n MNASSA : Monthly Notes of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - Measurements of nine southern double stars

Volume 73, Issue 5_6
  • ISSN : 0024-8266



Nine bright southern double stars were measured and compared with observations made by Bob Argyle (from Cambridge University) using the 26" refractor in Johannesburg and the values listed in the Washington Double Star Catalog (WDS). The exercise was done to see whether a small telescope with a Meade Astrometric eyepiece could give results that are of sufficient accuracy to be of scientific value. The main reason for measuring double stars is to determine the total mass of a double-star system. Why? This information is of crucial importance to theorists working on stellar evolution. Indeed, our understanding has benefited greatly from thousands of measurements made by double-star observers since the time of Wilhelm Struve in the early 19th century.

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