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Additional references for amateur astronomers.

Annual Almanacs

The Astronomical Almanac for the Year 1998. Nautical Almanac Office (U.S. Naval Observatory, 1997). 556 pages. ISBN 0-16-049072-3. $38.00. *

This reference provides for 1998 precise ephemerides and phenomena of the Sun, Moon, planets and their satellites, positions of bright stars, and elements for asteroids and periodic comets. It contains much definitive calendrical material, information on time and coordinate systems, and other data indispensable to astronomers.

The Handbook of the British Astronomical Association 1998. N. J. Goodman, ed. (British Astronomical Association, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1V 9AG, United Kingdom; 1997). 104 pages. ISSN 0068-130X. Approx. $18.00 postpaid, paperbound.

The BAA Handbook gives ephemerides of the Sun, Moon, planets, double stars, and periodic comets for the entire year; predictions for Jupiter's satellites and for lunar occultations; a detailed diary of meteor showers; and more.

Astronomical Calendar 1998. Guy Ottewell (Universal Workshop, Furman University, Greenville, SC 29613; 1997). 72 pages. ISBN 0-934546-36-3. $19.95, paperbound. *

Two facing 11-by-15-inch pages present a star map, planet charts, and day-by-day notes on interesting sky events with innovative diagrams and a wealth of explanatory text.

Observer's Handbook 1998. Roy L. Bishop, ed. (Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, 136 Dupont St., Toronto, ON M5R 1V2, Canada; 1997). 244 pages. ISSN 0080-4193. $18.95, paperbound. *

This valuable reference features a daily calendar of sky events, finder charts for outer planets and bright asteroids, predictions of eclipses, lunar occultations for North American observers, and phenomena of Jupiter's satellites. It lists bright stars, variables, deep-sky objects, meteor showers, meteorite craters on Earth, and more.

1998 Comet Handbook. Syuichi Nakano and Daniel W. E. Green, eds. (Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, 60 Garden St., Cambridge, MA 02138; 1997). 86 pages. $15.00.

This special (fifth) issue of the International Comet Quarterly is now in its 12th edition. It provides orbital elements and ephemerides for 86 comets expected to be visible during 1998. Subscribers of ICQ can purchase copies for $8.00.

Comets, Asteroids, Meteors, and Meteorites

The Quest for Comets. David H. Levy (Avon Books, 1350 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10019; 1995). 282 pages. ISBN 0-380-72526-6. $12.50, paperbound.

The codiscoverer of Jupiter-colliding Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 explores the science and mystique of comets.

Comet of the Century: From Halley to Hale-Bopp. Fred Schaaf (Springer-Verlag, 175 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10010; 1996). 250 pages. ISBN 0-387-94793-0. $29.00.

Comet Hale-Bopp may be long gone but you never know when the next great comet will appear. This reference is rich in detail about past comets and astronomers' gradual understanding of these celestial showpieces.

Meteors. Neil Bone (Sky Publishing Corp., 1993). 176 pages. ISBN 0-9333346-67-0. $18.95, paperbound. *

A comprehensive guide to observing, reporting, and photographing meteors and fireballs.

Rocks from Space. O. Richard Norton (Mountain Press Publishing Co., P.O. Box 2399, Missoula, MT 59806; 1994). 449 pages. ISBN 0-87842-302-8. $20.00, paperbound.

A history of meteoritics and of the personalities who collect and study meteorites.

Impact! The Threat of Comets and Asteroids. Gerrit L. Verschuur (Oxford University Press, 198 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10016; 1996). 237 pages. ISBN 0-19-510105-7. $25.00.

One of the more popular astronomical topics today is the possibility of solar-system objects hitting the Earth. Verschuur summarizes the effects of impacts, how astronomers are hunting for cosmic interlopers, and preventive measures to take so we don't wind up like the dinosaurs.

Astro Imaging

Astrophotography for the Amateur. Michael Covington (Cambridge University Press, 40 W. 20th St., New York, NY 10011; 1991). 168 pages. ISBN 0-521-41305-2; clothbound, $54.95. 0-521-40984-5, paperbound; $19.95. *

Covers the basics of astronomical photography, from simple time-lapse star trails with a 35-millimeter camera to advanced techniques such as gas hypersensitizing film and using filters.

The Art and Science of CCD Astronomy. David Ratledge, ed. (Springer-Verlag, 1997). 178 pages. ISBN 3-540-76103-9. $39.95, paperbound. *

Amateur astronomers with electronic cameras can take a step beyond stargazing and snapping pictures and perform real scientific research. Chapters describe how the electronic age has come to backyard telescopes.

Astrophotography: An Introduction. H. J. P. Arnold (Sky Publishing Corp., 1995). 192 pages. ISBN 0-933346-73-5. $18.95, paperbound. *

This guide to capturing the night sky on film is intended for the novice photographer who is not necessarily familiar with the general principles of astronomy.

Equipment and Observing

The Backyard Astronomer's Guide. Terence Dickinson and Alan Dyer (Camden House Publishing, 7 Queen Victoria Rd., Camden East, ON K0K 1J0, Canada; 1991). ISBN 0- 921820-11-9. 295 pages. $39.95.

A picture-packed book by two of Canada's most prominent amateur astronomers helps beginners select observing equipment and tells how to use it. There are abundant expert observing tips.

Star Ware. Philip S. Harrington (John Wiley & Sons, 305 Third Ave., New York, NY 10158; 1994). 384 pages. ISBN 0-471-57671-9. $19.95, paperbound. *

A guide for buying and using all manner of amateur observing equipment.

Making and Enjoying Telescopes. Robert Miller and Kenneth Wilson (Sterling Publishing Co., 387 Park Ave. S, New York, NY 10016; 1995). 160 pages. ISBN 0-8069-1277-4. $24.95.

Hands-on amateurs may enjoy the satisfaction of building their own telescopes. This book presents several straightforward telescope-making projects. However, fabricating the optics is not included. Instead the authors offer sage advice on purchasing mirrors from commercial suppliers.

Binocular Astronomy. Craig Crossen and Wil Tirion (Willmann-Bell, Inc., P.O. Box 35025, Richmond, VA 23235; 1992). 224 pages. ISBN 0-943396-36-0. $24.95. *

A season-by-season tour of the astronomical sights you can view with standard binoculars, complete with star charts for the entire sky.

Touring the Universe through Binoculars: A Complete Astronomer's Guidebook. Philip S. Harrington (John Wiley & Sons, 1990) ISBN 0-471-51337-7. 297 pages. $24.95, paperbound. *

A constellation-by-constellation tally of star clusters, galaxies, and nebulae to view with medium to large binoculars. Also includes sections on objects in the solar system.

Skywatching. David H. Levy (Time-Life, Inc., 2000 Duke St., Alexandria, VA 22314; 1995). 288 pages. ISBN 0-783547-51-X. $29.95.

Novice stargazers will find a bounty of astronomical information on seemingly every cosmic topic in this lavishly illustrated handbook. The text features digests of subjects ranging from the planets to the structure of the universe. Monthly all-sky charts, single-page constellation summaries, equipment overviews, and observing tips make this a well-rounded reference.

Burnham's Celestial Handbook. Robert Burnham Jr. (Dover Publications, 31 E. 2nd St., Mineola, NY 11501; 1983). Vol. 1: Andromeda through Cetus, ISBN 0-486-23567-X. Vol. 2: Chamaeleon through Orion, ISBN 0-486-23568-8. Vol. 3: Pavo through Vulpecula, ISBN 0-486-23573-0. 2,138 pages. $14.95 each volume, paperbound. *

An indispensable mixture of constellation and celestial-object mythology, history, science, and observation. It is arranged alphabetically by constellation.

Star-Hopping for Backyard Astronomers. Alan M. MacRobert (Sky Publishing Corp., 1994). ISBN 0-933346-68-9. 160 pages. $22.95. *

Maneuver among recognizable star patterns to locate intriguing but inconspicuous celestial objects nearby. Fourteen star-hop safaris help you hunt down astronomical big game--160 objects of varying difficulty. Each starhop includes a detailed map, object descriptions, and photos. Introductory chapters cover how to choose and use a backyard telescope, find your way around the sky, read star charts, and observe faint objects.

Norton's 2000.0 Star Atlas and Reference Handbook, 18th Edition. Ian Ridpath, ed. (Longman Scientific & Technical, 1989). 179 pages. ISBN 0-470-21460-0. $49.95. *

Eighteen star maps cover the entire sky down to magnitude 6.5 in this venerable work. Each map is accompanied by tables of interesting objects and notes. Norton's also boasts a gold mine of data, explanations of celestial phenomena, and snippets of history.

The Beginner's Observing Guide: An Introduction to the Night Sky for the Novice Stargazer. Leo Enright (Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, 1996). 164 pages. ISBN 0-9695804-2-8. $12.00, spiralbound.

Designed for those who might be intimidated by the RASC's more technical Observer's Handbook, this guide features events through the year 2000, basic observing information, and tips for watching the Sun, Moon, planets, auroras, comets, and more.

* Available from Sky Publishing Corp., P.O. Box 9111, Belmont, MA 02178; 800-253-0245, 617-864-7360; orders@skypub.com.
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Author:Goldman, Stuart J.
Publication:SkyWatch
Date:Jan 1, 1998
Words:1321
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