New PDF release: The Observer’s Year: 366 Nights of the Universe

By Patrick Moore (auth.)

ISBN-10: 1846281555

ISBN-13: 9781846281556

ISBN-10: 1852338849

ISBN-13: 9781852338848

Patrick Moore’s sensible Astronomy Series


There are 365 nights in each year (366 in a jump year!) and from an beginner astronomer’s perspective, no are alike.

And because of this Sir Patrick Moore – the world’s most generally identified and revered television broadcaster and author on astronomy – has produced this specific e-book to spotlight detailed items of curiosity on each evening of the yr. utilizing easy-to-follow famous person maps, he talks in regards to the technological know-how and background of stars, double stars, galaxies, nebulae, the Moon, planets, constellations or even asteroids.

This moment variation has been totally up to date for astronomical occasions via until eventually the 12 months 2010.

What they acknowledged in regards to the first edition

"...beautifully written and bubbles with enthusiasm."


"Well, Patrick Moore has performed it back. What an exceptional booklet this is."

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Extra resources for The Observer’s Year: 366 Nights of the Universe

Example text

28 January 22 Right Ascension We have seen that the declination of Betelgeux is (in round numbers) +7°, and that of Rigel –8°. Declination is the sky equivalent of terrestrial latitude. But we also need an equivalent of terrestrial longitude, and this is termed Right Ascension. On Earth, the zero for longitude is the great circle on the terrestrial globe which passes through both the poles and also the Greenwich Observatory, in Outer London. Longitude is the angular distance of the site either east or west of the Greenwich meridian – thus the longitude of Athens is 24° E, Tokyo 139° E, New York 74° W, and so on.

For Betelgeux, it is not easy to find a comparison star at equal altitude; from Britain, for example, Betelgeux is always higher up than Rigel, while from Australia it is always lower down. However, with a little practice it is possible to make 22 reliable estimates, and it is always interesting to keep track of Betelgeux as it slowly brightens and fades. Many red supergiants are similarly variable; I will have more to say about them later. Betelgeux is the brightest of them, because it is the closest star of its type.

Its orange-red colour is striking The Observer’s Year Future Points of Interest 2009: Venus at eastern elongation. January 15 Future Points of Interest 2007: Occultation of Antares, 13 h, S. Pacific, S. Atlantic. 21 even with the naked eye, and is well brought out with binoculars. The nineteenth-century astronomer William Lassell called it ‘a most beautiful and brilliant gem. Singularly beautiful in colour, a rich topaz, in hue and brilliancy, different from any other star I have seen’. It ranks as a supergiant star, but in spite of its immense size it is not so massive as might be thought, and is no more than around 15 times as massive as the Sun.

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The Observer’s Year: 366 Nights of the Universe by Patrick Moore (auth.)

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