South African Astronomical Observatory

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Stay informed about COVID-19

Please have a look at for the latest information about the COVID-19 Corona Virus in South Africa. Stay safe!

Due to the COVID-19 virus, all visits, tours and open nights have been cancelled until further notice in Cape Town.

Guided Tours in Sutherland are now open, please note only the following tours will be available for December:

1. Day Tours, Mondays – Saturdays 10:30 and 14:30, maximum of 12 people per tour including children

2. Evening Tours, Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, maximum of 15 people per tour including children

All the other tours are still suspended.

For more info on coronavirus here is a link to the South African Coronavirus Website

We are pleased to announce the publication of a special astronomy edition of the NRF’s Science Matters magazine. This has been produced in celebration of the 200th Anniversary of the SAAO. As we reach the milestone of 200 hundred years of astronomy research in South Africa,......

Today, 19 October 2020, saw the premiere of the highly anticipated locally produced planetarium film ‘Rising Star’ at the Iziko Planetarium and Digital Dome nestled in the heart of Cape Town, South Africa. The film was supported by the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) and......

The SAAO will, in October 2020, celebrate 200 years of existence as an astronomical observatory. We’re proud to announce the SAAO 200 Virtual Symposium which will be a fully virtual, interactive experience, live-streamed from Tuesday, 20 October through Friday, 23 October. This occasion grants us......

On Sunday 20 September 2020 the International Astronomical Union (IAU) Minor Planet Center announced the discovery of a comet (magnitude ~18.5) by SAAO Astronomer Dr Nicolas Erasmus. The discovery was made from four 30 second exposures taken on Sep 17 UT by ATLAS-MLO at Mauna......

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Malcolm Coe – The S-CUBE X-ray survey of the Small Magellanic Cloud

Dec 10 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Thursday 10 December 2020 Prof Malcolm Coe (Southampton University, UK) The S-CUBE X-ray survey of the Small Magellanic Cloud – neutron stars, white dwarfs, but still no Black Holes! The Small Magellanic Cloud hosts the largest population known of High Mass X-ray Binary systems –…

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