3rd January 2011

Come along to our free public observing evenings at Newlands Corner near Guildford.

3rd January 2011

Postby gas » Wed, 22-Dec-2010 01:00



Starting on Monday, 3rd January 2011 at 6.30pm until after midnight and then back again before dawn on Tuesday morning.

In support of the BBC2 ‘Star Gazing Live’ series of TV programs to be presented by Professor Brian Cox and the comedian Diara O'Briain on TV (with Liz Bonnin from Hawaii), this big event forms part of our popular series of well-attended and highly enjoyable public observing evenings at the NT Car Park, Newlands Corner, Shere Road, Guildford GU4 8SE. Members of the public are invited to come along and meet GAS members and their telescopes and take a look at the wonders of the Night Sky. For directions to Newlands Corner see here.

For the first 100 children or beginners to arrive we are giving away, on a strictly first-come-first-served basis and subject to stocks lasting, a copy of a free 14-page BBC "Star Guide" showing some of the main constellations visible through the changing seasons.

The Great Orion Nebula (NASA/ESA)

Come and see the beautiful Great Orion Nebula, the majestic planets Jupiter (and four of its moons) & Uranus, the Great Andromeda Galaxy, the Pleiades and many other stars, clusters, galaxies and nebulae that will be visible throughout the evening. Also, for a few minutes at about 9pm, the International Space Station will be visible as a bright, moving point of light in the South West.

At midnight is the peak of the Quadrantid Meteor Shower when small dust grains from a comet that broke up over 500 years ago will hit the Earth's atmosphere at over 40km per second(!) and burn up leaving the bright streak of a ‘Shooting Star’ across the night sky.

As the sun rises just after 8am on Tuesday morning it will already be close to the middle of the Moon's 67% partial eclipse of the Sun. GAS members will be there just before dawn.

Jupiter with Europa's Shadow (NASA/JPL/University of Arizona)

This event is:

  • Suitable for everyone,
  • Free and
  • There's no need to book.

Obviously it's cold at this time of year so we thoroughly recommend that you wrap up warm and wear wellington boots out on the field where the telescopes are located (hot drinks will be on sale in the Visitor's Centre if you need a warm break). Also, because of potential tripping hazards in the dark out on the field, children must be accompanied by an adult.

If it's cloudy we'll be indoors with a display and exhibition and GAS members will be on hand to answer questions.

GAS would like to thank the Surrey Wildlife Trust for their kind permission to use the Visitor Centre.

Please feel free to download one of these posters for the event and post it in your local library, doctor's surgery, local schools, barber's shop or supermarket:

BBC Poster: Print as a single A4 page.
GAS Poster: Print as a single A4 page.
GAS Poster: Print as two side-by-side A5 pages.
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