Friday, 3 May 2013

Sir PM, Meteors, CERN @ QUB, Aliens, Eclipse, Galileo, Solar Day, BBQ, ASGI, Web

Hi all,
1. Sir Patrick Moore Commemoration Events 1:
I was again honoured to be invited to the official BBC commemoration for Sir Patrick Moore, at New Broadcasting House on 1 May. The event was hosted and opened by the Director General of the BBC, Lord Hall of Birkenhead.
   The celebration of his life and work commenced with a presentation by Jane Fletcher, the Producer of the Sky At Night (SAN) from 2002 to the present, with many humorous and telling anecdotes and excerpts. Dr John Mason, one of his closest friends and colleagues, was interviewed extensively about his experiences with the great man.
   A very amusing episode was the reading of the initial correspondence between the BBC and PM, the latter's part being read, in character, by John Culshaw, well known comedian and impressionist.
   Some of the other TV highlights of his career were also shown including his appearances on Morecombe and Wise, Have I got News For You, etc, and of course his legendary live performance on the xylophone.
   The current astronomer Royal, Lord Rees of Ludlow, FRS, OM, then spoke about Patrick's influence on him and other professional astronomers: some of the top people in the profession owed their initial interest in the subject to Sir P.
  There followed an excerpt from one of Patrick's light operas, the intermezzo from Perseus and Andromeda, which he wrote in 1975 (and of which I'm privileged to have an original copy).
   John Culshaw then presented a very unofficial history of the SAN, in the inimitable style of PM himself. No-one can quite 'do' Patrick, or course, but John gets close.
   Dr Brian May was unable to be present, but a very sincere and touching recorded tribute from him was played.
   A professional xylophonist, Owen Gunnell, then played a piece which Patrick had composed for the instrument: "Penguin Parade"
   Pieter Morpurgo, one of the longest serving producers of the SAN (1981 - 1998) recalled some of the highlights of the 'Early Broadcast Years' from 1957 to 1987. Programmes were broadcast live then, as I well remember from my own performance, so very few full recordings remain. But I glimpsed a brief shot of Dr Eric Lindsay and Armagh Observatory.
    Dr Chris Lintott, current co-presenter, then recalled some of the highlights and funny incidents of the later years of the programme.
    Finally Prof Brian Cox gave a very personal and amusing tribute: he of course had appeared on the 700th SAN programme, and they had both appeared on Stargazing Live.
   Afterwards we were all treated to drinks and canapés in the BBC's 'Media Cafe', where I met many many old friends from all over the UK, many of them introduced through Patrick of course. I won't name-drop, but probably every well-known GB astronomer you can think of was there.
   However, just to give a flavour of the esteem in which he was held: Sir Arnold Wolfendale, the previous A.R., was present, as was the A.R. for Scotland, Prof John Brown, and our own Dame Prof Jocelyn Bell Burnell, past President of the RAS, and past President of the Institute of Physics, who has lectured to the IAA on several occasions: I was sitting beside her in the auditorium, and she recalled highlights of some of her appearances on the SAN. Also there were Prof Alan Fitzsimmons from QUB, who guested on the programme many times, and Lord Rosse from Birr Castle, which of course featured in several programmes, but I didn't see anyone else there from Ireland.
    A brief account of the event can be read here:
2. Sir Patrick Moore Commemoration Events 2: Now the good news; many people have been asking me about whether a public commemoration event for PM will be held. Up until now I have been unable to say either yes or no. But I can now reveal that there definitely WILL be one, later this year, in Chichester, Sussex (close to PM's home in Selsey). The exact date and venue are still to be confirmed, but as soon as they are definite, I will let you know.
   The event will be free, but in view of the expected demand, admission will be by ticket only: details of that as soon as available.
   However, the event will have to be paid for, so any individuals or societies who would like to do some fund-raising for the event should contact me, and I'll give you details of how to proceed.
3. Eta Aquarids: This meteor shower will peak at about 02.00 on the morning of 6 May, with no moonlight interfering, but the radiant is low in the SE morning twilight, especially in the N party of the island. Rates in an ideal site and conditions can reach 40 per hour, but we never see anything like that rate from Ireland.
4. CERN at QUB:  An exhibition and series of talks about CERN, the LHC, Higgs Boson etc, will be held at QUB on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday of next week. Admission is free, but by ticket only. Unfortunately the first event is already booked out. Details at:,384694,en.html#d.en.384694
5. ALIENS AT ARMAGH PLANETARIUM: May Bank Holiday W/END. For details
6. Annual Solar Eclipse, Australia, 9-10 May. Following last year's Total Solar Eclipse, North Queensland will have an annular eclipse on 9 May (10 May local time). The track starts in Western Australia, moves into Northern Territory, then across Far North Queensland and out into the Pacific, where it crosses a few small islands. The track crosses that of last November's TSE in a remote area near the base of the Cape York peninsula. … Maximum duration on the mainland is 4m 40s, and longest on any of the islands is 5m 53s. Cairns will see an 89% partial eclipse.
7. GALILEO: "THE LIFE OF GALILEO", by Bertolt Brecht, in a new version by David Hare, will be performed by the Greenwood Players in St. George's Church, Belfast, 7.30pm, Saturday 11th May 2013.
This is part of the 14th Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival, 2nd--12th May 2013.
For tickets, see
For poster, see
For further information, see

We'll be holding another of these very popular solar days at Carnfunnock Country Park on the A2 Antrim Coast Road just a few miles N of Larne, on Saturday 15 June, 2 - 5 p.m. Solar telescopes, the biggest collection of sundials in Ireland, an astronomy exhibition, and of course the mobile planetarium with shows for young and old. More details later.
9. IAA MIDSUMMER BBQ: This will be held immediately after our Solar day at Carnfunnock CP on Saturday 15 June: see above;
10. DIAS ANNUAL REPORT: The IAA, IAS and others get a mention, but perhaps our full contribution to the public outreach at Dunsink could be more fully acknowledged.
11: The ASGI Summer Meeting will be held in Trinity College, Dublin on Friday June 7th 2013. This date and venue have been chosen to coincide with the visit of the European Space Expo to TCD (see for more details). This is a professional level meeting, but members of affiliated societies, such as the IAA, are welcome to attend. But be warned: most of it is heavy stuff!

13. BCO: For information on events at Blackrock Castle Observatory, including the summer Space Camp, see
14. TWITTER: Follow the IAA on Twitter:  @IaaAstro

15. BBC THINGS TO DO WEBSITE: See the forthcoming IAA events on Look under 'Countryfile'.
16. JOINING the IRISH ASTRONOMICAL ASSOCIATION is easy: This link downloads a Word document to join the IAA. If you are a UK taxpayer, please tick the 'gift-aid' box, as that enables us to reclaim the standard rate of tax on your subscription, at no cost to youYou can also make a donation via Paypal if you wish: just click on the 'Donate' button.  See also
Clear skies,
Terry Moseley
Twitter: @terrymoseley2


Anonymous said...

The bands have carabiner clips attached to them to allow them to readily clip on to the handles.

Also visit my weblog :: Top

Anonymous said...

Wow, fantastic blog layout! How long have you been
blogging for? you made blogging look easy.
The overall look of your website is wonderful, let alone the content!

my weblog ...

Anonymous said...

[url=]グッチ 長財布[/url]

[url=]ルイヴィトン 修理[/url]

[url=]ルイヴィトン バッグ[/url]

[url=]グッチ ストール[/url]

[url=]バーバリー 時計[/url]

Anonymous said...

If you are going for best contents like I do, simply pay
a visit this website everyday for the reason
that it offers quality contents, thanks

Feel free to visit my page ... refinishing hardwood floors

Anonymous said...

Muscle mass doesn't really burn up that a lot calories. It is your organs like coronary heart and liver that burn the most. The one pound of additional muscle mass mass burns fifty calories' is a myth.

my site - muscle building weight lifting exercises

Anonymous said...

Hello there! Do you use Twitter? I'd like to follow you if that would be ok. I'm
absolutely enjoying your blog and look forward to new updates.

My page; Ripped Muscle Extreme

Anonymous said...

I like the valuable information you provide in your articles.
I'll bookmark your blog and check again here regularly. I'm quite certain I will learn many new stuff
right here! Best of luck for the next!

my web-site: Beta FOrce REview

Anonymous said...

Very rapidly this web site will be famous amid all blogging visitors, due to it's pleasant posts

My weblog - Green tone pro review\ Green tone pro reviews

Anonymous said...

Awesome blog! Do you have any recommendations for aspiring writers?
I'm planning to start my own blog soon but I'm a little lost on everything.
Would you recommend starting with a free platform like Wordpress or go for a paid option?
There are so many options out there that I'm totally confused .. Any ideas? Appreciate it!

Look at my blog :: exterior paint sprayer

Anonymous said...

Good article. I certainly appreciate this website.
Keep it up!

Look into my site ... colon cleansing

Anonymous said...

I've been surfing online more than 3 hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. It is pretty worth enough for me. Personally, if all webmasters and bloggers made good content as you did, the web will be much more useful than ever before.

my site best paint sprayers

Anonymous said...

That is a really good tip especially to those new to the
blogosphere. Simple but very precise information… Appreciate your sharing
this one. A must read article!

Also visit my site: how to cure hemorrhoids (

Anonymous said...

Hey there! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any trouble with hackers?

My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing months of hard work
due to no backup. Do you have any solutions to protect against hackers?

Also visit my web site: master cleanse weight loss - -

Anonymous said...

Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if
you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that
automatically tweet my newest twitter updates. I've been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this. Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

Also visit my web page Power Pump XL review