2018 Observer's Handbook

Item #81104

The 2018 Observer's Handbook is your essential guide to the night sky!

For the first time ever, the RASC Observer's Handbook is now available in a USA edition with applicable sections tailored to the USA.

An indispensable guide for amateur and professional astronomers, teachers, students, as well as interested general readers, the 2018 Observer’s Handbook is one of the oldest scientific publications in North America and has been published since 1907. The 352-page guide is published annually by The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada and includes information provided by more than 60 contributors.

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Description

The 2018 Observer's Handbook is your essential guide to the night sky!

For the first time ever, the RASC Observer's Handbook is now available in a USA edition with applicable sections tailored to the USA. This new version includes guest editorial by John Goss, President of the Astronomical League, plus a section by Robert Kerr detailing the AL's activities.

An indispensable guide for amateur and professional astronomers, teachers, students, as well as interested general readers, the 2018 Observer’s Handbook is one of the oldest scientific publications in North America and has been published since 1907. The 352-page guide is published annually by The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada and includes information provided by more than 60 contributors covering:

Upcoming astronomical events for the current year including

  • Times of sunrise and sunset 
  • Moon phases and other lunar phenomena
  • Conjunctions, elongations, etc. of the planets
  • Eclipses and transits
  • Location of the planets and dwarf and minor planets 
  • Returns of periodic comets
  • Times of meteor showers
  • Predictions of occultations by the Moon and by planetary bodies
  • Orbital positions of the brighter satellites of both Jupiter and Saturn
  • Predictions of the cycles of many variable stars
  • A 24-page section, “The Sky Month By Month" which gives an extensive listing of events for each month of the year

Astronomical reference information that does not vary much from year to year but is revised annually to ensure the information is the best available. This includes

  • Information on observing artificial satellites
  • This year’s feature star field – Hercules
  • Orbital and physical data on the planets and their satellites
  • Astronomical and physical constants 
  • Some optical properties of telescopes and binoculars
  • A section on the electromagnetic spectrum
  • Information on filters for astronomical observing 
  • Light pollution and sky transparency
  • Description of the various systems of specifying time
  • information on the Sun including sunspots and aurorae
  • Information on solar and lunar observing 
  • Sections on astronomical sketching and digital photography
  • Essay on deep-sky objects
  • Section and observing list "Wide-Field Wonders"
  • List of meteorite craters in North and Central America
  • Advice on using the Observer's Handbook for teaching astronomy
  • Information on the Gegenschein and zodiacal light
  • Section on Sky phenomena
  • Information on the Astronomical League and its activities
  • 40 pages of authoritative tables dealing with stars, star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies
  • Maps of the Moon and of the entire stellar sky

The 2018 Observer’s Handbook contains information useful for well beyond the current year and would be a much appreciated resource for any active observer.

Don't miss this must-have reference book for anyone interested in astronomy!

Editor: James S. Edgar
Size: 5.5 x 8.5
Page Count: 352

Table of Contents
Introduction
List of Contributors
The Observer’s Handbook
The RASC / Reporting of Astronomical Discoveries
Editor’s Comments / Cover images
Guest Editorial (John J. Goss)
Recommended Reading, Atlases, and Software
Selected Observatories, Star Parties, and Planetaria
Selected Internet Resources
Teaching and the Observer’s Handbook

Basic Data
Terminology and Symbols
Solar System Geometry / Handy Sky Measures
Astronomical Precession
Principal Elements of the Solar System
Natural Satellites of the Planets
Orbital Motion
Some Astronomical and Physical Data
The Electromagnetic Spectrum
Voyages in the Solar System
Observing Artificial Satellites

Time
Time and Time Scales
Standard Time Zones
Time Signals, Mean Sidereal Time, Julian Date
Astronomical Twilight and Sidereal Time

Optics and Observing
Telescope Parameters
Telescope Exit Pupils
Magnification and Contrast in Deep-Sky Observing
Night Myopia and Stargazing Eyeglasses
Binoculars
Filters
Limiting Magnitudes
Polar Alignment
Frequency of Nighttime Cloud Cover
Weather Resources on the Internet
Light Pollution
Astronomical League Programs
Deep-Sky Observing Hints
The Observing Logbook
Astronomical Sketching
Digital Astrophotography: A Primer

The Sky Month by Month
Introduction
Magnitudes of Naked-Eye Planets in 2018
RA of the Sun and the Planets in 2018
Detailed Monthly Descriptions

Eclipses
Eclipse Patterns
Eclipses in 2018
Viewing a Solar Eclipse – A Warning
Eclipse History

The Moon
Map of the Moon
New-Moon Dates / Times of Moonrise and Moonset
Lunar Observing
Lunar Occultations
Tides and the Earth-Moon System

The Sun
Ephemeris for the Sun
Solar Observing
Solar Activity
Rainbows and Some Other Sky Phenomena
Times of Sunrise and Sunset
Twilight
Sky Brightness at Midnight

Planets and Satellites
The Planets in 2018
Mercury-214; Venus-216; Mars-217; Jupiter-222; Saturn-223; Uranus-228; Neptune-229
Phenomena of the Galilean Satellites
Configurations of Saturn’s Brightest Satellites

Dwarf and Minor Planets
The Dwarf Planets
The Brightest Minor Planets
Planetary Occultations

Meteors, Comets, and Dust
Meteors
Fireballs
Meteorite Identification
Meteorite Impact Craters of North America
Comets in 2018
Observing Comets
Interplanetary Dust

Stars
Constellations-Names and Abbreviations
Feature Star Field: Hercules
Finding List of Some Named Stars
The Brightest Stars
Spectroscopy of Stars
The Nearest Stars
Double and Multiple Stars
Carbon Stars
Colored Double Stars
Variable Stars
Expired Stars

The Deep Sky
The Deep Sky-From Near to Far
RASC Observing Program & Certificates
A Deep-Sky Selection-From Near to Far
Star Clusters
The Messier Catalogue
The Finest NGC Objects
Dark Nebulae
Deep-Sky Challenge Objects
Deep-Sky Gems
Wide-Field Wonders
Southern Hemisphere Splendours
Galaxies: Brightest and Nearest
Galaxies with Proper Names
Radio Astronomy and Radio Sources

Appendices
Maps of the Night Sky
Index
2018 Holidays and Special Dates
Astronomy Discover