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Final Announcement -

17 - 21 July 2006 Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge, UK

In this announcement:

1. Travel information
2. Registration and welcome reception
3. Information for speakers
4. Information for poster presenters
5. Web Proceedings
6. Scientific Highlights
7. Conference dinner
8. Lunches and internet access

Dear conference participant,

With just over a week to go before the Discs meeting begins, we are sending you the final announcement with mostly practical information. As always, if anything is unclear or if you have any specific issues we need to deal with, please feel free to email us at - emails to this address will be forwarded to the Local Organising Committee and we will try to deal with your requests as quickly as feasible.


We have now updated our web site,, to include the most relevant information regarding arrival in the UK (if you happen to come from abroad) and in Cambridge itself. For completeness, we will repeat this information here:

Upon arrival at any of the London area airports, your options are to either take a "coach" (= the British description of a long-distance bus, operated by National Express), or a train. If you intend to come by coach, we advise you to book your ticket in advance (web site address:, although it should be said that those coaches are rarely ever completely full. It just gives you a bit more peace of mind, and doesn't cost any more than buying a ticket from the ticket office. Choose "CAMBRIDGE, coach stop, Drummer Street, Cambridgeshire" as your destination. Total journey time from Heathrow is about 2.5 hours, from Gatwick 3.5 to 4 hours, from Stansted 40 minutes, and from Luton 1 hour and 10 minutes.

When traveling by train, national rail time tables can be accessed from the National Rail web site, at If arriving at Heathrow airport, the fast (and hugely expensive) option is to take the "Heathrow Express" fast train to London Paddington station, then the Underground (metro) to King's Cross station, and a train to Cambridge. The alternative is to take an Underground train direct from Heathrow to King's Cross station, and then a regular train. In either case, the journey time is just over 2 hours.

From Gatwick, take a Thameslink train to King's Cross Thameslink station, walk a few hundred metres to the King's Cross mainline station (signposted), then take a regular train to Cambridge. Total journey time is about 2 hours.

From Stansted airport, the train is slightly faster (30 minutes) than the coach (40 minutes), but a little more expensive. From Luton, your only option is to catch a coach; journeys by train would need to go into London first (and Luton airport is located in between London and Cambridge).

There are taxi ranks at the train and coach stations in Cambridge, and we would recommend that you take a taxi to your destination. Most conference delegates for whom we have arranged their accommodation will be staying at Fitzwilliam College, see Click on the site map of Fitzwilliam College to get your bearings. You will need to go to the main entrance via Storey's Way, which is at the bottom of the map.

The official check-in time at FITZWILLIAM COLLEGE is 2pm, but if you are arriving early in the morning or late at night, please let us know (email and we will inform the College, so that, in the case of very late arrivals, the Porter can leave a message on the Lodge window, for example, when he needs to temporarily close to make a site security check etc. There will be a room for you to leave luggage. We will email participants arriving at Fitzwilliam College with maps and instructions (see also on how to get to the Institute of Astronomy.

If you wish to get to the Institute of Astronomy directly upon arrival, we refer you to these directions: Again, we recommend that you take a taxi from either bus or train station, the cost of which should be around 6 GBP.


If you arrive in time on Sunday, 16 July, you will be able to register from 5pm in the main lobby of the Institute of Astronomy. The Institute will not be open before this time. A welcome drinks and "finger" buffet reception will take place from 6pm; (but don't expect us to provide a full evening meal...). Attendance at the reception is included in the conference fee.

The Registration desk will remain open until 7pm and opens again on Monday morning, 17 July, from 8am. Thereafter it will remain open during programme breaks, at all lunchtimes and at the end of the meeting day until 6pm.


The Institute of Astronomy's lecture theatre is well equipped with audio-visual aids. Speakers will need to check the compatibility of their computing equipment before their presentation.

A windows laptop running powerpoint 2003 will be available for speakers who wish to use it for their presentations.

If you have any queries regarding your presentation, please don't hesitate to get in touch via email.


Our poster boards are 115cm wide and about 90 cm high; so please restrict the size of your poster to these dimensions. This provides space for ONE A0-sized poster in LANDSCAPE format or TWO A1-sized posters in PORTRAIT format.

We will provide material to attach your poster to the boards. You will find a final list of posters in your registration pack, each assigned a number corresponding to a numbered poster board. Please stick to these assigned spaces.

The programme includes an opportunity on Tuesday afternoon for poster presenters to advertise their poster in a session which will be followed by poster viewing. To ensure there is sufficient time for poster viewing, presenters should prepare just one overhead (transparency rather than powerpoint) and should keep their presentation to under one minute.


As we are not producing actual proceedings we intend to post every contribution (talks and posters) on the web after the conference. Therefore we ask every speaker and poster presenter to provide files for their presentations (pdf preferred) saved on a memory stick or floppy disk. Please bring these to the registration desk for copying.


We have set up a "Scientific Highlights" page. Please contact Suzanne Aigrain ( if you want to include YOUR story.


The conference dinner will be held on Wednesday evening, 19 July at 19.:45 (until approximately 22.00-22.30) in the Hall at Trinity College in the centre of Cambridge, preceded by a reception under the Cloisters from 19:15. The total cost of the dinner is 45 GBP. [Participants should have by now communicated whether they have special dietary requirements, including those of their guests. If you are unsure please do not hesitate to email after reading this.] If you would like to attend but have not reserved a seat please email by Tuesday, 11 July, as it will be too late if you wait until you arrive in Cambridge.

The dress code at the dinner will be "smart casual".


A. Lunches

Lunch will be served daily in a marquee situated on the Thorrowgood lawn. Please see programme for times. [Please inform us of any special dietrary requirements as soon as possible, if necessary.]

B. Internet

During the meeting, you will be able to log onto our network to connect to your home institute. Details will be available at Registration. Wireless internet connection is available at the IoA.

C. Weather

The Cambridge summer is occasionally hot and sunny, often warm, regularly cool and invariably wet. Be prepared for anything, and expect rain. Nights are usually cool.

We look forward to seeing you in Cambridge!

LOC: Planet-Disc Connection,

The Institute of Astronomy is part of the Faculty of Physics and Chemistry within the School of the Physical Sciences of The University of Cambridge
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