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Celestial Shadows

Eclipses, Transits, and Occultations

  • John Westfall
  • William Sheehan

Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 410)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxiv
  2. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 1-19
  3. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 21-42
  4. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 43-74
  5. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 75-95
  6. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 97-148
  7. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 149-183
  8. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 185-240
  9. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 241-253
  10. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 255-269
  11. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 271-287
  12. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 289-322
  13. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 323-343
  14. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 345-359
  15. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 361-405
  16. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 407-430
  17. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 431-436
  18. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 437-456
  19. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 457-486
  20. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 487-506
  21. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 507-557
  22. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 559-590
  23. John Westfall, William Sheehan
    Pages 591-625
  24. Back Matter
    Pages 627-713

About this book

Introduction

Much of what is known about the universe comes from the study of celestial shadows—eclipses, transits, and occultations.  The most dramatic are total eclipses of the Sun, which constitute one of the most dramatic and awe-inspiring events of nature.  Though once a source of consternation or dread, solar eclipses now lead thousands of amateur astronomers and eclipse-chasers to travel to remote points on the globe to savor their beauty and the adrenaline-rush of experiencing totality, and were long the only source of information about the hauntingly beautiful chromosphere and corona of the Sun.  

Long before Columbus, the curved shadow of the Earth on the Moon during a lunar eclipse revealed that we inhabit a round world. The rare and wonderful transits of Venus, which occur as it passes between the Earth and the Sun, inspired eighteenth century expeditions to measure the distance from the Earth to the Sun, while the recent transits of 2004 and 2012 were the most widely observed ever--and still produced results of great scientific value.  Eclipses, transits and occultations involving the planets, their satellites, asteroids and stars have helped astronomers to work out the dimensions and shapes of celestial objects—even, in some cases, hitherto unsuspected rings or atmospheres—and now transits have become leading tools for discovering and analyzing planets orbiting other stars.

This book is a richly illustrated account of these dramatic and instructive astronomica

l phenomena. Westfall and Sheehan have produced a comprehensive study that includes historical details about past observations of celestial shadows, what we have learned from them, and how present-day observers—casual or serious—can get the most out of their own observations.                                                          

Keywords

Celestial shadows Lunar eclipses Occultation of stars Planetary occultation Solar eclipse Transits and astronomy Transits of Mercury Transits of Venus Transits of exoplanets

Authors and affiliations

  • John Westfall
    • 1
  • William Sheehan
    • 2
  1. 1.Association of Lunar and Planetary ObserversAntiochUSA
  2. 2.WillmarUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4939-1535-4
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag New York 2015
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Physics and Astronomy
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4939-1534-7
  • Online ISBN 978-1-4939-1535-4
  • Series Print ISSN 0067-0057
  • Series Online ISSN 2214-7985
  • Buy this book on publisher's site