Forthcoming meetings


We are holding only online meetings until further notice.

Saturday, 19 September at 2 pm

Meteorites: The stones from outer space that made our world, with Dr Tim Gregory, British Geological Survey

Meteorites are the oldest objects in the Solar System. By studying space from a geological perspective, we have uncovered how our Solar System was born from a cloud of interstellar gas and dust and how the planets were forged, and gained clues to the origin of life on Earth. 

As a geologist by training, Tim Gregory achieved his PhD in cosmochemistry from the University of Bristol in 2019. Since then, he has continued his research into the early Solar System using rocks that fall from outer space: meteorites. Specifically, Tim and his colleagues research the timing of events that unfolded as our Solar System was assembling itself using radiometric dating. 

This meeting has now ended but can be seen again at youtube.com/popastro. 

Tim’s book, Meteorite, is available from https://www.hachette.co.uk/titles/tim-gregory/meteorite/9781529327649/

Exploring an ever-changing universe, with Prof Andy Newsam of Liverpool John Moores University

The Universe is a dynamic, ever-changing place full of extremes – from black holes to asteroids, and massive exploding stars to elusive distant planets. With recent developments in technology astronomers now have high-tech telescopes and instruments that allow them to observe changes in the Universe on timescales from fractions of a second to several years, all without leaving comfort of their homes or offices. So, how are astronomers using these new methods to explore the universe? And how can you get involved?

Andy Newsam is Professor of Astronomy Education and Engagement at Liverpool John Moores University. He joined the university in 1998 to help set up the educational arm of the Liverpool Telescope, which later became the National Schools’ Observatory, one of the largest astronomy education projects in the world. As director of the National Schools’ Observatory, he has given talks to thousands of schoolchildren around the UK. His latest book, Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Universe And Our Place Within It, was published on 3 September.

To join the webinar click on the link below, noting the passcode:

https://zoom.us/j/9740522268209
Passcode: Popastro

If you have not previously downloaded the Zoom software you can click on this link at any time beforehand. This will open a box which will allow you to download the software to your computer. Alternatively, you can watch online by using that link, cancelling the dialog box that appears and then using ‘View with your browser’.

There is a limit to the number of participants using Zoom, so if you are unable to access the meeting at the time, or prefer not to use the Zoom software you can still view it using the society’s YouTube channel: 

https://www.youtube.com/popastro

It is also possible to listen to the webinar by phone, although you will pay normal call costs, on any of these numbers: 0203 481 5240 or 0203 901 7895 or 0208 080 6591 or 0208 080 6592 or 0330 088 5830 or 0131 460 1196 or 0203 481 5237
Webinar ID: 974 0522 2682
Passcode: 77838030

Saturday, 31 October at 2 pm

Eagle nebula

Exploring an ever-changing universe, with Prof Andy Newsam of Liverpool John Moores University

The Universe is a dynamic, ever-changing place full of extremes – from black holes to asteroids, and massive exploding stars to elusive distant planets. With recent developments in technology astronomers now have high-tech telescopes and instruments that allow them to observe changes in the Universe on timescales from fractions of a second to several years, all without leaving comfort of their homes or offices. So, how are astronomers using these new methods to explore the universe? And how can you get involved?

Andy Newsam is Professor of Astronomy Education and Engagement at Liverpool John Moores University. He joined the university in 1998 to help set up the educational arm of the Liverpool Telescope, which later became the National Schools’ Observatory, one of the largest astronomy education projects in the world. As director of the National Schools’ Observatory, he has given talks to thousands of schoolchildren around the UK. His latest book, Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About the Universe And Our Place Within It, was published on 3 September.

Full details of how to attend this online Zoom webinar will be sent to members on our Newsletter list and will be posted here in advance of the meeting.

Friday Night Live with Vicky Video

Our own chat-show host Vicky Duncalf runs a live event on the SPA’s Facebook page usually on Friday evenings, from 8 to 9 pm. This is a chat show rather than a regular meeting, and as well as interesting guests from the world of astronomy there are quizzes and the chance to win some SPA merchandise! You also have the opportunity to chat or ask questions online.


Meeting videos

Online SPA meeting with Dr Susanne Schwenzer, Saturday 25 July: Curiosity at Gale Crater

Dr Susanne Schwenzer explains how NASA’s Curiosity probe has been exploring the geology of Gale Crater on Mars.

Now available to view online

Online SPA meeting with Prof Lucie Green, Saturday 23 May: Solar update

We are currently at a minimum of solar activity. But what causes the Sun to vary its activity level, and when can we expect the next maximum?

You can view a recording of this meeting in full at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eoXJTIV58_4

You can view videos of the main talks at previous meetings on your computer. Just click on the image at right to see what’s currently available. There are videos of talks about all aspects of astronomy there – they’ll keep you entertained for hours!