Thursday, September 12, 2013

Astronomical Resources in Public Libraries

There is a phenomenal amount of astronomical resources which can be borrowed from our public libraries - books, magazines audio-visual materials and even ebook readers.

Due to the complexity of astronomy and practical stargazing to a newcomer, acquiring bits and pieces of random unorganised information from the internet may create more confusion. And in the process, wasting more time compared to the apparently "slow" alternative of reading good books.

In my opinion, reading well-written and organised books on astronomy is still the BEST way to get started into the wonderful hobby of practical stargazing. Good beginner books on this subject matter is written in clear and concise language with visually stimulating illustrations.

To fully appreciate and enjoy stargazing, one need to acquire general knowledge of astronomy, practical knowledge of operating astronomical equipment as well as observation and astrophotography skills.

Here are some listings of my favourite astronomical resources available in our public libraries.

You can click on these text hyperlinks to check if they are available for loan and in which specific libraries. If all copies are on loan, you may reserve them online and have them delivered to your nearest public library for self-collection for a reasonable fee of $1.55.

Books on Practical Stargazing:

- The Backyard Astronomer's Guide (Highly Recommend!)
Stargazing with Binoculars
- Stargazing for Dummies
Practical Astronomy
- Deep-sky Wonders
- A Little Course in Astronomy
- Patterns in the Sky
- Secrets of Stargazing
- Star Watch
- Stargazing with a Telescope
Star Ware
- Turn Left at Orion
- Moon Observer's Guide
- Solar System Observer's Guide
- Guide to Observing Meteor Showers
- Sky Book for the Tropics
- AstroFAQs
- Advance Skywatching
- 50 Best sights in astronomy and how to see them

Books on Astrophotography:

- Photography Night Sky
- Philip's Astrophotography
- Astrotophography for the Amateur
- Photoshop Astronomy
Ancient Light

Books on General Astronomy:

- Cosmos - Carl Sagan
- Sizing up the Universe
- Wonders of the Universe
- Nature Guide: Stars and Planets
The Brightest Stars
- The New Astronomy Guide
Stargazing with Jack Horkheimer
- The Cambridge Photographic Atlas
Photographic Atlas of the Moon
- Big Book of Stars & Planets
- Stories in the Stars - Atlas of Constellations
- Space! The universe as you've never seen it before
- Our Sun : Biography of a Star
- Totality: Eclipses of the Sun

Miscellaneous Books:

- The Weather and Climate of Singapore
- The End of Night


- Astronomy
- Sky & Telescope

Audio-Visual Materials:

- Seeing in the Dark
- The Wonders Collection with Prof Brian Cox
- The Wonders of the Solar System
- The Wonders of the Universe
- Inside the Milky Way
- Secrets of the Sun
- Eclipse Chasers
- Earth From Space
- IMAX Hubble
- Hubble's Canvas
- Ultimate Mars Challenge
- The Fabric of the Cosmos
- Into the Universe with Stephen Hawkings
- Through the Wormhole - Season 1
- Through the Wormhole - Season 2
- Through the Wormhole - Season 3
- The Universe - Season 1
- The Universe - Season 2
- The Universe - Season 3
- The Universe - Season 4
- The Universe - Season 5
- The Universe - Season 6
- Ancient Aliens - Season 1 *
- Ancient Aliens - Season 2 *


*Not a very scientific series but can be hilarious to watch!

I will try to update this list as and when I manage to recall some of the good books I have come across as well as those that cannot be borrowed (reference only).

For more information about the location and opening hours of public libraries in Singapore, please visit the official National Library Board website.

(Last updated: 21 March 2016)

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