United Kingdom

The Webb Society Double Star Section started in 1968 and Bob Argyle became Director in 1970. It was not

Figure 20.12. The joint meeting between Spanish and French double star observers held in October 2000

Figure 20.12. The joint meeting between Spanish and French double star observers held in October 2000

until the end of the decade that some preliminary attempts to measure double stars using grating micrometers and home-made filar micrometers was made. By the end of the 1980s the availability of commercially made filar micrometers allowed members to make micrometric measures. At the time of writing the results have been published in eleven Double Star Section Circulars most of which have now been incorporated in the Observations Catalogue of the United States Naval Observatory. Using the 8-inch refractor at the Cambridge Observatories, Bob Argyle is carrying out a programme of visual measurement (see Chapter 21). The programme consists of a number of long-period binaries plus observations of some wider, fainter pairs which have not been observed for some time. Some 4300 measures have been made since 1990.

Tom Teague, using an 8.5-inch reflector near Chester, has developed a new and more efficient way of using a Celestron Micro Guide eyepiece and he is currently using it as part of the assessment programme which is described by Richard Harshaw (USA) earlier in this chapter.

Martin Nicholson operates a 12-inch Meade LX-200 telescope and a SBIG ST-7E CCD camera at Daventry in Northamptonshire. He has made numerous measures of neglected double stars from the USNO lists and has observed and measured a number of previously uncat-alogued pairs using the Space Telescope Science Institute on-line Schmidt catalogue. He can measure as many as 20 pairs per hour down to magnitude 16 and with separations down to 5''. His results appear in the Webb Society Double Star Section Circulars and on his website.

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