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1. The celestial sphere and coordinate systems; 2. Time; 3. Charts and catalogs; 4. Applications of the spherical triangle; 5. Quantifying light; 6. Optical telescopes; 7. Effects of the atmosphere; 8. Light detectors; 9. CCD calibrations; 10. Astronomical photometry; 11. Astrometry; 12. Spectrographs; 13. Spectroscopy; 14. Variable stars; 15. Observing the sun; Appendices; Index.
'Throughout there are useful equations of appropriate complexity and a helpful appendix of some statistical methods and internet resources. Each chapter ends with a set of graduated problems (though without solutions) and further reading suggestions, illustrations, mainly in the form of line drawings, are plentiful and useful for their simplicity.' Astronomy Now 'As is fitting for today's e-aware students, the availability of electronic catalogues and databases, such as provided by the CDS in Strasbourg, is highlighted ... Along with some quite practical advice on obtaining high-quality data, a student will find particularly helpful the real-world cases of differential photometry, making use of the author's own data, in two up-to-date projects which each present their own particular challenges ... I will recommend this book highly to my students. ... there is certainly much material suitable also for a (UK) first-year undergraduate. ... I don't think any other book on optical observational astronomy has quite the focus, and yet range, as this ...' The Observatory