Joined Jan 12 2011
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26 years old
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Brough Astronomy [BLAS]

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Reply Julian
9:25 AM on January 13, 2011 
Hi Matty

Nice to here that you want a career in astronomy and to start it off you could give us a visit as i am sure you could get someone to get you to Brough as this weekend coming we are holding a solar and moon / star party.
Reply Flamencopaul
8:45 AM on January 13, 2011 
Hi Again...

Another may want to have a look at the Hull and East Riding Astronomy Society (HERAS) website and check out their speakers list. HERAS is a lecture based society, with monthly talks given largely by professional astronomers. The talks would give you some idea of the work professional astronomers do, and I'm sure the speakers would be able to give you a better insight into possible study / career paths.

Reply Flamencopaul
8:15 AM on January 13, 2011 
Hi Matty,
Thanks for getting in touch. We are a group of amateur astronomers, and this is not a professional 'working' observatory, so unfortunately we would be unable to offer you work experience.

In terms of astronomy as a career, there are 3 broad options - Astronomy itself, which involves working out of a University or in some cases directly for an observatory and doing research-based work. The technical/mechanical/ electronics aspect which would involve working at an observatory operating and maintaining equipment, and the computer aspect which links in with operating equipment, but is also involved with processing the large amounts of observational data now available.

The general career path would be to do a degree in astronomy/astrophysics then follow that up with postgraduate study within your chosen area of interest. Any of the disciplines mentioned above require the study of advanced mathematics, as it is mathematical models that underpin much of the current research.

You would be most welcome to visit the observatory and/or become a member of the society, this would, in time, give you a good backround knowledge of astronomy and observing which may help you with your career choices.

Hope this helps answer some of your questions,

Best wishes