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The Journal of the British Astronomical Association, 2015 August

Volume 125, Number 4

See the Perseid meteors in a dark moonless sky, explore an erupting black hole, and follow Patrick Moore's mentor at the Brockhurst Observatory in Sussex..

Log in or join the BAA today to view this journal online. A full list of contents is also available.

Selected highlights from this Journal:

Observers' Forum

Skinning the Lizard
Callum Potter
A summer of variable stars
Gary Poyner

BAA Update

Refereed Papers

Saturn in 1995−’96
BAA observations between 1995 April and 1996 February are reviewed. Highlights of the apparition were observations of the phenomena of the triple ring-plane crossings by the Earth and the ring-plane crossing of the Sun, the results of which show that the predicted times were correct to within a few hours. Transits and shadow transits of Titan, Rhea, Dione and Tethys were observed. Several mutual satellite events were also observed, either visually or by means of CCD cameras. White spot activity could again be followed in the planet’s northern Equatorial Zone (EZ), though it was much reduced from 1994-’95: the long-enduring white spot (WS1) had survived solar conjunction and continued to move with a rotation period close to 10h 22m, as did another short-lived feature...
Richard McKim
Perseids 2013 – Multi-station meteor videography
The results from multi-station observations of the 2013 Perseids meteor shower are presented and discussed, including an estimate of the Perseids’ population index.
Alex R. Pratt, William Stewart, Mike Foylan, Leonard Entwisle & Michael O’Connell
William Sadler Franks and the Brockhurst Observatory
William Sadler Franks (1851-1935) was astronomer-in-charge at F. J. Hanbury’s private observatory at Brockhurst, near East Grinstead, Sussex, from 1909 until his death in 1935. This paper reviews the observational projects Franks undertook at Brockhurst, including his work on double stars, red stars, diffuse nebulae and dark nebulae, as well as his involvement with the commissioning of a 24-inch reflector built by Thomas William Bush.
Jeremy Shears
The brighter comets of 2005
This report describes and analyses observations of the brighter or more interesting comets discovered or at perihelion during 2005.
Jonathan Shanklin
HW Boötis: an enigmatic cataclysmic variable star
We present the 13-year lightcurve of HW Boo between 2001 May and 2014 May. We identified 12 outbursts, which typically lasted 2 to 5 days, with an amplitude of 2.7 to 3.6 magnitudes. We discuss whether HW Boo might be a dwarf nova of the SU UMa family or an Intermediate Polar, but further observations are needed to support classification.
Jeremy Shears, David Boyd, Graham Darlington, Ian Miller, Roger Pickard, Gary Poyner, Richard Sabo, Mike Simonsen & William Stein