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Hertford Astronomy Group

Membership details:

Download application form



September 14th  8:00pm

Gravitational Waves

Roger O’Brien

8:00 - 10:00pm


Doors open at 7:30 although the bar is open earlier for a drink or meal.

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Meetings held at:

Fairway Tavern

Panshanger Golf Complex

Old Herns Lane,

Welwyn Garden City,

Hertfordshire

AL7 2ED

Tel:01707 336007

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What happens at our meetings?


Doors open at 7:30 for the meeting due to start at 8:00 but several club members and friends gather before this to have a drink and chat in the bar.


Following welcome announcements we have a guest speaker who speaks on the subject of the evening for about 45 - 60 minutes.  This is followed by questions relating to the talk.


Announcements about forthcoming events follow.


You can then choose from the following activities:

  1. If the weather is clear telescopes and binoculars brought by members are set up outside for some observation.  Members doing so will be pleased to share their scopes with others.
  2. If you need help with some equipment then now is your chance to bring it in.  Others in our club will be more than willing to help you .  Don’t be shy, we get just as excited about a telescope bought at the charity shop for £20 as we do one costing many times more.
  3. Just socialise with others - about anything!


We look forward to seeing you.

Eclipse of the Sun 2017

One of our members has brought this to our attention in case you might want to think about going to the USA to watch the eclipse.  Details of an organised trip can be found at http://eclipseofthecentury.com/


Please note that we are not endorsing this venture but merely passing on information

What else is going on that might be of interest to you?

Institute of Physics Lectures University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield


Dates for your diary for 2016-17 series:


2016 October 5, November 9, December 7,

2017 January 25, February 22 (joint meeting with the Institute of Measurement and Control),

March 29, April 26 and May 31.​




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Woolsthorpe Manor Visit - June 25 2016


A great day out to this historic site.  Thanks for organising it Jerry.


At the recent committee meeting we discussed a number of venues for other trips for the future, and more details will be sent out in due course.


Gravitational waves are ripples in the curvature of spacetime that propagate as waves, generated in certain gravitational interactions and travelling outward from their source. The possibility of gravitational waves was discussed in 1893 by Heaviside using the analogy between the inverse-square law in gravitation and electricity. In 1905 Henri Poincare first predicted gravitational waves (ondes gravifiques) emanating from a body and propagating at the speed of light as being required by the formalism of spacetime.  Predicted in 1916 by Albert Einstein on the basis of his theory of general relativity, gravitational waves transport energy as gravitational radiation, a form of radiant energy similar to electromagnetic radiation. Gravitational waves cannot exist in the Newtonian theory of gravitation, since Newtonian theory postulates that physical interactions propagate at infinite speed.


Gravitational-wave astronomy is an emerging branch of observational astronomy which aims to use gravitational waves to collect observational data about objects such as neutron stars and black holes, events such as supernovae, and processes including those of the early universe shortly after the Big Bang.


Roger, President of our club,  has been an amateur astronomer since 1957. He worked in a bank for 26 years, then went to university and got a degree in astronomy. Now he is a tutor (in astronomy and planetary science) for the Open University and lectures in astronomy for other institutions.