3
votes
2answers
159 views

What is meant by matter distribution?

Frustratingly, I find this could be a very simplistic question and may leave me feeling a little stupid for asking it. But I have to ask this. My lecturer keeps refering to "matter distributions" for ...
8
votes
1answer
177 views

Why are retrograde orbits more stable than prograde ones?

Regarding solar system dynamics, i.e. planets in stellar systems and moons in planetary systems, this is often mentioned in the literature, but it is difficult to find a good analysis/explanation of ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Have there been successful attempts at spotting Neptune with the naked eye?

As pointed out here, the limit of naked eye visibility for people with extremely good night vision is about magnitude 8.5. Neptune at opposition is much brighter at magnitude 7.7, so it should be ...
8
votes
1answer
626 views

Is Universe Sandbox 2 realistic?

Universe Sandbox 2 is the second installment of Universe Sandbox that is available on Steam. It is an educational simulation game based on astronomy and anything space, it ranges from supernova ...
0
votes
2answers
56 views

Is this picture of a digital camera being oversaturated by bright light source i.e. the Sun? [closed]

Is this picture of a digital camera being oversaturated by bright light source i.e. the Sun? http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3110/3147227521_396e16bcfc.jpg
1
vote
1answer
19 views

How do I reduce planetary photometry to standard viewing geometry using phase angle?

I'm trying to make light curves for Pluto using old data. Most papers give magnitudes "reduced to standard viewing geometry" of r = 39.5 AU, Δ = 38.5 AU, and α = 1 degree, where r is ...
1
vote
3answers
109 views

Can you still see Polaris even if you are in the south pole?

I haven't been to south pole but can the Polaris still be viewed if the viewer is in the south pole? Or this question makes no sense at all?
0
votes
2answers
183 views

Where to get Polaris Right ascension value from

To calculate for example the polaris hour angle I use this formula to calculate polaris hour angle. τ = θ - α τ= hour angle θ= sideral time α= polaris RA (~ 2h32m) But where does the α=2h32m come ...
0
votes
1answer
150 views

LIGO gravitational wave chirp signal frequency

This question is about the LIGO gravitational wave signals' frequency. The signals start from about 35 Hz to peak at about 250 Hz, giving evidence of gravitational waves. The question is about the ...
0
votes
2answers
74 views

Does the retrograde movement affect the true angular distance between 2 planets?

I need to calculate the relative angular path between two planets in the geocentric view or in other words the number of degrees of a circle one planet travels away from another planet around the ...
1
vote
0answers
27 views

What did New Horizons photograph that was close enough to be out of focus? [migrated]

The picture below shows a Kuiper Belt object and a number of stars. It was recently taken by the New Horizons probe and published by NASA. The arrow points at the KBO and the rest of the bright ...
3
votes
0answers
43 views

H-alpha velocity fields of spirals falling into a cluster

What kind of impact would you expect ram pressure stripping / tidal interactions / harassment / interactions with the cluster potential (etc!) to have on the h-alpha velocity fields of infalling ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Which lens and magnification is best to see planets?

I just bought a Celestron Travel Scope 70 and it comes with a 20mm and a 10mm eyepiece. I get a good view of the Moon but I am not able to see Jupiter, Saturn or Mars as expected. I read about the ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

Estimating galactic dust extinction for medium band filters

I have a set of medium-band filters and I would like to compute $A_{\lambda}/E(B-V)$ for each filter which are not reported in the literatures. The magnitudes of the objects in the photometry ...
4
votes
1answer
67 views

How to determine the ellipticity of galaxies in SDSS

What is the best approach to determine the ellipticity of galaxies in the SDSS DR12. I have read this page. Are those really good methods? Do flux-weighted second moments (as given in the stokes ...
4
votes
1answer
113 views

Luminosity Schechter function for galaxies

Just a question I am having trouble understanding. I have the Schechter luminosity function for galaxies, given as: $$\Phi(L)dL=\Phi_{0}\left({\frac{L}{L_{\star}}}\right)^{\alpha}e^{-\frac{L}{L_{\...
6
votes
2answers
182 views

Are there any galaxies which fell out of sight horizon due to cosmic expansion?

If farthest galaxies run away from us with acceleration making them exceed speed of light, we should expect them to disappear from sky among time with increasing quantity. Did we observe this? Can we ...
9
votes
2answers
147 views

Boötes Void numbers, 2016

As a general science (hence Wikipedia!) reader, the latest information I have is that 60 galaxies "have been found and counted" inside the Boötes void, this of 1997. (1) What is the latest count of ...
11
votes
2answers
163 views

Conventional matter to dark matter ratio, outside of galaxies (Bounty!)

I'm pleased to offer a bounty to attract more attention to the fantastic Astronomy site. Consider say this outstanding diagram from another question, To begin with galaxies have a typical ...
2
votes
1answer
74 views

Difference in redshift between 2 interacting galaxies

I have a galaxy 'A', say at redshift 1. Let's suppose this galaxy has no peculiar velocity. What would be the redshift of another galaxy 'B', that has a radial velocity of 500 km/s, relative to A? ...
2
votes
0answers
31 views

How do people derive ionized gas mass from optical emission lines in a galaxy spectrum?

Suppose you had an optical spectrum of a galaxy, and you unambiguously detected emission lines from cooling ionized gas -- both forbidden lines like [O II] 3727AA and [O III] 4959,5007AA, as well as ...
2
votes
0answers
56 views

Are there equal number of planets, stars, galaxies etc in observable universe spinning in both directions?

Just because we observed that our milky way galaxy is spinning in a certain direction therefore we assume it is applicable to all other galaxies, I am curious to find out if hypothetically most of the ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

Could a “burping” supermassive black hole be responsible for a spiral galaxy's look?

I read an article which suggests black holes could influence the production of stars in the galaxy as the black hole can burst out powerful X-rays to "snowplow" the surrounding dust and gas. Although ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Question regarding the Milky Way when calculating galactic space velocities for galaxies

I have been calculating galaxy space velocities (where proper motions are known) in order to measure their orbits of the Milky Way using the method proposed in the appendix of http://www.aanda.org/...
3
votes
0answers
51 views

What percentage of galaxies rotate with trailing arms?

I am looking for the percentage of galaxies that rotate with trailing arms. I know that only a small percentage of galaxies rotate with leading arms and would like to know whether there are any ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

Create Position-Velocity diagram from a velocity field

Can someone explain to me how I can generate a Position-Velocity (PV) diagram from a galaxy's radial velocity field? I understand that usually PV diagrams are generated across the major axis of the ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Number of galaxies per redshift

Does exist something like a distribution of number of galaxies per redshift interval? I'm studying galaxy formation and evolution, and I'm curious to know how many todays' galaxies (with redshift <...
0
votes
0answers
16 views

Virial coefficient when computing dynamical mass enclosed by a rotating galactic disk of gas

Suppose I have a large thin disk of rotating gas in a galaxy -- the disk has a maximum inclination-corrected $V_{max}$ and a maximum radial extent of $R_{max}$ corresponding to that $V_{max}$ ...
0
votes
0answers
25 views

Replacing the tripod on a Celestron Travel Scope 70

I have a Celestron Travel Scope 70. The tripod seems incredibly wobbly, making it very difficult to view anything without the whole system bobbing up and down. I was thinking about replacing it with ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

Why the light curve goes down when the planet is behind the star?

There is a video explaing the transiting exoplanet light curve — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrusIZaWDW8 It is clear to my why the curve goes down when the planet is between the observer and the ...
0
votes
0answers
48 views

Radio white dwarfs

We have discovered about 2500 radio pulsars. Part of them show pulsations in other bands like X-ray and gamma ray. The radiation mechanism remains unclear now. I wonder whether there are radio ...
4
votes
2answers
104 views

Are white dwarf stars supported by proton degeneracy as well?

In general, fermions form a degenerate gas under high density or extremely low temperature. It's clear that white dwarf stars are supported by electron degeneracy pressure. However, there are still a ...
3
votes
2answers
291 views

Could the earth become a star if more mass was added?

I've heard that the only difference between a star and a planet is mass, meaning that if planets accredited enough mass they would too become stars. Does this mean that the star started off as a ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

Star formation: When a nebula collapses, is it only the gasses that form the star?

A nebula is made of dust (elements heavier than He and H) and gas (H and He). Stars are made when nebulae's collapse and hydrogen begins to fuse. 99% of nebula material goes into making the star. The ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Equation of the Center constant factor

This questions concerns the longitudinal aspect of the Equation of Time, also called the Equation of the Center. In some sources the equation looks like the following: $\nu - M = 2\varepsilon \sin M$ ...
15
votes
2answers
4k views

Why do the planets orbit in the same direction?

Theoretically, planets would have an approximately equal chance of going one way in their orbit or another but in reality, this is not the case (at least in our solar system). Why is this?
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Pinhole Projector: Can I use a specific solar optical eye piece to focus the Transit of Mercury?

The title pretty much explains this one. Can I use a specific solar optical eye piece, or other optical device, in conjunction with the pinhole projector method to focus the Transit of Mercury? ...
1
vote
0answers
27 views

What is the highest granularity focal-plane array on a dish radio telescope?

There is a short Wikipedia article Focal Plane Arrays that enumerates some projects, but my question is more along the lines of what is (at least) nearly complete or in "first light" phase, even if ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

Have any co-orbital exoplanet pairs been discovered (and not subsequently retracted)?

For this question, I think a good working definition of co-orbital configuration would be two bodies orbiting around a third much larger body in a 1:1 resonance and where neither mass is negligible. ...
1
vote
1answer
90 views

How does the sun move within the galaxy [closed]

I am trying to know what is the exact movement of the sun. I saw article like this one http://starchild.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/StarChild/questions/question18.html and from it I understand that the sun ...
1
vote
0answers
45 views

What is the word for space that is in the solar system, but outside the heliopause?

Wikipedia says the definition of interplanetary space is the region dominated by the interplanetary medium, which extends out to the heliopause where the influence of the galactic environment ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

Is Planet Nine observable in principle?

Is so-called Planet Nine (given it exists) observable in principle? By "observable in principle", I mean "if we knew exactly where to look, would we be able (from a technological standpoint) to get an ...
2
votes
2answers
51 views

Is the composition of stars in future made of more and more heavy elements?

In the beginning stars only consisted of the hydrogen element and due to nuclear fusion of those elements in stars and supernova's more heavy elements were created. Because of that, like our Sun, the ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

Why don't globular clusters flatten with a galactic disc?

Globular clusters lie in the galactic halo, outside of the disc. However, galaxies are more or less a collection of material and objects — why is it, then, that most stars form a plane due to the ...
0
votes
2answers
105 views

Two moons and one Earth? [closed]

Can any one explain to me What will happen to Earth if its has two moons? Same Distance & two sides of earth (North & south)? Will it be good for humans or bad?
1
vote
2answers
54 views

a random distribution of RA&Dec

How to make random positions in Equatorial coordinate system? If I divide Dec between -90 and 90 evenly, the space distribution is not random.
0
votes
1answer
70 views

How can black holes be sometimes so gaseous?

One of the most massive Supermassive Black Hole observed is the one at the centre of the galaxy NGC1600 with a mass of 17 billion suns. It would have a density of ∼0.01kg/m^3, or one part in 100,000 ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

Why is the CMB not simply travelling parallel to us? [closed]

When we look to the distant farthest reaches of the universe we see light that was emitted at the big bang 14 billion years ago. But the universe was tiny back then so that light, which is only ...
1
vote
1answer
20 views

Eyepiece projection photography [closed]

Nothing is showing up in the viewfinder of camera when I try to do eyepiece projection photography.could I have something set up wrong?
5
votes
1answer
95 views

Would a viewer see Earth from the rim of Shackleton Crater?

I've been researching this but so far have not found an answer. If you were standing on the top of the rim of Shackleton Crater at the lunar south pole, would you be able to see any of Earth? I can't ...

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