Mira Digital Publishing
161pp., $18.00 (hardcover)
Reviewed by Vincent Caracci
Amateur Radio and Optical Astronomer
Bruce Gary has written a book, Exoplanet Observing for Amateurs, which discusses the finding of exoplanets and the great job that amateurs are doing in finding exoplanets in collaboration with professional astronomers.
Bruce Gary was a radio astronomer working for Caltech and NASA for 34 years. He retired in 1998 and resumed his hobby of optical astronomy. He was the first amateur to observe an exoplanet transit (HD209458, in 2002).
This book is intended for amateur astronomers. Professionals probably know most of what is in the book. Bruce Gary's favorite philosophy is: "KNOW THY HARDWARE." The professional astronomer has staff to help him. The amateur astronomer has to be his own director, doing his own mechanical and electrical calibration and maintenance. The amateur does his own programming, calibration, and scheduling. He is his own telescope operator. He provides the money to operate his telescope.
Bruce Gary's book is a tutorial on finding exoplanets. The book gives a list of all the equipment you need, a list of the programs you will need, and how to analyze the data.
This book is a tutorial in every sense. Bruce Gary writes about his mistakes and shows you how to avoid them in your search. The author also will give you support on his web page. The book can be downloaded for free at http://www.transitsearch.org/contact.html.
For those interested in SETI search, aim your radio telescopes at the 250 exoplanets that have already been found. This may be very productive.
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this page last updated 12 January 2008
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