• Date: 27 July 2018.
  • Time: 18h00
  • Location: Jhb. Observatory, Top of the hill at the Herbert Baker Library. Map.
  • Donation: R20 pp. Children under 15 free.
  • Indemnity Form Download.

Memorable Magic Moments:

Very seldom do we have such enticing moments as the happenings in our Night Skies. Join ASSAJHB  at the Observatory on the hill top and enjoy ecliptic memories. Come and see this marvellous event through telescopes on the hill. Just imagine the stark beauty and dream about travelling there one day.

Specials to feast your eyes on:

The Moon and Mars will travel close together, brilliant shiny twins on the night of the Lunar Eclipse. Rusty ol’ Mars will be dressed in brightest magnificence for its closest approach to Earth from 27 to 30 July. Moon and Mars will be roughly 6 degrees apart. Together,  both will be visible in a pair of Celestron binoculars 8 x40 with a fov of 8.2 degrees. Its closest approach to Earth is July 31. That is the point in Mars’ orbit, when it comes closest to Earth. Mars will be at a distance of 35.8 million miles (57.6 million kilometers).


Sourced from

The animation shows what the eclipse approximately looks like in Johannesburg. Stages and times of the eclipse are outlined below. All times are local time (SAST) for Johannesburg.


Time Phase Direction Altitude
19:14 Fri, 27 Jul
Penumbral Eclipse beginsThe Earth’s penumbra start touching the Moon’s face. Map direction East100°


20:24 Fri, 27 Jul
Partial Eclipse beginsPartial moon eclipse starts – moon is getting red. Map direction East94°


21:30 Fri, 27 Jul
Total Eclipse beginsTotal moon eclipse starts – completely red moon. Map direction East87°


22:21 Fri, 27 Jul
Maximum EclipseMoon is closest to the center of the shadow. Map direction East80°


23:13 Fri, 27 Jul
Total Eclipse endsTotal moon eclipse ends. Map direction East-northeast66°


00:19 Sat, 28 Jul
Partial Eclipse endsPartial moon eclipse ends. Map direction North358°


01:28 Sat, 28 Jul
Penumbral Eclipse endsThe Earth’s penumbra ends. Map direction West-northwest291°


Sourced from

Visitors to the Observatory must fill in an indemnity form.
The forms are available from the ASSAJhb coordinator at the event or can be downloaded from the link.
Completed forms must be handed to the ASSAJHB coordinator.

Notice of Next Meeting

Our next monthly meeting takes place on:

Indemnity Form Download.

  • Date: Wednesday 8 August 2018
  • Time: 19h00 for 19h30
  • Location: Jhb. Observatory
  • Presenter: TBA
  • Topic: TBA
  • Donation: R20 pp for tea and snacks

Meetings generally last about one and a half hours, and include a Topic of Interest, What’s Up in the Night Sky, and the Main Speaker’s Presentation. Tea and coffee are served afterwards. Visitors are welcome.

Click here for directions and a map to the Observatory

Sky and Braai

Our next monthly Braai takes place on:

Indemnity Form Download.

  • Date: Sunday 22 July 2018
  • Time: 16h30
  • Location: Jhb. Observatory, Top of the hill at the Herbert Baker Library. Map.
  • Topic: Whats Up – a detailed overview af some objects.
  • Donation: R20 pp for the fire wood. Children under 15 free.


  • 16h30  – Arrival and Fires started
  • 17h00 – Braai
  • 18h00 –  Presentation
  • 18h20 – 10 min Break
  • 18h30 – Viewing
  • 20h00 –  close domes and lock up.

Our fire glows warmly with a spirit of friendship settling to waft delicious aromas that pervade the olfactory nerves, creating intense appeal for taste buds.

Read More.

The murmering and chuckling displays delight, comfort and contemplative joy at what will be seen in the sky tonight. Bursts of joyous laughter bring one back to the chatter and fun of the evening. Do join ASSA JHB on the hill for a lovely evening of sky and braai. Dress warmly, bring along your meat to braai, your condiments, drinks and salads, anything you need for your meal, hmm… fingers were invented before knives and forks? and  oops, do not forget a chair or ‘situpon’. You may bring your own telescope if you want to.


Public Viewing Evenings:

Indemnity Form Download.

  • Jan –
  • Feb – 23   Lunar Phase 1st Quarter
  • Mar – 23   Lunar Phase 1st Quarter
  • Apr – 20   Lunar Phase 1st Quarter
  • May – 18  Lunar Phase 17%
  • Jun – 22   Lunar Phase 73%
  • Jul – 20    Lunar Phase 60%
  • Aug – 17  Lunar Phase 1st Quarter
  • Sep – 14  Lunar Phase 28%
  • Oct – 12  Lunar Phase 14%
  • Nov – 16  Lunar Phase 60%
  • Donation: R20 pp. Children under 15 free.

Public Viewing Evenings take place at the Observatory – click here for directions and a map to the Observatory.

Please follow @JoosteJerome on Twitter or visit our Facebook page at for confirmation


Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre added 3 new photos.Friday, July 13th, 2018 at 10:52pm
Total Eclipse of the Moon
Friday 27th July 2018
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg CentreWednesday, July 11th, 2018 at 5:40pm
Scientists have found a chunk of the car sized meteorite that exploded over the South African wilderness just seconds before impact.
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre
Scientists find the meteorite that lit up the night sky over Botswana
The space rock was captured by two farmers on CCTV on June 2nd as it hurtled down from the heavens leaving a blazing white heat trail in its wake.
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg CentreSaturday, June 30th, 2018 at 2:22pm
The Sky and Braai 01 July has been Cancelled.
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre added 2 new photos.Thursday, June 28th, 2018 at 4:03pm
One of the biggest asteroids in our solar system has come so close to Earth that it is visible in the night sky with the naked eye. It will appear in the night sky like a dim yellow dot.

The asteroid – known as 4 Vesta, or 'Vesta' – is so big and bright that it can be spotted in despite being 106 million miles away.
It is visible in both the northern and southern hemispheres, where it can be seen in the night sky close to Mars, Saturn and the Sagittarius constellation.
The asteroid, which measures more than 800 000 square kilometers in size – 50 times wider than the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs, will be visible in the night sky until July 16.
Vesta is named after the goddess of the hearth and household in Roman mythology.
The rock, one of the largest known to mankind, currently resides in the asteroid belt.
The asteroid is easy to spot compared to other space rocks in the same belt as its surface reflects more light than the moon.
To stargazers in the northern hemisphere, Vesta will appear beyond the northwest tip of the Sagittarius constellation.
Saturn and Mars will be nearby, with all visible to the naked eye from now until mid-July.
For those in the southern hemisphere, the mirror image is true – with the asteroid appearing south-westerly of the constellation.
The last time the asteroid was visible in the night sky was 2011.
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg Centre
Astronomy - ASSA Johannesburg CentreSunday, June 24th, 2018 at 7:44pm
Clearest image ever taken of Saturn ...


Friday, November 24th, 2017 at 4:55am
Public Viewing
CANCELLED due to poor weather
Friday, October 27th, 2017 at 8:58am
Public Viewing
Johannesburg Observatory

Cancelled due to weather.
Friday, September 29th, 2017 at 8:07am
JHB Observatory
Public Viewing 29 September
Cancelled due to poor weather
Sunday, September 24th, 2017 at 10:47am
Sky and Braai - Cancelled - weather deteriorating -clouds and particulate in atmosphere.
Tuesday, September 5th, 2017 at 12:45pm
Monthly Meeting
Date : 13 Sep
Speaker : Heystek Grobler - HartRAO
Topic : Introduction to Radio Astronomy

In the Night Sky



Be sure to dress very warmly this month as you venture out to visit the July night skies.

Our crispy skies are just glittering with millions of stars and nebula to boot.

Sagittarius, Scorpius and nebula abound. In the south, the jewel box, a cross and galaxies are found.

Never to forget, the most important yet. At the end of July a full lunar eclipse is in our sky.

A vision we will not see again until 2023.

Come to the Observatory, to ASSAJHB, to see it all. There is a promise of moonshine and gluhwein,

to add to all delights on the night.

Moon Phases:

Universe Today

This week’s Carnival of Space is hosted by Brian Wang at his Next Big Future blog.

Click here to [...]

Thu, Jul 19, 2018
Source: Universe Today
Artist Illustration of TESS and its 4 telescopes. Credit: NASA/MIT

The James Webb Space Telescope is like the party of the century that keeps getting postponed. Due to its [...]

Thu, Jul 19, 2018
Source: Universe Today

A group of fans recently filled baseball's Fenway Park in Boston — not to watch homers fly over the Green [...]
Wed, Jul 18, 2018
Blue Origin launched its New Shepard suborbital spacecraft for the ninth time today (July 18) during a test to ensure [...]
Wed, Jul 18, 2018

Jupiter's family has really grown since Galileo first recorded its four largest moons in 1610. On Tuesday, the International Astronomical Union [...]
Tue, Jul 17, 2018

The exceptional duo is one of only four ever detected.

Fri, Jul 13, 2018


What's that spot next to the Moon?

What's that spot next to the Moon?

Source: APOD
There is much more to the familiar

There is much more to the familiar

Source: APOD