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ASTR 101 Exam 1

by: Ryley Kamiya

ASTR 101 Exam 1 ASTR 101

Ryley Kamiya
Cal State Fullerton

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These notes condense past lectures.
Introduction to Astronomy 101
Sarah Dhalla
Study Guide
Astronomy 101
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This 4 page Study Guide was uploaded by Ryley Kamiya on Thursday September 8, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to ASTR 101 at California State University - Fullerton taught by Sarah Dhalla in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 4 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Astronomy 101 in Science at California State University - Fullerton.


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Date Created: 09/08/16
Lecture 1:  Cosmic Address o Earth, Solar System, Milky Way, Local Group, Virgo Super Cluster  Astronomical Unit (AU) o Average distance from the Earth to the Sun o 1 AU = 1.4 x 10  meters  1 Light Year (LY) o Distance light Object LTT travels in one year through  space Moon 1.33 sec  distance = speed x time Sun 8.5 min  distance = speed of light x 1  year o Light Travel Time (LTT)  Time it takes light to travel from one place to another  Huge Universe o Nearest Star: 4.4 LY o Distance across the Milky Way: 100,000 LY o Nearest galaxy: 2.5 Million LY  Distant Objects o # of stars approx. = # of grains of sand on all beaches on Earth o Scientific Thinking:  Facts: objectively true  Hypothesis: tentative explanation, subject to testing/revision  Theory/Law: model shown to be true by testing  Principles: general ideas about construction of new theory  Falsifiable Statements: can be tested to determine if it is false o Cosmological Principle  “There is nothing special about our place in the universe.”  Matter and energy obey the same physical laws everywhere Lecture 2:  Unaided eye can only see  ~6000 stars o Only visible half the day o Need good conditions (ex. light pollution, weather)  Constellations o Group of stars that form recognizable patterns  88 official constellations   Asterisms: Patterns that are recognizable (ex. Ursa Minor/Major)  Naming Stars o Bayer Designation: assign letter from Greek alphabet (begin w/ brightest)  Ancient Greeks o Proposed: Universe is rational—always an explanation o Geocentric model   Celestial Sphere o Celestial Equator: extension of the Earth’s equator into the celestial sphere o North Celestial Pole (NCP): the point on the celestial sphere directly  above the Earth’s North Pole o South Celestial Pole (SCP): the point on the celestial sphere directly below the Earth’s South Pole o Lack depth perception—dome­like appearance  Topocentric Coordinates (The Local Sky) o Only half of the celestial sphere is visible at a time = our “local sky” o Horizon: boundary between Earth and Sky, all around observer o Zenith: point directly overhead observer o Nadir: point directly below observer o Meridian: imaginary north­south line based on observer o Altitude: distance btwn horizon and an object in the sky o Azimuth: direction around the horizon from north (measure clockwise)  Star Types o Circumpolar: always visible o Rise and Set: rise in the East, set in the West o Never Rise: remain below the horizon  At North Pole o NCP directly overhead o Stars rotate counterclockwise  o All stars are circumpolar  At Equator o Celestial poles are on northern and southern horizons o All stars are rise and set  Between Poles and Equator o One pole above horizon o Angle to horizon = latitude o Stars can be all 3 types  Rotation of Earth o Rotates from West to East o NCP: counterclockwise o SCP: clockwise  Annual Motion o Earth orbits Sun in the elliptic plane  o Earth’s axis always points to Polaris  Seasonal Stars o Stars that lie near the ecliptic divide into 12 constellations (Zodiac) o Over course of one day, Sun appears fixed with respect to the stars  Equinoxes (Equal Day / Equal Night) o When ecliptic and celestial equator cross at special points o In summer, Sun rises north of east, high overhead at noon o In winter, Sun rises south of east, low in southern sky at noon o On equinoxes, rises exactly east, sets exactly west o Summer solstice: Northern Hemisphere gets the most direct sunlight o Winter solstice: Northern Hemisphere gets the least direct sunlight  Winter Solstice (Dec. 21): point furthest south of celestial equator   Vernal Equinox (Mar. 21): Sun crosses celestial equator going  north  Summer Solstice (June 21): point on ecliptic furthest north  Autumnal Equinox (Sep. 22): Sun crosses celestial equator going  south  Tilt of Earth = Seasons o Summer: Northern Hemisphere tilted toward Sun o Winter: Northern Hemisphere tilted away from Sun  Sun at the Zenith  o Summer solstice: Sun directly above Tropic of Cancer at noon o Equinoxes: directly above the Equator at noon o Winter Solstice: directly above Tropic of Cancer  Gravitation o Universal force of attraction between all objects o Force depends on mass and distance Lecture 3:  The Moon o Orbits Earth once every 27.32 days o Lunar cycle repeats every 29.53 days = one lunar month o Orbits counterclockwise about Earth  Phases o Always see the same side of the Moon (other side = far side) o Synchronous rotation:  Rotation of a body with a period equal to its orbital period   Period: time to complete one orbit o Terminator:  Boundary between light and dark regions on the moon  Sidereal Month o Time it takes the moon to complete one full orbit around Earth  Synodic (Lunar) Month o Time it takes the moon to complete one 29.5 day cycle  Eclipses o Occurs when the shadow of one object falls on another o Shadow: Need light source and opaque object  Umbra: region of total shadow  Penumbra: region of partial shadow o The Moon and Earth cast shadows in sunlight, aligned can cause eclipses o Lunar orbital plane is inclined to ecliptic plane by about 5.1 = rare  o Lunar Eclipse: when Moon passes through Earth’s shadow o Total Lunar Eclipse: all of the Moon passes through (looks red/orange)  When Moon’s shadow touches the Earth (total darkness) o Partial: Part of Moon passes through Earth’s umbra  Only part of Sun is blocked by Moon dangerous to look at)  Planets o Inferior Planet: has an orbit that is closer than the Earth­Sun distance  Mercury, Venus o Superior Plant: has an orbit that is further than the Earth­Sun distance  Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune o Opposition:  Planetary position in which the Sun, the Earth, and a superior  planet are aligned in that order, in a straight line  Best time to observe planet because its at its closest to  Earth and rises just as the Sun sets o Conjunction:   Planetary position in which the Earth, the Sun, and the superior  planet are aligned in that order, in a straight line  Superior Conjunction: Earth, Sun, Inferior Planet  Inferior Conjunction: Earth, Inferior Planet, Sun  Calendar o A year is the time it takes Earth to complete 360 orbit around Sun o Takes ~365.25 days o Leap Year: every 4 years, add extra day so seasons won’t shift months


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