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Amateur Astronomers

January 26, 1997 | Associated Press
A television repairman with stars in his eyes has found his fifth new comet. Howard Brewington first spotted the comet July 3 during the optimum 45-minute dark-sky viewing gap between the end of twilight and moonrise. By July 6 it was official: The Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, the international registry for comet discoveries at Harvard University, confirmed his find and named it "C/1996 N1 (Brewington)," or "Comet Brewington" for short.
May 3, 2005 | Veronique de Turenne
THE Eta Aquarids, a stream of dust particles and debris cast off by Halley's Comet, hurtles into the Earth's atmosphere and lights up the predawn sky through much of May. Sky watchers will be gathering in local deserts for the annual display -- so named because the meteors seem to originate from the constellation Aquarius -- which peaks on Thursday, with best visibility at 4 a.m.
November 3, 1994 | TIM MAY
Forget Cruise as the Vampire Lestat. Forget DeNiro as Dr. Frankenstein's monster. For some real full-moon action, check out the Sylmar branch of the Los Angeles Public Library on Nov. 16. There, the public can peer at the solar system through telescopes, check out craters on the full moon, and take a gander at Saturn and possibly Jupiter. At a special "Sidewalk Astronomy" program to be held at the library from 6 to 8 p.m.
Telescope manufacturer Meade Instruments Corp. said Wednesday it hopes to raise $26 million through an initial public stock offering. Meade will use proceeds from the sale of 2.5 million shares to retire debt and to cover general operating expenses. An additional 850,000 shares are being sold by a partnership that invested in the company during a previous private offering. Existing shareholders, including an employee stock ownership plan, will hold 55.
September 23, 1995 | RICHARD KAHLENBERG
Dozens of amateur astronomers equipped with telescopes will gather near Frazier Park today for their monthly star party. "Comet discovery is an incredibly time-consuming thing," said Art Babcock, secretary of the Los Angeles Astronomical Society. His organization, which has been probing the skies of Southern California for 70 years, is part of a worldwide movement of amateur scientists--young people and adults who are making a contribution to astronomy.
August 20, 1995 | from Associated Press
An astronomer peering through his home telescope on his driveway noticed a fuzzy blob in the skies that turned out to be a new comet. "I got very little sleep that night," said Alan Hale, who has been credited as a co-discoverer of Comet 1995 01. He was waiting for a known comet to rise early July 23 when he said he turned his 16-inch telescope on a cluster of stars known as M-70 and saw something he knew was not supposed to be there.
August 11, 1985 | LEE SIEGEL, Associated Press
Mary Firth will photograph Halley's Comet from a California mountainside. Mark Coco plans to watch it from the Galapagos Islands. Ruthi Moore may plant her lawn chair in a Hawaiian sugar cane field. The three amateur astronomers belong to International Halley Watch, a loosely organized group mounting history's largest study of a comet, said Stephen Edberg, an astronomer at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena.
When the fireworks flare on the far side of Jupiter on Saturday, astronomers around the world will be straining for an indirect glimpse of the collision between a comet and the solar system's largest planet, like someone outside the stadium trying to follow the Super Bowl by the roar of the crowd. Scientists and amateur astronomers will be denied a direct look at the collision because the 21 or so fragments of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 are expected to hit the planet's night side, which faces away from Earth.
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