Subject: Newsflash Lecture update, 2 New events.

Date: 24 September 2014 14:42:33 BST

Hi all,


(this is a shortened version of the last bulletin, with just the latest updates, and main items)



IAA New Season Opening Lecture 24 Sep: Latest Science Results from Rosetta, by Leo Enright

   NEWSFLASH: the latest pictures from Mars as a preview:  

The Irish Astronomical Association's Public Lecture event this evening hopes to be among the first in the world to publicly screen pictures from Mars taken this afternoon by India's historic space probe which arrived at the Red Planet early this morning.

    The Mars Orbiter Mission successfully fired its main rocket engines at 3 o'clock Irish Time this morning to ease itself into orbit around Mars.  Flight controllers hope to receive the first colour pictures from the craft sometime this afternoon. If the images arrive in time, they will be displayed on a big screen to an audience at Queen's University Belfast tonight.  See 

MAIN LECTURE: The talk by Ireland's leading science broadcaster and journalist, will reveal the latest findings from the fantastic Rosetta spacecraft at Comet C-G. As you can see from some of the images, the comet is weird - absolutely unlike anything we've seen before. And Leo usually updates his talk from the Internet just about 10 minutes before he's due to start, so it will be the VERY latest information. Not to be missed!

   The lecture is free and open to all, including free refreshments. Venue: the Bell Lecture Theatre, Physics Building, Queen's University, Belfast, at 7.30 p.m. 

   Thanks to the Astrophysics Research Centre, QUB, for help in hosting these lectures.


2. Shannonside Astronomy Club's Burren Star Party this Weekend. Sorry for the short notice, but I've only just been informed about this. See


3. Giant impacts in the early solar system: evidence from meteorites

Edward Scott, University of Hawai’i Thursday 16 October, 17.00, in TCD

   This is the John Joly lecture organised by Trinity College in Dublin. : for details see Trinity’s website:



4. Special Krauss lecture at QUB, 22 October: "Cosmic Connection: from the Big Bang to life on Earth and Beyond."

BOOKING NOW OPEN! Registration is now open for the lecture. Go to, and the top news link, beside the book snapshot 

   Taking advantage of the visit to Belfast by world famous cosmologist Lawrence Krauss (see earlier bulletin), the IAA is teaming up with the Astrophysics Research Centre at QUB (to which sincere thanks are due) to present a public lecture by him on 22 October.  

   Time 7.30 p.m., in Larmor Lecture Theatre, QUB. Free admission but by email ticket application only. 

    Lawrence Krauss is a renowned cosmologist, and author of many best-selling books such as "The Fifth Essence" (Dark Matter); "The Physics of Star Trek"; "A Universe From Nothing"; "Quintessence, The Search For Missing Mass In The Universe", "Beyond Star Trek"; "Atom: An Odyssey from the Big Bang to Life on Earth...and Beyond"; and many articles in various science journals. He is also the ONLY physicist to have received awards from all three of the major American Physics Societies. See:

   By coincidence, this story on dark matter has recently broken: Intuitively, I like it, although the science is of course totally beyond me!


5. IAA Observing Nights at Delamont Country Park

These very popular weekend observing sessions will start again this month. Delamont is well signposted off the A22 just South of Killyleagh, (North of Downpatrick) Co Down. They are suitable for anyone, but are aimed especially at beginners.

We bring our own large telescopes; bring your own if you have a portable one.

  The events work like this: If it's clear on the Friday night, the event goes ahead. If not, we try again on the Saturday night. If both are cloudy, we try again on the following weekend, same procedure. To check if it's going ahead, check the IAA website: up to 6.0 p.m. on each day. Dates for next session: Sep 26-27 If cloudy, we'll try again on the next date on the list..


6. World Space Week: October 4 to 11; UK Launch in N. Ireland!

There will be events in various parts of the province. More news on this excellent coup by Robert Hill in the next bulletin. To register your event, please follow this link: 


7. ARCHAEOASTRONOMY TRIP TO NEWGRANGE and KNOWTH, 11 October: Following the success of last years' trip, Stranmillis University College Institute of LifeLong Learning have asked me to run another one, on 11 October, but this time including a visit to the Knowth Tomb as well. It has the largest collection of Megalithic art anywhere in Europe in one single site, some of which is reckoned to be astronomical. Booking for thus very popular, non-technical trip, is via the Stranmillis website, or go direct to,456138,en.pdf and scroll down to p. 23, or pick up a brochure from Reception.

   This trip is booking quickly, so reserve your places now if you want to go!


8. ROSETTA's probe to land on Comet on 11 November. The Rosetta spacecraft continues to 'orbit' round Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, sending back more jawdropping photos. After studying the 'binary' surface in great detail, the site to land a probe on the surface has now been chosen. (the dimension quoted for the 'landing site' is actually the diameter of the whole 'head' section of the comet)

Watch out for more amazing photos.  See:

First map of Rosetta's comet: 

Errrm - freshly exposed ice, anyone?

This will be the topic for the IAA's opening lecture of the new season, by the incomparable Leo Enright.

 See item 1 above:



Dragon arrives at ISS 

Rapid view of space images of Earth 

Origin of Uranus and Neptune

Solar explosions in a computer

Winds in infant Solar System

Diamond string leads to space  The graphic of the orbits is wrong - the inner orbit is not geostationary. A geostationary orbit is achieved at a distance just under 3 Earth diameters from the planet.

Finding hints of gravity waves in stars

MAVEN enters Martian orbit 



10. TWITTER: Follow the IAA on Twitter: The account is now operational again as before: at signIaaAstro.


11. JOINING the IRISH ASTRONOMICAL ASSOCIATION is easy: This link downloads a Word document to join the IAA.

    If you are a UK taxpayer, please tick the 'gift-aid' box, as that enables us to reclaim the standard rate of tax on your subscription, at no cost to youYou can also make a donation via Paypal if you wish: just click on the 'Donate' button.  See also



Clear skies,

Terry Moseley

mob: (0044) (0) 7979 300842

I'm now back on Twitter (occasionally - I don't have enough time!), after some temporary hiccups: at signterrymoseley2


Terry Moseley