Details

Meteors and How to Observe Them


Meteors and How to Observe Them


Astronomers' Observing Guides

von: Robert Lunsford

32,12 €

Verlag: Springer
Format: PDF
Veröffentl.: 19.02.2009
ISBN/EAN: 9780387094618
Sprache: englisch
Anzahl Seiten: 192

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Beschreibungen

In this era of high-tech instruments, meteor observing is the one facet of astr- omy that needs nothing more than your naked eye. Meteors can be easily seen without the aid of cameras, binoculars, or telescopes. Just ? nd a comfortable chair and lie back and watch for the surprises that await high above you. It is a great way to involve the family in science where everyone is active at the same time, not wa- ing to take turns at the eyepiece. The kids especially enjoy the hunt for “shooting stars,” oohing and ahing at each streak of light that crosses the sky. While gazing upwards, it is also a great way to get more familiar with the sky by learning the constellations and seeing if you can see the warrior among the stars of Orion or the scorpion among the stars of Scorpius. Until just recently, one could simply go outside and watch for meteors from his or her yard. Unfortunately, humankind’s fear of the dark and the widespread use of lighting as advertisement have lit the nighttime scene in urban areas so that only the brightest stars are visible. Serious meteor observing under such conditions is nearly impossible as the more numerous faint meteors are now lost in the glare of urban skies. Today, a serious meteor observing session entails organizing an outing to a country site where the stars can be seen in all their glory and meteors of all magnitudes can be viewed.
No two meteor showers are alike, and their variation depends on current conditions and the observer’s location. This introduction to the art of meteor observing explains how best to view meteor activity under all conditions and from all locations.
In this era of high-tech instruments, meteor observing is the one facet of astr- omy that needs nothing more than your naked eye. Meteors can be easily seen without the aid of cameras, binoculars, or telescopes. Just ? nd a comfortable chair and lie back and watch for the surprises that await high above you. It is a great way to involve the family in science where everyone is active at the same time, not wa- ing to take turns at the eyepiece. The kids especially enjoy the hunt for “shooting stars,” oohing and ahing at each streak of light that crosses the sky. While gazing upwards, it is also a great way to get more familiar with the sky by learning the constellations and seeing if you can see the warrior among the stars of Orion or the scorpion among the stars of Scorpius. Until just recently, one could simply go outside and watch for meteors from his or her yard. Unfortunately, humankind’s fear of the dark and the widespread use of lighting as advertisement have lit the nighttime scene in urban areas so that only the brightest stars are visible. Serious meteor observing under such conditions is nearly impossible as the more numerous faint meteors are now lost in the glare of urban skies. Today, a serious meteor observing session entails organizing an outing to a country site where the stars can be seen in all their glory and meteors of all magnitudes can be viewed.
An Introduction to Meteorics.- Sporadic Meteors.- Major Annual Showers.- Minor Annual Showers.- Variable Showers.- Daytime Showers.- New Showers?.- Observing Meteor Showers.- Meteor Activity Throughout the Year.- Meteor Groups and Organizations.
Robert Lunsford has had forty years experience viewing meteors and meteor showers, and is a memberv of the American Meteor Society (AMS) and the International Meteor Organization (IMO).

ASTRONOMERS’ OBSERVING GUIDES provide up-to-date information for amateur astronomers who want to know all about what it is they are observing. This is the basis of the first part of the book. The second part details observing techniques for practical astronomers, working with a range of different instruments.

Have you ever been on the beach at night, watching the sky overhead, and seen streaks of light against the background of stars? Though many people still refer to these as shooting stars, they are, of course, not stars. They are meteors—small chunks of rock and ice debris from disintegrating comets that are careening through our Solar System and sometimes enter Earth’s atmosphere. Most are so small that they burn up as they enter the atmosphere. These are called meteors. In a meteor shower, many meteors can be seen streaking across the sky in a short time. A few meteors make it through intact and descend to Earth as meteorites. Watching these beautiful streaks of light in the sky can be an exciting pastime, and it can result in some important science.

Robert Lunsford explains what meteors are, where they come from, and what happens to them as they whiz through space and enter our atmosphere. He tells how to observe meteors and meteor showers, what equipment to use, what you should look for, where you should look, and much more. Armed with the information in this book and with very little effort and equipment, you can begin your regular search of the heavens right now and join the ranks of those who have made this rewarding pastime a lifetime hobby.

Practical Astronomy

ISBN 978-0-387-09460-1

springer.com
Explains what meteors and meteroids are
Provides necessary expertise in observing meteors
Enables the observer to plan meteor shower “expeditions” well into the future
Enables observers to produce scientifically useful data
Provides contacts with other individuals and groups devoted to viewing meteor showers

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