A PERSONAL HISTORY OF H.M. NAUTICAL ALMANAC OFFICE
30 October 1930 - 18 February 1972


By Donald H. Sadler

Edited by George A. Wilkins


PART 4. AT HERSTMONCEUX 1949-1972   Chapters 12-17

This period saw further major changes in the activities of the Office, which gradually became integrated into the Royal Greenwich Observatory. The Office installed punched-card machines and later electronic computers for general use. There were major changes in the almanacs and new publications for reference in numerical analysis and positional astronomy. There was an increasing emphasis on research. Sadler became the General Secretary of the International Astronomical Union and he organised its General Assembly at the University of Sussex just before his retirement.

Chapter 12   Early years at Herstmonceux: 1949-1951
Move from Bath to Herstmonceux
Early days at Herstmonceux
Administrative arrangements
The start of the R.G.O. Club
Work of the Office
Visit to U.S.A. in 1949
Conference on Astronomical Constants in 1950
Follow-up and other activities
Vacation students
Visit to North America in 1951
Office appointments and activities in 1950 and 1951
The Star Almanac for Land Surveyors
Chapter 13   End of the Spencer Jones era: 1952-1955
Installation of punched-card equipment
Responsibilities of Miss McBain
The lunar occultation programme
I.A.U. General Assembly in Rome in 1952
Navigational work in 1952-1955
Institute of Navigation
Visits by navigators
A minor annoyance
Responsibilities of Dr Porter
Visit by Professor Herrick
Activities in 1952-1955 continued
Loss of position in computing
Visit to the U.S.S.R. in 1954
Conformity of the almanacs
Marriage to Miss F. M. McBain
I.A.U. General Assembly in Dublin in 1955
The change of Astronomer Royal
Chapter 14   Woolley becomes Astronomer Royal
Woolley's administrative style
Anecdotes about Woolley
Role of the Astronomer Royal
Work of the N.A.O. in 1956-1959
Visit to Washington and Montreal in 1956
Committee on the definition of the second
Preparation of Interpolation and Allied Tables
Preparation of Subtabulation
Visit by Wilkins to U.S.A. in 1957-1958
Prediction service for artificial satellites
N.A.O. accommodation in the West Building
Staffing matters
The I.A.U. General Assembly in Moscow in 1958
The acquisition of the ICT 1201 computer
Staff changes
The Explanatory Supplement
Other activities in 1958-1959
Promotion to D.C.S.O.
Chapter 15   Period as General Secretary of the I.A.U.
Relationships of the N.A.O. and R.O.Cape to R.G.O.
Appointment as the A.G.S. of the I.A.U.
Appointment as General Secretary of the I.A.U.
Overseas visits in 1960-1963
The I.A.U. General Assembly in Hamburg in 1964
Federation of Astronomical and Geophysical Services
N.A.O. activities in 1960-1964
Retirement of Dr. Porter
N.A.O. Reunion in 1963
Replacement of the ICT 1201 computer
Transfer of R.G.O. from the M.o.D. to the S. R. C.
Chapter 16   Transfer to the S.R.C.
Transfer of the R.G.O to the S.R.C.
Activities in 1965-1966
Celestial mechanics and astronomical constants
The occultation programme
Bicentenary of the Nautical Almanac
Relations with the A.R.
Notes on the staff
Appreciation of the work of Mr. Scott
Retirement of Mr. Scott
Overseas visits in 1996-1967
The future of the Astronomical Ephemeris
Proposal for a department of celestial mechanics
Aside on the Institute of Theoretical Astronomy
The I.A.U. General Assembly in Prague in 1967
As President of the R.A.S. and visit of the Queen
Statutes of the I.A.U.
Relations with other ephemeris offices
Chapter 17   A change of duties
Preparations for the I.A.U. General Assembly in Brighton
Events during the I.A.U. General Assembly in 1970
Activities after the I.A.U. General Assembly
N.A.O. records
Retirement arrangements
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