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The Philae Lander

Dr McKenna-Lawlor

by Dr Susan McKenna-Lawlor, Maynooth University)

Monday 30th November 2015 (20.00 hrs).
Venue: Ely House, 8 Ely Place, Dublin 2. Time: 8 pm. All welcome, free event.

Dr McKenna-Lawlor will speak on her involvement with the current Rosetta Mission to comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, and with its lander module Philae.

Please see more details.

Stars, Comets and Mince Pies

Friday December 11th 2015 (19.00 hrs) at Dunsink Observatory, Dublin 15.

The IAS is organising this special social event, for amateur astronomers, to mark the festive season. This year it will include a talk on the "Trials and Tribulations of Amateur Astronomy" by Michael O'Connell and a poetry reading with a focus on the night sky by poet and IAS vice president Peter Denman. Weather permitting, there will also be some time for a little observing.

Light refreshments will be available including mince pies and plenty of chat before a warm log fire. The night is for amateur astronomers and their friends. The IAS would specially like to extend the invitation to our many friends in IFAS Clubs and in the various astronomy groups. Most of all it is hoped this event will be an opportunity for like minded people to meet old friends and make new ones and we look forward to seeing you there.

To help us establish numbers in advance please book tickets for Stars, Comets and Mince Pies (no charge).

IAS & IFAS Astrophotography Exhibition

astro photo

Calling all Astrophotographers. Here is an opportunity for astrophotographers in Ireland to showcase their work to the public. The IAS and IFAS have organised a special exhibition to showcase the work of Irish backyard astronomers. The exhibition is taking place in the Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin, Dublin from 2nd - 21st February 2016. See more details.

You can submit your images and relevant details to skyimagebotanic@gmail.com.

DIAS 75th Anniversary

The Dublin Institute of Advanced Study is celebrating its 75th Anniversary in 2015. They have a programme of special lectures in November and December 2015. Especially interesting to astronomers are those on Relativity (this is the 100th anniversary of General Relativity).

Note that while free, advance booking is required.

More information and how to book.

Total Lunar Eclipse of 28 September 2015 was well seen by most

lunar eclipse

We were treated to a fine total lunar eclipse.

The photo of the eclipse was taken by J. O'Neill, at 02.21 UT, with a 106 mm refractor at f/8. This was 10 min after the start of totality.

The next total lunar eclipse visible from Ireland occurs in July 2018.

Members please report any observations, drawings or photographs to our Director of Observations, Liam Smyth for inclusion in the next issue of Orbit.

IAS Membership Sub due

Membership renewals are due from the 1st August 2015. Please note that the rates have increased this year. This is the first increase in many years and is needed to cover increased postage costs and rental fees for the hall for our lectures.

Comet Lovejoy 2014 Q2 near Polaris

In late May, the comet passes about 1° from the pole star Polaris. Remarkably, it is still visible (as of 23 May) in binoculars, at just below mag 8. It is an excellent time to image the comet with a fixed camera, as trailing would be slight.

The photo (below) of the comet is by John O'Neill and was taken on 9-10 January 2015 (cropped; 200 mm camera lens). The drawing of 19 January 2015 is by Deirdre Kelleghan, with details appended.

Please report any observations, drawings or photographs to our Director of Observations, Liam Smyth.

comet lovejoy

comet lovejoy

Petition for Ireland to join the European Southern Observatory

VLT Please consider signing the petition in favour of Ireland joining the European Southern Observatory.

Photo of the Very Large Telecope in Chile, courtesy of E.S.O.

What's on?

2015 Nov 30 Talk in Ely House (by Dr Susan McKenna-Lawlor).

2015 Dec 11 Stars, Comets and Mince Pies (in Dunsink Obs).

2015 Dec 18 Dublin Sidewalk Astronomy at Sandymount.

2015 Dec 19 Dublin Sidewalk Astronomy at Clontarf.

Please see EVENTS for more details and further events.

If you would like to attend Dunsink Observatory Public Open Nights that are supported by the IAS, you can find more details at Dunsink Observatory. These recommenced in October 2015.

Malahide Community School is starting an astronomy course.

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