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14
votes
3answers
2k views

Is the Earth-Sun distance 1.012 AU?

Wolfram Alpha's query: Sun Earth distance in AU gives: 1.012 au (astronomical units) They definitely use this value in other places too - e.g. Earth-Sun $L_1$ distances from Earth and from Sun ...
3
votes
1answer
38 views

Astrophysical “unitised” version of the Gravitational constant

This question relates formalising the gravitational constant, $G$, (which in S.I. units is usually quoted as $\sim6.67\times10^{-11}\,\mathrm{m}^{3}\,\mathrm{kg}^{-1}\,\mathrm{s}^{-2}$) in units which ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

What is projected separation and how can I make sense of its unit (h^-1 kpc)?

I have been reading this paper on the separation of a binary quasar in which it states: At a projected separation of 8.3/h kpc (Omega_matter = 1), CTQ 839 would be the smallest projected ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Units of angular power spectrum

I am not sure whether this question might be better suited for crossvalidated or stackoverflow, but I will give it a try here: I have a map of the full sky in in the healpix format, units are $\rm ...
1
vote
2answers
138 views

What are the units of distance in this subtended angle calculation?

I'd like to find the distance at which a 2.4 cm coin is subtended by an angle of 10". I've drawn my diagram and found that $D=\dfrac{d}{\alpha}$ using the small angle approximation. Since $10" = 4.85\...
1
vote
2answers
53 views

How often and over what period is Earth’s rotation averaged to compute UT1?

I understand that UT1 (and for that matter UT0, UT2, etc.) are based on averages of actual earth rotation, and serve as a form of mean solar time. However it’s not clear to me when these averages are ...
1
vote
2answers
36 views

What are some applicable problems with the correct usage of G?

In some fields of astrophysics, where distances are measured in parsecs (pc), velocities in kilometers per second (km/s) and masses in solar units (), it is useful to express G as approximately 4.302 ...
2
votes
2answers
55 views

What is frequency range?

Using the NED, you can search via frequency range corresponding to the selected pass band filter. I'm a beginner here and don't really understand. Here's the quote: NOTES: Objects with ...
1
vote
3answers
126 views

Basic celestial data

complete beginner here, only got into star gazing a few days ago using my friend's telescope and I don't really understand at all what any of the measurements mean. Anyway, talk about jumping in the ...
5
votes
2answers
45 views

apparent size of an astronomical body

What's the name of the measure of apparent (visible) size of a body? e.g. the Sun and the Moon appear to be roughly the same size, despite the Sun being vastly bigger - because the Moon is much closer....