Welcome to the ASSA website

Scholarships for 2014 awarded

ScholarshipHoldersThe ASSA Scholarship for 2014 has been awarded to Freya Bovim, and the SAAO-ASSA Scholarships have been awarded to Verlon Etsebeth, Dean De Villiers and Francois Botha. (find out more)

Upcoming observing evenings and star parties

  • April 18: ASSA Pretoria Centre will hold their observing evening on 18th April. Contact Percy Jacobs on 082 498 4680 for further information, or visit their website.
  • April 19: The Soutpansberg Astronomy Club in Louis Trichardt will have a stargazing evening on the 19th April. Contact Kos Coronaios on 079 148 4934.
  • April 25 – April 28: The Autumn 2014 Southern Star Party will be held at Night Sky Caravan Park, Bonnievale, Western Cape, from Friday, April 25th to Monday, April 28th. This three-night/four-day event promises to be a spectacular observing experience with talks and presentations. Visit their website for booking forms and more information.
  • April 30 – May 04: The West Rand Astronomy Club will host a long weekend of astronomy (30th April to 4th May) at the Rights Farm near Senekal in the Free State. Contact Kenny Nevill at 082 335 1983 or Jess van Elferen at 076 432 1222 for details.
  • May 01 – May 04: The ASSA Pretoria Centre will hold its sixth National Karoo Starparty during the weekend of 1st to 4th May 2014, about 20 km north of Britstown in the Karoo, right next to the N12 at the Kambro Padstal. More information from Johan Smit (072 806 2939) or Danie Barnardo (084 588 6668). To book, please book contact Wilma Strauss, the Manager of Kambro, directly at 083 305 6668.

2014 Symposium

The 10th ASSA Symposium will be held from 25–27 September 2014 at the Hotel School of the Durban University of Technology. The theme for this year is “South African Astronomy – Beyond SALT and SKA” and the event is hosted by the ASSA Durban Centre. The cost is R 550 p.p. Find out more by reading the invitation and vitising the ASSA Symposium 2014 website.

AR 1967 is back

The sunspot complex Active Region 1967 returns and is now known as AR 1990. (find out more)

Pallas – astrophotography challenge

Take up the challenge and track the 2nd largest asteroid in the Solar System, now excellently placed for observing. (find out more)

Acrux – Double star of the month

Acrux, the magnificent gem at the foot of the Southern Cross, is the double star for March  (find out more)

Recent sightings

Browse the “Report A Sighting” archives for ongoing investigations of recent sightings, including those by Grant B. (2014 Jan 02), Albie M., Isabel R. & Alex A. (2013 Dec 31), and Alison F. (2013 Dec 21). (browse archive)

Nova Cen 2013

Find out more about Nova Cen 2013

Nova Centauri 2013 erupted early in 2013 December, and remained a naked-eye object until early this month. Follow the progress of the nova, which lies near beta Centauri, by grabbing a finder chart and making a brightness estimate. (find out more)

Fireball over Western Cape

On Monday morning, January 27, several people in the Western Cape reported a fireball, which was described by one observer as “the most amazing light I have ever witnessed in the sky.” (find out more)

What's up this April

What's up

by Case Rijsdijk The month starts with a waxing crescent Moon that becomes full on the 15th with the new Moon following on the 29th, but the first crescent will only become visible on the 1st of May though. And as is often the case it is the time of th …

Find out more

An overview of upcoming celestial and ASSA-related events appears on the Events page. Details about these and other astronomical events will be found in the Sky Guide, the astronomical handbook for Southern Africa, available from leading book sellers.

2014 Highlights