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IRISH ASTRONOMERS MEET IN ARMAGH

Armagh Observatory, 3 September 2001
The Astronomical Science Group of Ireland (ASGI) meets in Armagh on Friday 7 September, for its autumn meeting to discuss new astronomical results obtained by Irish astronomers working both in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

The ASGI was formed in 1974 to provide a forum for the Irish astronomical community to meet on a regular basis and to exchange results and new information. Meetings are held twice a year, usually in the spring and the autumn, and alternate between venues in Northern Ireland and the South. The Group's membership includes professional astronomers working in the principal universities and observatories throughout Ireland, and also amateur groups and associations, such as the Irish Astronomical Society, the Irish Astronomical Association, and Astronomy Ireland.

Today's meeting is hosted by the Armagh Observatory, which currently Chairs the ASGI, and takes place in the Rotunda Theatre, the Trian, Armagh. The full programme of professional talks includes those by external speakers Dr Mike Burton (University of New South Wales, Australia) on new results from sub-millimetre telescopes located in the frozen continent of Antarctica, and Dr Andrew Newsam (Liverpool John Moores University) on the exciting possibilities to use modern robotic telescopes to beam astronomical data and other information directly into schools via the internet, for teaching and educational purposes. His talk is entitled "The Cosmos in the Classroom - Telescopes and the National Schools Observatory".

Other speakers include Professor Evert Meurs, the Director of Dunsink Observatory, Dublin, who will present new results on X-ray "runaway" stars; and Dr Michael Smith (Armagh), who will describe the effects of catastrophic shocks in star forming regions and in the jets and supersonic outflows surrounding young stars and protostellar disks.

Titania The early hours of Saturday 8 September also provide an opportunity to witness a rare and quite exceptional astronomical event. This is the eclipse, or occultation, of a bright star by Titania, the largest moon of the planet Uranus. Titania is about 1580 km across, and its shadow will sweep across Central America, the North Atlantic and Ireland at about 45,000 miles per hour shortly before 3.00 am local time. Dr Apostolos Christou (Armagh) will speak on the science opportunites provided by this rare event, and will describe how he and others hope to observe the phenomenon, weather permitting, from a dark observing site near Armagh.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John McFarland or Mark Bailey at the Armagh Observatory (Tel.: 028-3752-2928, FAX: 028-3752-7174); e-mail jmf@star.arm.ac.uk or meb@star.arm.ac.uk. For Armagh Observatory details, see http://www.arm.ac.uk/

 * Programme of Meeting

Last Revised: 2001 September 5th
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