All Questions

209 views

Are these facts about moon true?

I don't have much knowledge of Astronomy but today I was googling randomly and found an article, according to which: The moon is of the wrong size for its current orbit. The moon rings like a ...
103 views

Would an ultra bright moon indicate that the world is ending?

There is a sci-fi television episode that shows a man looking out the window into the night sky. There up in the sky is the moon, and it's extraordinarily bright. The man spends the rest of the night ...
57 views

How massive does a planet need to be to create gravitational lensing?

Is it ever possible for starlight to be distorted in a noticeable way from something as small as a planet? I'm guessing that the chances of this working are better on a dense terrestrial planet than ...
174 views

Can we hear something on Venus, Mars and Titan?

Mars, Venus and Titan have an atmosphere and we can theoretically step on them (and die quickly). So, as an example, let's say we can survive on these objects without a space suit. I say: “Hi” on any ...
55 views

What known comets are binary?

Many asteroids are today known to be binary, to have "moons". But what comets are known to be binary? Or what fraction of them are theoretically thought to be binary? And if possible, then separate ...
535 views

How does a gravity slingshot actually work?

From what I know of elliptical orbits, an object speeds up near the periapsis and slows down at the apoapsis, much like we learned in high school physics how a sphere would roll down and back up a ...
326 views

Can the asteroid belt be seen from Jupiter?

Suppose that someone lives in the neighborhood of Jupiter. He may live in a space station around Jupiter, or in any ot it's moons (I believe that it doesn't matter for this question). If this person ...
86 views

What's an order-of-magnitude main sequence star look like?

I'm looking for a very rough, order-of-magnitude approach to the main sequence. What I mean is, I have a spherically-symmetric hydrogen distribution. I'm looking to get a rough approximation for ...
30 views

What are possible methods of discerning a starburst AGN composite galaxy?

I'm currently working on an independent project that involves discerning starburst galaxies that are themselves within active galaxies. I would assume radio observations would be best to discern star ...
40 views

Can solar luminosity & activity be predicted?

Can a star's luminosity and its activity, solar flares and sunspots, be predicted? If so, with what accuracy & precision?
100 views

Are ascending node of sun, the point of intersection of prime meridian and equator and center of earth all collinear?

I did a bit of googling but couldn't find the exact answer, so are the following 3 points collinear or not ? 1_center of earth 2_ascending(or descending) node of sun 3_point of intersection of ...
66 views

Does near light-speed travel doppler-shift the light from the target into gamma rays?

If a space ship travels at near the speed of light towards a star, wouldn't the light from the star doppler shift into gamma rays (or worse?) and become lethal to life and destructive to space ship ...
49 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 ...
84 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 ...
233 views

Classification of a Comet

Google's definition of a comet is: a celestial object consisting of a nucleus of ice and dust and, when near the sun, a ‘tail’ of gas and dust particles pointing away from the sun. This ...
73 views

What is the time/size/rigidity ratio for a space object to become mostly round?

In the answer here multiple comets are identified that do not form a single round body. A drop of water will form a round shape in the time it takes to free fall a couple of feet. All of the ...
23 views

Do planetary radio frequency change upon alignments?

If Neptune would align Uranus, would the radio frequency perceived on Earth increase? Are the radio antennas on NM capable of getting the 2 different radio frequencies feom both planets or would they ...
334 views

Is it possible to move a planet out of its orbit? At least a lighter planet?

As observed by many researches our sun will be exhausted in a distant future. So anyone thinks driving our planet (or any planet) closer to the sun for more light and heat is a solution for the life ...
31 views

Can Summer Triangle asterism be used for navigation?

I am wondering, whether is it possible to use vega-altair-deneb asterism for navigational purpose? Or if there is any geometric relationship of it with Polaris? Any idea. Thanks
101 views

How were the designations of “North” and “South” applied to the hemispheres of Mars?

How was it decided which hemisphere was North and which hemisphere was South on Mars? Clearly, the designations "North" and "South" apply only to the hemispheres which contain the axis of rotation at ...
949 views

Can two comets travel together as one?

If two comets come together in space, will they bounce apart, merge into a single body, or could they travel together through space, either touching or orbiting a shared center of gravity?
72 views

The RA and Dec of lunar poles

The moon faces the earth with one fixed side. However there is a small vibration. So I am not sure the south and north poles of the moon is fixed. Even if they are fixed points on the moon, the pole ...
20 views

How to compare a Catadioptrics light asorbtion with a reflector?

I used to have a 6" Dobsonian reflector, and the next telescope I buy, I want it to have the equivlant of about a 11/12" dobsonian reflector. I'm looking at this Nexstar VX 9.25 , it says 235mm ...
218 views

is there any theory or observational evidence that our universe is electrically neutral or not?

It seems our universe is neutral in large scale. There is CP violationwiki problem about matter and dark matter. Similarly is there any theory about whether our universe is electrically neutral? ...
204 views

Is there any point on earth where the moon stays below the horizon for an extended period of time?

When I was teaching a class why the earth has seasons today, I mentioned how the poles of the earth experience months of daylight and darkness. Then one of my students asked whether the moon ...
41 views

Alt-Az or Polar?

I have a Meade wedge that I am to install on one of their LX200 telescopes. Will I be able to align in alt-az afterwards? Is polar easier or harder to make an alignment? Any other tips welcome. Thanks ...
59 views

Can astronomical radio sources be used as a verifiable randomness beacon?

A randomness beacon is a source of random data that is broadcast to multiple parties. Users listening to the beacon receive the same sequence of random strings and no one can predict the values in ...
110 views

Derivation of the formula for longitude of ascending node for a satellite

I've been looking into the document IS-GPS-200H to understand how to calculate satellite location in the ECEF coordinate. I am having problem understanding the formula to derive $\Omega$, the ...
76 views

What is the apparent magnitude limit for the naked eye?

If you only read the question, you will answer: ''That depends on the light pollution''. Yes, it does, but if you are in the darkest night sky (Bortle class 1), what magnitude would have the faintest ...
156 views

Hour angle sunrise calculation problem

I am trying to program a sunrise/sunset calculator using this formula tutorial. If you follow the steps, eventually you get to this formula for "H" (the "hour angle"): \$H = \arccos( [\sin(-0.83) - ...
109 views

Is it difficult to see DSO in your eyepiece?

I want to know if bringing the image of a DSO in eyepiece generally represents a problem for beginners in astronomy.
59 views

Sloan digital sky survey galaxies

I am trying to get some data from the Sloan digital sky survey (SDSS). This task turned out to be challenging for me as someone with only little knowledge about astronomy and maybe someone here can ...
492 views

How do we know that the speed of the influence of gravity is instant?

When I was in college, I posed to my astronomy professor a thought experiment that had been puzzling my mind for some time: "If the sun magically disappeared, instantly, along with all its influences, ...
69 views

how to measure temperature of the distant star [duplicate]

As part of small project i want to measure temperature of the distant star on basis of optical observations. so by what exact method i can do it? which instruments will be necessary? what is the ...
50 views

Would a low albedo substance warm up Mars?

If Mars were coated in a dark substance that absorbs sunlight (including infrared light), would this heat up Mars? I am envisioning a fine dust that is dispersed into the atmosphere, but possibly ...
112 views

Would a high albedo reflective substance cool down Venus?

If we were to put a highly reflective substance into Venus's upper atmosphere, could we cool it down? I am envisioning adding a highly reflective fine dust or gas, possibly lighter than "air" to the ...
169 views

Accurate way to programmatically generate a main sequence star?

I am working on a (personal) programming project, part of which involves generating random stars and their parameters. In order to create a procedurally generated star, I want to randomly select as ...
62 views

What is the difference between a dwarf spheroidal galaxy and a globular cluster?

This Wikipedia article states that Segue 1 is either a dwarf spheroidal galaxy or globular cluster associated with our own Milky Way. I am wondering what the difference is between dwarf spheroidal ...
77 views

Is dark energy constant?

Does the "amount" of dark energy in the universe change over time, or is it constant? The dark energy I am asking about is the rate of acceleration of the universe's expansion.
170 views

What is the farthest point of light that is emitted by a torch?

If I focus my torch into the night sky,what would be the farthest point the light can reach? Recently I looked at the night sky and noticed a light spark moving around the clouds for about 15 ...
744 views

Is it Possible for Planetary Bodies To Exist In Close Proximity Without Adverse Effects?

There are several sci-fi movies where planetary bodies are shown in the sky in order to indicate that the characters are on an alien planet. A good example is in Predators (2010): Is it actually ...
37 views

Is there a radius inside of which objects are (doppler) blue shifted?

The Andromeda galaxy is about 600,000 light years away and is doppler blue-shifted. Are there objects closer to us than Andromeda which are red-shifted? Are there objects farther than Andromeda that ...
78 views

In regards to the holographic principle, what exactly is information? [closed]

I'm having trouble understanding what exactly "information" is in the context of the holographic principle suggested by string theory. Can it be equated to a matrix of ones and zeros? Does this ...
117 views

What is the explanation for rapid inflation just after the big bang?

I often hear about cosmic inflation occurring rapidly after the Big Bang, but have never came across any explanation for it. What supposedly caused this inflationary period in the early universe? ...
2k views

How can I accurately find & apply the white donut to the center of my mirror?

I have a Plettstone 18" Dobsonian telescope and use a Howie Glatter tuBlug, laser collimator, and Square Grid Projection Attachment to adjust the mirrors. Proper collimation requires an accurate ...
37 views

Rate of star collpse

It is believed that our sun will become a red giant with a diameter of about 1 AU. When the fusion slows down, gravity will collapse the sun. Since the energy release from the fusion diminishes slowly ...
279 views

How did Kepler determine the orbital period of Mars?

As I understand it, Kepler used the orbital period of Mars, along with observational data of Mars' and the sun's position in the sky to derive the orbits of Earth and Mars. (As described, here: ...
19 views

Can spectroscopes identify minerals?

Could a spectrometer on a probe or space telescope identify minerals, not only elements and molecules, from the spectral lines? Is there any technology for identifying minerals remotely?