The Journal of the British Astronomical Association

Volume 122, No.2: 2012 April

Summary contents page

Detailed contents: Notes and News / Articles / Observers' Forum / Reviews / Letters / Meetings

On the cover: Observing the Sun
With activity on the Sun increasing in the runup to the next solar maximum, now is a great time to begin observing our nearest star. For hints on how to get started, see our ‘Observing basics’ article by the BAA’s Solar Section Director, Lyn Smith, on page 78. Full disk image in H-alpha light by Pete Lawrence, 2011 June 3.

Notes and News

From the President (Bill Leatherbarrow) / Stargazing Live in Regent’s Park (Alan Lorrain) / Aurora Section (Ken Kennedy) / Solar Section (Lyn Smith) / Good Lighting Award for Leicester temple (Bob Mizon) / Venus in 2011-’12: third interim report (Richard McKim) / Supernova 2011ht in UGC 5460 (Guy Hurst) / Mars in 2011-’12: first interim report (Richard McKim) / Observers battle cloud and moonlight to view the 2011 Geminids (John W. Mason) / Weidong Li, 1969-2011 (Tom Boles)

Observing basics: II

  • Observing the Sun ... Lyn Smith
  • 'Observing basics' is a new series of articles by BAA Section Directors and other experts, designed to help you get started in observing, whether you are a newcomer to astronomy or an ‘old hand’ thinking of taking up a new area of interest. Look out for further articles in the series in future issues of the Journal!

  • Reviews

  • Exoplanets: Finding, exploring, and understanding alien worlds by Chris Kitchin,
    Springer, 2012. ISBN 978-1-4614-0643-3. Pp xvi + 281, £26.99 (pbk).
    Reviewed by Richard Miles
  • Exploring Mars: Chronicles from a Decade of Discovery by Scott Hubbard,
    University of Arizona Press, 2012. ISBN 978-0-8165-2896-7. Pp xx + 194, $17.95 (pbk).
    Reviewed by Richard McKim

  • CLICK HERE to read scores more authoritative book reviews from the BAA Journal


    Refereed papers

    Observing variable stars for fun and physics ... David Boyd

    The 2011 Presidential Address, given on 2011 October 26 at the Royal Astronomical Society, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BQ

    Mercury projected on the solar corona
    ... Richard Baum

    Instances of Mercury seen in silhouette on the corona before or after a passage across the solar disk are described and placed in context. The observations are a reminder of the role of chance and surprise in our experience of the physical world. Furthermore they illustrate the need for observers to be more aware of the historical record.

    Farewell to film: Imaging comets and the Sun the old way ... Michael Hendrie

    After more than a century the use of photographic emulsion, whether on a flexible base or a glass plate, has largely given way to electronic imaging in its various forms. This paper describes some of the techniques and equipment used by amateurs in the era of photographic film.

    Asymmetry in lunar eclipses ... Darren Beard
    Most lunar eclipse canons and catalogues make the assumption that lunar eclipses are symmetrical about the moment of greatest eclipse. This is in fact not strictly true. This paper investigates the asymmetries, quantifies their magnitude, and illustrates the errors in calculated times if they are not considered.

    Short paper: A revised rotation period for asteroid (2903) Zhuhai ... Peter Meadows


    Click here to obtain a PDF file of any of these articles


    Why not join us at a BAA meeting near you? Meetings are open to all and you will be made very welcome.   Click here for the latest Meetings Diary

    BAA Update

    Observers' Forum

  • NGC 4565: a stunning galaxy in Coma Berenices ... Stewart L. Moore
  • Aurora at Tarbat Ness ... Denis Buczynski
  • Remote observations of supernova 2011fe ... Martin J. F. Fowler
  • NGC 4565 imaged by Gordon Rogers

    Sky notes for 2012 April & May by Callum Potter

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