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A Dictionary of Astronomy

by Ian Ridpath

Astronomy is expanding almost as rapidly as the universe itself, and the proliferating scientific jargon can sometimes baffle even the most dedicated amateur. Now, in some 4,000 concise, up-to-date entries, this dictionary cuts a clear path through the maze of complex technical language, offering full, clear definitions drawn from all aspects of astronomy. Compiled by Ian Ridpath, a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society, and an expert team of contributors, A Dictionary of Astronomy contains the most recent entries from astrophysics and cosmology to galaxies and time. Here are succinct definitions for the Big Bang theory, comets, eclipses, Magellanic Clouds, Mars, quasar, relativity, and variable stars. Entries on telescopes and other measuring devices, observatories, space missions, and recently named Solar System objects show how astronomers have explored the universe. The Dictionary also provides biographical entries on eminent astronomers from Copernicus to Edwin Hubble. From black hole to white dwarf, and from spiral galaxies to solar waves, A Dictionary of Astronomy opens a window on the universe for amateur astronomers everywhere.

The Monthly Sky Guide

by Ian Ridpath

The ninth edition of Ian Ridpath and Wil Tirion's famous guide to the night sky is updated with planet positions and forthcoming eclipses to the end of the year 2017. It contains twelve chapters describing the main sights visible in each month of the year, providing an easy-to-use companion for anyone wanting to identify prominent stars, constellations, star clusters, nebulae and galaxies; to watch out for meteor showers ('shooting stars'); or to follow the movements of the four brightest planets, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Most of the sights described are visible to the naked eye and all are within reach of binoculars or a small telescope. This revised and updated edition includes sections on observing the Moon and the planets, with a comprehensive Moon map. The Monthly Sky Guide offers a clear and simple introduction to the skies of the northern hemisphere for beginners of all ages.

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