Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Norton's Star Atlas

While perusing the local Half Price Books store, I came across a copy of "Norton's Star Atlas", superb condition, for only a tenner. I'd heard a lot about the book so decided to forgo my weekly pocket money (destined to make its way to the local McDonalds) and make the investment.

What a fantastic book! While it's not quite as beginner-friendly as the "Backyard Astronomer's Guide", it does provide for a very nice grounding in some of the more advanced astronomical concepts, from basic terminology through to observational techniques. Most notably, the back section of the book contained well-detailed, regional star maps with notes about the most interesting targets in each region. This part of the book is somewhat like the guides produced by Burnham, but not quite as detailed. Still very useful, though. I've already spent a couple of hours reading through it and have picked up a couple of new ideas for my observing. I will no doubt use this book to plan future observing sessions - a very handy reference indeed.

Apart from that, I decided to keep my Meade plossl eyepiece set. I took it off Astromart after deciding I could probably make a lot of use out of the eyepieces for planetary and double-star observations. Besides, it's a nice set to have just for the fun of it.

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