Found in the Archives
  • After a special vote in the IAu General Assembly, we interview Armagh Observatory and Planetarium Director. Professor MIchael Burton, on the renaming of the Hubble Law.

    The Hubble-Lemaître Law: recognising where credit is due in science

    After a special vote in the IAu General Assembly, we interview Armagh Observatory and Planetarium Director. Professor MIchael Burton, on the renaming of the Hubble Law.

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  • This September is a relatively uneventful month (astronomy-wise). Few visible planets, quiet Sun and overall a very poor month for meteor showers.

    What’s up in the Sky this September

    This September is a relatively uneventful month (astronomy-wise). Few visible planets, quiet Sun and overall a very poor month for meteor showers.

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  • Space is forever changing. Here is a list of 10 things we used to believe about Space.

    10 things we used to believe about Space

    Space is forever changing. Here is a list of 10 things we used to believe about Space.

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  • The Armagh Observatory has been a staple feature along the Armagh skyline since its creation in 1790. Astronomical research has been undertaken within the organisation since the 1790s and to this day it has seen several different Directors and numerous astronomers walk through its historical doors. 

    The Beginnings of Armagh Observatory – A Brief History

    The Armagh Observatory has been a staple feature along the Armagh skyline since its creation in 1790. Astronomical research has been undertaken within the organisation since the 1790s and to this day it has seen several different Directors and numerous astronomers walk through its historical doors. 

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  • September 2018 will see over 50 astronomers from around the world gather at the Armagh Observatory and Planetarium to discuss the latest news about hydrogen-deficient stars. These stars have lost nearly all the hydrogen from which they were made, to leave only nuclear ash. Astronomers want to learn how these rare and short-lived remnants formed, and what drives their spectacular changes in brightness. 

    Hydrogen-Deficient Stars 2018 – Armagh Observatory and Planetarium

    September 2018 will see over 50 astronomers from around the world gather at the Armagh Observatory and Planetarium to discuss the latest news about hydrogen-deficient stars. These stars have lost nearly all the hydrogen from which they were made, to leave only nuclear ash. Astronomers want to learn how these rare and short-lived remnants formed, and what drives their spectacular changes in brightness. 

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  • July 4, 2018 saw the 150th birthday of Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868 - 1921), one of the most important astronomers of the 20th century. Born in Lancaster, Massachusetts, Leavitt graduated from Radfcliffe College, Harvard, in 1892. She then stayed on at the Harvard College Observatory as a volunteer research assistant. Whilst attempting a graduate degree in astronomy and travelling in Europe, she became ill with grave consequences for her hearing. In 1902, then director, Edward Pickering, invited Henrietta to join the permanent staff at Harvard, where she was assigned to study “variable” stars.

    Measuring the Universe – 150th birthday of Henrietta Swan Leavitt

    July 4, 2018 saw the 150th birthday of Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868 - 1921), one of the most important astronomers of the 20th century. Born in Lancaster, Massachusetts, Leavitt graduated from Radfcliffe College, Harvard, in 1892. She then stayed on at the Harvard College Observatory as a volunteer research assistant. Whilst attempting a graduate degree in astronomy and travelling in Europe, she became ill with grave consequences for her hearing. In 1902, then director, Edward Pickering, invited Henrietta to join the permanent staff at Harvard, where she was assigned to study “variable” stars.

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  • Armagh Observatory, 3rd August 2018: Armagh Observatory reports that July 2018 was much warmer and sunnier than average, with only slightly less than average total rainfall. The mean temperature was 17.0 degrees Celsius (62.6 Fahrenheit), approximately 2.2 C warmer than the long-term (1796–2010) average July temperature at Armagh and 1.2 C warmer than the most recent (1981–2010) 30- year average. This was the warmest July at Armagh for five years. The warmest day (highest maximum air temperature) was 27.1 C, which occurred on the 4th, followed by 26.7 C on the 22nd. Both these maxima wereslightly more than 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The coldest day (lowest maximum air temperature) was 14.4 C on the 11th. The coolest night (lowest minimum air
temperature) was 7.6 C on the 10th, and the warmest night (highest minimum air temperature) was 16.6 C on the 27th followed closely by 16.5 C on the 23rd. The minimum grass temperature was 0.3 C on the 10th, so there were no ground or air frosts.

    July Weather Roundup

    Armagh Observatory, 3rd August 2018: Armagh Observatory reports that July 2018 was much warmer and sunnier than average, with only slightly less than average total rainfall. The mean temperature was 17.0 degrees Celsius (62.6 Fahrenheit), approximately 2.2 C warmer than the long-term (1796–2010) average July temperature at Armagh and 1.2 C warmer than the most recent (1981–2010) 30- year average. This was the warmest July at Armagh for five years. The warmest day (highest maximum air temperature) was 27.1 C, which occurred on the 4th, followed by 26.7 C on the 22nd. Both these maxima wereslightly more than 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The coldest day (lowest maximum air temperature) was 14.4 C on the 11th. The coolest night (lowest minimum air temperature) was 7.6 C on the 10th, and the warmest night (highest minimum air temperature) was 16.6 C on the 27th followed closely by 16.5 C on the 23rd. The minimum grass temperature was 0.3 C on the 10th, so there were no ground or air frosts.

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  • During the summer every year, we observe the International Asteroid Day (“Asteroid Day” for short) on 30th June. The United Nations has proclaimed it will be observed globally on that date “to raise awareness about asteroids and what can be done to protect the Earth, its families, communities, and future generations from a catastrophic event.” 

While their topics certainly have some overlap, the date for the Asteroid Day was not chosen in acknowledgment of the film Armageddon (which was released on 1st July 1998), but to commemorate a much more real and to this day somewhat mysterious occurrence: the Tunguska event (which would also make a good movie title!). This summer marks the 110th anniversary of what is believed to be the largest impact event on Earth in recorded history. 

    110 Years Since The Tunguska Event 

    During the summer every year, we observe the International Asteroid Day (“Asteroid Day” for short) on 30th June. The United Nations has proclaimed it will be observed globally on that date “to raise awareness about asteroids and what can be done to protect the Earth, its families, communities, and future generations from a catastrophic event.”  While their topics certainly have some overlap, the date for the Asteroid Day was not chosen in acknowledgment of the film Armageddon (which was released on 1st July 1998), but to commemorate a much more real and to this day somewhat mysterious occurrence: the Tunguska event (which would also make a good movie title!). This summer marks the 110th anniversary of what is believed to be the largest impact event on Earth in recorded history. 

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  • It's the beginning of a new month, filled with new exciting events in the night sky. Here is a brief summary of what to expect in the next few weeks.

    What’s up in the sky this August

    It's the beginning of a new month, filled with new exciting events in the night sky. Here is a brief summary of what to expect in the next few weeks.

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  • Astronomers now know many hundreds of planets orbiting other stars in our Galaxy. These show an incredible amount of diversity in their basic properties such as size and temperature with no two planets being quite the same. But the Earth is still unique among planets within or outside our solar system in its ability to support life

    Lough-Neagh sized pool of liquid water found on Mars

    Astronomers now know many hundreds of planets orbiting other stars in our Galaxy. These show an incredible amount of diversity in their basic properties such as size and temperature with no two planets being quite the same. But the Earth is still unique among planets within or outside our solar system in its ability to support life

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