All Questions

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This article from 2011 mentions simulations about the sputtering effect caused by a solar flare hitting the Moon: "We found that when this massive cloud of plasma strikes the moon, it acts like ...
105 views

Why are spacecraft not air-launched from airplanes

I searched on the subject, thinking it could probably be cheaper to fly the spacecraft aboard a plane and then launch it from altitude. The only thing I found was this Wikipedia page, but it only ...
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What is the difference between LMC and SMC?

Apart from the obvious difference as suggested by their names that the Large Magellanic Cloud is 'larger' than the Small Magellanic Cloud, what are the other differences between them? Do give all the ...
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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? ...
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Blowing up an asteroid/comet really potentially worse?

Often on television shows and in articles I see it mentioned that it'd always be bad to blow up an asteroid or comet because then the energy would just be spread out and cause even more damage. ...
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What is meant by “Radial Direction” of a galaxy?

There is a scientific journal article having a line: "In order to study the star formation scenario in the radial direction of the LMC...." What is meant by 'radial direction' of a galaxy ?
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What percentage of visual stars are actually binary stars?

I know this is such a thing as a binary star where for example two stars rotate around a central point of gravity but to the naked eye are just a star. What I do not know is how common this is ...
447 views

How to calculate Longitude from Right Ascension?

Considering that a star of certain declination is crossing the local meridian at the observer's zenith at an unknown location on the earth. Here, the declination of the star is equal to the observer's ...
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Why the lows of the GRB 2014-04-27 in Andromeda?

The Swift gamma ray burst space telescope has measured a GRB according to the link below. But why the oscillations in the measured gamma rate? Why wasn't just an increase detected, but also as big ...
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Did the Babylonians believe in the Heliocentric version?

It's mentioned that the Babylonians decreed that there were exactly 360 days in a year. This statement was based upon the utilization of 360 as a standard (based on the sexagesimal system) i.e., they ...
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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., ...
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Why is twilight longer in summer than winter and shortest at the equinox

I recently decided to set my alarm clock to wake me up when it is "dark" out. In the end, I decided to set my clock to the earliest time that nautical sunrise is in my state (Illinois) and stick with ...
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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?
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What study profiles could land me the job of Astronomer?

I realize there are very few to none universities that offer direct specialization of Astronomy. If I aspired to be make astronomy my career choice, I'd likely have to pick something like physics and ...
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What are shooting stars and how are they formed? [duplicate]

What are shooting stars? How are they formed and how often do they occur during the night? Also, why are there more shooting stars on some nights than on others?
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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 ...
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How exactly does inflation convert random gravity fluctuations into coherent gravitational waves?

In the course of this very enjoyable press announcement, it is mentioned that inflation can create gravity waves by amplifying gravity fluctuations. I do not properly understand this statement. I ...
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Calculating Angular Distance

Given the horizontal coordinates of two objects in the sky, how does one go about calculating the angular separation between them?
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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.
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Triple Stars v/s Ternary Stars

Ternary (or trinary) stars are not the same as triple stars. So, what is the basic ...
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What will happen to life on Earth when Andromeda and Milky Way galaxies collide?

It is said that, Andromeda and Milky way galaxies are coming close to each other with the speed of approx $400000 \ km/hours$. They will be together in the next $4 \ billion years$. What will ...
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Are Gamma Ray Bursts of galactic or extragalactic origin?

I read about the 1995 Lamb-Paczynski debate on whether GRBs are galactic or extragalactic in origin. With our current experimental evidence, have we found whether GRBs are galactic or extragalactic?
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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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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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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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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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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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 ...
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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 ...
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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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Motion of rogue planets

Two Questions: 1) Are rogue planets in motion, i.e. are they just wandering freely in space or stationary? 1) Do rogue planets have defined path or a one which can be anticipated? I understand that ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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, ...
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Mechanisms of binary/multiple star formation

What are mechanisms of binary/multiple star formation in different mass ranges (low, intermediate and high stellar masses)?
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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?
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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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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 ...
87 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 ...