Fundamentals of Astronomy  book cover
1st Edition

Fundamentals of Astronomy

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ISBN 9780750308861
Published July 20, 2006 by CRC Press
384 Pages 222 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Providing a broad overview of foundational concepts, Fundamentals of Astronomy covers topics ranging from spherical astronomy to celestial mechanics, closing with two chapters that discuss elements of astronomical photometry and spectroscopy. Supplementary and explanatory notes at the end of each chapter provide references to material published in scientific journals, and solved and unsolved exercises allow students to review their understanding of the material. Broad in coverage, the book presents arguments from classical astronomy, such as spherical astronomy, that form the foundation for future work in the field.


  • Provides an introductory vision of arguments from spherical astronomy to celestial mechanics to astronomical photometry and spectroscopy
  • Presents the information at an introductory level without sacrificing scientific rigor
  • Includes worked examples, references, and Web site evaluations

Table of Contents

Introduction. Spherical Astronomy. Astronomical Reference Systems. Transformation of Coordinates. The Movements of the Earth and the Astronomical Times. The Movements of the Fundamental Planes. Dynamics of Earth's Rotation. Aberration of Light. The Parallax. Radial Velocities and Proper Motions. The Astronomical Times. The Terrestrial Atmosphere. The Two-Body Problem. Ephemerides and Orbital Elements. Elements of Perturbation Theories. Eclipses and Occultations. Elements of Astronomical Photometry. Elements of Astronomical Spectroscopy.

OTI #1 IP149

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Cesare Barbieri is Emeritus Professor of Astronomy at the University of Padova, Italy. He is one of Europe’s leading scientists in astronomical science. His team was involved in the construction of the Halley Multicolour Camera for GIOTTO and the OSIRIS camera for Rosetta; two history-making European cometary space missions. He directed the design and construction of the 3.5m Telescopio Nazionale Galileo, Italy’s largest telescope on the Canary Islands. He is also renowned for his research into the tenuous atmosphere of the Moon and Mercury with high resolution spectroscopy. He pioneered the application to astronomy of fundamental aspects of quantum optics, building single photon photometers that obtain light curves of optical pulsars of the highest quality.