Cambridge illustrated dictionary of astronomy by Jacqueline Mitton

By Jacqueline Mitton

Beautifully-illustrated dictionary; a necessary advisor to the universe for astronomers of every age.

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88 light years. Possible ‘‘wobbles’’ in the motion of Barnard’s star have raised suspicions that it may have unseen planets but this has never been confirmed. barred spiral galaxy A common type of ä spiral galaxy that has a bright central bar of stars. The spiral arms seem to wind out from the end of the bar. Barringer Crater ä Meteor Crater. Barwell meteorite A 46-kilogram (101–lb) stony ä meteorite that fell near the village of Barwell, Leicestershire, UK, in 1965. Though it broke up, it is the largest stony meteorite known to have fallen in the UK.

5 mile) across. Atlas (1) The innermost small satellite of Saturn, discovered in 1980 by Richard Terrile during the ä Voyager 1 mission. It measures 37 · 34 · 27 km (23 · 21 · 17 miles) and orbits Saturn at a distance of 137 670 km (85 544 miles). Atlas (2) A third-magnitude star in the ä Pleiades cluster. atmosphere The gaseous outermost layer of a planet, moon or star. Since gas has a natural tendency to expand into space, only bodies with gravity strong enough can retain atmospheres. Mercury and the Moon, for example, are not massive enough to hold on to atmospheric gases.

Their water content can be as high as 20 percent. The largest known example is the ä Allende meteorite. carbon cycle (carbon–nitrogen (CN) cycle; carbon–nitrogen–oxygen (CNO) cycle; Bethe–Weizsa¨cker cycle) A series of nuclear reactions that takes place inside stars. The outcome of the carbon cycle is that hydrogen is converted to helium and large amounts of energy are released. carbon star A peculiar, red giant star with unusually strong features in its spectrum caused by C2, CN, CH or other carbon compounds.

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