Hunting and Imaging Comets
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About the author
Martin Mobberley is a well-known amateur astronomer from Suffolk, England, who joined the British Astronomical Association in 1969, aged eleven, initially as a visual observer. Since the early 1980s he has been a regular photographer and imager of comets, planets, asteroids, variable stars, novae, and supernovae. He served as one of the youngest presidents of the British Astronomical Association, from 1997 to 1999, and in 2000 he was presented with the association’s Walter Goodacre Award. In 1997 the International Astronomical Union (IAU) named asteroid number 7239 as ‘Mobberley’ in recognition of Martin’s contribution to amateur astronomy. Martin is the sole author of seven previous practical astronomy books published by Springer as well as three children’s ‘Space Exploration’ books published by Top That Publishing. In addition he has authored hundreds of articles in the UK magazine Astronomy Now and numerous other astronomical publications, as well as appearing from time to time on Patrick Moore’s long-running BBC TV program The Sky at Night.
For many astronomers, the holy grail of observation is to discover a comet, not least because comets always bear the name of their discoverer! Hunting and Imaging Comets was written for comet hunters and digital imagers who want to discover, rediscover, monitor, and make pictures of comets using astronomical CCD cameras and DSLRs. The old days of the purely visual comet hunter are pretty much over, but this is not to say that amateurs have lost interest in finding comets.The books also covers the discovery of comet fragments in the SOHO image data, CCD monitoring of older comets prone to violent outbursts, the imaging of new NEOs (Near Earth Objects) that have quite often been revealed as comets - not asteroids - by amateur astronomers, and the finding of recent comets impacting Jupiter.
Springer New York
; October 2010
401 pages; ISBN 9781441969057Read online
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Title: Hunting and Imaging Comets
Author: Martin Mobberley
Preface.- Acknowledgments.- Comets, Their Orbits, and Where They Hide!.- Great Comet Discoveries Throughout History.- Professional 21st Century Comet Hunters.- Amateur 21st Century Comet Hunters.- Finding the Next Hale-Bopp with Your Gear.- Comets That Have Been Missed by the Pros.- Recovering Returning Periodic Comets.- Discovering Comets Using SOHO.- Following the NEOS that Might Become Comets.- Monitoring Outbursting Comets.- Comet Imaging Techniques.- Lenses, Telescopes, Astrographs, and Mountings.- Imaging Comets Remotely and via the Internet.- Comet Photometry.- A Few of the World's Keenest Comet Imagers.- Comet Resources.- Index.
In the press
From the reviews:
“Presents an entertaining and motivating guide for backyard observers to search for and image comets and near-Earth objects. … Mobberly shares anecdotes about the discovery of notable comets and advice for how amateur astronomers can compete for discoveries with the current and upcoming large-scale automated sky surveys … . It is written for a reader with at least a basic familiarity with astronomical concepts and a desire to join the devoted international group of astronomers … . Summing Up: Highly recommended. All audience levels.” (S. A. Russell Gonzalez, Choice, Vol. 48 (9), May, 2011)
“Packed with a wealth of information to aid both would-be comet discoveries and observers … . The book is nicely illustrated … and is well researched and accurate throughout comprising a collection of 15 chapters, each of which is a good read in itself. … I enjoyed the conversational style of the writer including his many light-hearted remarks and occasional humorous quip. … I would say that if … you too have leanings of the comet kind then this book is certainly for you.” (Richard Miles, Astronomy Now, August, 2011)
“Martin Mobberley, a well-known British amateur astronomer, describes in loving detail the comet hunting and observing process. … gives a blow-by-blow account of how, with small telescopes and CCD cameras, these comets can be successfully imaged. … Mobberley also discusses historical comet records … . The joy of comet hunting and comet chasing springs from every page. Sensible practical advice and useful clues abound. But what I liked especially was the underlying aim of the endeavour. There is more to it than just fun.” (David W. Hughes, The Observatory, Vol. 131 (1225), December, 2011)