IAGA Guides

IAGA Guides document methods and standards of observation of geophysical phenomena.

1. Observing Noctilucent Clouds

This manual and instruction book was written by a group of active researchers, both professional and amateur. There are chapters giving practical advice for taking visual observations, photographing the clouds with film or with video equipment. A summary of observations from space is included, as well as comments on the connection between noctilucent clouds, seen from the ground, and the polar mesospheric clouds that so far have been measured only from orbit. Noctilucent clouds are seen in the summer months, shining in the poleward sky at nighttime. Measurements show that the clouds are higher than any others. Lying at a height of 80-85 kilometers, the clouds mark a boundary between meteorology and space physics. This book is beautifully illustrated with photographs, and will help everyone recognize and appreciate these "sailors in the summer night".

The photographs in the book may be viewed at Pekka Parviainen's web site: www.polarimage.fi (A cross-referenced index to the photographs is given in Appendix A of the pdfdocument.)

2. IAGA Guide for Magnetic Measurements and Observatory Practice

  • by J. Jankowski and C. Sucksdorff
  • 1996
  • Price: USD50
  • 232 pages
  • ISBN: 0-9650686-2-5
  • Electronic version (PDF, 3.7 Mb)

This Guide provides comprehensive information about how to organize and run a magnetic observatory and make magnetic measurements.

  • The main topics are:
  • Brief description of the magnetic field of the Earth
  • Selection of observatory sites and layout
  • Magnetometers
  • Absolute magnetic measurements
  • Recording of magnetic variations
  • Data processing
  • Testing and calibrating instruments

3. IAGA Guide for Magnetic Repeat Station Surveys

  • by L.R. Newitt, C.E. Barton, and J. Bitterly
  • 1997
  • Price: USD25
  • 120 pages
  • ISBN: 0-9650686-1-7
  • Electronic version (PDF, 2.2 Mb)

This Guide provides a comprehensive description of the theoretical basis, operational details, and instrumentation for making magnetic repeat station survey measurements.

4. IAGA Guide for Calibrating a Compass Swing Base

In this guide a general description of a compass swing base calibration procedure is presented which was developed at the Hermanus Magnetic Observatory. The procedure is based on the use of DI flux magnetometers as these types of magnetometers are widely in use. Although there are also other methods in use the 'DI-method' should be seen as an IAGA recommendation.

To order these publications, contact the IAGA Secretary General (Prices do not include shipping and handling.)