A Skywatcher's Year

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Cambridge University Press, Jul 8, 1999 - Nature - 189 pages
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If you have ever watched shooting stars graze the sky or wondered about a particularly bright point of light near the horizon, then this is the book for you. A Skywatcher's Year is the authoritative guide to visible bodies in the night sky throughout the year. Through fifty-two essays, Jeff Kanipe guides you to celestial events and phenomena that occur or are visible with the naked eye and binoculars for each week of the year. He acquaints you not only with up-to-date astronomical information on stars, nebulae, meteors, the Milky Way, and galaxies, but also conveys the beauty and wonder of the night sky. Covering both the Northern Hemisphere and Southern Hemisphere, A Skywatcher's Year helps readers find prominent stars and constellations, bright star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies, and explains how and when to observe prominent annual meteor showers. Kanipe also examines the most frequently-observed celestial body, the Moon, and the intriguing lore surrounding it. A rich and jargon-free look at the sky through the four seasons, this engaging book will give new dimensions to backyard star-gazing.
 

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Contents

Winter
11
New year new millennium same stars
14
The years first meteor shower
15
The flashing Dog Star
17
The Milky Way in winter
19
The winter clock
20
Who was Auriga the Charioteer?
23
The secondbrightest star in the night sky
26
Autumn
93
Star time
94
The Double Cluster
96
The rescue of Andromeda
98
Shooting stars from Orion
101
Five southern birds
102
A stepping stone to the universe
104
The Leonid meteor shower
106

The Magellanic Clouds
28
A starry hothouse
30
Three star clusters
32
Gemini the Twins
34
The light that hides
36
Spring
39
Finding true north
42
Finding true south
45
The Beehive Cluster
47
A kingly star
49
The surprising Lyrid meteors
50
The Big Dippers many identities
51
The Eta Aquarid meteor shower
53
Bootes the Herdsman
54
A star that bears watching
56
Quest for the Southern Cross
57
A cosmic window
60
A summer place
62
Summer
65
Clouds in space
67
The glorious Milky Way
68
Galactic central
70
Deepsky treasures
72
Dog Days
75
The Summer Triangle
77
A false comet
79
Meteor shower alert
81
The Native American Scorpion
84
Summer holds on as autumn draws near
85
The smile in the sky and the watery realm
87
Time is distance among the stars
89
Fomalhaut solitary star in the south
91
The Pleiades rise at sunset
108
A star that winks
109
Betelgeuse Betelgeux Betelgeuze
111
The flashy Geminid meteor shower
112
Winters eve
114
The Sun Moon and Planets
117
The skywatchers Sun
119
Sunspots and faculae
120
The sunspot cycle
122
Preparing for observing the Sun
123
Observing the Sun
125
the northern and southern lights
126
greatest shadow show in the solar system
128
Total solar eclipses
129
A note on observing a solar eclipse
131
Total lunar eclipses
132
The skywatchers Moon
134
Observing the Moon
135
Predicting moonrise
138
The tides
140
The Harvest Moon
142
Blue Moons
144
Finding and observing the planets
148
Appendices
153
Total and annular solar eclipses 2001 to 2024
155
Total lunar eclipses 2001 to 2025
161
General planet locations 1999 to 2010
164
Oppositions for Mars Jupiter and Saturn 2000 to 2010
178
The 20 brightest stars in the night sky
180
Further Reading
183
Index
187
Copyright

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Page 9 - You do not have to sit outside in the dark. If, however, you want to look at the stars, you will find that darkness is necessary.
Page 5 - Thus a star of magnitude 1 is 2.5 times brighter than a star of magnitude 2...
Page xiii - They frequent the higher latitudes, as a general thing, not only in the northern hemisphere but in the southern hemisphere as well, where they are most conspicuous in the southern sky.

About the author (1999)

Jeff Kanipe is a science writer and editor based in Boulder, Colorado.

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