The Flamsteed Astronomy Society

Solar viewing with the FAS (Mike Meynell)Solar viewing with the Flamsteed Astronomy Society. Credit: Mike Meynell, FAS Moon over the Planetarium by Mike MeynellMoon over the Peter Harrison Planetarium. Credit: Mike Meynell, FAS If you are interested in exploring new concepts and discoveries in astronomy, then join the Flamsteed Astronomy Society. The Society meets in the Museum's Lecture Theatre on the first Monday of the month during the winter, with world-class astronomers joining members to explore new concepts and discoveries. The group also have observing sessions out and about and special sessions on the Royal Observatory's 28-inch telescope.

In summer, a programme of visits and observing activities are arranged. Flamsteed members will be active during March's National Science Week and the first weekend of every month from 11.30–15.00 in the Astronomers' Garden at the Royal Observatory to offer visitors the chance to view the Sun through a solar telescope donated to the Museum by the Flamsteed Astronomy Society.

Membership of the Flamsteed Astronomy Society costs £80 for an individual membership, £120 for joint membership and £63 for concessionary membership. This includes the price of the standard Museum membership. See How to join.

Find out more on the Flamsteed Astronomy Society's website.

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Rosetta: To Catch a Comet! by Professor Mark McCaughrean

Monday 9 February 2015

19.15 | Lecture Theatre, NMM

After ten years flight, the European Space Agency’s Rosetta mission arrived at Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in August 2014, returning spectacular images of this remarkable dark, dusty, icy remnant of the birth of our Solar System. In the following three months, the Rosetta team studied and surveyed the comet in detail, culminating in the exciting deployment of the Philae lander to its surface on 12 November 2014, under the gaze of worldwide attention.

In this talk, Professor Mark McCaughrean will describe the scientific motivation for the Rosetta mission, its history, and the discoveries that have already been made in the first few months since this first ever rendezvous with, escorting of, and landing on a comet. Mark will also provide a look forward into 2015, as the comet and Rosetta make their closest approach the Sun, leading to a substantial increase in the activity of the comet and even the possible return of Philae from hibernation.

Mark works for the European Space Agency, where he is the Senior Science Advisor in the Directorate of Science and Robotic Exploration.