Planetary Astronomy, the book!


What instrument should I buy, is the one I already own fine for planets?

How do I set correctly my camera to image planets?

How far should I process my images?

Using WinJupos, should I use video or image derotation?

I wonder what was this very strange detail on Jupiter last night…

How can I make scientifically valid analyses of my data?

If you ever ask yourself any of these questions (and many others…) you have certainly already looked for informations on the web, or ask people on forums. There are a lot of free good information on internet (… like this blog!), and many observers are skillful and ready to help you but…

  • Information is highly scattered throughout the net, and is not organized
  • Forums are made for people to share ideas or experiences. But then everyone is likely to post and you have no guarantee that they know what they are talking about, and no guarantee that the persons who have the correct answer will even see your topic!

In other words, you are losing time looking for information better than having the best advices at hand to simply enjoy your observations!

Planetary Astronomy is a comprehensive book about observing, imaging, and studying planets. It has been written under my direction by seven authors, all being skillful amateur observers in their respective domains: Christian Viladrich, Marc Delcroix, Jean-Jacques Poupeau, Frédéric Burgeot, Giuseppe Monachino, and Jean-Pierre Prost. This is a translation of the book Astronomie planétaire who is a great success in France since 2015.


With Planetary Astronomy you will learn to:

  • Make the best use of your equipment: choosing an instrument, setting correctly the optics of the telescope, setting the camera, using planetary filters, train your eye to see all possible details at the eyepiece

  • Anticipate weather and seeing conditions, not to lose any good night

  • Use in depth the best planetary softwares: Autostakkert!, Registax, and WinJupos, how to objectively process details and colors

  • Identify features on planets: each of the seven planets (but Earth of course) has a detailed chapter that will help you to anticipate cycles of activity on Jupiter, recognize dust storms on Mars, detect bright storms on Uranus or Neptune

  • Analyse your data to go beyond simple observations: measuring position and details drifting on planets, making cartographies, participate to advanced observing projects including cooperation with scientists.

(October 2018) Planetary Astronomy is in its final correction phase, more to come later!