The Big Bang is the Astronomical Society of Malta’s quarterly publication, and one of the longest (37 years) of any hobbyist group in Malta. The publication is nowadays available in an online format and covers historical and current astronomical topics like constellations, deep sky objects (Messier), planetary events, along notable sky events such as eclipses and meteor showers.
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History of the The Big Bang
In February 1984, Alexander Bonello issued the first edition of The Big Bang as a bi-monthly publication of the Students’ Astronomical Circle (SAC). It was aimed at the amateur observer “serving as a guide to the night sky.” When in September 1984 the SAC and the other active astronomical group, the Astronomical Association, merged to form the present Society, The Big Bang became the quarterly magazine of the new Astronomical Society of Malta.
Over these years, The Big Bang has been edited by Alex Bonello, Professor Frank Ventura, Dr. Philip Sciortino and the present editor Tony Tanti. The material that has been published has covered a wide variety of astronomical themes and many astounding celestial events were reported: there was the apparition of Halley’s comet in 1985-86; the collision of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 with Jupiter in 1994; the appearance of the great comets Hyakutake and Hale-Bopp in 1996 and 1997 respectively; the solar eclipse of August 11, 1999; the Leonid meteor storm of 2003; the rare twin transits of Venus in 2004 and 2012, and many more.