Cover image for Observing the universe : a guide to observational astronomy and planetary science
Title:
Observing the universe : a guide to observational astronomy and planetary science
Publication Information:
Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2004
ISBN:
9780521603935
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PSZ JB 30000010141914 QB61 O27 2004 Open Access Book
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Summary

Summary

Observing the Universe introduces a range of techniques and skills that will be useful for those wishing to undertake observational work in astronomy and planetary science. Observations have played, and continue to play, a crucial role in developing our understanding of the Universe, and the best way to get a feel for the role of observations is to do some. This comprehensive guide provides a sound basis for tackling astronomy and planetary science observations. It concentrates on generic aspects of observations, including the principles of telescopes and detectors, photometry and spectroscopy, microscopy techniques for analysing samples, teamwork skills, planning for a session at an observatory, keeping records of what you do, estimating uncertainties in measurements, analysing data numerically and graphically, and producing a written report. Including self-assessment questions with full solutions, this self-contained guide is suitable for undergraduate students of astronomy and planetary science, and serious amateur astronomers.


Author Notes

W. Alan Cooper The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Ian A. Franchi The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Stuart M. Freake The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Simon F. Green The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Carole A. Haswell The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Barrie W. Jones The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Ulrich C. Kolb The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
T.J. Lowry McComb Durham University, UK
Andrew J. Norton The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
David A. Rothery The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK
Sean G. Ryan The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK


Table of Contents

1 Introduction
Part I Techniques
2 The night sky - positional astronomy
3 Telescopes
4 Spectrographs
5 Astronomical detectors
6 Reducing CCD data
7 Photometry
8 Spectroscopy
9 Microscopes and microscopy techniques
10 Interpreting images of planetary surfaces
Part II Skills
11 Team working
12 Preparing for practical work in astronomy and planetary science
13 Keeping records
14 Experimental uncertainties
15 Analysing experimental data
16 Making use of graphs
17 Using calculators and computers
18 Communicating your results