Friday, 19 June 2009

Event Updates, NLCs


Hi all,

Two updates: 1. Change of times at An Creagan / Beaghmore event.

2. Change of speakers at Solarfest

See updated details below.

1. SOLSTICE ASTROARCHAEOLOGY, Sunday 21 June, 14.00.

To mark the summer solstice, the Irish Astronomical Association and the Ulster Archaeological Society have organised an event at the An Creagan Centre in Co Tyrone, including an escorted visit to the nearby famous Beaghmore Stone Circles and Alignments. This is part of the UAS's public "Archaeology Days" in June, and also falls neatly into the International Year of Astronomy events.

   There will be an exhibition of the amazing IYA 2009 'From the Earth To The Universe' posters; telescopes for solar observing if the sky is clear, lectures on astroarchaeology in general, and on the Beaghmore site in particular, by Lorraine Bourke of the Environment and Heritage Service, and Terry Moseley of the IAA. This will be followed by a visit to the Beaghmore site, which is one of the most fascinating, enigmatic and beautiful of all the neolithic sites in Ireland. There are many stone circles, of various sizes; some are in pairs; some are open and some are 'filled'; some have associated cairns; and many have associated stone rows or alignments, many of which are aligned in the general direction of the Summer Solstice Sunrise.

    The site is maintained by EHS, and you won't need welly boots, but it is an exposed site, in the foothills of the Sperrin Mountains, so bring appropriate footwear and clothing for the expected weather conditions - whether wind, rain or sun, or all three!

   We would expect to be finished by about 5.30 or 6 p.m.

   The lectures will start at 1.30 p.m., but you are invited to join the rest of us there beforehand for lunch at the An Creagan Centre at 12.00, BUT YOU MUST LET ME KNOW BY RETURN if you want to attend that lunch, so that we can reserve a seat for you.

  The event itself is free, but you'll have to pay for your own lunch.

   The An Creagan Centre is just off the main A505 Cookstown to Omagh road, just under halfway from Cookstown to Omagh. If going from Cookstown direction it's just past Creagan crossroads (junction with the B46), on the right, and is signposted.

   If you have not yet booked, but would like to attend, please let me know by return if you intend to come:

A: for the lunch, and

B: for the event itself.

Please let me know ASAP!

2. SOLARFEST 2009, 10:30 - 17:00, 20TH JUNE


Dunsink Observatory is just off the M50 on the N3, just on the city side of the N3/M50 roundabout.

    IFAS in conjunction with Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (DIAS) are organising a one-day event in Dublin to discuss Solar Astronomy. The event is called Solarfest 2009. IFAS is very grateful for the support of DIAS for sponsoring the event, therefore making attendance FREE to all. Speakers are Deirdre Kelleghan (IFAS), Sally Russell (RAS), Eamonn Scullion (Armagh Observatory, Kevin Smith (Practical Astronomer Magazine), Nick Howes (Astronomy Now Magazine) and Michael O'Connell (MAC). Weather permitting, we will have solar observing sessions also.

    A more detailed programme of the event will be available in the next few days, however, the day will commence at approx 10:30am and finish at 5pm. Spaces are limited to 60 seats so if you are interested in attending this event, please drop an e-mail to Michael or Deirdre Kelleghan, asap so that a seat can be reserved for you at this invitation-only event.

NB: BRing your own picnic lunch!!!

Here's the latest programme:

10:30 - 11:00   Registration
11:00 - 11:30   Kevin Smith (Practical Astronomer Magazine) - "Enjoying the Splendor of Our Nearest Star"
11:30 - 12:00   Tea/Coffee + Solar Observing  
12:00 - 12:30   Deirdre Kelleghan (IFAS) - "Experiments in Solar Sketching"
12:30 - 13:00   Sally Russell (FRAS) - "Half Hours with the Sun - A Solar Sketchbook"
13:00 - 14:00   Picnic + Solar Observing
14:00 - 14:30   Observatory Tour
14:30 - 15:00   Eamon Scullion (Armagh Observatory) - "Solar Physics: Past and Present"
15:00 - 15:45   Nick Howes (Astronomy Now Magazine) - "Three Sides to the Sun - Practical Set-ups and Imaging of our Nearest Star"
15:45 - 16:15   Tea/Coffee + Solar Observing
16:15 - 16:45   Michael O'Connell (MAC) - "Eclipse of the Century"
16:45 - Closing Address 
    More info can be seen on the IFAS website here:

3. NLCs.  Many of you saw the NLCs that were visible as I was sending out the last email alert! There have been more since, so keep your eyes peeled for clear skies along the N horizon!

Happy Solstice!

Clear Skies,

Terry Moseley

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