Our Research

UK-Germany National Astronomy Meeting NAM2012

Public programme

There are several ways in which you can get involved with NAM 2012. Booking details are included for each activity listed below - please note that spaces are limited so early booking is advised. You may also be interested in our programme for schools.

Public Lectures

These free evening lectures are aimed at a general public audience. They will also be suitable for older school students.

Mon 26th March 8pm
University Place
(Building 37 on the University of Manchester Campus Map)
Simon White All from Nothing : The Structuring of Our Universe

Prof. Simon White
Director, Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics, Germany

Telescopes are time-machines. They allow us to see into the distant past. Our deepest images show the Universe not as it is today, but as it was just 400,000 years after the Big Bang. At that time there were no galaxies, no stars, no planets, no people, no familiar elements other than hydrogen and helium. The cosmos contained nothing but weak sound waves in a near-uniform fog. Supercomputers can compress thirteen billion years of cosmic evolution into a few months of calculation to show how these sound waves developed into the rich structure we see around us today. A study of their harmonic content gives clues to their origin. They appear to be an echo of quantum zero-point fluctuations occurring a tiny fraction of a second after the Big Bang. Thus our entire world may be a consequence of the nature of this early vacuum. In a very real sense, everything may have come from nothing.
Wed 28th March 8pm
University Place
(Building 37 on the University of Manchester Campus Map)
Fran Bagenal The Juno Mission to Jupiter: Whatís Inside the Giant Planet?

Prof. Fran Bagenal
Laboratory of Atmospheric & Space Physics, University of Colorado, USA

NASAís JUNO mission was launched in August 2011 and will go into orbit over Jupiterís poles in about 5 years time. JUNO carries instruments that will probe Jupiterís deep interior and measure the amount of water ó a key component of solar system evolution. JUNO is the first spacecraft to fly over Jupiterís aurora and will measure both the energetic particles raining down on the planet and the bright 'northern & southern lights' which they excite.

Bright Club

On Tuesday March 27th from 20:00 to 22:45 (tickets 3 pounds on the door) there is an astronomically-themed Bright Club which includes short science talks, music and comedy. More information can be found on the Bright Club event website.

Solar telecope viewing

On Thursday March 29th there will be a chance to view our nearest star by a solar telescope. This will take place outside University Place (weather permitting) - with members of the Liverpool Astronomical Society.

Plenary Lectures

We are also reserving a number of free tickets for the plenary lectures taking place during the conference itself on the days of 27-30 March. These must be booked in advance and are only available to teachers (not school students) and members of local astronomical societies. The lectures are on a range of topics in modern astrophysics and are aimed at an audience of professional astronomers but could be useful as teacher CPD and to the advanced amateur. The plenary lectures take place in University Place (Building 37 on the University of Manchester Campus Map).

How to book: If you are a teacher or a member of a local (Northwest England in the first instance whilst we gauge demand) astronomical society and you would like to attend a plenary lecture then contact Anna Mayall at Anna.Mayall@manchester.ac.uk stating your school or society. Note that tickets are limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis.