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Actual Astronomy - Astronomy Books

The 365 Days of Astronomy

Release Date: 02/15/2024

Travelers in the Night Eps. 271 & 272: Dark Trails & Mars Impactor show art Travelers in the Night Eps. 271 & 272: Dark Trails & Mars Impactor

The 365 Days of Astronomy

Dr. Al Grauer hosts. Dr. Albert D. Grauer ( ) is an observational asteroid hunting astronomer. Dr. Grauer retired from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 2006. Today's 2 topics: - A faint shooting star or meteor streaking across the sky is produced when a tiny bit of rock or dust enters the Earth's atmosphere and burns up some 60 miles above us. NASA scientist Dr. Marc Fries and his collaborators have used Doppler Weather Radar to track twenty meteor's dark trails through the sky. In the past year or so they have used this technique to direct searchers on the ground to the probable...

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Deep Astronomy - DwarfLab Dwarf 2 Smart Telescope show art Deep Astronomy - DwarfLab Dwarf 2 Smart Telescope

The 365 Days of Astronomy

The Beginner's Gateway to the Cosmos, Even in the City! From  Sep 28, 2023. Here is the Deep Astronomy Review of the Dwarf II smart telescope from Dwarflabs. If you're looking to buy one, here's my affiliate link:   We've added a new way to donate to 365 Days of Astronomy to support editing, hosting, and production costs.  Just visit: and donate as much as you can! Share the podcast with your friends and send the Patreon link to them too!  Every bit helps! Thank you! ------------------------------------ Do go visit for cool Astronomy Cast and CosmoQuest t-shirts, coffee...

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EVSN - Following the Water Toward Climate Change show art EVSN - Following the Water Toward Climate Change

The 365 Days of Astronomy

From April 10, 2024. This week’s episode is brought to you by last week’s terrible weather. While experiencing hail and thunder IRL, we also saw press release after press release and article after article discussing climate change. This one-two punch of new science and the need for a new roof means we will touch on climate change in our closer look this week. We apologize in advance; it’s not pretty out there -- unless you like storm chasing, then it’s kind of the stuff of dreams at the moment.   We've added a new way to donate to 365 Days of Astronomy to support editing, hosting,...

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Actual Astronomy - Globular Star Clusters with Peter Jedicke show art Actual Astronomy - Globular Star Clusters with Peter Jedicke

The 365 Days of Astronomy

Hosted by Chris Beckett & Shane Ludtke, two amateur astronomers in Saskatchewan. Our guest today is Peter Jedicke who was National President of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada from 2004 to 2006 and is now a Fellow of the RASC. He is also Honorary President of the RASC London Centre. His favourite astronomical topic, both astrophysically and as an observer, is globular clusters and co-authored the RASCC Observer’s Handbook section on Star Clusters. Peter co-authors the Star Clusters section of the RASC Observer's Handbook. Lastly, Peter helped start the list of asteroid names...

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SETI Live - On the Trail of Fireballs: Tracking Meteors and Finding Meteorites show art SETI Live - On the Trail of Fireballs: Tracking Meteors and Finding Meteorites

The 365 Days of Astronomy

Only eight times in history have scientists found an asteroid, tracked its trajectory toward Earth, and caught the resulting fireball on cameras. The latest of these eight events happened in January 2024, with the discovery of asteroid 2024 BX1, a mere three hours before impacting the atmosphere over Europe. And of course, the SETI Institute's own Dr. Peter Jenniskens was hot on the trail, flying to Germany to help search for meteorite fragments. Within the week, several pieces were discovered, and early analysis found that they belong to a rare group of meteorites called "aubrites".  ...

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Ask A Spaceman Ep. 222: What is the Most Distant Thing We Can See? show art Ask A Spaceman Ep. 222: What is the Most Distant Thing We Can See?

The 365 Days of Astronomy

What’s the most distant thing we can see with the naked eye? What about with a telescope? What about at other wavelengths? Is there anything more to see? I discuss these questions and more in today’s Ask a Spaceman!   This episode is sponsored by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at betterhelp.com/spaceman and get on your way to being your best self. Visit BetterHelp to get 10% off your first month!   Support the show: All episodes: Follow on Twitter: Read a book:   Keep those questions about space, science, astronomy, astrophysics, physics, and cosmology coming to...

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Astronomy Cast Ep. 9: Einstein's Theory of Special Relativity show art Astronomy Cast Ep. 9: Einstein's Theory of Special Relativity

The 365 Days of Astronomy

From November 6, 2006. It’s all relative. How many times have you heard that? Well, when you’re traveling close to the speed of light, everything really is relative; especially the passage of time. This week, Fraser and Pamela give you the skinny on Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity. After listening to a few thought experiments, you too should be able to wrap your head around this amazing theory.   We've added a new way to donate to 365 Days of Astronomy to support editing, hosting, and production costs.  Just visit: and donate as much as you can! Share the podcast with...

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Travelers in the Night Eps. 723 & 724: Very Close One & Aten show art Travelers in the Night Eps. 723 & 724: Very Close One & Aten

The 365 Days of Astronomy

Dr. Al Grauer hosts. Dr. Albert D. Grauer ( ) is an observational asteroid hunting astronomer. Dr. Grauer retired from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock in 2006. Today's 2 topics: - Ten hours and 46 minutes after my Catalina Sky Survey teammate Greg Leonard discovered a Toyota RAV4 sized space rock, now named 2018 UA, streaking through the constellation of Pegasus at 8.8 miles/second, this tiny asteroid passed less than 1/2 the distance of the communications satellites to the surface of planet Earth. - Aten Asteroids are stealthy space rocks which can be dim and hard to detect since...

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NOIRLab - The Heaviest Black Hole Pair Ever Found show art NOIRLab - The Heaviest Black Hole Pair Ever Found

The 365 Days of Astronomy

Using archival data from the Gemini North telescope, a team of astronomers have measured the heaviest pair of supermassive black holes ever found. The merging of two supermassive black holes is a phenomenon that has long been predicted, though never observed. In this podcast, Dr. Roger Romani discusses the discovery of this system and what we can learn about massive black hole pairs from this system.   Bios:  - Rob Sparks is in the Communications, Education and Engagement group at NSF’s NOIRLab in Tucson, Arizona. - Dr. Roger W. Romani is a member of the Kavli Institute for...

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EVSN - Planet Formation is (Still) Not Well Understood show art EVSN - Planet Formation is (Still) Not Well Understood

The 365 Days of Astronomy

From March 29, 2024. One of our recurring topics is “Planet formation is not well understood,” and a trio of new papers is making it clear why planet formation continues to... not be well understood. Put simply: the Universe likes to create more diverse solar systems than an entire planet’s worth of sci-fi writers can imagine.   We've added a new way to donate to 365 Days of Astronomy to support editing, hosting, and production costs.  Just visit: and donate as much as you can! Share the podcast with your friends and send the Patreon link to them too!  Every bit helps!...

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Hosted by Chris Beckett & Shane Ludtke, two amateur astronomers in Saskatchewan. [email protected]

The Actual Astronomy Podcast presents Astronomy Books. In this episode we discuss some of the best astronomy books with City Lights Bookstore owner Chris Wilcox. From poetry to the Milky Way we cover our favourite books on the astronomical table.

 

What are some of the titles that you’ve enjoyed and could recommend to our listeners?

* Arthur Koestler: The Sleepwalkers, in which Western civ gets stuck in geocentricity for 1500 years

* Thomas Kuhn: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Some dated conventions, but a fascinating sociological study of avant-garde science. This classic gave us the now-overused term “paradigm shift.”

* Michael Hoskin: The History of Astronomy: A Very Short Introduction

* Dava Sobel: The Planets

* Leslie C. Peltier Starlight Nights: The Adventures of a Star-Gazer

* Ronald Florence: The Perfect Machine: Building the Palomar Telescope

* Robert Zimmerman: The Universe in a Mirror: The Saga of the Hubble Space Telescope and the Visionaries Who Built It

* Emily Levesque: The Last Stargazers: The Enduring Story of Astronomy's Vanishing Explorers. A young professor’s assemblage of adventures -- her own, plus accounts gleaned from colleagues -- from the days when astronomers would travel to the big, remote observatories to capture their data.

 

What are some popular books on planetary science, astrophysics, and cosmology that are high up on your list of must reads?

* Mike Brown: How I Killed Pluto and Why It Had It Coming

* Adam Frank: The Little Book of Aliens

* Philip Plait: Under Alien Skies: A Sightseer's Guide to the Universe

* Becky Smethurst: A Brief History of Black Holes

* Carlo Rovelli: White Holes

* Moiya McTier: The Milky Way: An Autobiography of Our Galaxy

 

I think you even mentioned some poems?

* Benjamin Labatut: When We Cease to Understand the World and The MANIAC

* Kim Stanley Robinson: Galileo's Dream

* Tracy K. Smith Life on Mars: Poems

 

What makes a really good observing reference?

* Leslie C. Peltier, in his classic Guideposts to the Stars

* Walter “Scotty” Houston (his bio reminds us that he was an editor and English teacher by profession)

* Stephen James O’Meara, e.g., his Messier Objects 2nd ed.

* Sue French, in her inimitable continuation of Houston & O’Meara’s Deep Sky Wonders

* Howard Banich (his recent S&T article on M33 was his 33rd column for the magazine, so I hope he eventually pulls his writings and brilliant sketches into a bound collection)

 

What are some other useful books?

* Burnham's Celestial Handbook in three volumes

* Nightwatch (Dickinson, et al.)

* Harrington: Touring the Universe through Binoculars

* Hill: A Portfolio of Lunar Drawings

 

What do you keep handy at your desk?

* Pasachoff: Peterson Field Guide to the Stars and Planets

* Mitton: A Concise Dictionary of Astronomy 

* Edgar: RASC Observer’s Handbook (current U.S. ed.)

* Beckett: RASC 2024 Observer’s Calendar

 

What are some good books to have in the field?

* Interstellarum Deep Sky Atlas, Field Edition* (Stoyan & Schurig)

* Sky Atlas 2000.0: Deluxe Edition  (Tirion & Sinnott)

* Rukl: Atlas of the Moon

* Turn Left at Orion (Consolmagno & Davis) 

* The Messier Observer’s Planisphere* from Celestial Teapot   >46-cm diameter

 

What are a few indispensable texts from your collection:

* Swanson: NexStar User's Guide II

* Menard: New Perspectives on Newtonian Collimation

* Brown: All about Telescopes

* Telescopes, Eyepieces, and Astrographs: Design, Analysis, and Performance of Modern Astronomical Optics (Smith et al.)

* Astronomical Sketching (Handy et al.)

 

What books do you dip into when you need a jot between sessions under the stars. 

* Freistetter: The Story of the Universe in 100 Stars

* Any of those splashy coffee table books loaded with astrophotography. While they may not represent visual astronomy's faint, mostly monochrome experience, they are stunning. And, as the imagers tell us, those long integrations and enhanced colors are scientifically useful.

* Cathay LeBlanc & David Chapman:  Mi'Kmaw Moons: Through the Seasons. A picture book about Mi’Kmaq cosmology combines rich information and great storytelling with Loretta Gould’s gorgeous illustrations.

— Many astronomy-related books for kids are too delightful to let the youngsters have all the fun. Plucking a few stars from this constellation: 

* Gaiter: The Mysteries of the Universe A lavish, outward sweeping reference

* McCulley: Caroline’s Comets A sweet, pictorial biography of C. Hershell

* Becker: You Are Light  Spectra are for babies!

* 100 Poems: Outer Space, edited by Midge Goldberg   From the Cambridge series

 

Are there any sentimental books in your library:

* Norton's Star Atlas (Epoch 1950) The stars have processed into a new epoch since these gate-fold pages were bound in boards of blue cloth. So it’s dated, and those boards are a bit warped, but I treasure this volume because it originally belonged to Col. Carl Hill, a kindly next-door elder when I was a kid. He was like a surrogate grandfather and the astronomy mentor who might’ve been had I shown interest at the time. He and his wife sold my folks the land where I grew up (and where I live). He had a backyard pier and enlisted my dad, an amateur machinist, to help him fabricate a wedge. There’s a sort of poignant regret I feel when holding this book. 

 

We've added a new way to donate to 365 Days of Astronomy to support editing, hosting, and production costs. 

Just visit: https://www.patreon.com/365DaysOfAstronomy and donate as much as you can!

Share the podcast with your friends and send the Patreon link to them too! 

Every bit helps! Thank you!

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The 365 Days of Astronomy Podcast is produced by the Planetary Science Institute. http://www.psi.edu

Visit us on the web at 365DaysOfAstronomy.org or email us at [email protected].