Astronomical Yearbooks

Yearbooks, Astronomical


collections of astronomical tables primarily containing the coordinates of celestial bodies (sun, moon, planets, satellites, stars) and compiled for each calendar year. Astronomical yearbooks are used in scientific, technological, astronomical, geodetic, cartographic, and geophysical research and in computing the trajectories of artificial satellites and space probes, as well as studying their movements. They are also used in solving problems of navigation on the seas, in the air, and in space. Astronomical yearbooks, which also contain tables of solar and lunar eclipses, are based on the mathematical theories of the motions of the bodies of the solar system worked out by the methods of celestial mechanics.

The best known astronomical yearbooks abroad are the Connaissance des temps (Paris, since 1759) and the Astronomical Ephemeris (London, since 1766; since 1960 published jointly by the British and American Bureaus of Ephemerides). The first astronomical yearbook in Russia was published in 1814 under the title Morskoi mesiatzeslov (Naval Calendar) and was intended to serve the navy; it was published until 1856. Since 1911 national astronomical yearbooks are compiled through the cooperative efforts of scientific institutions of different countries. In the USSR the Institute of Theoretical Astronomy of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR publishes the Astronomicheskii ezhegodnik SSSR (Astronomical Yearbook of the USSR, since 1922), Morskoi astronomicheskii ezhegodnik (Naval Astronomical Yearbook, since \929),Aviatsionnyi astronomicheskii ezhegodnik (Aviation Astronomical Yearbook, since 1936), and Efemeridy malykh planet (Ephemerides of Minor Planets, since 1947). The Astronomicheskii ezhegodnik SSSR is one of the most comprehensive national astronomical yearbooks and is therefore widely used abroad. Popular scientific astronomical yearbooks contain information of interest to a wide range of amateur astronomers. Some of them publish survey-type articles. The oldest and most comprehensive of such astronomical yearbooks is the Astronomicheskii kalendar (Astronomical Calendar), which was founded in 1895 by the Nizhny Novgorod Society of Amateur Physicists and Astronomers; since 1952 it has been published in Moscow by the All-Union Astronomical and Geodetic Society.