“The mysteries of Black Holes, large and small” – Mon 10 Feb 2020, 8pm

For our February lecture, UCC Professor of Physics and Astronomy Dr Paul Callanan will talk about those mysterious objects so fundamental to astronomy, black holes.    The date is Mon 10th Feb 2020 at 8 pm, and the venue is UCC.   Please arrive 10 minutes early, or if you wish to join, then ideally at 7.40 if you can.

Understanding the nature of black holes remains one of the great challenges of modern astronomy.

More than 100 years ago, Einstein produced a remarkable theory which could be used predict the basic properties of black holes, but it was only this year, in 2019,  when we finally got a glimpse of what a black hole really looks like. In this talk Paul will explore what we know about black holes, and what the most recent observations tell us about them. We will also see how Irish astronomers, 100 years ago this year, made observations which helped to show that Einstein’s theory of gravity was correct; an important milestone in the application of his theory to black holes and the universe at large.

Prof Paul Callanan, UCC
Prof Paul Callanan, UCC

“Back to the Future: Celestial Navigation for Ocean Positioning” – Mon 13 Jan 2020, 8pm

For our January lecture, Master Mariner and nautical science lecturer Bill Kavanagh will explain how traditional methods were used to obtain a ship’s position by observing astronomical objects, and how such methods are being used again today in an era of global navigation satellite systems.  The date is Mon 13th Jan 2020 at 8pm, and the venue is UCC.   Please arrive 10 minutes early, or if you wish to join, then ideally at 7.40 if you can.

Bill is a committee member of Cork Astronomy Club. Captain Bill Kavanagh MA, FNI to give him his full title, lectures in the National Maritime College of Ireland at Ringskiddy. After a 20-year career at sea including 8 years in command, he moved ashore to start a new career in education and training. He currently lectures and co-ordinates the award year of the BSc honours degree in nautical science, and is an adjunct lecturer in research methods with Jade University of Applied Sciences, Oldenberg, Germany. While at sea, he navigated the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans using celestial navigation techniques. 

Bill Kavanagh
Bill Kavanagh

“The Active Sun: Solar Eruptions and their Impact on Earth” – Mon 11 Nov 2019

On Monday 11th November we welcome Trinity College space weather scientist Dr Sophie Murray, who will look at solar flares, coronal mass ejections, and auroras. All this is called space weather, and she will discuss its impact on the Earth’s upper atmosphere, and potentially on human civilisation.  All lectures are on Mondays at 8pm, and the venue is UCC.   Please arrive 10 minutes early, or if you wish to join, then ideally at 7.30 if you can.

Dr Murray’s interests include developing operational solar eruption forecast products in weather prediction.   She will no doubt refer to the 1859 Carrington Event, which gave us the first alert that solar flares can interfere with our electronics.

This lecture was originally slated for 14th Oct 2019.

Dr Sophie Murray

Evening class in astronomy starts 25 September 2019

Tom Bonner is again running his popular astronomy evening class at Ballincollig Community School. Ten Wednesdays, started 25th September, cost €70. This is a course designed to give an overview of the important basics that any person who wants to pursue an interest in Astronomy will need.     Tom is a prominent member of Cork Astronomy Club, and we are happy to recommend this course. Click for enrollment details – this takes you to the school’s website, where you’ll find the astronomy course under Wednesdays.

You’ll also find a link which enables you to enroll online, and the astronomy course is W2.