The Perseids, one of the best meteor showers of the year, reaches its peak on the night of August 12-13, not long after New Moon, so conditions are quite favourable. Some will be visible each night from 23 July to 20 August.
We had an excellent talk from Prof. Giles Hammond of the University of Glasgow on a very interesting project he's running with his students. Alan Pickup also gave us a very comprehensive rundown of what's in the night sky in July and August.
What a fantastic set of panellists we had for the Losing the Sky event last night. The talk was very wide-ranging and covered just about all the issues associated with the problem of mega-constellations and the pollution of the night sky. Watch the video if you missed it. You won't find a better overview of the topic.
Prof. Petri Vaisanen, Director of the South African Astronomical Observatory gave us a very interesting presentation on the "South African Large Telescope (SALT) and SAAO – responding to astronomy in the 2020s". This was followed by the Sky in June from ASE member Nigel Goodman and then our AGM for members only.
Congratulations to Prof. Catherine Heymans who was officially announced as the new Astronomer Royal for Scotland today and the first woman to hold the post. Catherine is also our new Honorary President and an enthusiastic and infectious communicator of astronomy.
We'll be hosting a very special event on 15 June about the problems caused for astronomers by satellites. "Losing the Sky" is an online live public discussion with Andy Lawrence, Brian Eno, Catherine Heymans, Mark McCaughrean from ESA, Amy Mehlman from Viasat, and many others.
Dr Samantha Lawler gave a detailed and fascinating technical explanation of what astronomers understand about the bodies in our outer Solar System, discussing theories for their formation. Alan Pickup then gave a wonderful Sky in May presentation which was, as always, full of topical gems of knowledge.
Dr Bruce Vickery's talk was a fascinating in-depth analysis of the origin and importance of a famous cuneiform tablet describing astronomical observations of Venus. We also had two Scope Talks from Pat Devine and Hugh Somerville.
Yuji Nakamura (Kameyama, Mie, Japan) has reported the discovery of a possible nova, PNV J23244760+6111140, on March 18.4236. It is relatively bright at mag. 8 and may brighten more so worth a look. Here's a finder chart prepared by Alan [...]