Public Meeting Tuesday 22nd January


~  Our next meeting is this Tuesday 22nd January



Topic #1: Our solar system’s geological makeup.


Topic #2: The latest from Nasa’s space craft New Horizons, that recently explored the Ultima Thule asteroid in the solar system’s Kuiper Belt, is yielding scientific discoveries daily.


Ultima Thule Asteroid  (Source: Wikipedia)

New Horizons

New Horizons space probe  (Source: NASA)


Topic #3: The recent landing of China’s Chang’e 4 space craft on the Moon’s far side.

This mission, named after Chang’e the Chinese Moon goddess, will attempt to determine the age and composition of an unexplored region of the Moon. Landing took place on 3rd January 2019 shortly after lunar sunrise over the Von Karman crater.



The far side of the Moon is sometimes called the “dark side” of the Moon as most of it is not visible from Earth due to tidal locking.  (Source: Wikipedia)



Topic #4: Our galaxy’s most mysterious star.



Topic #5: The gravitational encounter between 2 galaxies : the Milky Way and Andromeda – our closest neighbour coming our way.

The Milky Way-Andromeda encounter is a galactic collision predicted to occur in about 3.75 billion years between two galaxies – the Milky Way (that contains the Solar System, including Earth) and the Andromeda Galaxy. The stars involved are sufficiently far apart that it is improbable that any of them will individually collide. The resulting galaxy is nicknamed Milkomeda or Milkdromeda.


Based on data from the Hubble Space Telescope, the Milky Way Galaxy (pictured right of centre) and Andromeda Galaxy (left of centre) are predicted to distort each other with tidal pull in 3.75 billion years, as shown in this illustration.  (Source: Wikipedia)



Make a note!

The gravitational encounter between our Milky Way and Andromeda, and other topics

at our Fergusson Park Observatory, Tilby Drive, Matua, Tauranga

this Tuesday 22nd January at 7.30pm.


Admission to our meetings –

A donation of $5 is requested.

Members & children free.


TAS large



Affliated With:


With funding support from:


Slooh Space Camera


NASA astronomy picture of the day