A Handbook of Double Stars

A Handbook of Double Stars : For the Use of Amateurs

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Used to describe both binary systems and optical doubles, the term 'double star' has been familiar to astronomers since the seventeenth century. This book, first published in 1879, outlines the history of their study, and describes the methods and equipment needed in order to observe the fascinating phenomenon. Written for non-specialists by Fellows of the Royal Society Edward Crossley (1841-1904), Joseph Gledhill (1837-1906) and James M. Wilson (1836-1931), the catalogue of over 1,200 double stars appears beside detailed notes and does not assume mathematical expertise. Also offered are a fully worked example of how to find the orbit of a binary star, and illustrations of telescopes, observatories, and even custom-made observation chairs. This reissue includes the supplement with corrections and notes published in 1880. A standard reference text in the late nineteenth century, the work remains a resources for students and scholars of the history of astronomy.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 11 b/w illus.
  • 1139108980
  • 9781139108980

Table of contents

Preface; Part I. Historical, and Descriptive of Instruments and Methods: 1. Historical introduction; 2. The Equatorial: its construction and adjustments; 3. Some account of the Equatorials which have been used by double-star observers; 4. The micrometer; 5. Methods of observing double stars; Part II. On the Calculation of the Orbit of a Binary Star: 1. Introduction; 2. Example of an orbit worked by a graphical method; 3. Dr. Doberck's example of an orbit worked by analytical methods; 4. On relative rectilinear motion; 5. On the effect of proper motion and parallax on the observed position angles and distance of an optically double star; 6. On the errors of observation and the combination of observations; Part III. The Catalogue and Measures: Introductory remarks; A catalogue of binary and other double starts deserving of attention; Lists of measures, with historical notes, etc.; Supplementary list of measures; Appendix; Additional notes to measures; Binary stars classified; Note on systematic errors in the measures of angle and distance of double stars; Part IV. Bibliography: A. Some of the most important works and papers on double stars; B. Some papers on the micrometer; C. Some papers on the colours of double stars; Additional notes; Corrections 1880.show more