The Observer's Guide to Astronomy, Volume 1 / Edition 1

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This guide provides comprehensive practical information for both beginning and advanced amateur astronomers on how to make scientifically significant observations. The book explains in detail how to observe every conceivable astronomical object—from meteors to distant galaxies. It presents a wide variety of methods ranging from the simplest visual observations, such as making pencil drawings of the surface of the Moon, to the use of highly sophisticated equipment, such as CCD cameras and photoelectric photometers. It also explains how to record and catalog observations using recognized professional terminology and classification schemes. The volume's emphasis throughout is on giving amateur astronomers sound information to use at the telescope. The most effective and efficient techniques are presented so that observers can apply those that are most suitable to their own equipment and degree of experience. This comprehensive survey of practical methods of observation will develop the observational skills of the avid novice and will also satisfy the more demanding needs of the experienced amateur astronomer.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book is packed with solid information on observing...The information is delivered in a succinct intelligent style...I fully recommend this book to anyone who wants to take that next step beyond casual observing." Rod Hatcher, The Observer

"It illustrates, in painstaking detail, the types of scientifically useful observations amateur astronomers and students can make with modest equipment....Each section is complete and self-contained....For serious amateur astronomers and students with access to telescopes, this set is a necessity. Strongly recommended..." K. Larsen, Choice

"The books really shine on topics about the Moon, Sun, plan etary satellites, occultations, double stars, variable stars, aurorae, and meteors...deserves a spot on any advanced observers bookshelf." Astronomy

"The authors of each chapter are specialists in the field amateur searching for knowledge...can find a wealth of information here." Alan and Susan French, Sky & Telescope

"...the most complete book on amateur solar-system observing that I have ever encountered. It is full of practical advice on observing, drawing, and photographing every manner of solar-system object and phenomenon, making the book a fine addition to any personal or astronomy-club library." Scott Kardel, Astronomy

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521379458
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/2005
  • Series: Practical Astronomy Handbooks Series, #4
  • Edition description: English language ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 612
  • Product dimensions: 8.46 (w) x 10.98 (h) x 1.22 (d)

Table of Contents

Volume 1: Contents (Volumes 1 & 2); The contributors; Summary (Volumes 1 & 2); Preface; Translator's preface; 1. The Sun; 2. Observing the Sun with a coronograph; 3. Solar eclipses; 4. The Moon; 5. Planetary surfaces; 6. Planetary satellites; 7. The minor planets; 8. Comets; 9. Occultations; 10. Artificial satellites; Notes, references and bibliography - Volume 1; Volume 2: Contents (Volumes 1 & 2); The contributors; Summary (Volumes 1 & 2); 11. Aurorae; 12. Meteors; 13. Double and multiple stars; 14. Variable stars; 15. Deep sky novae and supernovae; 16. Plate comparisons; 17. Astrometry; 18. Spectroscopy; 19. Photoelectric photometry; 20. Image-intensifiers and CCDs; Appendices: 1. Time scales; 2. The T60 Association; Notes, references and bibliography - Volume 2.

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