Welcome to the AAS

Founded in 1923 and now with around 500 members, the Auckland Astronomical Society is one of New Zealand's largest

We are based at the Auckland Observatory and provide for all levels of interest and expertise in astronomy. We are committed to educating our members in the science of astronomy and to keeping them up-to-date with current astronomical developments and discoveries.

The Society members provide voluntary support for the Auckland Observatory public programs.
 

2015 Harry Williams Astrophotography Competition

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ENTRY FORM

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE CONDITIONS OF ENTRY

It's that time of year again, time to get your entries in for the annual Auckland Astronomical Societies Harry Williams Astrophotography competition, I'm proud to announce that this years competition will be judged by Pete Lawrence who is an expert in image processing and one of the UK's foremost astrophotographers, Pete is probably best known for being one of the co-hosts of the very popular BBC "Sky At Night" television program where he routinely provides advice on astro imaging and general astronomical observing, Pete also has a degree in physics with astrophysics.

I am also very happy to announce that this year the Deep Sky category is sponsored by the Nikon D810a full frame astrophotography camera, Nikon has very generously provided a cash prize of $500 for the winner of the category as well as a loan of their new Nikon D810a, the Nikon D810a is Nikon's first dedicated astrophotography DSLR and it's also the first full frame DSLR optimized for astrophotography to be put on the market by any of the top camera brands. 

Based on the award-winning full-frame D810, the D810A records the brilliant red tones of H-alpha emission nebulae with a level of detail and sharpness, wide dynamic range and rich tonality almost unimaginable until now. The D810A is more sensitive to hydrogen-alpha (H-Alpha) light thanks to its modified IR cut filter on the sensor. This leads to greater transmission of the 656nm wavelength, which is required to capture red hues of diffuse nebulae and constellations. The transmission is four times greater than the D810, in fact!.

Using the D810a you can reveal the faintest celestial objects with exposures up to 15 minutes long; and noise-free performance at ISO levels as high as 12,800 (expandable to 51,000). Create star trail images that span the entire sky with unlimited continuous JPEG shooting. Whether using a fixed tripod, equatorial mount, connected to a telescope or tethered to a laptop, the D810A can take your passion for the cosmos out of this world.  

This year, the entries to the Harry Williams Astrophotography competition must be in by the 7th of September, so please don't delay to get those entries in, as we can't accept late entries, the winners of the competition will be announced at the Auckland Astronomical Societies annual Burbidge Dinner which is going to be held at the Alexandra Park Function Centre on the 3rd of October, we are looking forward to seeing all your entries and good luck with the competition.


Upcoming Events

Young Astronomers - Sep
Friday 04 Sep, 2015 at 19:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory - Sun Room
Speaker/Host: Margaret Arthur

Young Astronomers is the session for our younger members, aged 6-13yrs.

 Margaret Arthur leads an interactive session covering various current topics with plenty of question and answer
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Young Astronomers - Sep
Friday 04 Sep, 2015 at 19:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory - Sun Room

Young Astronomers is the session for our younger members, aged 6-13yrs.

 Margaret Arthur leads an interactive session covering various current topics with plenty of question and answers.

There will be telescope viewing after the session if weather permits.


Intro to Astronomy Sep -
Monday 07 Sep, 2015 at 20:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory
Speaker/Host: Dr Chris Benton

A tutorial series covering many aspects of astronomy. This months topic is:

Exploring the Small Bodies of the Solar System Pt1

Chris Benton continues his series of talks o
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Intro to Astronomy Sep -
Monday 07 Sep, 2015 at 20:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory

A tutorial series covering many aspects of astronomy. This months topic is:

Exploring the Small Bodies of the Solar System Pt1

Chris Benton continues his series of talks on the Solar System.

The populations of small bodies in the Solar System include Asteroids, Comets, Centaurs, Trans-Neptunian Bodies (TNOs), (aka Kuiper Belt Objects(KBOs)), and Oort Cloud Bodies. The study of these bodies helps give us insight into the conditions of the early solar system in different locations, plus provides clues to early planetary migration and transport mechanisms. They are also at the gravitational whim of the large Jovian planets, resulting in potential collisions with Earth and subsequent serious consequences to humanity and life in general. This highlights the need to fully understand them. 2015 is proving to be an exciting year for space exploration of the Solar System’s small bodies with exciting results from the Dawn mission to the asteroid Vesta and dwarf planet Ceres, New Horizons to TNOs Pluto and Charon, and Rosetta/Philae to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

Part 1 will discuss the nature and types of comets followed by the various spacecraft to comets, with a special focus on the current Rosetta/Philae mission.

Parts 2 and 3 to follow will discuss the nature and types of asteroids and TNOs respectively, plus the relevant exploratory spacecraft with special focus on the current missions.




Monthly Meeting Sep - 100 Years of Einstein’s Relativity
Monday 14 Sep, 2015 at 20:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory
Speaker/Host: Dr. Jeffrey Bennett

The Monthly Meeting normally features a talk by a guest speaker. This month is:

100 Years of Ei
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Monthly Meeting Sep - 100 Years of Einstein’s Relativity
Monday 14 Sep, 2015 at 20:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory

The Monthly Meeting normally features a talk by a guest speaker. This month is:

100 Years of Einstein’s Relativity
(And How it Underlies Our Modern Understanding of the Universe)

Dr. Jeffrey Bennett
(University of Colorado)

2015 marks the 100th anniversary of Einstein’s completion of his General Theory of Relativity, the comprehensive theory of space, time, and gravity. Dr. Bennett explains the basic ideas of Einstein’s work (both the special and general theories) in everyday language and shows how Einstein’s remarkable ideas are being confirmed today by astronomical observations. He concludes with four reasons why relativity should matter to everyone.

Jeffrey Bennett holds a B.A. in Biophysics from the University of California at San Diego and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Astrophysics from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Bennett is the author of college-level textbooks in astronomy, astrobiology, mathematics and statistics, as well as the popular books What is Relativity? and Beyond UFOs: The Search for Extraterrestrial Life. His five books for children are currently aboard the International Space Station, and being read to kids on Earth by astronauts during “Story Time from Space.” He holds a doctorate from the University of Colorado, and has been a visiting senior scientist at NASA headquarters.
http://www.jeffreybennett.com/about/


This lecture is a rebroadcast of Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture


Astrophotography Group Sep - MaxIM DL
Monday 21 Sep, 2015 at 19:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory
Speaker/Host: Keith Smith

The Astrophotography Group discusses the practical aspects of astrophotography. This months topic is:

MaxIM DL
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Astrophotography Group Sep - MaxIM DL
Monday 21 Sep, 2015 at 19:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory

The Astrophotography Group discusses the practical aspects of astrophotography. This months topic is:

MaxIM DL

How to use MaxIM DL to stack and do preliminary processing of your image before passing it on to GIMP or Photoshop. 


Practical Astronomy September - The Spring Night Sky
Monday 21 Sep, 2015 at 20:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory
Speaker/Host: Bill Thomas

The Practical Astronomy sessions focus on learning the night sky and using telescopes. This months topic is:


The Spri
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Practical Astronomy September - The Spring Night Sky
Monday 21 Sep, 2015 at 20:00Hrs
Venue: Stardome Observatory

The Practical Astronomy sessions focus on learning the night sky and using telescopes. This months topic is:


The Spring Night Sky

This will be a planetarium session where we will be reviewing the Spring Night Sky. Weather permitting we will follow up with an outdoor sky tour and telescope viewing using the EWB Zeiss telescope. Otherwise we will view a short planetarium show.


View Our Other Upcoming Events
Astronz B-2080S
20x80mm Standard
Astronz M-IEQ45
IOptron iEQ45 Pro Goto EQ Mount
Astronz K-YB2014
2014 NZ Astronomical Yearbook
Astronz A-CAM52T
Camera Adapter M57-52T
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