All Questions

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What is our universe expanding into?

From inflation theory and other theories explaining the birth of the universe, the universe is expanding and recently it's been discovered that the expansion has been accelerating. My question is ...
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So, I've been starting to investigate radio astronomy, and am wondering about if certain things are possible from an amateur standpoint. I was looking at this powerpoint(that discusses building a tiny ...
104 views

Is a black hole a 5 dimensional vortex?

We know that a black hole behaves like a whirlpool or a tornado or any of the other rotating phenomena we experience on Earth.But the thing is, all these phenomena, except the black hole, are ...
670 views

Are there more stars than all the words ever spoken by humans?

A while ago I saw Neil deGrasse Tyson comparing the number of stars in the universe with the number of words spoken by all of humankind, ever since. I realize both of these numbers are not strictly ...
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Why does radio astronomy offer higher resolution images than optical?

According to this lecture,"Radio astronomy has several advantages over optical astronomy...We can make the highest resolution images, and see things happening on the smallest scales." Why is this? If ...
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What is the typical resolving power of the largest optical telescopes?

I'd like to estimate the typical resolving power of the largest optical telescopes. I've calculated the theoretical resolving power of the VLA for 21 cm light, R=\frac{\lambda}{B}=\frac{2.1 \times ...
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How long does it typically take to make a telescope yourself for the first time? [closed]

How difficult is it to make a telescope oneself? How much time would it take for a first-timer? What are the typical pitfalls?
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How many galaxies are there in the Hercules–Corona Borealis Great Wall?

The Hercules–Corona Borealis Great Wall is "to date (February 16, 2015), it is the largest and the most massive structure known in the observable universe" (source). How many galaxies is the ...
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What is the acceleration of the stars' speed in the Universe? Positive or negative? [closed]

I have read quite different opinions about that, so can someone tell me what is the sign of the acceleration of the stars in the Universe if we accept that the center of the Universe is the beginning ...
716 views

Where do the heavier elements come from?

Partly inspired by this question, the end result of stellar fusion is Iron-56 (eventually, after some decay). Then it explodes. How/where then to the heavier elements come from. The answer here ...
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What are the up- and downsides of spherical and parabolic mirrors in telescopes?

What are the up- and downsides of spherical and parabolic mirrors in telescopes? I was able to find small bits of information from the web but not a good comparison. Assume the telescope is a ...
221 views

Which eyepieces I can use it for best viewing experience using my exisiting telescope?

Telescope: Orion 09843 SpaceProbe 3,3 inch aperture(76mm), 700mm focal length, eyepieces - 25mm and 10mm focal lengths Hi, I am very happy and excited to see moon craters, jupiter and saturn. And ...
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Precessing of the Earth

It's been known that the Earth's axial tilt varies from 22.5 to 24.5. Does this result in a wobbling while the value of the tilt varies about these two limits? If so, how does it affect the mechanics ...
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Difficulties in finding Jupiter

I am new to astronomy. Jupiter is now visible to the naked eye but I have difficulties in locating it with my (new Newtonian reflector) telescope. The lowest magnification I have is 36X, which I guess ...
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How would Jupiter's brightness relative to our sun seem to a remote observer (observing from a remote star)

Given that Jupiter is 5 AU from our sun and a remote observer viewing our solar system from some other part of our galaxy looks at it. We assume that Jupiter's radius is $11 \times 6700$ km. What ...
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Solar Eclipses for dummies: Step 1 - moon equatorial orbit around a planet without axial tilt

Note 1: I've studied downvoted questions and decided that I either asked too many questions or I sound like I'm setting a fantasy world. So I'm editing my question accordingly. Note 2: I'm a ...
326 views

Estimating the angle covered by the star trails and deducing how long the exposure lasted

How would you estimate the angle covered by the star trails and deduce how long the exposure lasted in the following image? Here is the photo's caption: Star trails beyond the Gemini ...
414 views

What would the night sky look like if Earth orbited an intergalactic star?

If the Earth and its host star were located exactly in-between the Milky Way and Andromeda would the night sky be completely void of light? Would stars be visible to the unaided eye? So there could ...
151 views

Heat from other Stars

Does the Earth receive any heat at all from the millions of other Stars in our Galaxy ? Is it light that is bringing the heat and perhaps it cools down on the long journey in Space getting to the ...
3k views

How did Kepler “guess” his third law from data?

It is amazing that Kepler determined his three laws by looking at data, without a calculator and using only pen and paper. It is conceivable how he proved his laws described the data after he had ...
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What astronomical observations would give conclusive proof of alien life?

There are several ways we are coming closer to answering the question "is there life elsewhere in the universe?". One is by first understanding very well the origin life on our own planet. Another is ...
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What kinds of technologies are required to directly image exoplanets

I have read that immensley powerful telescopes such as the European Extremley Large Telescope will be able to directly image the atmospheres of exoplanets, and even determine their rotation rates. I ...
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What are the Gamma rays and Cosmic rays effects on humans and equipments? [closed]

First of all not to consider me a conspiracy theorist, but isn't landing on the moon a questionable issue? I am really not an expert in astronomy but let's assume that a moon landing has happened. 1- ...
148 views

What uncertainty does an error bar signify in astronomy?

When an astronomer talks about her/his topic and shows an X/Y-plot with error bars. What should one assume that those error bars represent? 1 standard deviation? Or 2? Or some specific significance ...
527 views

Circular orbits

First of all, I'm studying orbits for a hobby: world building. Unfortunately, my mathematical abilities approach a ridiculous low threshold, which means I am stuck with reading the simplest ...
31 views

L4&L5 positions?

I know that, in L4&L5, the distances to the two main bodies should be equal. Still, how can I calculate that distance with accuracy? How can I know that that distance is inside the equipotential ...
138 views

Relocation to Mars

One billion years into the future and the Sun has swollen in size and it is now not possible to live on Earth due to the heat. Mankind has relocated to Mars where the temperature is more favorable now ...
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Determination of orbital elements for Trans-Neptunian Objects, how?

How are orbits calculated for Trans-Neptunian Objects? I understand there are six standard parameters for defining an orbit (link) but I am not sure how telescope observations translate into these ...
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Estimates for how many Trans-Neptunian Objects there are [duplicate]

The Minor Planet Center shows that we know of about 1350 Trans-Neptunian Objects (TNO's). I think it is safe to assume that we have not found all the TNO's there are to find, even the ones that we ...
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Can an astronaut ever reach a Black Hole theoretically? [duplicate]

Ok, bear with me, while I try to explain the question I have. I read that time slows as we approach a black hole. So, suppose,theoretically, as astronaut is approaching a Black Hole. And he gets ...
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How are parachutes usable in other places than Earth?

Mars landings, Moon landings. . . Wherever I see a documentary or still pictures in Wikipedia, there are parachutes in the landing of rovers. Whenever I see them, I ask myself, "How they can it ...
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Is it proper to refer to objects beyond Neptune as “Kuiper Belt Objects?”

It seems to me that nowadays the more proper term is "Trans-Neptunian Object". Is there any difference between Kuiper Belt Objects and Trans-Neptunian Objects? If not, is one term preferred over the ...
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Binocular with features like gleam night sight advantage?

Im looking for binoculars, I have seen specs like DAY & NIGHT ZOOM BINOCULARS, Full size day and night vision ,binoculars gleam night sight. Are these thing helpful when i look in ...
66 views

How are molecules detected in space?

Recently the sugar glycoaldehyde was detected in a star system 400 light years from Earth. How exactly are molecules detected in space? I am aware that spectroscopy is used to detect them, but I don't ...
93 views

Hubble HST scheduling algorithm

NASA developed SPIKE: Intelligent Scheduling of Hubble Space Telescope Observations (HST) and this. My question is simple, is there a programming library, preferably in python or C#, to implement the ...
438 views

How far away is the light that would reveal the Big Bang?

I guess theoretically if we could go faster than light, which we clearly cannot, at some point we'd be able to see the big bang itself. Just curious - how far away is that light?
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Why would all places appear to be at the center of the universe's expansion?

I just watched an iMax planetarium video that claimed that no matter where you are in the universe, it will appear that you are at the center of the universe and all things are expanding away from ...
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If Kepler-444 planets existed for 11.2 billion years, why fear for life on Earth after six billion years?

According to recent news, Kepler-444, a 11.2 billion year old star, has a system of five planets. It has a mass of 3/4 of solar mass. So I believe both Kepler 444 and the Sun will share the fate of ...
218 views

How do moons get captured?

[Apologies if this is a duplicate: I feel it ought to be, but my searches have failed]. A moon-sized object is running loose in the Solar System, perhaps after a planetary collision. As it approaches ...
254 views

Why there are other planets in our solar system? [closed]

Earth receives sunlight from Sun; in a similar way, do we receive any kind of energy from other planets? My question is: We are dependent on sunlight, which is energy from Sun; similarly, are we ...
118 views

Does one need to take into account finite gravity speed in N-body simulations?

Most small-scale N-body simulations (e.g., planetary systems, solar system, stellar clusters, ...) use classical Newtonian gravity. Most large-scale N-body simulations (e.g., galaxy clusters, ...) ...
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How much magnification is needed to see planets of solar system?

I have a 3inch Newtonian reflector telescope with 300 mm focal length. I can use highest magnification of 75x using a 4mm eyepiece. But in 75x I can't see details of Jupiter what was expected. Instead ...
395 views

Why are all quasars so far away?

Why are all quasars so far away? If the universe is homogeneous, we could expect to have a homogeneous distribution of quasars, but all of then seem to be far away from Earth. Why is that?
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How long was the hyper inflation phase?

How long was the hyper inflation phase? Haw can we know that it lasted for a period of time and not more or les time?
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Why are gas giants colored the way they are?

As I understand it, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune are all made primarily from varying proportions of hydrogen and helium. Despite this, Jupiter is very red, Saturn is yellow, and Uranus and ...
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How precisely is planetary tilt defined (the tilt direction, not just the angle)?

The earth's axis is titled 23.4 degrees with respect to the ecliptic. Since this tilt is responsible for the seasons, it's clear that the tilt is in the direction away from the sun on the shortest day ...
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What will happen when landing on Jupiter?

Jupiter is a gas giant, so landing on it will not be like as on Earth, our moon or Mars etc., as it does not have a solid surface like these. If we have a hypothetical spaceship or probe landing on ...
132 views

Entropy of black hole

A line from one of the answers on a different question got me thinking: The simplest way to see this is probably that a black hole has a much higher entropy than a star or even another type of ...