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From: TerryMoselat signaol.com
Date: 6 May 2007 22:09:6 May 2007
Subject: Sky at Night 2nite, Meade/Malin Event, Midsummer event

Hi all,

1. SKY AT NIGHT:  The special programme of the BBC Party for Sir Patrick
Moore's 50th anniversary of the Sky at Night will be broadcast tonight
(Sun, 6/7 May) at 24.10. You might even glimpse yours truly in it, as I
was interviewed, but as there were many many more eminent people there
than me, I may have been cut! However, there may be further broadcasts


Thanks to Armagh Planetarium, who are sponsoring a special lecture tour
by world-famous astrophotographer David Malin - "The Man Who Colours
Stars". Working with the 150" AAT and the UK Schmidt Telescope at Siding
Springs in Australia, David Malin developed special new techniques, such
as unsharp masking, now universally used, and took astronomical
photographs which were never equalled, let alone surpassed, until the
HST was fixed. David will be visiting Galway, Limerick and Cork as part
of this tour. Contact Prof Mike Redfern at NUIG (
mike.redfernat signnuigalway.ie ); Tony O'Hanlon 065 689 2221,
or tony.ohanlonat signvitalograph.ie ), or Dr Niall Smith at CIT (
nsmithat signcit.ie ) respectively, for further details.

The IAA has teamed up with Armagh Planetarium and Meade
Telescopes/BCF/Telescope House to lay on an extra unmissable special
event to coincide with David Malin's lectures at Armagh Planetarium. The
Planetarium will open at 11.30 a.m., when David Malin will give a
SPECIAL, extra, lecture to IAA members and other amateur astronomers:
this will go into more detail about the techniques and the astronomy, so
this is an event not to be missed. Admission by ticket only, which must
be pre-booked with the Planetarium.

And running from 1.30 until closing time at about 5 p.m., the IAA has
arranged, through Dr Andy McCrea of North Down Telescopes, and
BCF/Telescope House in London, a special MEADE TELESCOPE EVENT. Star of
the show will be the new 16" Lightbridge Dobsonian - the first one in
Ireland. There will also be the latest Meade LX200, & lots of smaller
items including binoculars.  Peter Gallon of BCF/Telescope House will be
there to talk about all the latest products & equipment. In addition,
members of the IAA will be demonstrating some of their own telescopes &
discussing the pros and cons of each type, and how to use them & get the
best from them.

There will be a special discount price on the 16" Lightbridge, and you
can haggle on other items! 

David Malin's public lectures, at a more general level, will be at 2.30
and 3.30, and also MUST be pre-booked with Armagh Planetarium. Tickets
for the David Malin lectures are £3 each.  Please specify to the
Planetarium which lecture you intend to go to: 11.30 (for astronomers),
or 2.30 or 3.30, for the public.

N.B. Normal admission charges to the Planetarium will apply that day,
except for those IAA members who are bringing telescopes for the
Meade/Telescope event. This admission charge will admit you to the
exhibition area, or to the exhibition area + a show in the stardome,  or
to the exhibition area plus the Mail lecture, depending on what you want
- different charges apply. The £3 charge is for the David Malin
lectures, and you MUST pre-book to reserve a place at any of the Malin
lectures. Further details from Armagh Planetarium on 028 37524725, or

BBQ, Sunday 24 June.

Our midsummer event this year is an extra special treat! Those of you
who have met or heard Ash McFadden, the Greencastle Planetarium Director
and chief rocket launcher, will know that a visit there during the
summer for a show and watching or taking part in the rocket launching is
a real treat. (BTW, these are REAL rockets, not compressed air or water.
The big one can go up to over 20,000 feet, although most launches are
'only' to about 2-3,000 feet.) The fun part is the egg-lofting
competition, whereby you make your own rocket, from a kit which you buy
from the Planetarium, and design it so that it will launch, and land
with a parachute, a standard raw egg (supplied). The rocket that goes
highest, and lands the egg intact afterwards, wins. If by any chance the
weather is too bad for rocket launching, which is VERY unlikely, Ash has
promised us a free laser light show (in which he specialises) in the

Well, we're doing even better than that: we'll have a special show in
the Planetarium, plus it will be exclusively open for us that day, and
after the rocket launching that afternoon, Ash has invited us all to
have our midsummer BBQ either at the Planetarium or at his house
afterwards! Ash lives in a lovely location overlooking Kinnagoe Bay in
Inishowen, a few miles from Greencastle, and has great outdoor BBQ

The Planetarium show will be at 13.00; that will be followed by the
rocket launching etc. To allow time to look around the Planetarium and
the Maritime Museum, of which it is part, we will aim to meet there no
later than noon. More details on that later.

Our normal BBQ rules apply - no charge, you just bring ALL your own
stuff for eating, drinking etc: we + Ash will supply the heat for the

There is of course a charge for the Planetarium show, and places are
limited by the size of the Planetarium, so you MUST book a place by
sending a cheque for £7.00 payable to the IAA to our Treasurer, John
Hall, 3 Vaddegan Avenue, Newtownabbey, Co Antrim, BT36 7SP, ASAP!

TRANSPORT: A limited number of seats will be available on a
special minibus from Belfast to Greencastle that day. There is no actual
charge for the minibus, but a minimum donation of £10 per person is
required to cover fuel costs and a donation to Robert Campbell's school,
who will once again be supplying the minibus. If you want to book a seat
on that minibus, send a cheque for £17 (i.e. bus + admission charge) to
John Hall, as above. You may of course make your own way there if you

NB, It's not a big planetarium, and places are limited, so book now -
first come, first served!

E&OE.  Terry Moseley


Last Revised: 2007 May 8th
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