Institute of Astronomy

Current Season - Public Talks


All public open evenings are held at the Institute of Astronomy with talks taking place in the lecture theatre in the Hoyle Building. You can find a map of the Institute site here.

Talk Times

All talks start at 7:15pm unless otherwise stated. Often our events are very popular and it is not always possible to accommodate everyone who attends in the main lecture theatre. We encourage you to arrive early to avoid disappointment.


There is no need to book unless you are a group of 15+ people; only the evenings that remain blank in the 'Group Booking' column are available for groups.

Date Talk Title Speaker Group Booking Weather No. of Visitors Handout
5th Oct Latest results from Gaia Gerry Gilmore Clear 200
12th Oct Proxima b: the closest Earth-like planet? Ryan MacDonald Amino Cloudy 175
19th Oct Planet-eating white dwarfs Amy Bonsor Sawston scouts Cloudy 135
26th Oct Mapping the Universe with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Daniel Eisenstein - half term - Clear 210
2nd Nov Receding horizons: the discovery of other galaxies and the birth of cosmology Anna Schooneveld Murray Edwards Franklin Society Clear 180
9th Nov Gravitational waves - listening to the birth of the Universe Deyan Mihaylov Hitchin Priory Rotary Club Cloudy 130
16th Nov Finding earth-like planets Amaury Triaud 1st Fenstanton and Hilton scouts. Cloudy 170
23rd Nov Forming the most massive stars in the Universe John Ilee 2nd St Neots scouts Cloudy 130
30th Nov How clumpy is the dark matter in the Milky Way? Denis Erkal Larmor Society, St John's Clear 190
7th Dec What heated up the Universe? Girish Kulkarni Linton scouts Partly Clear 175
14th Dec Exploring Inner and Outer Space with the Dark Energy Survey William Wester students from Beal High School Clear 165
Date Talk Title Speaker Group Booking Weather No. of Visitors Handout
4th Jan Early views of the Moon Carolin Crawford Cloudy 135
11th Jan Supermassive black hole binaries: the long journey to coalescence Davide Fiacconi Partly Clear 140
18th Jan A dark matter: seeing the invisible Rupert Allison
25th Jan Alien Megastructures or a Cloud of Comets? Christina Hedges 16th Cambridge Scouts
1st Feb Thomas Maedler Pupils from King's Ely School
8th Feb 1st Littleport Scout Troop
15th Feb The top ten ways to die in space Michael Parker half-term
22nd Feb Robin Catchpole 1st Cambourne cubs
1st Mar Astrophysics for Super-villains Scott Thomas 1st St Neot's Scouts
8th Mar Galactic Cannibalism Kathryn Johnston 12th Cambridge scouts
15th Mar Sonali Shukla 1st Warboys scouts
22nd Mar
29th Mar