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82ndAnnual General Meeting of the I.A.S. (meeting also has extra talks)

Monday May 27th 2019 (19:30).
Venue: Ely House, 8 Ely Place, Dublin 2.

All members requested to attend.

On the same night: Back to Basics.

Would you like to discover how to begin a fascinating hobby? Three speakers from the society at our monthly meeting will give short practical talks on how to get started in astronomy:

John Flannery - Getting familiar with the night sky
Mick McCreary - Using a telescope for the first time
John Dolan - First steps with night sky photography

Great opportunity to learn basic skills and join the Irish Astronomical Society. We offer involvement and support to those wishing to learn about the night sky. T his is an informal friendly meeting for the public and society members. Novice and more experienced amateur astronomers will be present and they are always generous with their time to help beginners.


Images of Starlight

IAS Astrophotography Exhibition continues!

Cahersiveen Library, Co Kerry

15 May to 15 June 2019

The IAS (with IFAS help) has a very special touring exhibition to showcase the work of Irish backyard astronomers astrophotography. Splendid images of the Stars, the Galaxy and the Solar System are featured.

The exhibition first took place in the Botanic Gardens, Dublin in February 2016 before moving to a number of venues around the country. The display was completely updated with brand new images in late 2018.



Sky-High 2019

skyhigh 2019

Our yearly almanac Sky-High 2019 is now available. It is now in its 27th year.

Sky-High has articles on upcoming events regarding Planets, Asteroids, Comets, Meteors, Transit of Mercury and Variable Stars. It has a detailed Diary tailored for Irish Observers. It includes a handy table of sunset and twilight times as well as Moon phases. It also features a number of guest articles.

Please see more details, that includes information in obtaining a copy.

Please note that paid-up IAS members are mailed a free copy.

21 Feb: There is now online resources - Sky-High Extra.


Members observe Total Solar Eclipse of 9 March 2016 from Indonesia

solar eclipse

Angela O'Connell reports:

A view of totality from the MS Volendam, on the starboard bow, mid-ship. We were located in the Makassar Strait between the islands of Borneo and Sulawesi, about 1½ degrees south of the equator. The sea was surprisingly calm and the ship was steady allowing those of us with tripods to relax and concentrate on the spectacle which lasted 2 min 46 sec approximately. Photo (at left) taken 08:34 (local time), 9th March 2016 with Lumix GM5 on automatic night scene setting.


solar eclipse

Terry Moseley reports:

The solar corona during totality. Photo taken 08:36 (local time), 9th March 2016 with Canon Power Shot with x42 zoom.

The next total solar eclipse occurs in August 2017, only touching land in USA.



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.



Comet Lovejoy 2014 Q2 near Polaris

In late May 2015, the comet passed about 1° from the pole star Polaris. Remarkably, it was still visible (as of 23 May) in binoculars, at just below mag 8. It was 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


What's on?

2019 May 27 IAS AGM and Talks, Ely House.

Please see EVENTS/opposite 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.

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