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Viewing and Imaging the Solar System

Viewing and Imaging the Solar System Author Jane Clark
ISBN-10 9781461451792
Release 2014-09-24
Pages 256
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Viewing and Imaging the Solar System: A Guide for Amateur Astronomers is for those who want to develop their ability to observe and image Solar System objects, including the planets and moons, the Sun, and comets and asteroids. They might be beginners, or they may have already owned and used an astronomical telescope for a year or more. Newcomers are almost always wowed by sights such as the rings of Saturn and the moons of Jupiter, but have little idea how to find these objects for themselves (with the obvious exceptions of the Sun and Moon). They also need guidance about what equipment, besides a telescope, they will need. This book is written by an expert on the Solar System, who has had a lot of experience with outreach programs, which teach others how to make the most of relatively simple and low-cost equipment. That does not mean that this book is not for serious amateurs. On the contrary, it is designed to show amateur astronomers, in a relatively light-hearted—and math-free way—how to become serious.

Getting Started in Radio Astronomy

Getting Started in Radio Astronomy Author Steven Arnold
ISBN-10 9781461481577
Release 2013-09-24
Pages 208
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Radio astronomy is a mystery to the majority of amateur astronomers, yet it is the best subject to turn to when desirous of an expanded knowledge of the sky. This guide intends to instruct complete newcomers to radio astronomy, and provides help for the first steps on the road towards the study of this fascinating subject. In addition to a history of the science behind the pursuit, directions are included for four easy-to-build projects, based around long-term NASA and Stanford Solar Center projects. The first three projects constitute self-contained units available as kits, so there is no need to hunt around for parts. The fourth – more advanced – project encourages readers to do their own research and track down items. Getting Started in Radio Astronomy provides an overall introduction to listening in on the radio spectrum. With details of equipment that really works, a list of suppliers, lists of online help forums, and written by someone who has actually built and operated the tools described, this book contains everything the newcomer to radio astronomy needs to get going.

Deep Sky Video Astronomy

Deep Sky Video Astronomy Author Steve Massey
ISBN-10 038787612X
Release 2009-04-21
Pages 185
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Deep-Sky Video Astronomy is a concise guide to using modern integrating video cameras for deep-sky viewing and imaging with the kinds of modest telescopes available commercially to amateur astronomers. It includes an introduction and a brief history of the technology, camera types, etc. The authors then examine the pros and cons of this unrefrigerated yet highly efficient technology, which is already beginning to compete with expensive astronomical cooled-chip CCD cameras in quality and ease of use. There is a thorough examination of accessories used to achieve particular results. Examples are focal reducers, Barlow lenses, and optical filters. However, the focus is mostly on the practical side of creating beautiful and detailed astronomical portraits using image-stacking software, enhancement tools like PhotoShop, and creating color images with a black-and-white camera. Practical step-by-step examples supported by tried and trusted tips show how to achieve the best possible deep-sky video portrait!

Lunar and Planetary Webcam User s Guide

Lunar and Planetary Webcam User s Guide Author Martin Mobberley
ISBN-10 9781846281990
Release 2006-08-03
Pages 230
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This book de-mystifies the jargon of webcams and computer processing, and provides detailed hints and tips for imaging the Sun, Moon and planets with a webcam. It demonstrates how inexpensive tools are revolutionizing imaging in amateur astronomy. Anyone with a modest telescope and a webcam can now obtain jaw-dropping lunar and planetary images to rival those taken with mid-range astronomical CCD cameras costing thousands of dollars. A glance through the images in this book shows just what spectacular results can be achieved by using a webcam with your telescope! Your scientific results will be sought by professional astronomers.

The Mythology of the Night Sky

The Mythology of the Night Sky Author David E. Falkner
ISBN-10 1461401372
Release 2011-08-28
Pages 238
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The Mythology of the Night Sky is intended primarily for amateur astronomers who would like to know the mythology behind the names of constellations and planets. It deals with the 48 constellations identified by the ancient Greek astronomer Ptolemy, as well as all the planets of our solar system and their moons, which are named after Roman gods. To assist practical observers the book gives the location and description of each constellation, including named stars and deep-sky objects. Readers are encouraged to observe and image the constellations for themselves, and there is a lot of practical information in this book to help them along the way. In addition to providing a detailed (and mostly Greek) mythology of the constellations and the vast soap opera that was part of the Ancient Greek pantheon, this book also addresses the planets of the Solar System, which are named after the Roman - not Greek - gods.


Starlight Author Keith Robinson
ISBN-10 1441907084
Release 2009-10-03
Pages 277
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This is a book about the physics of stars and starlight. The story of starlight is truly fascinating. Astronomers analyze and interpret the light from stars using photometry and spectroscopy, then inspirational detective work combines with the laws of physics to reveal the temperatures, masses, luminosities and outer structure of these far away points of light. The laws of physics themselves enable us to journey to the very center of a star and to understand its inner structure and source of energy! Starlight provides an in-depth study of stellar astrophysics that requires only basic high school mathematics and physics, making it accessible to all amateur astronomers. Starlight teaches amateur astronomers about the physics of stars and starlight in a friendly, easy-to-read way. The reader will take away a profoundly deeper understanding of this truly fascinating subject – and find his practical observations more rewarding and fulfilling as a result.

Twenty Five Astronomical Observations That Changed the World

Twenty Five Astronomical Observations That Changed the World Author Michael Marett-Crosby
ISBN-10 9781461468004
Release 2013-06-28
Pages 318
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"Twenty-Five Astronomical Observations That Changed the World" takes twenty-five journeys through space, back in time and into human history. We begin with the simplest sight of the Tycho Crater on the Moon, through a repeat of Galileo's observations of Jupiter's moons, and then move out towards the nebulae, stars, and galaxies. The astronomical observations repeat the original groundbreaking discoveries that have changed our understanding of science and ourselves. This title contains graded observing challenges from the straightforward to the more difficult (in chapter order). It offers clear observing tips and lots of practical help, presuming no prior in-depth knowledge of equipment. Binoculars and/or a small astronomical telescope are all that is required for most of the observations. Secondly, it explores for each observation the science of what is seen, adding to the knowledge and enjoyment of amateur astronomers and offering lots of reading for the cloudy nights when there is not a star in view. Thirdly, the book puts the amateur astronomers' observations into a wider perspective. "Twenty-Five Astronomical Observations That Changed the World" makes the observer part of that great story of discovery. Each chapter, each observing challenge, shows how to observe and then how to look with understanding. The projects begin with practicalities: where the object is, how best is it observed and with what appropriate equipment (usually a small-to-medium aperture amateur telescope, binoculars, even the naked eye). "Twenty-Five Astronomical Observations that Changed the World" guides even the inexperienced amateur astronomer - beginners can use the book - around a variety of night-sky objects, and reminds the more experienced how they can best be seen. These practical observations put us in contact with all the history and culture surrounding them: through scientific speculation and literature to those first fuzzy images made in 1959 by the Russian space probe Luna 3.

Observer s Guide to Star Clusters

Observer   s Guide to Star Clusters Author Mike Inglis
ISBN-10 9781461475675
Release 2013-07-20
Pages 282
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Amateur astronomers of all expertise from beginner to experienced will find this a thorough star cluster atlas perfect for easy use at the telescope or through binoculars. It enables practical observers to locate the approximate positions of objects in the sky, organized by constellation. This book was specifically designed as an atlas and written for easy use in field conditions. The maps are in black-and-white so that they can be read by the light of a red LED observer’s reading light. The clusters and their names/numbers are printed in bold black, against a “grayed-out” background of stars and constellation figures. To be used as a self-contained reference, the book provides the reader with detailed and up-to-date coverage of objects visible with small-, medium-, and large-aperture telescopes, and is equally useful for simple and computer-controlled telescopes. In practice, GO-TO telescopes can usually locate clusters accurately enough to be seen in a low-magnification eyepiece, but this of course first requires that the observer knows what is visible in the sky at a given time and from a given location, so as to input a locatable object. This is where "The Observer's Guide to Star Clusters" steps in as an essential aid to finding star clusters to observe and an essential piece of equipment for all amateur astronomers.

Celestial Delights

Celestial Delights Author Francis Reddy
ISBN-10 1461406102
Release 2011-11-12
Pages 423
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Celestial Delights is essentially a 'TV Guide' for teh sky. This will be its third edition. This title, which has aggregated sales of about 20,000 copies to date in its two previous editions and has found a niche with skygazers, is much awaited. Through extensive graphics integrated with an eight-year-long calendar of sky events, it provides a look at "don't miss" sky events, mostly for naked-eye and binocular observing. The book is organized by ease of observation - lunar phases and the brighter planets come first, while solar eclipses, the aurora, and comets come later. Celestial Delights also includes a hefty dose of sky lore, astronomical history, and clear overviews of current science. It provides a handy reference to upcoming naked-eye events, with information broken out in clear and simple diagrams and tables that are cross-referenced against a detailed almanac for each year covered. Most broad-ranging astronomy field guides focus on stars, constellations, and the deep sky, but tend to ignore planetary events, which are in by far the most widely observable aspects of the changing night sky. Celestial Delights puts a variety of information all in one place, presents it in a friendly way that does not require prior in-depth astronomical knowledge, but provides the context and historical background for understanding events that astronomical computer programs or web sites lack.

Scientific Astrophotography

Scientific Astrophotography Author Gerald Hubbell
ISBN-10 9781461451730
Release 2012-11-09
Pages 333
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Scientific Astrophotography is intended for those amateur astronomers who are looking for new challenges, once they have mastered visual observing and the basic imaging of various astronomical objects. It will also be a useful reference for scientifically inclined observers who want to learn the fundamentals of astrophotography with a firm emphasis on the discipline of scientific imaging. This books is not about making beautiful astronomical images; it is about recording astronomical images that are scientifically rigorous and from which accurate data can be extracted. This book is unique in that it gives readers the skills necessary for obtaining excellent images for scientific purposes in a concise and procedurally oriented manner. This not only gets the reader used to a disciplined approach to imaging to maximize quality, but also to maximize the success (and minimize the frustration!) inherent in the pursuit of astrophotography. The knowledge and skills imparted to the reader of this handbook also provide an excellent basis for “beautiful picture” astrophotography! There is a wealth of information in this book – a distillation of ideas and data presented by a diverse set of sources and based on the most recent techniques, equipment, and data available to the amateur astronomer. There are also numerous practical exercises. Scientific Astrophotography is perfect for any amateur astronomer who wants to go beyond just astrophotography and actually contribute to the science of astronomy.

Video Astronomy on the Go

Video Astronomy on the Go Author Joseph Ashley
ISBN-10 9783319469379
Release 2016-10-24
Pages 205
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Author Joseph Ashley explains video astronomy's many benefits in this comprehensive reference guide for amateurs. Video astronomy offers a wonderful way to see objects in far greater detail than is possible through an eyepiece, and the ability to use the modern, entry-level video camera to image deep space objects is a wonderful development for urban astronomers in particular, as it helps sidestep the issue of light pollution. The author addresses both the positive attributes of these cameras for deep space imaging as well as the limitations, such as amp glow. The equipment needed for imaging as well as how it is configured is identified with hook-up diagrams and photographs. Imaging techniques are discussed together with image processing (stacking and image enhancement). Video astronomy has evolved to offer great results and great ease of use, and both novices and more experienced amateurs can use this book to find the set-up that works best for them. Flexible and portable, they open up a whole new way of seeing space.

Measure Solar System Objects and Their Movements for Yourself

Measure Solar System Objects and Their Movements for Yourself Author John D. Clark
ISBN-10 0387895612
Release 2009-04-20
Pages 173
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Instead of taking somebody's word for it about the basic size and distance statistics for the solar system, this book shows amateur astronomers how to measure these things for themselves. This is an enriching experience for any amateur astronomer - to understand and personally measure some fundamental astronomical quantities and distances. A basic knowledge of geometry is required, but it is amazing how simple the geometry can be. Readers are led through the geometry as gently as possible - and in a light-hearted way - presuming that most non-academics will have half-forgotten most of their mathematics. The practical astronomical equipment recommended is no more than a typical commercially-made amateur telescope and a camera of some sort - these days a webcam works very well. Apart from that all the reader will need is access to a computer, the know-how to download free software, and an enthusiasm to expand his knowledge of the basis of scientific astronomy.

Choosing and Using Astronomical Filters

Choosing and Using Astronomical Filters Author Martin Griffiths
ISBN-10 9781493910441
Release 2014-06-20
Pages 269
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As a casual read through any of the major amateur astronomical magazines will demonstrate, there are filters available for all aspects of optical astronomy. This book provides a ready resource on the use of the following filters, among others, for observational astronomy or for imaging: Light pollution filters Planetary filters Solar filters Neutral density filters for Moon observation Deep-sky filters, for such objects as galaxies, nebulae and more Deep-sky objects can be imaged in much greater detail than was possible many years ago. Amateur astronomers can take photographs that rival those of professional observatories! The ability to do this has been brought about by the revolution in CCD cameras and improved filters. The book pinpoints which astronomical objects are best observed with which filters. Post-processing (using Photoshop) is also discussed, since it is helpful in further improving filtered astro images. The last part of the book is an observational guide to 100 deep sky objects that benefit from the use of filters – all personally observed by the author – with notes on the filters used (or potentially of use) in their observation and imaging. There are also notes on their celestial coordinates, magnitudes and other pertinent information.

Observing the Sun

Observing the Sun Author Jamey L. Jenkins
ISBN-10 9781461480150
Release 2013-07-19
Pages 257
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""Observing the Sun"" is for amateur astronomers at all three levels: beginning, intermediate, and advanced. The beginning observer is often trying to find a niche or define a specific interest in his hobby, and the content of this book will spark that interest in solar observing because of the focus on the dynamics of the Sun. Intermediate and advanced observers will find the book invaluable in identifying features (through photos, charts, diagrams) in a logical, orderly fashion and then guiding the observer to interpret the observations. Because the Sun is a dynamic celestial body in constan.

The Observer s Guide to Planetary Motion

The Observer s Guide to Planetary Motion Author Dominic Ford
ISBN-10 9781493906291
Release 2014-05-14
Pages 240
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To the naked eye, the most evident defining feature of the planets is their motion across the night sky. It was this motion that allowed ancient civilizations to single them out as different from fixed stars. “The Observer’s Guide to Planetary Motion” takes each planet and its moons (if it has them) in turn and describes how the geometry of the Solar System gives rise to its observed motions. Although the motions of the planets may be described as simple elliptical orbits around the Sun, we have to observe them from a particular vantage point: the Earth, which spins daily on its axis and circles around the Sun each year. The motions of the planets as observed relative to this spinning observatory take on more complicated patterns. Periodically, objects become prominent in the night sky for a few weeks or months, while at other times they pass too close to the Sun to be observed. “The Observer’s Guide to Planetary Motion” provides accurate tables of the best time for observing each planet, together with other notable events in their orbits, helping amateur astronomers plan when and what to observe. Uniquely each of the chapters includes extensive explanatory text, relating the events listed to the physical geometry of the Solar System. Along the way, many questions are answered: Why does Mars take over two years between apparitions (the times when it is visible from Earth) in the night sky, while Uranus and Neptune take almost exactly a year? Why do planets appear higher in the night sky when they’re visible in the winter months? Why do Saturn’s rings appear to open and close every 15 years? This book places seemingly disparate astronomical events into an understandable three-dimensional structure, enabling an appreciation that, for example, very good apparitions of Mars come around roughly every 15 years and that those in 2018 and 2035 will be nearly as good as that seen in 2003. Events are listed for the time period 2010-2030 and in the case of rarer events (such as eclipses and apparitions of Mars) even longer time periods are covered. A short closing chapter describes the seasonal appearance of deep sky objects, which follow an annual cycle as a result of Earth’s orbital motion around the Sun.

Sketching the Moon

Sketching the Moon Author Richard Handy
ISBN-10 1461409411
Release 2011-12-11
Pages 233
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For anyone artistically inclined, observing the Moon and attempting to sketch or paint it can easily become a passion. The Moon presents a broad array of tone, texture, and form. Capturing this in a painting or sketch at the eyepiece of a telescope – or even with binoculars – develops observational skills, leaves a record of the observation, and can also be a delightful and rewarding pastime. However, the choice of media available is extensive (acrylic paint, oils, pen, charcoal, etc., and even computer art programs), and there is no existing text that fully explains all lunar sketching and painting techniques in each respective medium. This beautiful and graphically rich book fulfills this requirement. It presents detailed step-by-step instructions, in the form of illustrated tutorials for every major medium employed to represent the Moon. It also provides practical advice on how to sketch outdoors at night (not ideal conditions for an artist!). This is easily the most extensive book on the subject of lunar art for amateur astronomers, particularly those observing through a telescope. The diverse features of the lunar surface will attract and entice readers to review the number of different media presented, exciting and inspiring them with the possibilities of learning to depict all of the fascinating aspects of Earth's very own satellite.

A Buyer s and User s Guide to Astronomical Telescopes Binoculars

A Buyer s and User s Guide to Astronomical Telescopes   Binoculars Author James Mullaney
ISBN-10 9781846287077
Release 2007-05-26
Pages 204
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Both beginning/novice amateur astronomers (at the level of Astronomy and Night Sky magazine readers), as well as more advanced amateur astronomers (level of Sky and Telescope) will find this book invaluable and fascinating. It includes detailed up-to-date information on sources, selection and use of virtually every major type, brand and model of such instruments on today’s market. The book also includes details on the latest released telescope lines, e.g. the 10-, 12-, 14- and 16-inch aperture models of the Meade LX-R series. As a former editor for Sky & Telescope, Astronomy, and Star & Sky magazines, the author is the ideal person to write this book.