Derby and District Astronomical Society

Welcome to the website of the Derby & District Astronomical Society (DDAS). We were founded in 1974 and are open to all with an interest in astronomy. We currently number around 40 members from all walks of life and whose knowledge of astronomy ranges from complete beginner to advanced. The society holds regular meetings on the first Friday of each month (except July and August) at 7:30 pm at the Friend's Meeting House on St. Helen's Street in Derby. Meetings usually involve an outside speaker, but members also give talks and the society holds a quiz in January. We also hold 'Introduction to Astronomy' evenings at the Friends Meeting House on the third Friday of the month, and these are designed to cover the basics of astronomy. See below for more information or check out our meetings programme. We are a friendly and, despite our subject, 'down to earth' society. Meetings are a great way for potential new members to see what we're about in an informal and relaxed atmosphere. The social aspect continues after most monthly meetings with a visit to, appropriately enough, The Seven Stars.

The society's Flamsteed Observatory near Brailsford houses a 10-inch Meade Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope and Altair ED-80 refractor on a computerised 'GOTO' mount. The observatory is named in honour of England's first Astronomer Royal, the Reverend John Flamsteed (1646-1719), who was born in Derbyshire and attended Derby School. Regular monthly observing sessions are held (weather permitting) at the facility and new people are always welcome. They are usually held on the second Saturday of the month and start times vary with the season. The observatory is also available for use by individual members at any time after some simple training. A barbecue is held at the observatory on the first Saturday in July instead of a meeting at The Friend's Meeting House that month. The society also takes part in a number of public events and observing evenings during the year, at which members share their enthusiasm for the night sky and bring along their telescopes. An annual trip provides the opportunity for members to visit a different site of astronomical or space interest within the UK each year. Several of our members photograph the night sky and our picture gallery is entirely comprised of DDAS member's work.

For general information on all our meetings and the benefits of becoming a member please click here.

DDAS member Mike Lancaster captured this image of Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF) on the evening of the 31st January this year.  Image Credit: Mike Lancaster.  More details....

The Flamsteed Observatory OUR NEXT OBSERVING SESSION will be held on Saturday 11th February 2023 from 7:30 pm onwards at the Society's Flamsteed Observatory. View the night sky through our 10-inch Meade telescope, and on screen via our video astronomy setup. Learn the constellations under our rural skies. Need advice on getting into astronomy, or on telescopes, binoculars or cameras? - just ask! For more details please email the DDAS Secretary .  Find us on Google Maps.

Our next INTRODUCTION TO ASTRONOMY evening will be held on Friday 17th February 2023 from 7:30 pm onwards at The Friends Meeting House, St. Helens Street, Derby, DE1 3GY. DDAS Chairman Gary Lambert will be giving a Tour of the Planets. For further details please email the DDAS Secretary .

LATEST IMAGES!  Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF), the Monkey Head Nebula, The Christmas Tree Cluster, Cone Nebula & Fox Fur Nebula, Rosette Nebula and Crab Nebula all taken in January 2023 by Mike Lancaster. Atmospheric halos and associated phenomena taken by Chris Lewis on the 17th January 2023. An animation of the occultation of Mars by the Moon on the 8th December 2022 by Pete Hill. The partial solar eclipse of the 25th October 2022 taken by Mike Dumelow. The Milky Way from Australia on the 20th October 2022 by Pete Hill. M15 taken by Mike Lancaster on the 17th October 2022. The Perseid meteor shower taken by Pete Hill on the 12th-13th August 2022. The sun in Ha taken by Pete Hill on the 12th August 2022. The North America and Pelican Nebulae taken by Dave Selfe on the 11th August 2022. The Coathanger Cluster, Garnet Star, M11, M13, M31 and NGC 6781 taken by Peter Branson in July 2022. The sun taken at different wavelengths by Pete Hill on the 10th July and 22nd June 2022. The Eastern Veil, Dumbell and Eagle nebulae captured by Peter Branson in June 2022. The moon taken by Peter Branson on the 5th May 2022. The Whirlpool Galaxy taken in April 2022 by Peter Branson. M65 and M66 taken by Dave Selfe on the 2nd April 2022. Caldwell 25, NGC 1501 and NGC 1502 taken by Dave Selfe on the 18th March 2022. M13 and M34 taken by Dave Selfe on the 25th and 18th March 2022 respectively. M13 taken by Dave Selfe on the 19th March 2022. M48 and NGC 2355 taken by Mike Lancaster on the 21st March and 19th March 2022 respectively. The Horsehead Nebula, M63 and M109 taken by Dave Selfe on the 26th February 2022. NGC 2266 and NGC 1931 taken by Mike Lancaster on the 14th and 6th March 2022 respectively. M97 and M108 taken by Dave Selfe on the 26th February 2022. M36, NGC 2420 and Caldwell 25 taken by Mike Lancaster on the 22nd, 25th and 26th February 2022 respectively.

THE SPRING/SUMMMER 2022 EDITION OF ARIES IS AVAILABLE... here. Thanks to our Aries editor Gill Pryor and all our contributors for making this edition possible.

HERSTMONCEUX VISIT...   A group of DDAS members paid a visit to the Herstmonceux Observatory Science Centre on the 9th April last year. A photojournal of the visit can be seen here.


The DDAS is a member of the Federation of Astronomical Societies

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