# All Questions

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### Torus of the AGN

How much do we know about the structure of the torus surrounding the galactic nuclei? Is the shape defined or still under speculations? And are there different structures for this torus possible i.e., ...
172 views

### Is a wavy path possible for a shooting star?

I was camping recently (May 2014), and observed several shooting stars (very fast, short lived), a few satellites (very slow, long lived) and lots of aircraft (flashing lights) in the night sky. All ...
200 views

### Was the progress of astronomy in the 1800s surprisingly slow, and if so why? [closed]

The 1800's was a century of fantastic scientific discoveries in chemistry, geology, biology, engineering and so on. Is it correct to say that astronomy did not keep up with this development? And if ...
145 views

### Dark Flow: statistical limits on existence

Dark Flow has been thrown around as a term a lot lately, especially with the latest Planck results. New Scientist reported last year that it was now statistically improbable, but the paper by Atrio ...
672 views

### Did we ever actually see the earth revolving around the sun? Is the geocentric model completely disproved?

Did we ever actually see the Earth revolving around the Sun? Also, is the geocentric model completely disproved or was it sidelined because the heliocentric model made things easier to understand? ...
74 views

### How would a planetary defence against comets work?

Mappings of practically all potentially dangerous asteroids is well underway. But comets seem almost hopeless to protect against. How far away are approaching comets detected today? How long time ...
36 views

### Calculating Angular Distance

Given the horizontal coordinates of two objects in the sky, how does one go about calculating the angular separation between them?
58 views

### Triple Stars v/s Ternary Stars

Ternary (or trinary) stars are not the same as triple stars. So, what is the basic ...
807 views

### Can we (theoretically) spin the black hole so strong that it will be broken apart by centrifugal force?

I can't imagine the forces involved in black holes' lives. So please, help me to find out, if it is possible or not to destroy black hole in this specific way.
2k views

### Is Sun a part of a binary system?

Does our Sun have a counterpart, i.e., is it a part of a binary-system? If so, how does the other star look like and where is it?
100 views

### Can Space-Time Itself Have Energy Qualities Like Momentum?

Hypothetically, if space could be moved or scaled, what would happen to everything inside? I'd like to know if an element of momentum could be transferred to objects by contorting space-time. Other ...
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### How can pre-main sequence stars radiate more energy than main-sequence stars?

How can a pre-main sequence star radiate more energy by gravitational contraction than a main-sequence star can by hydrogen fusion?
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### Would time go by infinitely fast when crossing the event horizon of a black hole?

If you were to fall into a black hole, my understanding is that from your reference point, time would speed up (looking out to the rest of the universe), approaching infinity when approaching the ...
107 views

### Why do pictures of the Milky Way look like a spiral?

When I see pictures of the Milky Way they show a spiral shape. Why is this?
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### Pulsars with accreting disk in binary system

Following this line, I am wondering about the following question. Accreting pulsars in binary systems are usually thought to accrete from a prograde disk, so increasing their spin in the process. ...
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### How does solar activity (e.g. flares, coronal mass ejections) change over the life cycle of a Sun-like star?

As a Sun-like star is born from a collapsed nebula and generates energy by nuclear fusion some of that energy is converted to magnetic fields which fuel solar activity. How does that activity evolve ...
100 views

### Metallicity of Celestial Objects: Why “Metal = Non-metal”?

Metallicity of objects refers to the amount of chemical elements present in it other than Hydrogen and Helium. Note: The other elements may or may not be actual ...
37 views

### Active Galactic Nuclei - categorisation on the basis of observer?

As we know AGNs are considered to be one of the most luminous objects to be found in the cosmos.Based on the observer, for instance on Earth, we categorize them on the basis of the angle between the ...
53 views

### Instrument aperture sizes on Hubble Telescope

When looking at the diagram of the focal plane of the Hubble Space Telescope I noticed that the aperture sizes of most of the scientific instruments are very small. They occupy a very tiny fraction of ...
68 views

### Calculation of Horizontal Coordinates

Given a fixed coordinate location on Earth (i.e. a latitude and longitude), and a fixed equatorial coordinate location of a particular astronomical object in the sky (i.e. right ascension and ...
23 views

### 2SB mixer in radio astronomy?

In literature about the instrumentation of radio astronomy, I frequently come across a type of mixer described as "2SB". I'm familiar with single-sideband (SSB) and double-sideband (DSB) mixers, but ...
112 views

### Pulsation Modes of Cepheids

There are various modes of Cepheids like single modes: fundamental (F), first overtone (1O), and likewise. And then we have double modes: F/1O, 1O/2O etc. triple modes: 1O/2O/3O etc. ...
70 views

### Taking Advantage of Time Dilation

According to Einstein's theory of Special Relativity, one's speed in relation to a relatively stationary object would 'slow down' time on the moving object. With this in mind, would it be possible to ...
201 views

### Where is a Hollow Object's Center of Gravity? [closed]

Let's imagine that the Earth's moon is hollow. Given this scenario, where would its center of gravity be? What would the conditions be like at the center? Also would one still be able to stand on the ...
116 views

### Calculate telescope orientation based on RA, DEC and Lat/Long

I'm parsing FITS files for a project based on data from a telescope. These files include 'DEC', 'RA' and lat long values. I understand roughly the concept of celestial coordinates and I assume that ...
96 views

### What does “Normalized to Si 10 to the power 6” mean?

I'm writing a space game that I want to give a more "realistic" feel. When looking for a reference as to distribute elements in planets (for mining, etc) Instead of finding the more usual percentage ...
191 views

### Why is right ascension measured in hours?

When viewing star maps in Stellarium, I noticed that the meridians of the equatorial grid were denoted in hours and not degrees, and that always puzzled me. Why did astronomers choose this system? I ...
53 views

### Do origin theories imagine each planet to first orbit the Sun very irregularly before stabilizing?

What I was wondering is that, for example, toss a few balls into zero gravity space randomly, what would be the steady state motion? Would not all the balls go on weird directions and undergo ...
23 views

### golden and red colored light even after Sunset [closed]

I heard about golden hour but today i saw golden and red colored patches in sky even after Sunset. why it happens? and would like to know more about science behind golden hour.
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### How big would a disc have to be to blot out the sun covering 5% of the land mass of earth?

Like this, but floating in space. I imagine that this would also be influenced by the distance of the object from the sun, and that there is some ideal distance for this object to be? (and ...
80 views

### What kind of collision of celestial bodies would be visible to the naked eye?

When asteroids crash into the Moon they give of huge amounts of energy resulting in a "bright" flash, as can be seen in this video. At the end of the video its also says that anyone looking at the ...
97 views

### How are the masses of celestial bodies determined?

I was scrolling through the list of moons of Jupiter and I wondered how astronomers where able to determine the masses of those objects. When I tried to google it I meanly found results of people ...
143 views

### Meaningful theories of the shape of the universe

Normally, when people say "the universe is infinite" they generally mean something like "the observable universe is locally flat, it is easy to assume that it is flat way beyond the observable ...
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### how to know the nature of the companion in a neutron star binary?

The companion could be a main sequence star, white dwarf, neutron star or black hole. We detected pulsar-pulsar binaryhere several decades ago. But if one of the pulsar does not radiate towards us, ...
215 views

### How to calculate right ascension of Greenwich? [closed]

If I know specific time, t0, how can I calculate RA of Greenwich?
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### Active Galaxies

I've read that there are 4 distinct although related forms of AGs : Seyferts, Quasars, Radio and Blazars. Are there any other forms possible? Also do these forms ever intermix to give something new?
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### Broadband spectrum of Sun

Broadband spectrum is one which is inclusive of all the observed wavelength ranges. In the case of the BB spectra of our Sun, there is a sharp (non-differentiable) kink in the curve in the UV-range ...
57 views

### Do we make predictions in our time, or local time?

I was scrolling idly through the Wikipedia article on Orion when I read: Orion will still be recognizable long after most of the other constellations—composed of relatively nearby stars—have ...
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### Quasars and SMBH

Quasars are known to contain supermassive Black Holes at their cores. So does that mean that the number of quasars is equal to that of the SMBHs out there?
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### How did astronomers first come to understand that the Sun's core was a gas?

I was reading a very old book (around 1850) on astronomy and the author explains Sun spots as a phenomena where you can see the black planetary like hard core of the Sun through two different ...
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### how steady over time are right ascension and declination values?

I understand that astronomers use right ascension and declination for the position of stars. However both these values strike me as very anthropocentric and, more importantly, unreliable over time as ...
734 views

### Why did the moon abruptly change positions in the sky?

Three or four weeks ago I was outside showing my neighbors how cool the moon was through a 'backyard' telescope in broad daylight (~8PM PDT). It was 3/4 of the way across the sky (setting behind the ...
61 views

### Is the expansion of the universe proof of the big bang?

Is the expansion of the universe proof of the Big Bang theory? Or are there other proofs?
127 views

### A day in earth, a thousand years somewhere else

By followig the laws of physics, is it possible, that in a place far far away that one day (at that place), is counted as 1000 years in the earth. I am familiar with black holes having impact on ...
69 views

### Which is the most early type star with a planet discovered by radial velocity method?

We have discovered planets in Beta_Pictoris(A6V)here and Fomalhaut alpha(A3v)here. However they were discovered by direct images. There should be an stellar type limit by RV? What is the most ...
99 views

### Determine north just by one shadow

I am not sure if this is the right place to post at, but I tried to find the best place to do so. To my point, I wonder if it is posssible, to determine where north is, just by one shadow, that means ...
335 views

### Does matter accumulate just outside the event horizon of a black hole?

My understanding is that time slows and approaches stopping when approaching the event horizon of a black hole. I have seen this explained several places, including a brief explanation in the last ...
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### A black “superhole” possibility?

When matter crosses the event horizon, it is easy to imagine that matter is torn apart into their individual components by tidal wave effects. Atoms would be ripped apart eventually. At one time, the ...