Edward Emerson Barnard

Edward Emerson Barnard

Edward Emerson Barnard (December 16, 1857February 6, 1923) was an American astronomer. He was commonly known as E. E. Barnard, and was recognized as a gifted observational astronomer. He is best known for his discovery of Barnard's star in 1916, which is named in his honor.

Early life

He was born in Nashville, Tennessee, to Reuben Barnard and Elizabeth Jane Barnard ("née" Haywood), and had one brother. His father died before his birth, so he grew up in an impoverished family and did not receive much in the way of formal education. His first interest was in the field of photography, and he became a photographer's assistant at the age of nine.

He later developed an interest in astronomy. In 1876 he purchased a convert|5|in|mm|sing=on refractor telescope, and in 1881 he discovered his first comet. (But he failed to announce his discovery). He found his second comet later the same year and a third in 1882.

While he was still working at a photography studio he was married to the English-born woman Rhoda Calvert in 1881. In the 1880s a Hulbert Harrington Warner offered US$200 per discovery of a new comet. Edward discovered a total of eight, and used the money to build a house for himself and his bride.

With his name being brought to the attention of amateur astronomers in Nashville, they collectively raised enough money to give Edward a fellowship to Vanderbilt University. Barnard never graduated from the school, but he did receive the only honorary degree Vanderbilt has ever awarded. [cite news |last=Carey |first=Bill |title=Astronomer Barnard was among Vanderbilt's first academic superstars |url=http://www.vanderbilt.edu/News/register/Oct29_01/story5.html |work=The Vanderbilt Register |date=2001-10-29 |accessdate=2007-06-27 ] He joined the staff of the Lick Observatory in 1887, though he later clashed with the director, Edward S. Holden, over access to observing time on the larger instruments and other issues of research and management. [ [http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-iarticle_query?1984JHA....15...81O Osterbrock, Donald E., The Rise and Fall of Edward S. Holden - Part One, JOURN. HISTORY OF ASTRONOMY V.15:2, NO.43, P. 81 at 95-98, 1984] ]

Astronomical work

In 1892 he made observations of a nova and was the first to notice the gaseous emissions, thus deducing that it was a stellar explosion. The same year he also discovered Amalthea, the fifth moon of Jupiter. He was the first to discover a new moon of Jupiter since Galileo Galilei in 1609. This was the last satellite discovered by visual observation (rather than by examining photographic plates or other recorded images).

In 1895 he joined the University of Chicago as professor of astronomy. There he was able to use the convert|40|in|mm|sing=on telescope at Yerkes Observatory. Much of his work during this period was taking photographs of the Milky Way. Together with Max Wolf, he discovered that certain dark regions of the galaxy were actually clouds of gas and dust that obscured the more distant stars in the background. From 1905, his niece Mary R. Calvert worked as his assistant and computer.

The faint Barnard's Star is named for Edward Barnard after he discovered in 1916 that it had a very large proper motion, relative to other stars. This is the second nearest star system to the Sun, second only to the Alpha Centauri system.

He was also a pioneering astrophotographer. He cataloged a series of dark nebula giving them numerical designation akin to the Messier catalog. They begin with Barnard 1 and end with Barnard 366. He published his initial list with the 1919 paper in the Astrophysical Journal, "On the Dark Markings of the Sky with a Catalogue of 182 such Objects".

He died on February 6, 1923 in Williams Bay, Wisconsin, and was buried in Nashville. After his death, his exceptional collection of photographs was published in 1927 as "A Photographic Atlas of Selected Regions of the Milky Way", having been finished by Edwin B. Frost, then director of Yerkes Observatory, and Mary R. Calvert.

Comet discoveries

Between 1881 and 1892, he discovered fourteen different comets, three of which were periodic:
* C/1881 S1
* C/1882 R2
* D/1884 O1 (Barnard 1)
* C/1885 N1
* C/1885 X2
* C/1887 B3
* C/1887 D1
* C/1887 J1
* C/1888 U1
* C/1888 R1
* C/1889 G1
* 177P/Barnard (P/1889 M1, P/2006 M3, Barnard 2)
* C/1891 T1
* D/1892 T1 (Barnard 3) - First comet to be discovered by photography

Honors

Awards
* Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society (1897)
* Bruce Medal (1917)Named after him
*Barnard crater on the Moon
*Barnard crater on Mars
*Barnard Regio on Ganymede
*Asteroid 819 Barnardiana
*Barnard's Star
*Barnard's Loop
*Barnard Hall, a residence hall at Vanderbilt University

ee also

*Barnard 33, (Horsehead Nebula)

External links

* [http://astro.uchicago.edu/yerkes/virtualmuseum/Barnardfull.html Biography]
* [http://www.library.gatech.edu/barnard/ Edward Emerson Barnard's Photographic Atlas of Selected Regions of the Milky Way]

Obituaries

* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/AJ.../0035//0000025.000.html AJ 35 (1923) 25]
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/AN.../0218//0000085.000.html AN 218 (1923) 159/160] (one line)
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/AN.../0218//0000128.000.html AN 218 (1923) 241/242] (in German)
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/AN.../0218//0000131.000.html AN 218 (1923) 247/248] (in English)
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/ApJ../0057//0000128.000.html ApJ 57 (1923) 128] (one paragraph)
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/ApJ../0058//0000001.000.html ApJ 58 (1923) 1]
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/JRASC/0017//0000097.000.html JRASC 17 (1923) 97]
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/JRASC/0018//0000309.000.html JRASC 18 (1924) 309]
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/MNRAS/0084//0000221.000.html MNRAS 84 (1924) 221]
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/Obs../0046//0000095.000.html Obs 46 (1923) 95] (one paragraph)
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/Obs../0046//0000158.000.html Obs 46 (1923) 158]
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/PASP./0035//0000072.000.html PASP 35 (1923) 72] (one paragraph)
* [http://adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/PASP./0035//0000087.000.html PASP 35 (1923) 87]

Notes and references


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