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Celestial Calculations: A Gentle Introduction to Computational Astronomy
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J. L. Lawrence
Celestial Calculations: A Gentle Introduction to Computational Astronomy by J. L. Lawrence at Abbey's Bookshop,

Celestial Calculations: A Gentle Introduction to Computational Astronomy

J. L. Lawrence


9780262536639

MIT Press


Mathematics & Sciences;
Popular astronomy & space


Paperback

392 pages

$71.99
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How to predict and calculate the positions of stars, planets, the sun, the moon, and satellites using a personal computer and high school mathematics.

Our knowledge of the universe is expanding rapidly, as space probes launched decades ago begin to send information back to earth. There has never been a better time to learn about how planets, stars, and satellites move through the heavens. This book is for amateur astronomers who want to move beyond pictures of constellations in star guides and solve the mysteries of a starry night. It is a book for readers who have wondered, for example, where Saturn will appear in the night sky, when the sun will rise and set, or how long the space station will be over their location. In Celestial Calculations, J. L. Lawrence shows readers how to find the answers to these and other astronomy questions with only a personal computer and high school math. Using an easy-to-follow step-by-step approach, Lawrence explains what calculations are required, why they are needed, and how they all fit together.

Lawrence begins with basic principles: unit of measure conversions, time conversions, and coordinate systems. He combines these concepts into a computer program that can calculate the location of a star, and uses the same methods for predicting the locations of the sun, moon, and planets. He then shows how to use these methods for locating the many satellites we have sent into orbit. Finally, he describes a variety of resources and tools available to the amateur astronomer, including star charts and astronomical tables. Diagrams illustrate the major concepts, and computer programs that implement the algorithms are included. Photographs of actual celestial objects accompany the text, and interesting astronomical facts are interspersed throughout.

Source code (in Python 3, JAVA, and Visual Basic) and executables for all the programs and examples presented in the book are available for download at https://CelestialCalculations.github.io.

By:   J. L. Lawrence
Imprint:   MIT Press
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 229mm,  Width: 152mm,  Spine: 22mm
ISBN:   9780262536639
ISBN 10:   0262536633
Series:   The MIT Press
Pages:   392
Publication Date:   April 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Unspecified

J. L. Lawrence is Chief Technology Officer for a company that builds computer systems for the government and commercial satellite customers.


A recommended read for anyone looking to understand how we can predict where celestial objects will appear in the sky -BBC Sky at Night

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