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Descriptive Astronomy Week 4 02-02/04

by: Alexa Marie

Descriptive Astronomy Week 4 02-02/04 Ast 2002

Marketplace > University of South Florida > Astronomy > Ast 2002 > Descriptive Astronomy Week 4 02 02 04
Alexa Marie
GPA 3.5
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About this Document

These notes cover the class activity that we did in order to understand how to see stars using a "Planisphere" we also went over in more detail circumpolar stars, The First Point of Aries, and how ...
Descriptive Astronomy
Dr. Kevin McKay
Class Notes
astronomy, stars, Science, Circumpolar, sun




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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Alexa Marie on Saturday February 6, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Ast 2002 at University of South Florida taught by Dr. Kevin McKay in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 168 views. For similar materials see Descriptive Astronomy in Astronomy at University of South Florida.


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Date Created: 02/06/16
Descriptive  Astronomy  02/02       Today  in  class  we  made  our  own  “Planisphere”  in  order  to  interpret  how  to   measure  constellations  by  date,  time,  and  compass.  It  actually  takes  23  hours  and  56   minutes  for  the  Earth  to  spin  on  its  axis  and  that  makes  the  stars  come  up  4  minutes   earlier.  Sidereal  time  is  reckoned  from  the  motion  of  the  earth  relative  to  the  distant   stars.  If  you  visit  an  observatory  you  will  begin  to  understand  why  they  have  the   coordinates  the  way  they  do  by  understanding  sidereal  time.  Tells  you  the  right   ascension  of  the  observers  meridian.     We  continued  to  observe  the  Planisphere  and  Dr.  McKay  asked  up  questions  about   certain  stars  or  constellations  to  find  them  on  them  so  we  know  how  to  use  the   Planisphere.         02/04     An  observer  can  only  see  half  the  sky  because  the  Earth  blocks  the  other  half   out.  The  high  up  the  star  is  the  better  image  you  get.  When  star  crosses  meridian  it  is   said  to  culminate.  When  stars  culminate  its  R.A.  (right-­‐ascension)  =  local  sidereal   time.  Circumpolar  stars  cross  meridian  twice  upper  and  lower  transit.     Both  sidereal  and  solar  clock  read  the  same  time  on  21  of  September  is  because  how   we  define  the  zero  point.     The  first  point  of  Aries     The  zero  point  for  right-­‐ascension  is  arbitrary  just  like  the  zero  point.  The   sidereal  and  solar  clock  read  opposite  times  on  March  21.  In  order  to  define  whether   or  not  a  star  is  circumpolar  is  the  declination  of  the  star  has  to  be  greater  than  or   equal  to  90  –  the  latitude  of  where  you  are  (observer’s  site).  Any  stars  with  a   declination  of  <  /  (90  –  lat)  can  never  be  seen.  The  circumpolar  circle  is  around  the   pole  star  where  these  circumpolar  stars  reside.     Exam  question:  The  professor  will  give  you  a  point  and  you  have  to  find  the   declination  of  circumpolar  stars.   Circumpolar  constellations   -­‐Ursa  Major:  The  story  behind  this  comes  from  Greek  methology.  Zeus  had  and  affair   with  Calisto  who  then  had  a  son  Arcas.  When  Zeus’  wife  Hera  found  out  about  Arcas   she  trained  him  to  be  a  hunter  and  turned  Calisto  into  a  bear.  Before  Arcas  made  his   move  on  the  bear  Zeus  took  the  both  of  them  and  threw  them  into  the  sky.  Hera  had   the  last  word  and  never  let  them  sleep  as  the  stars  continue  to  move  around.     As  telescopes  began  to  get  bigger  with  time,  scientists  began  to  find  “New  General   Catalogue”  and  they’re  identified  by  numbers.  Stars  are  classified  by  colors.  The  sun   is  a  “G”  star.  47  Ursa  Majoris  is  a  classified  “G”  star  and  is  another  star  that  has   planets  circulating  it.     Looking  out  into  space  you  can  see  the  past  and  future.  Low  mass  stars  are  like  the   sun  and  the  amount  of  mass  depends  on  how  stars  die.  For  a  star  like  the  sun  is   extremely  stable,  what  will  happen  is  it  will  run  out  of  fuel  and  collapse.  The  outer   layer  will  swell  and  become  large.           Nuclear  fusion   You  need  a  lot  of  heat.  You  can  turn  hydrogen  into  helium.  You  need  4  H  atoms  to   make  one  He  atom  (10  million  degrees  Kelvin).  That’s  how  stars  make  energy.  When   H  runs  out  the  stars  will  collapse  and  the  core  will  heat  up.  You  can  turn  He  into  C.                               P.S.=  Pole  Star   C.E.=  Celestial  equator   Z=  Zenith   N.H./S.H.=  North/South  Horizon   The  pole  star  is  important  because  it  equals  our  latitude  above  the  horizon.  As  the   sun  goes  up  the  highest  it  can  be  on  the  day  of  the  equinox  is  23  ½  degrees  for  the   summer  solstice  and  -­‐23  ½  for  the  winter  solstice.    


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