The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers

2007 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Hockey, Virginia Trimble, Thomas R. Williams, Katherine Bracher, Richard A. Jarrell, Jordan D. MarchéII, F. Jamil Ragep, JoAnn Palmeri, Marvin Bolt

Maunder, Edward Walter

  • Richard Baum
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-30400-7_913

BornLondon, England, 12 April 1851

DiedLondon, England, 21 March 1928

Walter Maunder is chiefly remembered for his work in the field of solar studies. His plot of the latitude drift of sunspots is known as the Maunder butterfly diagram. The lapse in sunspot numbers during the interval from 1645 to 1715, which he investigated, has been termed the Maunder minimum.

The youngest of three sons of the Reverend George Maunder, a Wesleyan minister, Maunder's basic education was acquired at the school attached to University College in Gower Street, London, and supplemented with additional courses at King's College, London. He worked briefly in a City of London bank before taking the first‐ever examination set by the British Civil Service Commissioners (1872), designed to fill vacancies created at the Royal Greenwich Observatory. With his appointment as photographic and spectroscopic assistant in 1873, the observatory entered the realm of astrophysics, or the New Astronomy, as it was called...

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Selected References

  1. Eddy, John A. (1976). “The Maunder Minimum.” Science 192: 1189–1202.ADSGoogle Scholar
  2. Hollis, H. P. (1927–1928). “Edward Walter Maunder.” Journal of the British Astronomical Association 38: 229–233. (See also pp. 165–168.)Google Scholar
  3. ——— (1929). “E. W. Maunder.” Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 89: 313–318.ADSGoogle Scholar
  4. Hufbauer, Karl (1991). Exploring the Sun: Solar Science since Galileo. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, esp. pp. 273–277.Google Scholar
  5. Maunder, E. Walter (1894). “A Prolonged Sunspot Minimum.” Knowledge 17: 173–176.Google Scholar
  6. ——— (1904). “Note on the Distribution of Sun‐spots in Heliographic Latitude, 1874 to 1902.” Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 64: 747–761.ADSGoogle Scholar
  7. ——— (1922). “The Prolonged Sunspot Minimum, 1645–1715.” Journal of the British Astronomical Association 32: 140–145.Google Scholar
  8. Warner, Deborah Jean (1974). “Maunder, Edward Walter.” In Dictionary of Scientific Biography, edited by Charles Coulston Gillispie. Vol. 9, pp. 183–185. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Baum

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