Tagged Questions

Questions involving basic astronomical concepts or information.

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How does Astronomy, amateur and professional, contribute to humanity and a better world? [migrated]

I think this is a good question to ask. There are possibly many aspects to this question. Astronomy and seeking knowledge has lead to the development of space probes, space science, development of ...
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Planets, gem stones and their psychological effect on society [closed]

I have been having a pretty bad events happen to me lately. Any new undertaking turns sour. Situations that seemed to be getting better yesterday suddenly take a turn for the worst. For example I ...
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Where can I find the DR12 SDSS dataset in their website

I have to cross-match the SDSS DR12 dataset with that of GALEX but apparently I cannot find the fits document which has the same field as that in GALEX. I have explored the website but I couldn't find ...
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Books describing first-hand experience of astrophysicists finding planets without skipping actual maths

Are there good references of astronomical texts where we get a first-hand experience of astronomers uncovering astronomical gems using maths alone and not using observation. Observation may have been ...
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IDL (particularly GBTIDL) velocity axis explanation?

I have been working with GBTIDL (the Green Bank Telescope version of IDL I suppose) to look at some spectra, and in addition to having the x-axis be frequency or wavelength, you can also have it in ...
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Why do we use FITS format for scientific images especially in astronomy? How is it different from formats such as JPEG, PNG etc?

I am new to astronomy and I found that the telescopic dataset can be stored in the FITS format instead of JPEG. Why do we have a special image format just for scientific images?
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Calculating azimuth from equatorial coordinates

I try to get the azimuth of an object from its equatorial coordinates using this formula: $a = \arctan2(\sin(θ - α), \sin φ * \cos(θ - α) - \cos φ * \tan δ)$ Where φ = geographic latitude of the ...
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How to calculate position of an unknown star knowing positions of some other stars from an image?

Suppose I know the coordinates (right ascension and declination) of the stars marked with red. How should I calculate the coordinates of an unknown star, marked with yellow? Searching over the web, I ...
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Astronomical databases for machine learning?

I was reading this question about open problems in astronomy. The bounty-receiving answer says that I have just left the field where some colleagues are trying to develop some software to use ...
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Where to obtain Tycho Brahe's data?

I would like to obtain Tycho Brahe's data on Mars. What would be an authoritative source? One source I could find is this page (the data is given as an Excel file) but I have no idea can that be ...
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Equations for coordinates of solar system objects

I would like to write a program that visualizes the solar system. To do this, I would need equations for calculating the coordinates of each solar system object at a given time. Where could I obtain ...
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Open problems in astronomy that an amateur (with a PhD in some other field) would have a chance of solving?

What are some open problems in astronomy that an amateur would have a chance of solving? Suppose the amateur has a PhD in some other field, owns a basic telescope, a set of filters, diffraction ...
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