Sky Guide Africa South 2014, by Astronomical Society of Southern Africa
The Astronomical Society of Southern Africa, together with Struik Nature, publishes this annual astronomical guide. Now in its 64th year of publication, the book is prepared by a team of contributors, all specialists in their fields.
The Sky Guide Africa South 2014, published by Astronomical Society of Southern Africa (ASSA), together with Struik Nature, continues the tradition of the well-established Astronomical Handbook for Southern Africa and is intended as a reference work for both the established astronomer and the casual sky watcher. This is its 68th year of publication. Data is obtained from the JPL Horizons ephemeris generator, Occult 4.1 (David Herald), Stellarium 0.10 (Fabien Chereau et al.), Cartes du Ciel 2.76c (Patrick Chevalley), A Dictionary of Modern Star Names (Paul Kunitzsch and Tim Smart), Edwin Goffin (occultation predictions), the Lunar and Planetary Institute (lunar photographs) and the Digitized Sky Survey (Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. & the Anglo-Australian Observatory Board). Assistance was received from the ASSA Secretary, Directors and Specialists of the Sections, and Secretaries of the Centres. Contributions by Tim Cooper (comets and meteor showers), Greg Roberts (artificial satellites), Chris Stewart (choosing a telescope), Carol Botha (light pollution) and Chris de Coning (historical material) are gratefully acknowledged. Special thanks is due to Johan Retief, Johan Smit, Pumlani Sibula, Thembela Mantungwa and Nomawethu Martin for help in compilation of the Afrikaans and isiXhosa lexicons. Many South African astrophotographers contributed their work freely to the Sky Guide Africa South 2014 and are thanked for their beautiful submissions. Photographers are invited to submit their work for consideration for publication in future editions.
How to use the Sky Guide Africa South 2014:
This handbook is divided into a number of sections, each of which is identified by a symbol along the top of the page. The first section is the monthly sky diary, which includes eight full-page seasonal star charts as well as four pages of information for each month, as follows:
Following the sky diary are sections on:
- Sun and Moon, giving information about such topics as eclipses and predictions for Ramadan & Shawwal, Including Moon maps to help Identify prominent lunar features;
- Planets, discussing their movement and appearance, with a graph of rising and setting times, which can be used throughout southern Africa, and also star charts for locating Uranus and Neptune during 2014;
- Asteroids, comets and meteors, comprehensive background Information and details on opportunities to observe these fascinating objects;
- Southern stars and constellations, Including data on all the brightest stars, a brief guide to pronouncing star names and a chart for locating the enigmatic companion to Sirius;
- Deep-sky objects, with a hand-picked selection of the finest southern examples;
- Basic observing skills, with tips on getting started in stargazing, including sound advice on choosing a telescope, and how to combat light pollution;
- Astronomy in southern Africa, looked at from various perspectives (historical, contemporary research, educational and social), including information about the ASSA;
- glossary, defining commonly used terminology; and a lexicon, giving a list of basic astronomical terms in Afrikaans and isiXhosa.
This is an excerpt from the astronomical guide: Sky Guide Africa South 2014, by Astronomical Society of Southern Africa.
Title: Sky Guide Africa South 2014
Publisher: Astronomical Society of Southern Africa; Struik Nature
Random House Struik
Cape Town, South Africa 2014
ISBN 9781775840329 / ISBN 978-1-77584-032-9
Softcover, 15x21 cm, 136 pages, throughout colour photos and images
The Sky Guide is a well-established astronomical handbook for Southern Africa and is intended as a reference work.
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