Apollo 11. Flamsteed members have a unique opportunity to see this exhibition, guided by one of the RMG curators responsible for this excellent show. Places are limited and only open to Flamsteed members.    

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December 2019

Special anniversary talks: The life and work of John Flamsteed – and the founding of the Flamsteed Astronomy Society

December 9, 2019 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Louise Devoy, Dr Rebekah Higgitt and Emma-Louise Hill This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Flamsteed Astronomy Society and the 300th year since the death of John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal. Our special anniversary lecture will begin with a talk by some of the founders of the Society who will give us their very entertaining take on how it all started. For our main lecture, we have no fewer than three guest speakers who will talk about…

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January 2020

Dragonfly: Exploring Saturn’s Moon Titan by Rotorcraft by Dr Elizabeth Turtle and Dr Ralph Lorenz

January 22 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dragonfly

Dr Elizabeth Turtle Dr Ralph Lorenz PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS LECTURE WILL BE TAKING PLACE ON A WEDNESDAY EVENING. Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, is a world with a dense atmosphere, abundant complex organic material on its icy surface, and a liquid-water ocean in its interior. The joint NASA-ESA Cassini-Huygens mission revealed Titan to be surprisingly Earth-like, with active geological processes and opportunities for organic material to have mixed with liquid water on its surface in the past. These attributes make…

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February 2020

Finding Life in the Universe by Dr Sarah Rugheimer

February 10 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Dr Sarah Rugheimer This planet we call home is teeming with life from the very depths of the ocean where no light penetrates, to small brine layers between ice crystals and near-boiling iridescent waters of Yellowstone. As we discover the vast diversity of extremophile life on Earth, our minds can only begin to imagine the possibilities for life to exist on other planets in the Universe. In this talk, Dr Sarah Rugheimer will present how we are going to characterize…

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March 2020

The Physics of Supernovae by Prof Ian Howarth

March 9 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
National Maritime Museum, SE10 9NF
Greenwich, London SE10 9NF United Kingdom
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Professor Ian Howarth This talk will be a gentle introduction to the physics of 'core collapse' supernovae (think pictures, not equations!). Working from a largely historical perspective, Professor Ian Howarth will outline how we know that these are the end-points of the evolution of the most massive stars, and their role in generating most of the heavy elements that exist in the nearby universe. Biography Having concluded that choosing an interesting subject was more important to him than a ‘marketable’…

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