Public Release: 

National Astronomy Meeting 2017: First media announcement

Royal Astronomical Society

Around 500 astronomers and space scientists will gather at the University of Hull, from 2 - 6 July, for the Royal Astronomical Society National Astronomy Meeting (NAM 2017). The conference is the largest regular professional astronomy and space science event in the UK and will see leading researchers from around the world presenting the latest work in a variety of fields.

NAM 2017 will be held in conjunction with the annual meeting of the UK Solar Physics (UKSP) group. The conference is principally sponsored by the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).

Sessions at NAM 2017 will cover a diverse range of topics, including the Sun, and its unusually quiet state; the Solar system, results of the search for dark energy, cosmology in the early and distant universe, massive stars, and the science of planets around other stars.

Alongside the formal meeting a suite of events will run for schools and the general public. Highlights include a lecture by Professor Chris Lintott of the University of Cambridge and Sky at Night on the Galaxy Zoo citizen science project.

During the conference week, there will be a day of activities for primary school children, and a day of activities for secondary students in the form of a student conference. Activities will include the use of a planetarium, telescope workshops and a poster competition that will be judged by some of the astronomers attending the conference. Speakers include Professor Becky Parker, Director of the Institute for Research in Schools (IRIS), and the astrobiologist Professor Lewis Dartnell, who will talk on extraterrestrial life.


Meeting arrangements and a full and up to date schedule of the scientific programme can be found on the official website and via the conference Twitter account

Media representatives are cordially invited to attend the Meeting and can register at no cost. Press room facilities will be available for the duration of the conference - from 0900 BST on Monday 3 July to 1500 BST on Thursday 6 July. A series of releases, issued under embargo, will cover key scientific results presented at the meeting.

For free registration please contact Robert Massey (see below).

Media contacts

Dr Robert Massey
Royal Astronomical Society
Tel: +44 (0)20 7292 3979
Mob: +44 (0)7802 877 699

Ms Anita Heward
Royal Astronomical Society
Mob: +44 (0)7756 034 243

Dr Morgan Hollis
Royal Astronomical Society
Tel: +44 (0)20 7292 3977

Notes for editors

The Royal Astronomical Society (RAS), founded in 1820, encourages and promotes the study of astronomy, solar-system science, geophysics and closely related branches of science. The RAS organises scientific meetings, publishes international research and review journals, recognizes outstanding achievements by the award of medals and prizes, maintains an extensive library, supports education through grants and outreach activities and represents UK astronomy nationally and internationally. Its more than 4000 members (Fellows), a third based overseas, include scientific researchers in universities, observatories and laboratories as well as historians of astronomy and others.

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The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is keeping the UK at the forefront of international science and has a broad science portfolio and works with the academic and industrial communities to share its expertise in materials science, space and ground-based astronomy technologies, laser science, microelectronics, wafer scale manufacturing, particle and nuclear physics, alternative energy production, radio communications and radar.

STFC's Astronomy and Space Science programme provides support for a wide range of facilities, research groups and individuals in order to investigate some of the highest priority questions in astrophysics, cosmology and solar system science. STFC's astronomy and space science programme is delivered through grant funding for research activities, and also through support of technical activities at STFC's UK Astronomy Technology Centre and RAL Space at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory. STFC also supports UK astronomy through the international European Southern Observatory.


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