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  1. #1
    Ron Wood's Avatar
    Ron Wood Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?



    I only have a basic understanding of the Solar system and the rest of
    the Universe. My young son has been asking some astronomy questions
    that I had problems with: "When the Earth rotates, why do the
    constelations stay in the same spot?", "Why can't we see the other
    side of the Moon if it rotates?" etc...

    I need a good basic book that covers essential issues, sort of
    Astronomy FAQ for beginners. Any suggestions?

    Thanks
    Ron

  2. #2
    Mark Hansen's Avatar
    Mark Hansen Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    On 6/8/2004 11:57, Ron Wood wrote:


    One good way to get him going would be to have him perform a small
    experiment:

    Go outside on a clean night, and draw a picture of the stars he
    can see when looking to the north - it may help to also draw some
    simple features of the horizon, like roof tops and large trees, just
    so he can have a reference for the direction he was looking.

    Then, get him up early in the morning, while it is still dark, and
    have him draw another picture from the same location, looking in the
    same direction. Then have him compare the two drawing.



    Do the same thing here. Have him draw a picture of the dark colored
    patterns visible on the moon. Do it again from day to day (or once
    a week, if you prefer), then compare the drawings.

    I think he will be amazed at the results of both.


    I can't recommend any specific book. If you have a book store near
    you, drop in and thumb through a few. Otherwise, go to Amazon.com
    and look for books on Astronomy. For example, have a look at this:

    <http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0521794455/qid=1086726326/sr=1-16/ref=sr_1_16/104-6973209-1900719?v=glance&s=books>

    sorry for the long link... I hope it won't be too difficult to
    copy and paste.




  3. #3
    Jim Mosquera's Avatar
    Jim Mosquera Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    Run... don't walk... to the nearest bookstore and buy a copy of "Nightwatch"
    by Terrence Dickinson (Firefly Publishing). It is hands-down the best book
    out there in your situation.

    Jim M.


    "Ron Wood" <unixzip@yahoo.com> wrote in message
    news:3fcc5fec.0406081057.3279cf33@posting.google.c om...



  4. #4
    Llanzlan Klazmon The 15th's Avatar
    Llanzlan Klazmon The 15th Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    unixzip@yahoo.com (Ron Wood) wrote in news:3fcc5fec.0406081057.3279cf33
    @posting.google.com:


    Eh, they don't. Stars near the celestial equator rise and set just like
    the Sun. Note that there is a slight difference in time between Solar Day
    and Siderial day due to the orbit of the Earth about the Sun. Over the
    course of the year you will note that different constellations are
    visible at different times. The ones near your pole though, just rotate
    around the pole so you can see those all year round. See this link which
    shows the effect of long exposure shot of the North celestial pole taken
    from a fixed camera:

    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap980912.html


    , "Why can't we see the other

    The moon is tidally locked to the Earth, which means that the same side
    of the moon always faces towards the Earth. However due to the Moon's
    eliptical orbit, you can get a peak around the edges due to an effect
    known as libration:

    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap010218.html



    Not off the top of my head. Have a look in a good book store or check out
    Amazon and look at the reviews of any introduction to astronomy type
    books.

    LK.




  5. #5
    Z Zag's Avatar
    Z Zag Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    > I need a good basic book that covers essential issues, sort of

    MIT has online courses that are self-study and no credit...



  6. #6
    Paul Lawler's Avatar
    Paul Lawler Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    "Jim Mosquera" <jimandlaura26@comcast.net> wrote in message
    news:kI-dndySNa-7wFvd4p2dnA@comcast.com...
    "Nightwatch"
    book

    I second this recommendation... with the next best book probably being "Turn
    Left at Orion."



  7. #7
    Algomeysa2's Avatar
    Algomeysa2 Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?


    "Ron Wood" <unixzip@yahoo.com> wrote in message
    news:3fcc5fec.0406081057.3279cf33@posting.google.c om...

    One suggestion is, check out your local museums and see if any of them is a
    science museum that has a Planetarium (artificial night sky projection), or
    an Observatory (better telescope than you'll ever manage at home) with
    public viewing hours.

    If so, take your son to some of the Planetarium shows, and to the
    observatory nights. You'll both learn something.



  8. #8
    Jim Mosquera's Avatar
    Jim Mosquera Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    I agree.

    Jim M.


    "Paul Lawler" <stargazer@kilolaniDOT.net> wrote in message
    news:Ehzxc.7674$uX2.4459@newsread2.news.pas.earthl ink.net...
    "Turn



  9. #9
    Felder's Avatar
    Felder Guest

    Default where to begin when you are 40?

    Ron Wood (unixzip@yahoo.com) wrote...


    Astronomy Today by Eric Chaisson and Steve McMillan.
    Fantastic intro text book. Local library should have it.

    -Felder

 

 

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