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Scientific Astrophotography: How Amateurs Can Generate and Use Professional Imaging Data (The Patrick Moore Practical Astronomy Series) [Paperback]

Gerald Hubbell
2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

17 Nov 2012 1461451728 978-1461451723 2013
Scientific Astrophotography is intended for those amateur astronomers who are looking for new challenges, once they have mastered visual observing and the basic imaging of various astronomical objects. It will also be a useful reference for scientifically inclined observers who want to learn the fundamentals of astrophotography with a firm emphasis on the discipline of scientific imaging. This books is not about making beautiful astronomical images; it is about recording astronomical images that are scientifically rigorous and from which accurate data can be extracted.

This book is unique in that it gives readers the skills necessary for obtaining excellent images for scientific purposes in a concise and procedurally oriented manner. This not only gets the reader used to a disciplined approach to imaging to maximize quality, but also to maximize the success (and minimize the frustration!) inherent in the pursuit of astrophotography. The knowledge and skills imparted to the reader of this handbook also provide an excellent basis for "beautiful picture" astrophotography!

There is a wealth of information in this book - a distillation of ideas and data presented by a diverse set of sources and based on the most recent techniques, equipment, and data available to the amateur astronomer. There are also numerous practical exercises. Scientific Astrophotography is perfect for any amateur astronomer who wants to go beyond just astrophotography and actually contribute to the science of astronomy.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 364 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 2013 edition (17 Nov 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1461451728
  • ISBN-13: 978-1461451723
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 15.5 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 689,628 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

Endorsements

"...Overall, Scientific Astrophotography is a compelling work in the history of technical photographic publications, and it is noteworthy that this is Hubbell's first book on the subject, culminating his own learning experience in making astrophotographs, which began only a few years ago. Even though Hubbell is a relative newcomer, he delivers with the expertise of someone who has practiced for decades. The book is written as though Hubbell were with you, giving you encouragement, inspiration, and all the technical advice you could hope for..."
- Scott Roberts, Founder and President, Explore Scientific LLC

"Astronomical imaging has come a long way in a short period of time. The era of cold cameras and hypersensitization of photographic emulsions has been replaced with Charge-Coupled Devices, software image enhancements, and precise tracking and go-to mounts we only dreamed of a short quarter of a century ago. Hubbell's Scientific Astrophotography is truly a masterpiece for those who not only want to select the right gear for doing high-quality astronomical imaging, yet understand why the various hardware, components, and especially high-quality optics and options are needed. This work will become the standard for those who are hard-core astronomical imagers as well as those who simply would like to explore and understand today's imaging techniques."
- Dr. Mike Reynolds, Dean of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Astronomer, Florida State College

"Gerald Hubbell's new book, Scientific Astrophotography, is the perfect companion for anyone dipping their toe into the digital imaging realm for the first time. The author answers all the questions people have when starting out, such as how do I get the most bang for my buck, and how do I select the right CCD for my telescope?

The first part of the book guides the reader through the entire imaging system, component by component. The second part instructs the reader on how to acquire and calibrate the images. Once you have mastered the basics, the third part of the book introduces you to all the ways today's amateur astronomers can obtain scientifically useful data, and who to share this data with.

This guide is exceptionally well organized and provides useful field exercises all along the way, making the climb up the learning curve just a little bit easier for all of us."
- Mike Simonsen, American Association of Variable Star Observers

"Jerry Hubbell has been using SSON since April 2009 for various remote astronomy projects. His new book Scientific Astrophotography is a well written comprehensive description and guide for doing meaningful scientific imaging work in astronomy. Whether you are just starting out or are experience doing scientific astronomy projects, you will find the book to be an excellent reference for improving your skills."
- Rich Williams, Found of the Sierra Stars Observatory Network (SSON)

"Scientific Astrophotography is a major contribution to the literature in the field of astronomical photography. Hubbell, a well-respected astro-photographer himself, has written a book that will be of value to both the newcomer and the seasoned imager. In his well-written book, he methodically covers the field, giving helpful practical information as well as the theoretical background so the reader understands both the hows and the whys. This book stands out for its thoroughness and breadth; as well as Hubbell's clear thinking and articulate writing. Scientific Astrophotography upholds the high standards of the Patrick Moore series."
- Tom Field, Founder of Field Tested Software, and RSpec Developer

From the Back Cover

Scientific Astrophotography is a work for those amateur astronomers looking for new challenges, once they have mastered visual observing and the basic imaging of various astronomical objects. It is a wonderful reference for scientifically-inclined observers who want to learn the fundamentals of astrophotography with a firm emphasis on the discipline of scientific imaging.

This book is a wealth of information and a distillation of ideas presented by a diverse set of sources and based on the most recent techniques, equipment, and data available. It also includes numerous exercises for the reader, to maximize the success and minimize the frustration inherent in the pursuit of this specific craft. Scientific Astrophotography is perfect for any amateur astronomer who wants to go beyond just the process of making beautiful images and actually contribute to the science of astronomy!

"...Gerald Hubbell's new book, Scientific Astrophotography, is the perfect companion for anyone dipping their toe into the digital imaging realm for the first time. The author answers all the questions people have when starting out, such as how do I get the most bang for my buck, and how do I select the right CCD for my telescope?"
- Mike Simonsen, American Association of Variable Star Observers


Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very disappointing.
In his introduction, the author, Gerald Hubbell, make great stand that as a 'mentor' to the astrophotographic needs in his local society and with years in the nuclear industry (so does Homer), he purports to be qualified to write this book, despite only 4yrs experience as an astrophotographer. It showed! After reading 50 pages and having learned nothing except how to spend vast sums on equipment, I was getting bored.By page 100, I was getting irritated by the sloppiness and wordiness of the writing, particularly having read about the selection of filters in which he describe solar filters as either Mylar film with a 'coating' or glass filter with a 'coating'. Doesn't he realize that only metallic coating are suitable for solar imaging. Not saying so is downright negligent. By page 200 I had lost the will to live and had started to flick through the remainder of the book. It really wasn't worth the effort. The final insult was a list of well over 120 acronyms, many of which as a technical writer (?) Mr Hubbell had concocted for this book.
The very best parts of the book are the lists of recommended reading at the end of the chapters. I have purchased many of them over many years as a reasonably experienced astrophotographer and endorse his choice of sound, knowledgeable expertise. My impression is that Mr Hubbell had come to the same conclusion; then decided that with four years experience he could write one too. He couldn't and didn't.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Astrophotography 16 April 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A very well written book and the author gives an excellent procedure to attain high quality and scientifically valid work for the community. However, though the title makes clear that the intent is to improve your own astrophotography by minimising error present in your setup and to have a plan of action it may be a little disappointing if a buyer thinks this book will help the beginner in getting their astro shots to a high standard. There are many books suitable for the beginner but very few for the more advanced and this book is an ideal contribution to the latter.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for getting into hands on Astronomy and then more advanced projects 3 July 2014
By russgarrett - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have been in astronomy for years and have an observatory I have done research in. This is a great book for someone wanting to learn how to get started in hands on astronomy and move on to more advanced projects.
Even though I have been doing this for years I always learn something new or an easier way of doing things.

I only have a high school diploma and the author communicates in a way that makes it easy to comprehend.
I wish this book had been around years ago when i was starting out.

This is a great companion book to Bruce Gary's "Exoplanet Observing for Amateurs" .
5.0 out of 5 stars Usefull 25 Nov 2013
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I found the way the author guides you to focus on a specific imaging type of the evening through the guides and plans very useful in directing and organizing my own imaging sessions
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book for the scientifically minded amateur. 27 July 2014
By W. G. Davies - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An excellent introduction to spectral analysis and general scientific investigation for amateur astronomers.
3 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Color 24 Jun 2013
By Ladislav Nemec - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
Fortunately, from the sample (17 pages) it seems the book does not waste time with film astrophotography.

However, the samples in the 17 pages are only B&W pics of the Moon. Most amateurs these days use the advanced color (CCD or CMOS) cameras made by Canon or Nikon for 'pretty pictures'. Astrometry does not need them but astrometry (I have done it for years some 10 years ago) is rather specialized part of astrophotography.

I believe that the main interest now is in color pictures of objects in our galaxy (mostly nebulae with a few stellar clusters thrown in for a good measure) and other galaxies.

From the 17 pages of the sample it does not seem this book is aware of that and I CANNOT recommend it.

Technical progress since 1995 when I started with this hobby has seen amazing changes reflected in this book only partially.
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