WorldWideScience

Sample records for astronomical instrumentation

  1. Astronomical Instruments in India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarma, Sreeramula Rajeswara

    The earliest astronomical instruments used in India were the gnomon and the water clock. In the early seventh century, Brahmagupta described ten types of instruments, which were adopted by all subsequent writers with minor modifications. Contact with Islamic astronomy in the second millennium AD led to a radical change. Sanskrit texts began to lay emphasis on the importance of observational instruments. Exclusive texts on instruments were composed. Islamic instruments like the astrolabe were adopted and some new types of instruments were developed. Production and use of these traditional instruments continued, along with the cultivation of traditional astronomy, up to the end of the nineteenth century.

  2. Astronomical Instrumentation System Markup Language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldbaum, Jesse M.

    2016-05-01

    The Astronomical Instrumentation System Markup Language (AISML) is an Extensible Markup Language (XML) based file format for maintaining and exchanging information about astronomical instrumentation. The factors behind the need for an AISML are first discussed followed by the reasons why XML was chosen as the format. Next it's shown how XML also provides the framework for a more precise definition of an astronomical instrument and how these instruments can be combined to form an Astronomical Instrumentation System (AIS). AISML files for several instruments as well as one for a sample AIS are provided. The files demonstrate how AISML can be utilized for various tasks from web page generation and programming interface to instrument maintenance and quality management. The advantages of widespread adoption of AISML are discussed.

  3. Instrument Remote Control via the Astronomical Instrument Markup Language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sall, Ken; Ames, Troy; Warsaw, Craig; Koons, Lisa; Shafer, Richard

    1998-01-01

    The Instrument Remote Control (IRC) project ongoing at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's (GSFC) Information Systems Center (ISC) supports NASA's mission by defining an adaptive intranet-based framework that provides robust interactive and distributed control and monitoring of remote instruments. An astronomical IRC architecture that combines the platform-independent processing capabilities of Java with the power of Extensible Markup Language (XML) to express hierarchical data in an equally platform-independent, as well as human readable manner, has been developed. This architecture is implemented using a variety of XML support tools and Application Programming Interfaces (API) written in Java. IRC will enable trusted astronomers from around the world to easily access infrared instruments (e.g., telescopes, cameras, and spectrometers) located in remote, inhospitable environments, such as the South Pole, a high Chilean mountaintop, or an airborne observatory aboard a Boeing 747. Using IRC's frameworks, an astronomer or other scientist can easily define the type of onboard instrument, control the instrument remotely, and return monitoring data all through the intranet. The Astronomical Instrument Markup Language (AIML) is the first implementation of the more general Instrument Markup Language (IML). The key aspects of our approach to instrument description and control applies to many domains, from medical instruments to machine assembly lines. The concepts behind AIML apply equally well to the description and control of instruments in general. IRC enables us to apply our techniques to several instruments, preferably from different observatories.

  4. Harvey Butcher: a passion for astronomical instrumentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhathal, Ragbir

    2014-11-01

    This paper covers some aspects of the scientific life of Harvey Butcher who was the Director of the Research School for Astronomy and Astrophysics at the Australian National University in Canberra from September 2007 to January 2013. He has made significant contributions to research on the evolution of galaxies, nucleosynthesis, and on the design and implementation of advanced astronomical instrumentation including LOFAR (Low Frequency Array Radio telescope). He is well known for his discovery of the Butcher-Oemler effect. Before coming to Australia he was the Director of the Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy from September 1991 to January 2007. In 2005 he was awarded a Knighthood in the Order of the Netherlands Lion for contributions to interdisciplinary science, innovation and public outreach.This paper is based on an interview conducted by the author with Harvey Butcher for the National Project on Significant Australian Astronomers sponsored by the National Library of Australia. Except otherwise stated, all quotations used in this paper are from the Butcher interview which has been deposited in the Oral History Archives of the National Library.

  5. New Life for Astronomical Instruments of the Past at the Astronomical Observatory of Taras Shevchenko

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kazantseva, Liliya

    2012-09-01

    Astronomical instruments of the past are certainly valuable artifacts of the history of science and education. Like other collections of scientific equipment, they also demonstrate i) development of scientific and technical ideas, ii) technological features of the historical period, iii) professional features of artists or companies -- manufacturers, and iv) national and local specificity of production. However, astronomical instruments are also devices made for observations of rare phenomena -- solar eclipses, transits of planets of the solar disk, etc. Instruments used to study these rare events were very different for each event, since the science changed quickly between events. The Astronomical Observatory of Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University has a collection of tools made by leading European and local shops from the early nineteenth century. These include tools for optically observing the first artificial Earth satellites, photography, chronometry, and meteorology. In addition, it has assembled a library of descriptions of astronomical instruments and makers'price-lists. Of particular interest are the large stationary tools that are still active in their pavilions. Almost every instrument has a long interesting history. Museification of astronomical instruments gives them a second life, expanding educational programs and tracing the development of astronomy in general and scientific institution and region in particular. It would be advisable to first create a regional database of these rare astronomical instruments (which is already being done in Ukraine), then a common global database. By combining all the historical information about astronomical instruments with the advantages of the Internet, you can show the full evolution of an astronomical instrument with all its features. Time is relentless, and much is destroyed, badly kept and thrown in the garbage. We need time to protect, capture, and tell about it.

  6. Spectroscopic instrumentation fundamentals and guidelines for astronomers

    CERN Document Server

    Eversberg, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    In order to analyze the light of cosmic objects, particularly at extremely great distances, spectroscopy is the workhorse of astronomy. In the era of very large telescopes, long-term investigations are mainly performed with small professional instruments. Today they can be done using self-designed spectrographs and highly efficient CCD cameras, without the need for large financial investments.   This book explains the basic principles of spectroscopy, including the fundamental optical constraints and all mathematical aspects needed to understand the working principles in detail. It covers the complete theoretical and practical design of standard and Echelle spectrographs. Readers are guided through all necessary calculations, enabling them to engage in spectrograph design. The book also examines data acquisition with CCD cameras and fiber optics, as well as the constraints of specific data reduction and possible sources of error. In closing it briefly highlights some main aspects of the research on massive s...

  7. Astronomical Instrumentation Systems Quality Management Planning: AISQMP (Abstract)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldbaum, J.

    2017-12-01

    (Abstract only) The capability of small aperture astronomical instrumentation systems (AIS) to make meaningful scientific contributions has never been better. The purpose of AIS quality management planning (AISQMP) is to ensure the quality of these contributions such that they are both valid and reliable. The first step involved with AISQMP is to specify objective quality measures not just for the AIS final product, but also for the instrumentation used in its production. The next step is to set up a process to track these measures and control for any unwanted variation. The final step is continual effort applied to reducing variation and obtaining measured values near optimal theoretical performance. This paper provides an overview of AISQMP while focusing on objective quality measures applied to astronomical imaging systems.

  8. Temperature control system for optical elements in astronomical instrumentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verducci, Orlando; de Oliveira, Antonio C.; Ribeiro, Flávio F.; Vital de Arruda, Márcio; Gneiding, Clemens D.; Fraga, Luciano

    2014-07-01

    Extremely low temperatures may damage the optical components assembled inside of an astronomical instrument due to the crack in the resin or glue used to attach lenses and mirrors. The environment, very cold and dry, in most of the astronomical observatories contributes to this problem. This paper describes the solution implemented at SOAR for remotely monitoring and controlling temperatures inside of a spectrograph, in order to prevent a possible damage of the optical parts. The system automatically switches on and off some heat dissipation elements, located near the optics, as the measured temperature reaches a trigger value. This value is set to a temperature at which the instrument is not operational to prevent malfunction and only to protect the optics. The software was developed with LabVIEWTM and based on an object-oriented design that offers flexibility and ease of maintenance. As result, the system is able to keep the internal temperature of the instrument above a chosen limit, except perhaps during the response time, due to inertia of the temperature. This inertia can be controlled and even avoided by choosing the correct amount of heat dissipation and location of the thermal elements. A log file records the measured temperature values by the system for operation analysis.

  9. Using XML and Java Technologies for Astronomical Instrument Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ames, Troy; Case, Lynne; Powers, Edward I. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Traditionally, instrument command and control systems have been highly specialized, consisting mostly of custom code that is difficult to develop, maintain, and extend. Such solutions are initially very costly and are inflexible to subsequent engineering change requests, increasing software maintenance costs. Instrument description is too tightly coupled with details of implementation. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, under the Instrument Remote Control (IRC) project, is developing a general and highly extensible framework that applies to any kind of instrument that can be controlled by a computer. The software architecture combines the platform independent processing capabilities of Java with the power of the Extensible Markup Language (XML), a human readable and machine understandable way to describe structured data. A key aspect of the object-oriented architecture is that the software is driven by an instrument description, written using the Instrument Markup Language (IML), a dialect of XML. IML is used to describe the command sets and command formats of the instrument, communication mechanisms, format of the data coming from the instrument, and characteristics of the graphical user interface to control and monitor the instrument. The IRC framework allows the users to define a data analysis pipeline which converts data coming out of the instrument. The data can be used in visualizations in order for the user to assess the data in real-time, if necessary. The data analysis pipeline algorithms can be supplied by the user in a variety of forms or programming languages. Although the current integration effort is targeted for the High-resolution Airborne Wideband Camera (HAWC) and the Submillimeter and Far Infrared Experiment (SAFIRE), first-light instruments of the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), the framework is designed to be generic and extensible so that it can be applied to any instrument. Plans are underway to test the framework

  10. Using XML and Java for Astronomical Instrumentation Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ames, Troy; Koons, Lisa; Sall, Ken; Warsaw, Craig

    2000-01-01

    Traditionally, instrument command and control systems have been highly specialized, consisting mostly of custom code that is difficult to develop, maintain, and extend. Such solutions are initially very costly and are inflexible to subsequent engineering change requests, increasing software maintenance costs. Instrument description is too tightly coupled with details of implementation. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is developing a general and highly extensible framework that applies to any kind of instrument that can be controlled by a computer. The software architecture combines the platform independent processing capabilities of Java with the power of the Extensible Markup Language (XML), a human readable and machine understandable way to describe structured data. A key aspect of the object-oriented architecture is software that is driven by an instrument description, written using the Instrument Markup Language (IML). ]ML is used to describe graphical user interfaces to control and monitor the instrument, command sets and command formats, data streams, and communication mechanisms. Although the current effort is targeted for the High-resolution Airborne Wideband Camera, a first-light instrument of the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, the framework is designed to be generic and extensible so that it can be applied to any instrument.

  11. Arc-Second Pointer for Balloon-Borne Astronomical Instrument

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Philip R.; DeWeese, Keith

    2004-01-01

    A control system has been designed to keep a balloon-borne scientific instrument pointed toward a celestial object within an angular error of the order of an arc second. The design is intended to be adaptable to a large range of instrument payloads. The initial payload to which the design nominally applies is considered to be a telescope, modeled as a simple thin-walled cylinder 24 ft (approx.= 7.3 m) long, 3 ft (approx.= 0.91 m) in diameter, weighing 1,500 lb (having a mass of .680 kg). The instrument would be mounted on a set of motor-driven gimbals in pitch-yaw configuration. The motors on the gimbals would apply the control torques needed for fine adjustments of the instrument in pitch and yaw. The pitch-yaw mount would, in turn, be suspended from a motor mount at the lower end of a pair of cables hanging down from the balloon (see figure). The motor in this mount would be used to effect coarse azimuth control of the pitch-yaw mount. A notable innovation incorporated in the design is a provision for keeping the gimbal bearings in constant motion. This innovation would eliminate the deleterious effects of static friction . something that must be done in order to achieve the desired arc-second precision. Another notable innovation is the use of linear accelerometers to provide feedback that would facilitate the early detection and counteraction of disturbance torques before they could integrate into significant angular-velocity and angular-position errors. The control software processing the sensor data would be capable of distinguishing between translational and rotational accelerations. The output of the accelerometers is combined with that of angular position and angular-velocity sensors into a proportional + integral + derivative + acceleration control law for the pitch and yaw torque motors. Preliminary calculations have shown that with appropriate gains, the power demand of the control system would be low enough to be satisfiable by means of storage

  12. Antenna data storage concept for phased array radio astronomical instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunst, André W.; Kruithof, Gert H.

    2018-04-01

    Low frequency Radio Astronomy instruments like LOFAR and SKA-LOW use arrays of dipole antennas for the collection of radio signals from the sky. Due to the large number of antennas involved, the total data rate produced by all the antennas is enormous. Storage of the antenna data is both economically and technologically infeasible using the current state of the art storage technology. Therefore, real-time processing of the antenna voltage data using beam forming and correlation is applied to achieve a data reduction throughout the signal chain. However, most science could equally well be performed using an archive of raw antenna voltage data coming straight from the A/D converters instead of capturing and processing the antenna data in real time over and over again. Trends on storage and computing technology make such an approach feasible on a time scale of approximately 10 years. The benefits of such a system approach are more science output and a higher flexibility with respect to the science operations. In this paper we present a radically new system concept for a radio telescope based on storage of raw antenna data. LOFAR is used as an example for such a future instrument.

  13. Improved Astronomical Instrumentation for the Far Ultra-Violet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Witt, Emily M.; Fleming, Brian; Egan, Arika; Tyler, Rachel; Wiley, James

    2018-06-01

    Recent technological advances have opened up new instrument capabilities in the ultraviolet. Of particular interest are advanced deposition processes that have made lithium fluoride (LiF) based mirrors more accessible, achieving greater than 80% broadband reflectivity down into the Lyman UV (100 nm). Traditional MgF2 protected aluminum mirrors cut off at 115 nm, missing crucial tracers of warm gas and molecules. The hygroscopic sensitivity of LiF, which adds mission risk and cost, has also been mitigated with a thin capping layer of a more durable substance, making LiF mirrors accessible without onerous environmental procedures. These advances open up a new paradigm in UV astronomy by enabling multi-reflection systems in the Lyman UV. We present recent progress in the testing of eLiF-based optics, and then discuss the potential scientific avenues this opens up in UV astronomy.

  14. The Astronomical Instrument, So-Gahui Invented During King Sejong Period

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yong-Sam Lee; Kim, Sang-Hyuk

    2002-09-01

    So-ganui, namely small simplified armillary sphere, was invented as an astronomical instrument by Lee Cheon, Jeong Cho, Jung In-Ji under 16 years' rule of King Sejong. We collect records and observed data on So-ganui. It is designed to measure position of celestial sphere and to determine time. It also can be transformed equatorial to horizontal, and horizontal to equatorial coordinate. It can measure the right ascension, declination, altitude and azimuth. It is composed of Sayu-hwan (Four displacements), Jeokdo-hwan (Equatorial dial), Baekgak-hwan (Ring with one hundred-interval quarters), Gyuhyeong (Sighting aliadade), Yongju (Dragon-pillar) and Bu (Stand). So-ganui was used conveniently portable surveying as well as astronomical instrument and possible to determine time during day and night.

  15. Astronomical Instruments with Two Scales Drawn on Their Common Circumference of Rings in the Joseon Dynasty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byeong-Hee Mihn

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the scale unique instruments used for astronomical observation during the Joseon dynasty. The Small Simplified Armillary Sphere (小簡儀, So-ganui and the Sun-and-Stars Time-Determining Instrument (日星定時儀, Ilseong-jeongsi-ui are minimized astronomical instruments, which can be characterized, respectively, as an observational instrument and a clock, and were influenced by the Simplified Armilla (簡儀, Jianyi of the Yuan dynasty. These two instruments were equipped with several rings, and the rings of one were similar both in size and in scale to those of the other. Using the classic method of drawing the scale on the circumference of a ring, we analyze the scales of the Small Simplified Armillary Sphere and the Sun-and-Stars Time-Determining Instrument. Like the scale feature of the Simplified Armilla, we find that these two instruments selected the specific circumference which can be drawn by two kinds of scales. If Joseon’s astronomical instruments is applied by the dual scale drawing on one circumference, we suggest that 3.14 was used as the ratio of the circumference of circle, not 3 like China, when the ring’s size was calculated in that time. From the size of Hundred-interval disk of the extant Simplified Sundial in Korea, we make a conclusion that the three rings’ diameter of the Sun-and-Stars Time-Determining Instrument described in the Sejiong Sillok (世宗實錄, Veritable Records of the King Sejong refers to that of the middle circle of every ring, not the outer circle. As analyzing the degree of 28 lunar lodges (lunar mansions in the equator written by Chiljeongsan-naepyeon (七政算內篇, the Inner Volume of Calculation of the Motions of the Seven Celestial Determinants, we also obtain the result that the scale of the Celestial-circumference-degree in the Small Simplified Armillary Sphere was made with a scale error about 0.1 du in root mean square (RMS.

  16. Astronomical Instruments with Two Scales Drawn on Their Common Circumference of Rings in the Joseon Dynasty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mihn, Byeong-Hee; Choi, Goeun; Lee, Yong Sam

    2017-03-01

    This study examines the scale unique instruments used for astronomical observation during the Joseon dynasty. The Small Simplified Armillary Sphere (小簡儀, So-ganui) and the Sun-and-Stars Time-Determining Instrument (日星定時儀, Ilseong-jeongsi-ui) are minimized astronomical instruments, which can be characterized, respectively, as an observational instrument and a clock, and were influenced by the Simplified Armilla (簡儀, Jianyi) of the Yuan dynasty. These two instruments were equipped with several rings, and the rings of one were similar both in size and in scale to those of the other. Using the classic method of drawing the scale on the circumference of a ring, we analyze the scales of the Small Simplified Armillary Sphere and the Sun-and-Stars Time-Determining Instrument. Like the scale feature of the Simplified Armilla, we find that these two instruments selected the specific circumference which can be drawn by two kinds of scales. If Joseon`s astronomical instruments is applied by the dual scale drawing on one circumference, we suggest that 3.14 was used as the ratio of the circumference of circle, not 3 like China, when the ring`s size was calculated in that time. From the size of Hundred-interval disk of the extant Simplified Sundial in Korea, we make a conclusion that the three rings` diameter of the Sun-and-Stars Time-Determining Instrument described in the Sejiong Sillok (世宗實錄, Veritable Records of the King Sejong) refers to that of the middle circle of every ring, not the outer circle. As analyzing the degree of 28 lunar lodges (lunar mansions) in the equator written by Chiljeongsan-naepyeon (七政算內篇, the Inner Volume of Calculation of the Motions of the Seven Celestial Determinants), we also obtain the result that the scale of the Celestial-circumference-degree in the Small Simplified Armillary Sphere was made with a scale error about 0.1 du in root mean square (RMS).

  17. Property and instrumental heritage of the Bordeaux Astronomical Observatory; What future?

    Science.gov (United States)

    de La Noë, J.; Charlot, P.; Grousset, F.

    2009-11-01

    In the years 1870, the Government of the Third Republic decided to develop scientific and technical research. Such an effort contributed to supporting and creating universities and other institutes such as astronomical observatories. The dual wish of the Bordeaux council and professors at the Faculté des Sciences de Bordeaux led to the foundation of the astronomical Observatory of Bordeaux. It was set up by Georges Rayet in the years 1880's. The observatory owns a property of 12 hectares with a dozen of buildings, five domes housing an instrument, a Würzburg radiotelescope, a 2.5 meter radiotelescope, and a large collection of about 250 instruments, 4 500 photographic plates, drawings, slides for teaching astronomy, maps of the Carte du Ciel and 200 files of archives. In addition, the library contains about a thousand books for the period 1600-1950. The future of the observatory is not clear at the present time, when the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique will leave to the campus in a few years.

  18. TELICS—A Telescope Instrument Control System for Small/Medium Sized Astronomical Observatories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srivastava, Mudit K.; Ramaprakash, A. N.; Burse, Mahesh P.; Chordia, Pravin A.; Chillal, Kalpesh S.; Mestry, Vilas B.; Das, Hillol K.; Kohok, Abhay A.

    2009-10-01

    For any modern astronomical observatory, it is essential to have an efficient interface between the telescope and its back-end instruments. However, for small and medium-sized observatories, this requirement is often limited by tight financial constraints. Therefore a simple yet versatile and low-cost control system is required for such observatories to minimize cost and effort. Here we report the development of a modern, multipurpose instrument control system TELICS (Telescope Instrument Control System) to integrate the controls of various instruments and devices mounted on the telescope. TELICS consists of an embedded hardware unit known as a common control unit (CCU) in combination with Linux-based data acquisition and user interface. The hardware of the CCU is built around the ATmega 128 microcontroller (Atmel Corp.) and is designed with a backplane, master-slave architecture. A Qt-based graphical user interface (GUI) has been developed and the back-end application software is based on C/C++. TELICS provides feedback mechanisms that give the operator good visibility and a quick-look display of the status and modes of instruments as well as data. TELICS has been used for regular science observations since 2008 March on the 2 m, f/10 IUCAA Telescope located at Girawali in Pune, India.

  19. Space astronomical telescopes and instruments; Proceedings of the Meeting, Orlando, FL, Apr. 1-4, 1991

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bely, Pierre Y.; Breckinridge, James B.

    The present volume on space astronomical telescopes and instruments discusses lessons from the HST, telescopes on the moon, future space missions, and mirror fabrication and active control. Attention is given to the in-flight performance of the Goddard high-resolution spectrograph of the HST, the initial performance of the high-speed photometer, results from HST fine-guidance sensors, and reconstruction of the HST mirror figure from out-of-focus stellar images. Topics addressed include system concepts for a large UV/optical/IR telescope on the moon, optical design considerations for next-generation space and lunar telescopes, the implications of lunar dust for astronomical observatories, and lunar liquid-mirror telescopes. Also discussed are space design considerations for the Space Infrared Telescope Facility, the Hubble extrasolar planet interferometer, Si:Ga focal-plane arrays for satellite and ground-based telescopes, microchannel-plate detectors for space-based astronomy, and a method for making ultralight primary mirrors.

  20. New Platforms for Suborbital Astronomical Observations and In Situ Atmospheric Measurements: Spacecraft, Instruments, and Facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodway, K.; DeForest, C. E.; Diller, J.; Vilas, F.; Sollitt, L. S.; Reyes, M. F.; Filo, A. S.; Anderson, E.

    2014-12-01

    Suborbital astronomical observations have over 50 years' history using NASA's sounding rockets and experimental space planes. The new commercial space industry is developing suborbital reusable launch vehicles (sRLV's) to provide low-cost, flexible, and frequent access to space at ~100 km altitude. In the case of XCOR Aerospace's Lynx spacecraft, the vehicle design and capabilities work well for hosting specially designed experiments that can be flown with a human-tended researcher or alone with the pilot on a customized mission. Some of the first-generation instruments and facilities that will conduct solar observations on dedicated Lynx science missions include the SwRI Solar Instrument Pointing Platform (SSIPP) and Atsa Suborbital Observatory, as well as KickSat sprites, which are picosatellites for in situ atmospheric and solar phenomena measurements. The SSIPP is a demonstration two-stage pointed solar observatory that operates inside the Lynx cockpit. The coarse pointing stage includes the pilot in the feedback loop, and the fine stage stabilizes the solar image to achieve arcsecond class pointing. SSIPP is a stepping-stone to future external instruments that can operate with larger apertures and shorter wavelengths in the solar atmosphere. The Planetary Science Institute's Atsa Suborbital Observatory combines the strengths of ground-based observatories and space-based observing to create a facility where a telescope is maintained and used interchangeably with either in-house facility instruments or user-provided instruments. The Atsa prototype is a proof of concept, hand-guided camera that mounts on the interior of the Lynx cockpit to test target acquisition and tracking for human-operated suborbital astronomy. KickSat sprites are mass-producible, one inch printed circuit boards (PCBs) populated by programmable off the shelf microprocessors and radios for real time data transmission. The sprite PCBs can integrate chip-based radiometers, magnetometers

  1. Scale Marking Method on the Circumference of Circle Elements for Astronomical Instruments in the Early Joseon Dynasty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mihn, Byeong-Hee; Lee, Ki-Won; Ahn, Young Sook; Lee, Yong Sam

    2015-03-01

    During the reign of King Sejong (世宗, 1418-1450) in the Joseon Dynasty, there were lots of astronomical instruments, including miniaturized ones. Those instruments utilized the technical know-how acquired through building contemporary astronomical instruments previously developed in the Song(宋), Jin(金), and Yuan(元) dynasties of China. In those days, many astronomical instruments had circles, rings, and spheres carved with a scale of 365.25, 100, and 24 parts, respectively, on their circumference. These were called the celestial-circumference degree, hundred-interval (Baekgak), and 24 direction, respectively. These scales are marked by the angular distance, not by the angle. Therefore, these circles, rings, and spheres had to be optimized in size to accomodate proper scales. Assuming that the scale system is composed of integer multiples of unit length, we studied the sizes of circles by referring to old articles and investigating existing artifacts. We discovered that the star chart of Cheonsang yeolcha bunyajido was drawn with a royal standard ruler (周尺) based on the unit length of 207 mm. Interestingly, its circumference was marked by the unit scale of 3 puns per 1 du (or degree) like Honsang (a celestial globe). We also found that Hyeonju ilgu (a equatorial sundial) has a Baekgak disk on a scale of 1 pun per 1 gak (that is an interval of time similar to a quarter). This study contributes to the analysis of specifications of numerous circular elements from old Korean astronomical instruments.

  2. The Astronomical Instruments from the Tomb of Xiahou Zao (? - 165BCE) Revisited

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Yunli

    2012-09-01

    In 1977, archaeologists unearthed a piece of lacquerware from the tomb of Xiahou Zao (?--165BCE), the 2nd Marquis of Ruyin of the Western Han dynasty (206BCE--24ACE). It has been named ``A Lacquerware Article of Unkown Name" for no one understands its function. Our analysis shows that the article is actually a gnomon for the determination of 4 major seasons in ancient Chinese calendar, viz. Spring Equinox, Summer Solstice, Autumn Equinox and Winter Solstice, and the size and function of the article coincide quite well with those of the ``Earth Gnomon-Scale" as described in the Rites of Zhou, a Confucian Classic appeared in the middle of the 2nd century BCE. This is the earliest example of its kind that we have hitherto seen in a complete form. Moreover, the "Disks with 28 Lunar Lodges" from the same tomb have caused a lasting dispute over their possible function. While some scholars believe it to be a pure astrological instrument, others guess that it was an instrument for the measurement of celestial coordinates. Our analysis shows that, with the so-called ``Supporting Frame for the Cosmic Boards" unearthed from the same tomb, the disks can actually be mounted onto the plane of the celestial equator and thus form the earliest and definitely dated example of an equatorial device for astronomical observation that still can be seen in the world.

  3. Optical modelling of far-infrared astronomical instrumentation exploiting multimode horn antennas

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Sullivan, Créidhe; Murphy, J. Anthony; Mc Auley, Ian; Wilson, Daniel; Gradziel, Marcin L.; Trappe, Neil; Cahill, Fiachra; Peacocke, T.; Savini, G.; Ganga, K.

    2014-07-01

    In this paper we describe the optical modelling of astronomical telescopes that exploit bolometric detectors fed by multimoded horn antennas. In cases where the horn shape is profiled rather than being a simple cone, we determine the beam at the horn aperture using an electromagnetic mode-matching technique. Bolometers, usually placed in an integrating cavity, can excite many hybrid modes in a corrugated horn; we usually assume they excite all modes equally. If the waveguide section feeding the horn is oversized these modes can propagate independently, thereby increasing the throughput of the system. We use an SVD analysis on the matrix that describes the scattering between waveguide (TE/TM) modes to recover the independent orthogonal fields (hybrid modes) and then propagate these to the sky independently where they are added in quadrature. Beam patterns at many frequencies across the band are then added with a weighting appropriate to the source spectrum. Here we describe simulations carried out on the highest-frequency (857-GHz) channel of the Planck HFI instrument. We concentrate in particular on the use of multimode feedhorns and consider the effects of possible manufacturing tolerances on the beam on the sky. We also investigate the feasibility of modelling far-out sidelobes across a wide band for electrically large structures and bolometers fed by multi-mode feedhorns. Our optical simulations are carried out using the industry-standard GRASP software package.

  4. Scale Marking Method on the Circumference of Circle Elements for Astronomical Instruments in the Early Joseon Dynasty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Byeong-Hee Mihn

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available During the reign of King Sejong (世宗, 1418-1450 in the Joseon Dynasty, there were lots of astronomical instruments, including miniaturized ones. Those instruments utilized the technical know-how acquired through building contemporary astronomical instruments previously developed in the Song(宋, Jin(金, and Yuan(元 dynasties of China. In those days, many astronomical instruments had circles, rings, and spheres carved with a scale of 365.25, 100, and 24 parts, respectively, on their circumference. These were called the celestial-circumference degree, hundred-interval (Baekgak, and 24 direction, respectively. These scales are marked by the angular distance, not by the angle. Therefore, these circles, rings, and spheres had to be optimized in size to accomodate proper scales. Assuming that the scale system is composed of integer multiples of unit length, we studied the sizes of circles by referring to old articles and investigating existing artifacts. We discovered that the star chart of Cheonsang yeolcha bunyajido was drawn with a royal standard ruler (周尺 based on the unit length of 207 mm. Interestingly, its circumference was marked by the unit scale of 3 puns per 1 du (or degree like Honsang (a celestial globe. We also found that Hyeonju ilgu (a equatorial sundial has a Baekgak disk on a scale of 1 pun per 1 gak (that is an interval of time similar to a quarter. This study contributes to the analysis of specifications of numerous circular elements from old Korean astronomical instruments.

  5. Reviews in Modern Astronomy 12, Astronomical Instruments and Methods at the turn of the 21st Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schielicke, Reinhard E.

    The yearbook series Reviews in Modern Astronomy of the Astronomische Gesellschaft (AG) was established in 1988 in order to bring the scientific events of the meetings of the society to the attention of the worldwide astronomical community. Reviews in Modern Astronomy is devoted exclusively to the invited Reviews, the Karl Schwarzschild Lectures, the Ludwig Biermann Award Lectures, and the highlight contributions from leading scientists reporting on recent progress and scientific achievements at their respective research institutes. Volume 12 continues the yearbook series with 16 contributions which were presented during the International Scientific Conference of the AG on ``Astronomical Instruments and Methods at the Turn of the 21st Century'' at Heidelberg from September 14 to 19, 1998

  6. Instrumentations in x-ray plasma polarization spectroscopy. Crystal spectrometer, polarimeter and detectors for astronomical observations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Baronova, Elena O.; Stepanenko, Mikhail M. [RRC Kurchatov Institute, Nuclear Fusion Institute, Moscow (Russian Federation); Jakubowski, Lech [Soltan Institute for Nuclear Studies, Swierk-Otwock (Poland); Tsunemi, Hiroshi [Osaka Univ., Graduate School of Science, Osaka (Japan)

    2002-08-01

    This report discusses the various problems which are encountered when a crystal spectrometer is used for the purpose of observing polarized x-ray lines. A polarimeter is proposed based on the novel idea of using two series of equivalent atomic planes in a single crystal. The present status of the astronomical x-ray detection techniques are described with emphasis on two dimensional detectors which are polarization sensitive. (author)

  7. ALOHA—Astronomical Light Optical Hybrid Analysis - From experimental demonstrations to a MIR instrument proposal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehmann, L.; Darré, P.; Szemendera, L.; Gomes, J. T.; Baudoin, R.; Ceus, D.; Brustlein, S.; Delage, L.; Grossard, L.; Reynaud, F.

    2018-04-01

    This paper gives an overview of the Astronomical Light Optical Hybrid Analysis (ALOHA) project dedicated to investigate a new method for high resolution imaging in mid infrared astronomy. This proposal aims to use a non-linear frequency conversion process to shift the thermal infrared radiation to a shorter wavelength domain compatible with proven technology such as guided optics and detectors. After a description of the principle, we summarise the evolution of our study from the high flux seminal experiments to the latest results in the photon counting regime.

  8. Astronomical optics

    CERN Document Server

    Schroeder, Daniel J

    1988-01-01

    Written by a recognized expert in the field, this clearly presented, well-illustrated book provides both advanced level students and professionals with an authoritative, thorough presentation of the characteristics, including advantages and limitations, of telescopes and spectrographic instruments used by astronomers of today.Key Features* Written by a recognized expert in the field* Provides both advanced level students and professionals with an authoritative, thorough presentation of the characteristics, including advantages and limitations, of telescopes and spectrographic i

  9. Improved mirror coatings for use in the Lyman Ultraviolet to enhance astronomical instrument capabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quijada, Manuel A.; del Hoyo, Javier; Boris, David R.; Walton, Scott G.

    2017-09-01

    This paper will describe efforts at developing broadband mirror coatings with high performance that will extend from infrared wavelengths down to the Far-Ultraviolet (FUV) spectral region. These mirror coatings would be realized by passivating the surface of freshly made aluminum coatings with fluorine ions in order to form a thin AlF3 overcoat that will protect the aluminum from oxidation and, hence, realize the high-reflectance of this material down to its intrinsic cut-off wavelength of 90 nm. Improved reflective coatings for optics, particularly in the FUV region (90-120 nm), could yield dramatically more sensitive instruments and permit more instrument design freedom.

  10. Korean Astronomical Calendar, Chiljeongsan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Eun Hee

    In fifteenth century Korea, there was a grand project for the astronomical calendar and instrument making by the order of King Sejong 世宗 (1418-1450). During this period, many astronomical and calendrical books including Islamic sources in Chinese versions were imported from Ming 明 China, and corrected and researched by the court astronomers of Joseon 朝鮮 (1392-1910). Moreover, the astronomers and technicians of Korea frequently visited China to study astronomy and instrument making, and they brought back useful information in the form of new published books or specifications of instruments. As a result, a royal observatory equipped with 15 types of instrument was completed in 1438. Two types of calendar, Chiljeongsan Naepyeon 七政算內篇 and Chiljeongsan Oepyeon 七政算外篇, based on the Chinese and Islamic calendar systems, respectively, were published in 1444 with a number of calendrical editions such as corrections and example supplements (假令) including calculation methods and results for solar and lunar eclipses.

  11. Astronomical Cybersketching

    CERN Document Server

    Grego, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Outlines the techniques involved in making observational sketches and more detailed 'scientific' drawings of a wide variety of astronomical subjects using modern digital equipment; primarily PDAs and tablet PCs. This book also discusses about choosing hardware and software

  12. Optical studies of X-ray sources with the MASCOT - a charge-coupled device /CCD/-based astronomical instrument

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ricker, G.R.; Bautz, M.W.; Dewey, D.; Meyer, S.S.

    1981-01-01

    The performance levels achieved by the MASCOT (MIT Astronomical Spectrometer/Camera for Optical Telescopes) on the 1.3-m telescope at the McGraw-Hill observatory in March 1981 are discussed along with preliminary data obtained in searches for optical counterparts to four 'empty-field' X-ray sources. In the W band (4000-7000 A), the MASCOT achieved a sky-limited sensitivity of +24.4 mag per sq arcsec in an 1800 s integration. The ability to flatten pictures to a level consistent with (sky + source) photon statistics and readout noise was demonstrated. For the four sources observed, an optical counterpart was established for one source (1413+13) based on positional coincidence (better than 1.8 arcsec), four possible candidates were detected in the error box of another source (1009 35) and upper sensitivity limits were established for optical counterparts in the error boxes for the other two sources (0920+39 and 0931-11)

  13. Astronomical Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neuenschwander, D. E.; Finkenbinder, L. R.

    2004-05-01

    Just as quetzals and jaguars require specific ecological habitats to survive, so too must planets occupy a tightly constrained astronomical habitat to support life as we know it. With this theme in mind we relate the transferable features of our elementary astronomy course, "The Astronomical Basis of Life on Earth." Over the last five years, in a team-taught course that features a spring break field trip to Costa Rica, we have introduced astronomy through "astronomical ecosystems," emphasizing astronomical constraints on the prospects for life on Earth. Life requires energy, chemical elements, and long timescales, and we emphasize how cosmological, astrophysical, and geological realities, through stabilities and catastrophes, create and eliminate niches for biological life. The linkage between astronomy and biology gets immediate and personal: for example, studies in solar energy production are followed by hikes in the forest to examine the light-gathering strategies of photosynthetic organisms; a lesson on tides is conducted while standing up to our necks in one on a Pacific beach. Further linkages between astronomy and the human timescale concerns of biological diversity, cultural diversity, and environmental sustainability are natural and direct. Our experience of teaching "astronomy as habitat" strongly influences our "Astronomy 101" course in Oklahoma as well. This "inverted astrobiology" seems to transform our student's outlook, from the universe being something "out there" into something "we're in!" We thank the SNU Science Alumni support group "The Catalysts," and the SNU Quetzal Education and Research Center, San Gerardo de Dota, Costa Rica, for their support.

  14. Astronomical Spectroscopy for Amateurs

    CERN Document Server

    Harrison, Ken M

    2011-01-01

    Astronomical Spectroscopy for Amateurs is a complete guide for amateur astronomers who are looking for a new challenge beyond astrophotography. The book provides a brief overview of the history and development of the spectroscope, then a short introduction to the theory of stellar spectra, including details on the necessary reference spectra required for instrument testing and spectral comparison. The various types of spectroscopes available to the amateur are then described. Later sections cover all aspects of setting up and using various types of commercially available and home-built spectroscopes, starting with basic transmission gratings and going through more complex models, all the way to the sophisticated Littrow design. The final part of the text is about practical spectroscope design and construction. This book uniquely brings together a collection of observing, analyzing, and processing hints and tips that will allow the amateur to build skills in preparing scientifically acceptable spectra data. It...

  15. Astronomical chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klemperer, William

    2011-01-01

    The discovery of polar polyatomic molecules in higher-density regions of the interstellar medium by means of their rotational emission detected by radioastronomy has changed our conception of the universe from essentially atomic to highly molecular. We discuss models for molecule formation, emphasizing the general lack of thermodynamic equilibrium. Detailed chemical kinetics is needed to understand molecule formation as well as destruction. Ion molecule reactions appear to be an important class for the generally low temperatures of the interstellar medium. The need for the intrinsically high-quality factor of rotational transitions to definitively pin down molecular emitters has been well established by radioastronomy. The observation of abundant molecular ions both positive and, as recently observed, negative provides benchmarks for chemical kinetic schemes. Of considerable importance in guiding our understanding of astronomical chemistry is the fact that the larger molecules (with more than five atoms) are all organic.

  16. Biographical encyclopedia of astronomers

    CERN Document Server

    Trimble, Virginia; Williams, Thomas; Bracher, Katherine; Jarrell, Richard; Marché, Jordan; Palmeri, JoAnn; Green, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers is a unique and valuable resource for historians and astronomers alike. It includes approx. 1850 biographical sketches on astronomers from antiquity to modern times. It is the collective work of 430 authors edited by an editorial board of 8 historians and astronomers. This reference provides biographical information on astronomers and cosmologists by utilizing contemporary historical scholarship. The fully corrected and updated second edition adds approximately 300 biographical sketches. Based on ongoing research and feedback from the community, the new entries will fill gaps and provide expansions. In addition, greater emphasis on Russo phone astronomers and radio astronomers is given. Individual entries vary from 100 to 1500 words, including the likes of the super luminaries such as Newton and Einstein, as well as lesser-known astronomers like Galileo's acolyte, Mario Guiducci.

  17. Basic Optics for the Astronomical Sciences

    CERN Document Server

    Breckinridge, James

    2012-01-01

    This text was written to provide students of astronomy and engineers an understanding of optical science - the study of the generation, propagation, control, and measurement of optical radiation - as it applies to telescopes and instruments for astronomical research in the areas of astrophysics, astrometry, exoplanet characterization, and planetary science. The book provides an overview of the elements of optical design and physical optics within the framework of the needs of the astronomical community.

  18. Astronomical optics and elasticity theory

    CERN Document Server

    Lemaitre, Gerard Rene

    2008-01-01

    Astronomical Optics and Elasticity Theory provides a very thorough and comprehensive account of what is known in this field. After an extensive introduction to optics and elasticity, the book discusses variable curvature and multimode deformable mirrors, as well as, in depth, active optics, its theory and applications. Further, optical design utilizing the Schmidt concept and various types of Schmidt correctors, as well as the elasticity theory of thin plates and shells are elaborated upon. Several active optics methods are developed for obtaining aberration corrected diffraction gratings. Further, a weakly conical shell theory of elasticity is elaborated for the aspherization of grazing incidence telescope mirrors. The very didactic and fairly easy-to-read presentation of the topic will enable PhD students and young researchers to actively participate in challenging astronomical optics and instrumentation projects.

  19. Instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Prieur, G.; Nadi, M.; Hedjiedj, A.; Weber, S.

    1995-01-01

    This second chapter on instrumentation gives little general consideration on history and classification of instrumentation, and two specific states of the art. The first one concerns NMR (block diagram of instrumentation chain with details on the magnets, gradients, probes, reception unit). The first one concerns precision instrumentation (optical fiber gyro-meter and scanning electron microscope), and its data processing tools (programmability, VXI standard and its history). The chapter ends with future trends on smart sensors and Field Emission Displays. (D.L.). Refs., figs

  20. The Practical Astronomer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koester, Jack

    "The Practical Astronomer" by Thomas Dick, LLD, E.C. & J. Biddle, Philadelphia, 1849, is reviewed. Information on telescope makers and astronomers can be found. Mentioned are: Fraunhofer; John Herschel; Lawson; Dollond; Tulley; W. & S. Jones; and S.W. Burnham.

  1. Instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Decreton, M.

    2000-01-01

    SCK-CEN's research and development programme on instrumentation aims at evaluating the potentials of new instrumentation technologies under the severe constraints of a nuclear application. It focuses on the tolerance of sensors to high radiation doses, including optical fibre sensors, and on the related intelligent data processing needed to cope with the nuclear constraints. Main achievements in these domains in 1999 are summarised

  2. Instrumentation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Decreton, M

    2001-04-01

    SCK-CEN's research and development programme on instrumentation involves the assessment and the development of sensitive measurement systems used within a radiation environment. Particular emphasis is on the assessment of optical fibre components and their adaptability to radiation environments. The evaluation of ageing processes of instrumentation in fission plants, the development of specific data evaluation strategies to compensate for ageing induced degradation of sensors and cable performance form part of these activities. In 2000, particular emphasis was on in-core reactor instrumentation applied to fusion, accelerator driven and water-cooled fission reactors. This involved the development of high performance instrumentation for irradiation experiments in the BR2 reactor in support of new instrumentation needs for MYRRHA, and for diagnostic systems for the ITER reactor.

  3. Instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Decreton, M.

    2001-01-01

    SCK-CEN's research and development programme on instrumentation involves the assessment and the development of sensitive measurement systems used within a radiation environment. Particular emphasis is on the assessment of optical fibre components and their adaptability to radiation environments. The evaluation of ageing processes of instrumentation in fission plants, the development of specific data evaluation strategies to compensate for ageing induced degradation of sensors and cable performance form part of these activities. In 2000, particular emphasis was on in-core reactor instrumentation applied to fusion, accelerator driven and water-cooled fission reactors. This involved the development of high performance instrumentation for irradiation experiments in the BR2 reactor in support of new instrumentation needs for MYRRHA, and for diagnostic systems for the ITER reactor

  4. Instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Decreton, M.

    2002-01-01

    SCK-CEN's R and D programme on instrumentation involves the development of advanced instrumentation systems for nuclear applications as well as the assessment of the performance of these instruments in a radiation environment. Particular emphasis is on the use of optical fibres as umbilincal links of a remote handling unit for use during maintanance of a fusion reacor, studies on the radiation hardening of plasma diagnostic systems; investigations on new instrumentation for the future MYRRHA accelerator driven system; space applications related to radiation-hardened lenses; the development of new approaches for dose, temperature and strain measurements; the assessment of radiation-hardened sensors and motors for remote handling tasks and studies of dose measurement systems including the use of optical fibres. Progress and achievements in these areas for 2001 are described

  5. Instrumentation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Decreton, M

    2002-04-01

    SCK-CEN's R and D programme on instrumentation involves the development of advanced instrumentation systems for nuclear applications as well as the assessment of the performance of these instruments in a radiation environment. Particular emphasis is on the use of optical fibres as umbilincal links of a remote handling unit for use during maintanance of a fusion reacor, studies on the radiation hardening of plasma diagnostic systems; investigations on new instrumentation for the future MYRRHA accelerator driven system; space applications related to radiation-hardened lenses; the development of new approaches for dose, temperature and strain measurements; the assessment of radiation-hardened sensors and motors for remote handling tasks and studies of dose measurement systems including the use of optical fibres. Progress and achievements in these areas for 2001 are described.

  6. Instrumentation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Decreton, M

    2000-07-01

    SCK-CEN's research and development programme on instrumentation aims at evaluating the potentials of new instrumentation technologies under the severe constraints of a nuclear application. It focuses on the tolerance of sensors to high radiation doses, including optical fibre sensors, and on the related intelligent data processing needed to cope with the nuclear constraints. Main achievements in these domains in 1999 are summarised.

  7. Instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Umminger, K.

    2008-01-01

    A proper measurement of the relevant single and two-phase flow parameters is the basis for the understanding of many complex thermal-hydraulic processes. Reliable instrumentation is therefore necessary for the interaction between analysis and experiment especially in the field of nuclear safety research where postulated accident scenarios have to be simulated in experimental facilities and predicted by complex computer code systems. The so-called conventional instrumentation for the measurement of e. g. pressures, temperatures, pressure differences and single phase flow velocities is still a solid basis for the investigation and interpretation of many phenomena and especially for the understanding of the overall system behavior. Measurement data from such instrumentation still serves in many cases as a database for thermal-hydraulic system codes. However some special instrumentation such as online concentration measurement for boric acid in the water phase or for non-condensibles in steam atmosphere as well as flow visualization techniques were further developed and successfully applied during the recent years. Concerning the modeling needs for advanced thermal-hydraulic codes, significant advances have been accomplished in the last few years in the local instrumentation technology for two-phase flow by the application of new sensor techniques, optical or beam methods and electronic technology. This paper will give insight into the current state of instrumentation technology for safety-related thermohydraulic experiments. Advantages and limitations of some measurement processes and systems will be indicated as well as trends and possibilities for further development. Aspects of instrumentation in operating reactors will also be mentioned.

  8. UKRVO Astronomical WEB Services

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mazhaev, O.E.

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Ukraine Virtual Observatory (UkrVO has been a member of the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA since 2011. The virtual observatory (VO is not a magic solution to all problems of data storing and processing, but it provides certain standards for building infrastructure of astronomical data center. The astronomical databases help data mining and offer to users an easy access to observation metadata, images within celestial sphere and results of image processing. The astronomical web services (AWS of UkrVO give to users handy tools for data selection from large astronomical catalogues for a relatively small region of interest in the sky. Examples of the AWS usage are showed.

  9. An astronomical murder?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belenkiy, Ari

    2010-04-01

    Ari Belenkiy examines the murder of Hypatia of Alexandria, wondering whether problems with astronomical observations and the date of Easter led to her becoming a casualty of fifth-century political intrigue.

  10. The amateur astronomer

    CERN Document Server

    Moore, Patrick

    2006-01-01

    Introduces astronomy and amateur observing together. This edition includes photographs and illustrations. The comprehensive appendices provide hints and tips, as well as data for every aspect of amateur astronomy. This work is useful for amateur astronomers

  11. Instruments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buehrer, W.

    1996-01-01

    The present paper mediates a basic knowledge of the most commonly used experimental techniques. We discuss the principles and concepts necessary to understand what one is doing if one performs an experiment on a certain instrument. (author) 29 figs., 1 tab., refs

  12. Coronagraph for astronomical imaging and spectrophotometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vilas, Faith; Smith, Bradford A.

    1987-01-01

    A coronagraph designed to minimize scattered light in astronomical observations caused by the structure of the primary mirror, secondary mirror, and secondary support structure of a Cassegrainian telescope is described. Direct (1:1) and reducing (2.7:1) imaging of astronomical fields are possible. High-quality images are produced. The coronagraph can be used with either a two-dimensional charge-coupled device or photographic film camera. The addition of transmission dispersing optics converts the coronagraph into a low-resolution spectrograph. The instrument is modular and portable for transport to different observatories.

  13. Instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muehllehner, G.; Colsher, J.G.

    1982-01-01

    This chapter reviews the parameters which are important to positron-imaging instruments. It summarizes the options which various groups have explored in designing tomographs and the methods which have been developed to overcome some of the limitations inherent in the technique as well as in present instruments. The chapter is not presented as a defense of positron imaging versus single-photon or other imaging modality, neither does it contain a description of various existing instruments, but rather stresses their common properties and problems. Design parameters which are considered are resolution, sampling requirements, sensitivity, methods of eliminating scattered radiation, random coincidences and attenuation. The implementation of these parameters is considered, with special reference to sampling, choice of detector material, detector ring diameter and shielding and variations in point spread function. Quantitation problems discussed are normalization, and attenuation and random corrections. Present developments mentioned are noise reduction through time-of-flight-assisted tomography and signal to noise improvements through high intrinsic resolution. Extensive bibliography. (U.K.)

  14. Thirteenth Joint European and National Astronomical Meeting

    CERN Document Server

    Iniesta, J C

    2006-01-01

    The book gathers the invited talks to the XIII JENAM conference, organized this time by the European Astronomical Society (EAS) and the Spanish Astronomical Society (SEA), and hosted by the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (CSIC). All branches of astrophysics are encompassed from the largest scales and cosmology to the solar system and the Sun, through the galaxies and the stars, including a section on astronomical instrumentation. Very relevant experts from all over the world speak in a single book about the most recent, exciting results from their fields in a way which is useful for both researchers in these fields and colleagues working in other disciplines. The book is accompanied by a CD-ROM including the remaining contributions of the meeting in PDF format, hence opening a wide panorama of what is going on in astrophysics nowadays.

  15. Decoding the mechanisms of Antikythera astronomical device

    CERN Document Server

    Lin, Jian-Liang

    2016-01-01

    This book presents a systematic design methodology for decoding the interior structure of the Antikythera mechanism, an astronomical device from ancient Greece. The historical background, surviving evidence and reconstructions of the mechanism are introduced, and the historical development of astronomical achievements and various astronomical instruments are investigated. Pursuing an approach based on the conceptual design of modern mechanisms and bearing in mind the standards of science and technology at the time, all feasible designs of the six lost/incomplete/unclear subsystems are synthesized as illustrated examples, and 48 feasible designs of the complete interior structure are presented. This approach provides not only a logical tool for applying modern mechanical engineering knowledge to the reconstruction of the Antikythera mechanism, but also an innovative research direction for identifying the original structures of the mechanism in the future. In short, the book offers valuable new insights for all...

  16. Atlas of Astronomical Discoveries

    CERN Document Server

    Schilling, Govert

    2011-01-01

    Four hundred years ago in Middelburg, in the Netherlands, the telescope was invented. The invention unleashed a revolution in the exploration of the universe. Galileo Galilei discovered mountains on the Moon, spots on the Sun, and moons around Jupiter. Christiaan Huygens saw details on Mars and rings around Saturn. William Herschel discovered a new planet and mapped binary stars and nebulae. Other astronomers determined the distances to stars, unraveled the structure of the Milky Way, and discovered the expansion of the universe. And, as telescopes became bigger and more powerful, astronomers delved deeper into the mysteries of the cosmos. In his Atlas of Astronomical Discoveries, astronomy journalist Govert Schilling tells the story of 400 years of telescopic astronomy. He looks at the 100 most important discoveries since the invention of the telescope. In his direct and accessible style, the author takes his readers on an exciting journey encompassing the highlights of four centuries of astronomy. Spectacul...

  17. Methods in Astronomical Image Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jörsäter, S.

    A Brief Introductory Note History of Astronomical Imaging Astronomical Image Data Images in Various Formats Digitized Image Data Digital Image Data Philosophy of Astronomical Image Processing Properties of Digital Astronomical Images Human Image Processing Astronomical vs. Computer Science Image Processing Basic Tools of Astronomical Image Processing Display Applications Calibration of Intensity Scales Calibration of Length Scales Image Re-shaping Feature Enhancement Noise Suppression Noise and Error Analysis Image Processing Packages: Design of AIPS and MIDAS AIPS MIDAS Reduction of CCD Data Bias Subtraction Clipping Preflash Subtraction Dark Subtraction Flat Fielding Sky Subtraction Extinction Correction Deconvolution Methods Rebinning/Combining Summary and Prospects for the Future

  18. ASURV: Astronomical SURVival Statistics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feigelson, E. D.; Nelson, P. I.; Isobe, T.; LaValley, M.

    2014-06-01

    ASURV (Astronomical SURVival Statistics) provides astronomy survival analysis for right- and left-censored data including the maximum-likelihood Kaplan-Meier estimator and several univariate two-sample tests, bivariate correlation measures, and linear regressions. ASURV is written in FORTRAN 77, and is stand-alone and does not call any specialized libraries.

  19. South African Astronomical Observatory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-01-01

    Work at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) in recent years, by both staff and visitors, has made major contributions to the fields of astrophysics and astronomy. During 1986 the SAAO has been involved in studies of the following: galaxies; celestial x-ray sources; magellanic clouds; pulsating variables; galactic structure; binary star phenomena; nebulae and interstellar matter; stellar astrophysics; open clusters; globular clusters, and solar systems

  20. Astronomical Research Using Virtual Observatories

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M Tanaka

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The Virtual Observatory (VO for Astronomy is a framework that empowers astronomical research by providing standard methods to find, access, and utilize astronomical data archives distributed around the world. VO projects in the world have been strenuously developing VO software tools and/or portal systems. Interoperability among VO projects has been achieved with the VO standard protocols defined by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA. As a result, VO technologies are now used in obtaining astronomical research results from a huge amount of data. We describe typical examples of astronomical research enabled by the astronomical VO, and describe how the VO technologies are used in the research.

  1. Nikolay N. Donitch - the astronomer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaina, Alex B.; Volyanskaya, M. Yu.

    1999-08-01

    The article is devoted to milestones of life and scientific activity of the eminent astronomer Nikolay Nikolaevich Donitch (Nicolae N. Donici) (1874-1956), a graduate from the Odessa (Novorossiski) university. He was a wellknown expert in the field of reseacrh of objects of Solar system. A person highly cultured, which built the first in Bessarabia (actually a part of the Republic of Moldova) observatory. He was borne in Kishinev (Chisinau) in a nobles family of notable Moldavian landersmen. N.D. graduated from the Richelieu lyceym in Odessa and afterwards, in 1897, graduated from the Odessa (Novorossiysky) University. A.K. Kononovich (1850-1910)headed the chair of astronomy and the Observatory at that time - a foremost authority in the field of astrophysics and stellar astronomy. Many of his disciples became eminent scientists of their time. N. Donitch was among them. N.D. worked till 1918 at Pulkovo Observatory and became a master in the field of studying of such phenomena as solar and lunar eclipses. To observe the Sun N.D., could afford to design and manufacture a spectroheliograph, the first in Russia, with the assistance of a famous Odessa mechanic J.A. Timchenko. This instrument enabled him to obtain topquality photos of the Sun's surface and prominences. It was mounted together with coelostat in the private observatory of N.D. , built in the village Staryie Doubossary in 1908. Besides the heliograoph, the observatory was equiped with a five inch refractor-equatorial with numerous instruments for various observations. Of the other instruments should be mentioned : "a comet triplet" - an instrument consisting of guiding refractor, a photographic camera and a spectrograph with an objective prism. N.D. was lucky enough to observe rare astronomical phenomena. He observed the transit of Mercury through the disk of the Sun on November 14, 1907 and showed the athmosphere absence around this planet, observed the Halley's comet in 1910, the bright Pons-Winneke comet

  2. ARNICA, the Arcetri near-infrared camera: Astronomical performance assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, L. K.; Lisi, F.; Testi, L.; Baffa, C.; Borelli, S.; Maiolino, R.; Moriondo, G.; Stanga, R. M.

    1996-01-01

    The Arcetri near-infrared camera ARNICA was built as a users' instrument for the Infrared Telescope at Gornergrat (TIRGO), and is based on a 256x256 NICMOS 3 detector. In this paper, we discuss ARNICA's optical and astronomical performance at the TIRGO and at the William Herschel Telescope on La Palma. Optical performance is evaluated in terms of plate scale, distortion, point spread function, and ghosting. Astronomical performance is characterized by camera efficiency, sensitivity, and spatial uniformity of the photometry.

  3. Far-infrared spectrophotometer for astronomical observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moseley, H.; Silverberg, R. F.

    1981-01-01

    A liquid-helium-cooled far infrared spectrophotometer was built and used to make low resolution observations of the continua of several kinds of astronomical objects using the Kuiper Airborne Observatory. This instrument fills a gap in both sensitivity to continuum sources and spectral resolution between the broadband photometers with lambda/Delta lambda approximately 1 and spectrometers with lambda/Delta lambda greater than 50. While designed primarily to study planetary nebulae, the instrument permits study of the shape of the continua of many weak sources which cannot easily be observed with high resolution systems.

  4. On astronomical drawing [1846

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smyth, Charles Piazzi

    Reprinted from the Memoirs of the Royal Astronomical Society 15, 1846, pp. 71-82. With annotations and illustrations added by Klaus Hentschel. The activities of the Astronomer Royal for Scotland, Charles Piazzi Smyth (1819-1900), include the triangulation of South African districts, landscape painting, day-to-day or tourist sketching, the engraving and lithographing of prominent architectural sites, the documentary photography of the Egyptian pyramids or the Tenerife Dragon tree, and `instant photographs' of the clouds above his retirement home in Clova, Ripon. His colorful records of the aurora polaris, and solar and terrestrial spectra all profited from his trained eye and his subtle mastery of the pen and the brush. As his paper on astronomical drawing, which we chose to reproduce in this volume, amply demonstrates, he was conversant in most of the print technology repertoire that the 19th century had to offer, and carefully selected the one most appropriate to each sujet. For instance, he chose mezzotint for the plates illustrating Maclear's observations of Halley's comet in 1835/36, so as to achieve a ``rich profundity of shadows, the deep obscurity of which is admirably adapted to reproduce those fine effects of chiaroscuro frequently found in works where the quantity of dark greatly predominates.'' The same expertise with which he tried to emulate Rembrandt's chiaroscuro effects he applied to assessing William and John Herschel's illustrations of nebulae, which appeared in print between 1811 and 1834. William Herschel's positive engraving, made partly by stippling and partly by a coarse mezzotint, receives sharp admonishment because of the visible ruled crossed lines in the background and the fact that ``the objects, which are also generally too light, [have] a much better definition than they really possess.'' On the other hand, John Herschel's illustration of nebulae and star clusters, given in negative, ``in which the lights are the darkest part of the

  5. Grigor Narekatsi's astronomical insights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poghosyan, Samvel

    2015-07-01

    What stand out in the solid system of Gr. Narekatsi's naturalistic views are his astronomical insights on the material nature of light, its high speed and the Sun being composed of "material air". Especially surprising and fascinating are his views on stars and their clusters. What astronomers, including great Armenian academician V. Ambartsumian (scattering of stellar associations), would understand and prove with much difficulty thousand years later, Narekatsi predicted in the 10th century: "Stars appear and disappear untimely", "You who gather and scatter the speechless constellations, like a flock of sheep". Gr. Narekatsti's reformative views were manifested in all the spheres of the 10th century social life; he is a reformer of church life, great language constructor, innovator in literature and music, freethinker in philosophy and science. His ideology is the reflection of the 10th century Armenian Renaissance. During the 9th-10th centuries, great masses of Armenians, forced to migrate to the Balkans, took with them and spread reformative ideas. The forefather of the western science, which originated in the period of Reformation, is considered to be the great philosopher Nicholas of Cusa. The study of Gr. Narekatsti's logic and naturalistic views enables us to claim that Gr. Narekatsti is the great grandfather of European science.

  6. Getting Astronomers Involved in the IYA: Astronomer in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koenig, Kris

    2008-05-01

    The Astronomer in the Classroom program provides professional astronomers the opportunity to engage with 3rd-12th grade students across the nation in grade appropriate discussions of their recent research, and provides students with rich STEM content in a personalized forum, bringing greater access to scientific knowledge for underserved populations. 21st Century Learning and Interstellar Studios, the producer of the 400 Years of the Telescope documentary along with their educational partners, will provide the resources necessary to facilitate the Astronomer in the Classroom program, allowing students to interact with astronomers throughout the IYA2009. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION One of hundreds of astronomers will be available to interact with students via live webcast daily during Spring/Fall 2009. The astronomer for the day will conduct three 20-minute discussions (Grades 3-5 /6-8/9-12), beginning with a five-minute PowerPoint on their research or area of interest. The discussion will be followed by a question and answer period. The students will participate in real-time from their school computer(s) with the technology provided by 21st Century Learning. They will see and hear the astronomer on their screen, and pose questions from their keyboard. Teachers will choose from three daily sessions; 11:30 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time. This schedule overlaps all US time zones, and marginalizes bandwidth usage, preventing technological barriers to web access. The educational partners and astronomers will post materials online, providing easy access to information that will prepare teachers and students for the chosen discussion. The astronomers, invited to participate from the AAS and IAU, will receive a web cam shipment with instructions, a brief training and conductivity test, and prepaid postage for shipment of the web cam to the next astronomer on the list. The anticipated astronomer time required is 3-hours, not including the time to develop the PowerPoint.

  7. TPCs in high-energy astronomical polarimetry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Black, J K

    2007-01-01

    High-energy astrophysics has yet to exploit the unique and important information that polarimetry could provide, largely due to the limited sensitivity of previously available polarimeters. In recent years, numerous efforts have been initiated to develop instruments with the sensitivity required for astronomical polarimetry over the 100 eV to 10 GeV band. Time projection chambers (TPCs), with their high-resolution event imaging capability, are an integral part of some of these efforts. After a brief overview of current astronomical polarimeter development efforts, the role of TPCs will be described in more detail. These include TPCs as photoelectric X-ray polarimeters and TPCs as components of polarizationsensitive Compton and pair-production telescopes

  8. Astronomy Legacy Project - Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barker, Thurburn; Castelaz, Michael W.; Rottler, Lee; Cline, J. Donald

    2016-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) is a not-for-profit public foundation in North Carolina dedicated to providing hands-on educational and research opportunities for a broad cross-section of users in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. In November 2007 a Workshop on a National Plan for Preserving Astronomical Photographic Data (2009ASPC,410,33O, Osborn, W. & Robbins, L) was held at PARI. The result was the establishment of the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) at PARI. In late 2013 PARI began ALP (Astronomy Legacy Project). ALP's purpose is to digitize an extensive set of twentieth century photographic astronomical data housed in APDA. Because of the wide range of types of plates, plate dimensions and emulsions found among the 40+ collections, plate digitization will require a versatile set of scanners and digitizing instruments. Internet crowdfunding was used to assist in the purchase of additional digitization equipment that were described at AstroPlate2014 Plate Preservation Workshop (www.astroplate.cz) held in Prague, CZ, March, 2014. Equipment purchased included an Epson Expression 11000XL scanner and two Nikon D800E cameras. These digital instruments will compliment a STScI GAMMA scanner now located in APDA. GAMMA will be adapted to use an electroluminescence light source and a digital camera with a telecentric lens to achieve high-speed high-resolution scanning. The 1μm precision XY stage of GAMMA will allow very precise positioning of the plate stage. Multiple overlapping CCD images of small sections of each plate, tiles, will be combined using a photo-mosaic process similar to one used in Harvard's DASCH project. Implementation of a software pipeline for the creation of a SQL database containing plate images and metadata will be based upon APPLAUSE as described by Tuvikene at AstroPlate2014 (www.astroplate.cz/programs/).

  9. VEGAS: VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bussa, Srikanth; VEGAS Development Team

    2012-01-01

    The National Science Foundation Advanced Technologies and Instrumentation (NSF-ATI) program is funding a new spectrometer backend for the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). This spectrometer is being built by the CICADA collaboration - collaboration between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and the Center for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research (CASPER) at the University of California Berkeley.The backend is named as VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer (VEGAS) and will replace the capabilities of the existing spectrometers. This backend supports data processing from focal plane array systems. The spectrometer will be capable of processing up to 1.25 GHz bandwidth from 8 dual polarized beams or a bandwidth up to 10 GHz from a dual polarized beam.The spectrometer will be using 8-bit analog to digital converters (ADC), which gives a better dynamic range than existing GBT spectrometers. There will be 8 tunable digital sub-bands within the 1.25 GHz bandwidth, which will enhance the capability of simultaneous observation of multiple spectral transitions. The maximum spectral dump rate to disk will be about 0.5 msec. The vastly enhanced backend capabilities will support several science projects with the GBT. The projects include mapping temperature and density structure of molecular clouds; searches for organic molecules in the interstellar medium; determination of the fundamental constants of our evolving Universe; red-shifted spectral features from galaxies across cosmic time and survey for pulsars in the extreme gravitational environment of the Galactic Center.

  10. An infrared upconverter for astronomical imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyd, R. W.; Townes, C. H.

    1977-01-01

    An imaging upconverter has been constructed which is suitable for use in the study of the thermal 10-micron radiation from astronomical sources. The infrared radiation is converted to visible radiation by mixing in a 1-cm-long proustite crystal. The phase-matched 2-kayser bandpass is tunable from 9 to 11 microns. The conversion efficiency is 2 by 10 to the -7th power and the field of view of 40 arc seconds on the sky contains several hundred picture elements, approximately diffraction-limited resolution in a large telescope. The instrument has been used in studies of the sun, moon, Mercury, and VY Canis Majoris.

  11. TMT in the Astronomical Landscape of the 2020s

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickinson, Mark; Inami, Hanae

    2014-07-01

    Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory and NOAO will host the second TMT Science Forum at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort in Tucson, Arizona. The TMT Science Forum is an an annual gathering of astronomers, educators, and observatory staff, who meet to explore TMT science, instrumentation, observatory operations, archiving and data processing, astronomy education, and science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) issues. It is an opportunity for astronomers from the international TMT partners and from the US-at-large community to learn about the observatory status, discuss and plan cutting-edge science, establish collaborations, and to help shape the future of TMT. One important theme for this year's Forum will be the synergy between TMT and other facilities in the post-2020 astronomical landscape. There will be plenary sessions, an instrumentation workshop, topical science sessions and meetings of the TMT International Science Development Teams (ISDTs).

  12. Closing remarks: astronomical

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pecker, J.-C.

    1990-01-01

    During the discussions we have covered many facets of the basic interactions between solar activity and the Earth's climate. Solar activity is not the only astronomical or astrophysical phenomenon to influence physical conditions in the biosphere. Over timescales an order of magnitude less, the location of the Solar System in the Galaxy may have influenced life on Earth. The Sun is a complex generator of radiation, particles and magnetic fields sent far into space. Even if the total radiation emitted is constant, the amount of radiation received by the Earth changes with time: this change is complex and involved with a redistribution of energy emitted at different solar latitudes than to a real change in solar luminosity. These changes in the Earth's illumination may be a function of the wavelength, and have various effects in different layers of the Earth's atmosphere. The Sun also emits particles of all energies. Some of them find their way through the magnetopause, giving rise to auroras, to magnetic storms, to ionospheric disturbances and the like. The possible climatological effects are yet obscure. To understand the solar terrestrial relations better, regular, routine observations from ground-based stations and from space of solar phenomena must be continued. The sensitivity of human life to small changes in climatic conditions is very large. A good knowledge of solar-physics is therefore important and relevant. (author)

  13. Using commercial amateur astronomical spectrographs

    CERN Document Server

    Hopkins, Jeffrey L

    2014-01-01

    Amateur astronomers interested in learning more about astronomical spectroscopy now have the guide they need. It provides detailed information about how to get started inexpensively with low-resolution spectroscopy, and then how to move on to more advanced  high-resolution spectroscopy. Uniquely, the instructions concentrate very much on the practical aspects of using commercially-available spectroscopes, rather than simply explaining how spectroscopes work. The book includes a clear explanation of the laboratory theory behind astronomical spectrographs, and goes on to extensively cover the practical application of astronomical spectroscopy in detail. Four popular and reasonably-priced commercially available diffraction grating spectrographs are used as examples. The first is a low-resolution transmission diffraction grating, the Star Analyser spectrograph. The second is an inexpensive fiber optic coupled bench spectrograph that can be used to learn more about spectroscopy. The third is a newcomer, the ALPY ...

  14. Astronomical databases of Nikolaev Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Protsyuk, Y.; Mazhaev, A.

    2008-07-01

    Several astronomical databases were created at Nikolaev Observatory during the last years. The databases are built by using MySQL search engine and PHP scripts. They are available on NAO web-site http://www.mao.nikolaev.ua.

  15. The South African astronomical observatory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feast, M.

    1985-01-01

    A few examples of the activities of the South African Astronomical Observatory are discussed. This includes the studying of stellar evolution, dust around stars, the determination of distances to galaxies and collaboration with space experiments

  16. Sixteenth Century Astronomical Telescopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usher, P. D.

    2001-12-01

    Ophelia in Shakespeare's Hamlet is named for the ``moist star" which in mythology is the partner of Hamlet's royal Sun. Together the couple seem destined to rule on earth just as their celestial counterparts rule the heavens, but the tragedy is that they are afflicted, just as the Sun and Moon are blemished. In 1.3 Laertes lectures Ophelia on love and chastity, describing first Cytherean phases (crescent to gibbous) and then Lunar craters. Spots mar the Sun (1.1, 3.1). Also reported are Jupiter's Red Spot (3.4) and the resolution of the Milky Way into stars (2.2). These interpretations are well-founded and support the cosmic allegory. Observations must have been made with optical aid, probably the perspective glass of Leonard Digges, father of Thomas Digges. Notably absent from Hamlet is mention of the Galilean moons, owing perhaps to the narrow field-of-view of the telescope. That discovery is later celebrated in Cymbeline, published soon after Galileo's Siderius Nuncius in 1610. In 5.4 of Cymbeline the four ghosts dance ``in imitation of planetary motions" and at Jupiter's behest place a book on the chest of Posthumus Leonatus. His name identifies the Digges father and son as the source of data in Hamlet since Jupiter's moons were discovered after the deaths of Leonard (``leon+hart") and Thomas (the ``lion's whelp"). Lines in 5.4 urge us not to read more into the book than is contained between its covers; this is understandable because Hamlet had already reported the other data in support of heliocentricism and the cosmic model discussed and depicted by Thomas Digges in 1576. I conclude therefore that astronomical telescopy began in England before the last quarter of the sixteenth century.

  17. Thirty years of astronomical discovery with UKIRT

    CERN Document Server

    Davies, John; Robson, Ian; The Scientific Achievement of the United Kingdom InfraRed Telescope

    2013-01-01

    These are the proceedings of an international meeting hosted by the Royal Observatory, Edinburgh, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the dedication of the UKIRT, the United Kingdom InfraRed Telescope. The volume comprises 31 professional level papers. The first part of the book has 10 thorough reviews of the conception, design and build of the telescope, as well as accounts of some its key instruments such as IRCAM (the common-user infrared camera), CGS4 (the fourth Cooled Grating Spectrometer) and the Wide Field Camera. The second part of the book comprises 14 reviews of scientific achievements during its twenty years of visitor mode operations. The final part of the book is a series of 7 reviews of the results from the multiple surveys being done as part of UKIDSS (UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey). The authors are all experts in their respective fields, for example instrument scientists, operations staff and leading astronomers.

  18. Enthusiastic Little Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Novak, Ines

    2016-04-01

    Younger primary school students often show great interest in the vast Universe hiding behind the starry night's sky, but don't have a way of learning about it and exploring it in regular classes. Some of them would search children's books, Internet or encyclopedias for information or facts they are interested in, but there are those whose hunger for knowledge would go unfulfilled. Such students were the real initiators of our extracurricular activity called Little Astronomers. With great enthusiasm they would name everything that interests them about the Universe that we live in and I would provide the information in a fun and interactive yet acceptable way for their level of understanding. In our class we learn about Earth and its place in the Solar System, we learn about the planets and other objects of our Solar System and about the Sun itself. We also explore the night sky using programs such as Stellarium, learning to recognize constellations and name them. Most of our activities are done using a PowerPoint presentation, YouTube videos, and Internet simulations followed by some practical work the students do themselves. Because of the lack of available materials and funds, most of materials are hand made by the teacher leading the class. We also use the school's galileoscope as often as possible. Every year the students are given the opportunity to go to an observatory in a town 90 km away so that they could gaze at the sky through the real telescope for the first time. Our goal is to start stepping into the world of astronomy by exploring the secrets of the Universe and understanding the process of rotation and revolution of our planet and its effects on our everyday lives and also to become more aware of our own role in our part of the Universe. The hunger for knowledge and enthusiasm these students have is contagious. They are becoming more aware of their surroundings and also understanding their place in the Universe that helps them remain humble and helps

  19. The New Amateur Astronomer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mobberley, Martin

    Amateur astronomy has changed beyond recognition in less than two decades. The reason is, of course, technology. Affordable high-quality telescopes, computer-controlled 'go to' mountings, autoguiders, CCD cameras, video, and (as always) computers and the Internet, are just a few of the advances that have revolutionized astronomy for the twenty-first century. Martin Mobberley first looks at the basics before going into an in-depth study of what’s available commercially. He then moves on to the revolutionary possibilities that are open to amateurs, from imaging, through spectroscopy and photometry, to patrolling for near-earth objects - the search for comets and asteroids that may come close to, or even hit, the earth. The New Amateur Astronomer is a road map of the new astronomy, equally suitable for newcomers who want an introduction, or old hands who need to keep abreast of innovations. From the reviews: "This is one of several dozen books in Patrick Moore's "Practical Astronomy" series. Amid this large family, Mobberley finds his niche: the beginning high-tech amateur. The book's first half discusses equipment: computer-driven telescopes, CCD cameras, imaging processing software, etc. This market is changing every bit as rapidly as the computer world, so these details will be current for only a year or two. The rest of the book offers an overview of scientific projects that serious amateurs are carrying out these days. Throughout, basic formulas and technical terms are provided as needed, without formal derivations. An appendix with useful references and Web sites is also included. Readers will need more than this book if they are considering a plunge into high-tech amateur astronomy, but it certainly will whet their appetites. Mobberley's most valuable advice will save the book's owner many times its cover price: buy a quality telescope from a reputable dealer and install it in a simple shelter so it can be used with as little set-up time as possible. A poor

  20. Astronomical observations with the optical multichannel analyser of the Sao Paulo University

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Codina-Landaberry, S J; de Freitas Pacheco, J A [Universidade Mackenzie, Sao Paulo (Brazil). Centro de Radio-Astronomia e Astrofisica

    1979-03-01

    The first astronomical observations made with the optical multichannel analyser (OMA) of the Sao Paulo University is reported. A detailed description of the instrumentation is given as well as the results derived from the observation of some emission nebulae.

  1. Astronomical observations with the optical multichannel analyser of the Sao Paulo University

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Codina-Landaberry, S.J.; Freitas Pacheco, J.A. de

    1979-01-01

    The first astronomical observations made with the optical multichannel analyser (OMA) of the Sao Paulo University is reported. A detailed description of the instrumentation is given as well as the results derived from the observation of some emission nebulae [pt

  2. Choosing and using astronomical eyepieces

    CERN Document Server

    Paolini, William

    2013-01-01

    This valuable reference fills a number of needs in the field of astronomical eyepieces, including that of a buyer's guide, observer's field guide and technical desk reference. It documents the past market for eyepieces and its evolution right up to the present day. In addition to appealing to practical astronomers - and potentially saving them money - it is useful both as a historical reference and as a detailed review of the current market place for this bustling astronomical consumer product. What distinguishes this book from other publications on astronomy is the involvement of observers from all aspects of the astronomical community, and also the major manufacturers of equipment. It not only catalogs the technical aspects of the many modern eyepieces but also documents amateur observer reactions and impressions of their utility over the years, using many different eyepieces. Eyepieces are the most talked-about accessories and collectible items available to the amateur astronomer. No other item of equi...

  3. Astronomical Image and Data Analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Starck, J.-L

    2006-01-01

    With information and scale as central themes, this comprehensive survey explains how to handle real problems in astronomical data analysis using a modern arsenal of powerful techniques. It treats those innovative methods of image, signal, and data processing that are proving to be both effective and widely relevant. The authors are leaders in this rapidly developing field and draw upon decades of experience. They have been playing leading roles in international projects such as the Virtual Observatory and the Grid. The book addresses not only students and professional astronomers and astrophysicists, but also serious amateur astronomers and specialists in earth observation, medical imaging, and data mining. The coverage includes chapters or appendices on: detection and filtering; image compression; multichannel, multiscale, and catalog data analytical methods; wavelets transforms, Picard iteration, and software tools. This second edition of Starck and Murtagh's highly appreciated reference again deals with to...

  4. Choosing and using astronomical filters

    CERN Document Server

    Griffiths, Martin

    2014-01-01

    As a casual read through any of the major amateur astronomical magazines will demonstrate, there are filters available for all aspects of optical astronomy. This book provides a ready resource on the use of the following filters, among others, for observational astronomy or for imaging: Light pollution filters Planetary filters Solar filters Neutral density filters for Moon observation Deep-sky filters, for such objects as galaxies, nebulae and more Deep-sky objects can be imaged in much greater detail than was possible many years ago. Amateur astronomers can take

  5. The South African Astronomical Observatory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1989-01-01

    The research work discussed in this report covers a wide range, from work on the nearest stars to studies of the distant quasars, and the astronomers who have carried out this work come from universities and observatories spread around the world as well as from South African universities and from the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) staff itself. A characteristic of much of this work has been its collaborative character. SAAO studies in 1989 included: supernovae 1987A; galaxies; ground-based observations of celestial x-ray sources; the Magellanic Clouds; pulsating variables; galactic structure; binary star phenomena; the provision of photometric standards; nebulous matter; stellar astrophysics, and astrometry

  6. The Victorian Amateur Astronomer: Independent Astronomical Research in Britain 1820-1920

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, Allan

    1999-01-01

    This is the first book to look in detail at amateur astronomy in Victorian Britain. It deals with the technical issues that were active in Victorian astronomy, and reviews the problems of finance, patronage and the dissemination of scientific ideas. It also examines the relationship between the amateur and professional in Britain. It contains a wealth of previously unpublished biographical and anecdotal material, and an extended bibliography with notes incorporating much new scholarship. In The Victorian Amateur Astronomer, Allan Chapman shows that while on the continent astronomical research was lavishly supported by the state, in Britain such research was paid for out of the pockets of highly educated, wealthy gentlemen the so-called Grand Amateurs . It was these powerful individuals who commissioned the telescopes, built the observatories, ran the learned societies, and often stole discoveries from their state-employed colleagues abroad. In addition to the Grand Amateurs , Victorian Britain also contained many self-taught amateurs. Although they belonged to no learned societies, these people provide a barometer of the popularity of astronomy in that age. In the late 19th century, the comfortable middle classes clergymen, lawyers, physicians and retired military officers took to astronomy as a serious hobby. They formed societies which focused on observation, lectures and discussions, and it was through this medium that women first came to play a significant role in British astronomy. Readership: Undergraduate and postgraduate students studying the history of science or humanities, professional historians of science, engineering and technology, particularly those with an interest in astronomy, the development of astronomical ideas, scientific instrument makers, and amateur astronomers.

  7. Astronomical Spectroscopy A Short History

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Resonance – Journal of Science Education; Volume 3; Issue 5. Astronomical Spectroscopy A Short History. J C Bhattacharyya. General Article Volume 3 Issue 5 May 1998 pp 24-29. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link: https://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/reso/003/05/0024-0029 ...

  8. Multinational History of Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory

    CERN Document Server

    Heck, André

    2005-01-01

    Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory is quite an interesting place for historians: several changes of nationality between France and Germany, high-profile scientists having been based there, big projects born or installed in its walls, and so on. Most of the documents circulating on the history of the Observatory and on related matters have however been so far poorly referenced, if at all. This made necessary the compilation of a volume such as this one, offering fully-documented historical facts and references on the first decades of the Observatory history, authored by both French and German specialists. The experts contributing to this book have done their best to write in a way understandable to readers not necessarily hyperspecialized in astronomy nor in the details of European history. After an introductory chapter by the Editor, contributions by Wolfschmidt and by Duerbeck respectively deal extensively with the German periods and review people and instrumentation, while another paper by Duerbeck is more...

  9. Latin American astronomers and the International Astronomical Union

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torres-Peimbert, S.

    2017-07-01

    Selected aspects of the participation of the Latin American astronomers in the International Astronomical Union are presented: Membership, Governing bodies, IAU meetings, and other activities. The Union was founded in 1919 with 7 initial member states, soon to be followed by Brazil. In 1921 Mexico joined, and in 1928 Argentina also formed part of the Union, while Chile joined in 1947. In 1961 Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Venezuela were already member countries. At present (October 2016) 72 countries contribute financially to the Union. The Union lists 12,391 professional astronomers as individual members; of those, 692 astronomers work in Latin America and the Caribbean, from 13 member states (Argentina, Bolivia , Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Honduras, Mexico, Panamá, Perú, Uruguay and Venezuela) as well as from Ecuador and Puerto Rico. This group comprises 5.58% of the total membership, a figure somewhat lower than the fraction of the population in the region, which is 8.6% of the world population. Of the Latin American members, 23.4% are women and 76.6% are men; slightly higher than the whole membership of Union, which is of 16.9%. In the governing bodies it can be mentioned that there have been 2 Presidents of the Union (Jorge Sahade and Silvia Torres-Peimbert), 7 VicePresidents (Guillermo Haro, Jorge Sahade, Manuel Peimbert Claudio Anguita, Silvia Torres-Peimbert, Beatriz Barbuy, and Marta G. Rovira). The IAU meetings held in the region, include 2 General Assemblies (the 1991 XXI GA took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina and the 2009 XXVIII GA, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), 15 Regional Meetings (in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela and Uruguay), 29 Symposia (in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru and Mexico), 5 Colloquia (in Argentina and Mexico), 8 International Schools for Young Astronomers (in Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Honduras and Mexico), and 11 projects sponsored by the Office of Astronomy

  10. The astronomical tables of Giovanni Bianchini

    CERN Document Server

    Chabas, Jose

    2009-01-01

    This book describes and analyses, for the first time, the astronomical tables of Giovanni Bianchini of Ferrara (d. after 1469), explains their context, inserts them into an astronomical tradition that began in Toledo, and addresses their diffusion.

  11. Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harutyunian, H. A.; Mickaelian, A. M.; Parsamian, E. S.

    2014-10-01

    The book contains Proceedings of the Archaeoastronomical Meeting "Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture" Dedicated to Anania Shirakatsi's 1400th Anniversary and XI Annual Meeting of the Armenian Astronomical Society. It consists of 3 main sections: "Astronomical Heritage", "Anania Shirakatsi" and "Modern Astronomy", as well as Literature about Anania Shirakatsi is included. The book may be interesting for astronomers, historians, archaeologists, linguists, students and other readers.

  12. Eighth Scientific Meeting of the Spanish Astronomical Society

    CERN Document Server

    Diego, Jose M; González-Serrano, J. Ignacio; Gorgas, Javier; Highlights of Spanish Astrophysics V

    2010-01-01

    This volume collects the invited contributions and plenary sessions presented at the Eighth Scientific Meeting of the Spanish Astronomical Society (Sociedad Española de Astronomía, SEA) held on July 7-11, 2008 in Santander. These contributions cover all fields of astronomy and astrophysics, i.e., the Sun and solar system, the galaxy and its components, galaxies and cosmology, observatories and instrumentation, as well as astronomy teaching and dissemination. Further plenary sessions were devoted to selected hot topics, including the exploration of the solar system, gravitational lensing, exoplanets, X-ray binaries, solar magnetism, gravitational waves, the ALHAMBRA collaboration, and the OSIRIS instrument on the new 10-m GTC. Abstracts of the contributions presented at the parallels sessions and posters are also included in the book. Complete versions of those papers are available online.

  13. World's fastest and most sensitive astronomical camera

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-06-01

    The next generation of instruments for ground-based telescopes took a leap forward with the development of a new ultra-fast camera that can take 1500 finely exposed images per second even when observing extremely faint objects. The first 240x240 pixel images with the world's fastest high precision faint light camera were obtained through a collaborative effort between ESO and three French laboratories from the French Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique/Institut National des Sciences de l'Univers (CNRS/INSU). Cameras such as this are key components of the next generation of adaptive optics instruments of Europe's ground-based astronomy flagship facility, the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT). ESO PR Photo 22a/09 The CCD220 detector ESO PR Photo 22b/09 The OCam camera ESO PR Video 22a/09 OCam images "The performance of this breakthrough camera is without an equivalent anywhere in the world. The camera will enable great leaps forward in many areas of the study of the Universe," says Norbert Hubin, head of the Adaptive Optics department at ESO. OCam will be part of the second-generation VLT instrument SPHERE. To be installed in 2011, SPHERE will take images of giant exoplanets orbiting nearby stars. A fast camera such as this is needed as an essential component for the modern adaptive optics instruments used on the largest ground-based telescopes. Telescopes on the ground suffer from the blurring effect induced by atmospheric turbulence. This turbulence causes the stars to twinkle in a way that delights poets, but frustrates astronomers, since it blurs the finest details of the images. Adaptive optics techniques overcome this major drawback, so that ground-based telescopes can produce images that are as sharp as if taken from space. Adaptive optics is based on real-time corrections computed from images obtained by a special camera working at very high speeds. Nowadays, this means many hundreds of times each second. The new generation instruments require these

  14. Super resolution for astronomical observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhan; Peng, Qingyu; Bhanu, Bir; Zhang, Qingfeng; He, Haifeng

    2018-05-01

    In order to obtain detailed information from multiple telescope observations a general blind super-resolution (SR) reconstruction approach for astronomical images is proposed in this paper. A pixel-reliability-based SR reconstruction algorithm is described and implemented, where the developed process incorporates flat field correction, automatic star searching and centering, iterative star matching, and sub-pixel image registration. Images captured by the 1-m telescope at Yunnan Observatory are used to test the proposed technique. The results of these experiments indicate that, following SR reconstruction, faint stars are more distinct, bright stars have sharper profiles, and the backgrounds have higher details; thus these results benefit from the high-precision star centering and image registration provided by the developed method. Application of the proposed approach not only provides more opportunities for new discoveries from astronomical image sequences, but will also contribute to enhancing the capabilities of most spatial or ground-based telescopes.

  15. National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

    CERN Document Server

    Haubold, Hans J; UN/ESA/NASA Workshop on the International Heliophysical Year 2007 and Basic Space Science, hosted by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

    2010-01-01

    This book represents Volume II of the Proceedings of the UN/ESA/NASA Workshop on the International Heliophysical Year 2007 and Basic Space Science, hosted by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, Tokyo, 18 - 22 June, 2007. It covers two programme topics explored in this and past workshops of this nature: (i) non-extensive statistical mechanics as applicable to astrophysics, addressing q-distribution, fractional reaction and diffusion, and the reaction coefficient, as well as the Mittag-Leffler function and (ii) the TRIPOD concept, developed for astronomical telescope facilities. The companion publication, Volume I of the proceedings of this workshop, is a special issue in the journal Earth, Moon, and Planets, Volume 104, Numbers 1-4, April 2009.

  16. Observatory Sponsoring Astronomical Image Contest

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-05-01

    Forget the headphones you saw in the Warner Brothers thriller Contact, as well as the guttural throbs emanating from loudspeakers at the Very Large Array in that 1997 movie. In real life, radio telescopes aren't used for "listening" to anything - just like visible-light telescopes, they are used primarily to make images of astronomical objects. Now, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) wants to encourage astronomers to use radio-telescope data to make truly compelling images, and is offering cash prizes to winners of a new image contest. Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio-optical composite image of giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1316, showing the galaxy (center), a smaller companion galaxy being cannibalized by NGC 1316, and the resulting "lobes" (orange) of radio emission caused by jets of particles spewed from the core of the giant galaxy Click on image for more detail and images CREDIT: Fomalont et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF "Astronomy is a very visual science, and our radio telescopes are capable of producing excellent images. We're sponsoring this contest to encourage astronomers to make the extra effort to turn good images into truly spectacular ones," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. The contest, offering a grand prize of $1,000, was announced at the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The image contest is part of a broader NRAO effort to make radio astronomical data and images easily accessible and widely available to scientists, students, teachers, the general public, news media and science-education professionals. That effort includes an expanded image gallery on the observatory's Web site. "We're not only adding new radio-astronomy images to our online gallery, but we're also improving the organization and accessibility of the images," said Mark Adams, head of education and public outreach (EPO) at NRAO. "Our long-term goal is to make the NRAO Image Gallery an international resource for radio astronomy imagery

  17. Astronomical Data and Information Visualization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goodman, Alyssa A.

    2010-01-01

    As the size and complexity of data sets increases, the need to "see" them more clearly increases as well. In the past, many scientists saw "fancy" data and information visualization as necessary for "outreach," but not for research. In this talk, I wlll demonstrate, using specific examples, why more and more scientists--not just astronomers--are coming to rely upon the development of new visualization strategies not just to present their data, but to understand it. Principal examples will be drawn from the "Astronomical Medicine" project at Harvard's Initiative in Innovative Computing, and from the "Seamless Astronomy" effort, which is co-sponsored by the VAO (NASA/NSF) and Microsoft Research.

  18. Astronomical Research Institute Photometric Results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linder, Tyler R.; Sampson, Ryan; Holmes, Robert

    2013-01-01

    The Astronomical Research Institute (ARI) conducts astrometric and photometric studies of asteroids with a concentration on near-Earth objects (NEOs). A 0.76-m autoscope was used for photometric studies of seven asteroids of which two were main-belt targets and five were NEOs, including one potentially hazardous asteroid (PHA). These objects are: 3122 Florence, 3960 Chaliubieju, 5143 Heracles, (6455) 1992 HE, (36284) 2000 DM8, (62128) 2000 SO1, and 2010 LF86.

  19. The South African Astronomical Observatory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1988-01-01

    The geographical position, climate and equipment at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO), together with the enthusiasm and efforts of SAAO scientific and technical staff and of visiting scientists, have enabled the Observatory to make a major contribution to the fields of astrophysics and cosmology. During 1987 the SAAO has been involved in studies of the following: supernovae; galaxies, including Seyfert galaxies; celestial x-ray sources; magellanic clouds; pulsating variables; galatic structure; binary star phenomena; nebulae; interstellar matter and stellar astrophysics

  20. Astronomical publications of Melbourne Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andropoulos, Jenny Ioanna

    2014-05-01

    During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, four well-equipped government observatories were maintained in Australia - in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth. These institutions conducted astronomical observations, often in the course of providing a local time service, and they also collected and collated meteorological data. As well, some of these observatories were involved at times in geodetic surveying, geomagnetic recording, gravity measurements, seismology, tide recording and physical standards, so the term "observatory" was being used in a rather broad sense! Despite the international renown that once applied to Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories, relatively little has been written by modern-day scholars about astronomical activities at these observatories. This research is intended to rectify this situation to some extent by gathering, cataloguing and analysing the published astronomical output of the two Observatories to see what contributions they made to science and society. It also compares their contributions with those of Sydney, Adelaide and Perth Observatories. Overall, Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories produced a prodigious amount of material on astronomy in scientific and technical journals, in reports and in newspapers. The other observatories more or less did likewise, so no observatory of those studied markedly outperformed the others in the long term, especially when account is taken of their relative resourcing in staff and equipment.

  1. Powerful Radio Burst Indicates New Astronomical Phenomenon

    Science.gov (United States)

    2007-09-01

    . "It was a bit of luck that the survey included some observations of the sky surrounding the clouds," Narkevic said. It was from those "flanking" observations that the mysterious radio burst appeared in the data. The burst of radio waves was strong by astronomical standards, but lasted less than five milliseconds. The signal was spread out, with higher frequencies arriving at the telescope before the lower frequencies. This effect, called dispersion, is caused by the signal passing through ionized gas in interstellar and intergalactic space. The amount of this dispersion, the astronomers said, indicates that the signal likely originated about three billion light-years from Earth. No previously-detected cosmic radio burst has the same set of characteristics. "This burst represents an entirely new astronomical phenomenon," Bailes said. The astronomers estimate on the basis of their results that hundreds of similar events should occur over the sky each day. "Few radio surveys have the necessary sensitivity to such short-duration bursts, which makes them notoriously difficult to detect with current instruments," added Crawford. The next generation of radio telescopes currently under development should be able to detect many of these bursts across the sky. Although the nature of the mysterious new object is unclear, the astronomers have some ideas of what may cause such a burst. One idea is that it may be part of the energy released when a pair of superdense neutron stars collide and merge. Such an event is thought by some scientists to be the cause of one type of gamma-ray burst, but the only radio emission seen so far from these has been from the long-lived "afterglow" that follows the original burst. Another, more exotic, candidate is a burst of energy from an evaporating black hole. Black holes, concentrations of mass so dense that not even light can escape their powerful gravity, can lose mass and energy through a process proposed by famed British physicist Stephen

  2. Different Categories of Astronomical Heritage: Issues and Challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruggles, Clive

    2012-09-01

    Since 2008 the AWHWG has, on behalf of the IAU, been working with UNESCO and its advisory bodies to help identify, safeguard and promote cultural properties relating to astronomy and, where possible, to try to facilitate the eventual nomination of key astronomical heritage sites onto the World Heritage List. Unfortunately, the World Heritage Convention only covers fixed sites (i.e., the tangible immovable heritage of astronomy), and a key question for the UNESCO-IAU Astronomy and World Heritage Initiative (AWHI) is the extent to which the tangible moveable and intangible heritage of astronomy (e.g. moveable instruments; ideas and theories) influence the assessment of the tangible immovable heritage. Clearly, in an ideal world we should be concerned not only with tangible immovable heritage but, to quote the AWHWG's own Terms of Reference, ``to help ensure that cultural properties and artefacts significant in the development of astronomy, together with the intangible heritage of astronomy, are duly studied, protected and maintained, both for the greater benefit of humankind and to the potential benefit of future historical research''. With this in mind, the IAU/INAF symposium on ``Astronomy and its Instruments before and after Galileo'' held in Venice in Sep-Oct 2009 recommended that urgent steps should be taken 1. to sensitise astronomers and the general public, and particularly observatory directors and others with direct influence and control over astronomical resources, to the importance of identifying, protecting and preserving the various material products of astronomical research and discovery that already have, or have significant potential to acquire, universal value; (N.B. National or regional interests and concerns have no relevance in the assessment of ``universal value'', which, by definition, extends beyond cultural boundaries and, by reasonable expectation, down the generations into the future. 2. to identify modes of interconnectivity between

  3. Visualizing Astronomical Data with Blender

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Brian R.

    2014-01-01

    We present methods for using the 3D graphics program Blender in the visualization of astronomical data. The software's forte for animating 3D data lends itself well to use in astronomy. The Blender graphical user interface and Python scripting capabilities can be utilized in the generation of models for data cubes, catalogs, simulations, and surface maps. We review methods for data import, 2D and 3D voxel texture applications, animations, camera movement, and composite renders. Rendering times can be improved by using graphic processing units (GPUs). A number of examples are shown using the software features most applicable to various kinds of data paradigms in astronomy.

  4. Focus on astronomical predictable events

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jacobsen, Aase Roland

    2006-01-01

    At the Steno Museum Planetarium we have for many occasions used a countdown clock to get focus om astronomical events. A countdown clock can provide actuality to predictable events, for example The Venus Transit, Opportunity landing on Mars and The Solar Eclipse. The movement of the clock attracs...... the public and makes a point of interest in a small exhibit area. A countdown clock can be simple, but it is possible to expand the concept to an eye-catching part of a museum....

  5. Strasbourg Astronomical Data Center (CDS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F Genova

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The Centre de Donnees astronomiques de Strasbourg (CDS, created in 1972, has been a pioneer in the dissemination of digital scientific data. Ensuring sustainability for several decades has been a major issue because science and technology evolve continuously and the data flow increases endlessly. The paper briefly describes CDS activities, major services, and its R&D strategy to take advantage of new technologies. The next frontiers for CDS are the new Web 2.0/3.0 paradigm and, at a more general level, global interoperability of astronomical on-line resources in the Virtual Observatory framework.

  6. astroplan: Observation Planning for Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Brett

    2016-03-01

    Astroplan is an observation planning package for astronomers. It is an astropy-affiliated package which began as a Google Summer of Code project. Astroplan facilitates convenient calculation of common observational quantities, like target altitudes and azimuths, airmasses, and rise/set times. Astroplan also computes when targets are observable given various extensible observing constraints, for example: within a range of airmasses or altitudes, or at a given separation from the Moon. Astroplan is taught in the undergraduate programming for astronomy class, and enables observational Pre- MAP projects at the University of Washington. In the near future, we plan to implement scheduling capabilities in astroplan on top of the constraints framework.

  7. An Astronomer In The Classroom: Observatoire de Paris's Partnership Between Teachers and Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doressoundiram, A.; Barban, C.

    2006-08-01

    The Observatoire de Paris is offering a partnership between teachers and astronomers. The principle is simple: any teacher wishing to undertake a pedagogical project in astronomy, in the classroom or involving the entire school, can request the help of a mentor. An astronomer from the Observatoire de Paris will then follow the teacher's project progress and offer advice and scientific support throughout the school year. The projects may take different forms: construction projects (models, instruments), lectures, posters, exhibitions, etc. The type of assistance offered is as varied as the projects: lecture(s) in class, telephone and e-mail exchanges, visits to the Observatoire; an almost made-to-measure approach that delighted the thirty or so groups that benefited such partnership in the 2005-2006 academic year. And this number is continuously growing. There was a rich variety of projects undertaken, from mounting a show and building a solar clock to visiting a high altitude observatory, or resolving the mystery of Jupiter's great red spot. The Universe and its mysteries fascinate the young (and the not so- young) and provide a multitude of scientific topics that can be exploited in class. Astronomy offers the added advantage of being a multidisciplinary field. Thus, if most projects are generally initiated by a motivated teacher, they are often taken over by teachers in other subjects: Life and Earth Sciences (SVT), history, mathematics, French, and so forth. The project may consist in an astronomy workshop or be part of the school curriculum. Whatever the case, the astronomer's task is not to replace the teacher or the textbooks, but to propose activities or experiments that are easy to implement. Representing the Solar system on a school-yard scale, for instance, is a perfect way to make youngsters realize that the Universe consists mostly of empty space. There is no shortage of topics, and the students' enthusiasm, seldom absent, is the best reward for the

  8. Explanatory supplement to the astronomical almanac

    CERN Document Server

    Urban, Sean E

    2013-01-01

    The Explanatory Supplement to the Astronomical Almanac offers explanatory material, supplemental information and detailed descriptions of the computational models and algorithms used to produce The Astronomical Almanac, which is an annual publication prepared jointly by the US Naval Observatory and Her Majesty's Nautical Almanac Office in the UK. Like The Astronomical Almanac, The Explanatory Supplement provides detailed coverage of modern positional astronomy. Chapters are devoted to the celestial and terrestrial reference frames, orbital ephemerides, precession, nutation, Earth rotation, and coordinate transformations. These topics have undergone substantial revisions since the last edition was published. Astronomical positions are intertwined with timescales and relativity in The Astronomical Almanac, so related chapters are provided in The Explanatory Supplement. The Astronomical Almanac also includes information on lunar and solar eclipses, physical ephemerides of solar system bodies, and calendars, so T...

  9. SAADA: Astronomical Databases Made Easier

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, L.; Nguyen, H. N.; Motch, C.

    2005-12-01

    Many astronomers wish to share datasets with their community but have not enough manpower to develop databases having the functionalities required for high-level scientific applications. The SAADA project aims at automatizing the creation and deployment process of such databases. A generic but scientifically relevant data model has been designed which allows one to build databases by providing only a limited number of product mapping rules. Databases created by SAADA rely on a relational database supporting JDBC and covered by a Java layer including a lot of generated code. Such databases can simultaneously host spectra, images, source lists and plots. Data are grouped in user defined collections whose content can be seen as one unique set per data type even if their formats differ. Datasets can be correlated one with each other using qualified links. These links help, for example, to handle the nature of a cross-identification (e.g., a distance or a likelihood) or to describe their scientific content (e.g., by associating a spectrum to a catalog entry). The SAADA query engine is based on a language well suited to the data model which can handle constraints on linked data, in addition to classical astronomical queries. These constraints can be applied on the linked objects (number, class and attributes) and/or on the link qualifier values. Databases created by SAADA are accessed through a rich WEB interface or a Java API. We are currently developing an inter-operability module implanting VO protocols.

  10. Extracting meaning from astronomical telegrams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Matthew; Conwill, L.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Mahabal, A.; Donalek, C.; Drake, A.

    2011-01-01

    The rapidly emerging field of time domain astronomy is one of the most exciting and vibrant new research frontiers, ranging in scientific scope from studies of the Solar System to extreme relativistic astrophysics and cosmology. It is being enabled by a new generation of large synoptic digital sky surveys - LSST, PanStarrs, CRTS - that cover large areas of sky repeatedly, looking for transient objects and phenomena. One of the biggest challenges facing these is the automated classification of transient events, a process that needs machine-processible astronomical knowledge. Semantic technologies enable the formal representation of concepts and relations within a particular domain. ATELs (http://www.astronomerstelegram.org) are a commonly-used means for reporting and commenting upon new astronomical observations of transient sources (supernovae, stellar outbursts, blazar flares, etc). However, they are loose and unstructured and employ scientific natural language for description: this makes automated processing of them - a necessity within the next decade with petascale data rates - a challenge. Nevertheless they represent a potentially rich corpus of information that could lead to new and valuable insights into transient phenomena. This project lies in the cutting-edge field of astrosemantics, a branch of astroinformatics, which applies semantic technologies to astronomy. The ATELs have been used to develop an appropriate concept scheme - a representation of the information they contain - for transient astronomy using aspects of natural language processing. We demonstrate that it is possible to infer the subject of an ATEL from the vocabulary used and to identify previously unassociated reports.

  11. Astronomical Signatures of Dark Matter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Gorenstein

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Several independent astronomical observations in different wavelength bands reveal the existence of much larger quantities of matter than what we would deduce from assuming a solar mass to light ratio. They are very high velocities of individual galaxies within clusters of galaxies, higher than expected rotation rates of stars in the outer regions of galaxies, 21 cm line studies indicative of increasing mass to light ratios with radius in the halos of spiral galaxies, hot gaseous X-ray emitting halos around many elliptical galaxies, and clusters of galaxies requiring a much larger component of unseen mass for the hot gas to be bound. The level of gravitational attraction needed for the spatial distribution of galaxies to evolve from the small perturbations implied by the very slightly anisotropic cosmic microwave background radiation to its current web-like configuration requires much more mass than is observed across the entire electromagnetic spectrum. Distorted shapes of galaxies and other features created by gravitational lensing in the images of many astronomical objects require an amount of dark matter consistent with other estimates. The unambiguous detection of dark matter and more recently evidence for dark energy has positioned astronomy at the frontier of fundamental physics as it was in the 17th century.

  12. The League of Astronomers: Outreach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paat, Anthony; Brandel, A.; Schmitz, D.; Sharma, R.; Thomas, N. H.; Trujillo, J.; Laws, C. S.; Astronomers, League of

    2014-01-01

    The University of Washington League of Astronomers (LOA) is an organization comprised of University of Washington (UW) undergraduate students. Our main goal is to share our interest in astronomy with the UW community and with the general public. The LOA hosts star parties on the UW campus and collaborates with the Seattle Astronomical Society (SAS) on larger Seattle-area star parties. At the star parties, we strive to teach our local community about what they can view in our night sky. LOA members share knowledge of how to locate constellations and use a star wheel. The relationship the LOA has with members of SAS increases both the number of events and people we are able to reach. Since the cloudy skies of the Northwest prevent winter star parties, we therefore focus our outreach on the UW Mobile Planetarium, an inflatable dome system utilizing Microsoft’s WorldWide Telescope (WWT) software. The mobile planetarium brings astronomy into the classrooms of schools unable to travel to the UW on-campus planetarium. Members of the LOA volunteer their time towards this project and we make up the majority of the Mobile Planetarium volunteers. Our outreach efforts allow us to connect with the community and enhance our own knowledge of astronomy.

  13. LGBT Workplace Issues for Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kay, Laura E.; Danner, R.; Sellgren, K.; Dixon, V.; GLBTQastro

    2011-01-01

    Federal Equal Employment Opportunity laws and regulations do not provide protection from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or gender expression. Sexual minority astronomers (including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people; LGBT) can face additional challenges at school and work. Studies show that LGBT students on many campuses report experiences of harassment. Cities, counties, and states may or may not have statutes to protect against such discrimination. There is wide variation in how states and insurance plans handle legal and medical issues for transgender people. Federal law does not acknowledge same-sex partners, including those legally married in the U.S. or in other countries. Immigration rules in the U.S. (and many other, but not all) countries do not recognize same-sex partners for visas, employment, etc. State `defense of marriage act' laws have been used to remove existing domestic partner benefits at some institutions, or benefits can disappear with a change in governor. LGBT astronomers who change schools, institutions, or countries during their career may experience significant differences in their legal, medical, and marital status.

  14. Astronomers in the Chemist's War

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trimble, Virginia L.

    2012-01-01

    World War II, with radar, rockets, and "atomic" bombs was the physicists' war. And many of us know, or think we know, what our more senior colleagues did during it, with Hubble and Hoffleit at Aberdeen; M. Schwarzschild on active duty in Italy; Bondi, Gold, and Hoyle hunkered down in Dunsfeld, Surrey, talking about radar, and perhaps steady state; Greenstein and Henyey designing all-sky cameras; and many astronomers teaching navigation. World War I was The Chemists' War, featuring poison gases, the need to produce liquid fuels from coal on one side of the English Channel and to replace previously-imported dyesstuffs on the other. The talke will focus on what astronomers did and had done to them between 1914 and 1919, from Freundlich (taken prisoner on an eclipse expedition days after the outbreak of hostilities) to Edwin Hubble, returning from France without ever having quite reached the front lines. Other events bore richer fruit (Hale and the National Research Council), but very few of the stories are happy ones. Most of us have neither first nor second hand memories of The Chemists' War, but I had the pleasure of dining with a former Freundlich student a couple of weeks ago.

  15. C++, objected-oriented programming, and astronomical data models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farris, A.

    1992-01-01

    Contemporary astronomy is characterized by increasingly complex instruments and observational techniques, higher data collection rates, and large data archives, placing severe stress on software analysis systems. The object-oriented paradigm represents a significant new approach to software design and implementation that holds great promise for dealing with this increased complexity. The basic concepts of this approach will be characterized in contrast to more traditional procedure-oriented approaches. The fundamental features of objected-oriented programming will be discussed from a C++ programming language perspective, using examples familiar to astronomers. This discussion will focus on objects, classes and their relevance to the data type system; the principle of information hiding; and the use of inheritance to implement generalization/specialization relationships. Drawing on the object-oriented approach, features of a new database model to support astronomical data analysis will be presented.

  16. The Material Culture of Nineteenth-Century Astrometry, its Circulation and Heritage at the Astronomical Observatory of Lisbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raposo, Pedro

    The Astronomical Observatory of Lisbon was founded in 1857 in the sequence of a controversy on stellar parallax measurements involving astronomers from the Observatory of Paris and the Observatory of Pulkovo. The development of this discussion led the contenders to recognize Lisbon as a suitable place to carry out this kind of measurements and to foster the field of stellar astronomy. Some local actors strived to keep up with this wave of international interest and establish a first-rank astronomical institution in the Portuguese capital. In order to fulfil this goal, correspondence was intensively exchanged with leading foreign astronomers and instrument makers. Besides, a Portuguese Navy officer bound to become the first director of the new institution was commissioned to visit several observatories and instrument workshops abroad, and to spend a few years in Pulkovo as a trainee astronomer. Although founded with generous financial support from the Portuguese crown and lavishly equipped and constructed, the Observatory of Lisbon was later affected by limiting budgets and a shortage of qualified personnel. Nevertheless, local efforts to improve instruments as well as observation and calculation techniques enabled its astronomers to yield important contributions to positional astronomy, especially towards the end of the nineteenth century and the beginnings of the twentieth century. The original instruments and spaces of the Observatory of Lisbon, strongly modelled on those of Pulkovo, are very well preserved, constituting an outstanding extant example of a mid-nineteenth century advanced observatory. The history they embody testifies the connectedness of the astronomical heritage worldwide.

  17. Amateur Astronomers: Secret Agents of EPO

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berendsen, M.; White, V.; Devore, E.; Reynolds, M.

    2008-06-01

    Amateur astronomers prime the public to be more interested, receptive, and excited about space science, missions, and programs. Through recent research and targeted programs, amateur astronomy outreach is being increasingly recognized by professional astronomers, educators, and other amateurs as a valued and important service. The Night Sky Network program, administered by the ASP, is the first nationwide research-based program specifically targeted to support outreach by amateur astronomers. This Network of trained and informed amateur astronomers can provide a stimulating introduction to your EPO programs as Network members share the night sky with families, students, and youth groups.

  18. Astronomical Symbolism in Australian Aboriginal Rock Art

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norris, Ray P.; Hamacher, Duane W.

    2011-05-01

    Traditional Aboriginal Australian cultures include a significant astronomical component, perpetuated through oral tradition and ceremony. This knowledge has practical navigational and calendrical functions, and sometimes extends to a deep understanding of the motion of objects in the sky. Here we explore whether this astronomical tradition is reflected in the rock art of Aboriginal Australians. We find several plausible examples of depictions of astronomical figures and symbols, and also evidence that astronomical observations were used to set out stone arrangements. However, we recognise that the case is not yet strong enough to make an unequivocal statement, and describe our plans for further research.

  19. Storing Astronomical Information on the Romanian Territory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavinschi, M.; Mioc, V.

    2004-12-01

    Romanian astronomy has a more than 2000-year old tradition, which is, however, little known abroad. The first known archive of astronomical information is the Dacian sanctuary at Sarmizegetusa Regia, erected in the first century AD, having similarities with that of Stonehenge. After a gap of more than 1000 years, more sources of astronomical information become available, mainly records of astronomical events. Monasteries were the safest storage places of these genuine archives. We present a classification of the ways of storing astronomical information, along with characteristic examples.

  20. FITSManager: Management of Personal Astronomical Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cui, Chenzhou; Fan, Dongwei; Zhao, Yongheng; Kembhavi, Ajit; He, Boliang; Cao, Zihuang; Li, Jian; Nandrekar, Deoyani

    2011-07-01

    With the increase of personal storage capacity, it is easy to find hundreds to thousands of FITS files in the personal computer of an astrophysicist. Because Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) is a professional data format initiated by astronomers and used mainly in the small community, data management toolkits for FITS files are very few. Astronomers need a powerful tool to help them manage their local astronomical data. Although Virtual Observatory (VO) is a network oriented astronomical research environment, its applications and related technologies provide useful solutions to enhance the management and utilization of astronomical data hosted in an astronomer's personal computer. FITSManager is such a tool to provide astronomers an efficient management and utilization of their local data, bringing VO to astronomers in a seamless and transparent way. FITSManager provides fruitful functions for FITS file management, like thumbnail, preview, type dependent icons, header keyword indexing and search, collaborated working with other tools and online services, and so on. The development of the FITSManager is an effort to fill the gap between management and analysis of astronomical data.

  1. Database-Driven Analyses of Astronomical Spectra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cami, Jan

    2012-03-01

    Spectroscopy is one of the most powerful tools to study the physical properties and chemical composition of very diverse astrophysical environments. In principle, each nuclide has a unique set of spectral features; thus, establishing the presence of a specific material at astronomical distances requires no more than finding a laboratory spectrum of the right material that perfectly matches the astronomical observations. Once the presence of a substance is established, a careful analysis of the observational characteristics (wavelengths or frequencies, intensities, and line profiles) allows one to determine many physical parameters of the environment in which the substance resides, such as temperature, density, velocity, and so on. Because of this great diagnostic potential, ground-based and space-borne astronomical observatories often include instruments to carry out spectroscopic analyses of various celestial objects and events. Of particular interest is molecular spectroscopy at infrared wavelengths. From the spectroscopic point of view, molecules differ from atoms in their ability to vibrate and rotate, and quantum physics inevitably causes those motions to be quantized. The energies required to excite vibrations or rotations are such that vibrational transitions generally occur at infrared wavelengths, whereas pure rotational transitions typically occur at sub-mm wavelengths. Molecular vibration and rotation are coupled though, and thus at infrared wavelengths, one commonly observes a multitude of ro-vibrational transitions (see Figure 13.1). At lower spectral resolution, all transitions blend into one broad ro-vibrational molecular band. The isotope. Molecular spectroscopy thus allows us to see a difference of one neutron in an atomic nucleus that is located at astronomical distances! Since the detection of the first interstellar molecules (the CH [21] and CN [14] radicals), more than 150 species have been detected in space, ranging in size from diatomic

  2. Maraghe Observatory and an Effort towards Retrieval of Architectural Design of Astronomical Units

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Javad Shekari Niri

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Maraghe observatory was built by such engineers as Moayiededdin Orozi etc. under supervision of Khaje Nasireddin Tousi in 7th century AH. The most significant feature associated with Maraghe observatory is the fact that architecture is employed to achieve astronomical purposes in this site. The reason for preferring observatory by astronomers was the fact that these units are superior to wooden and metal instruments with respect to accuracy, no size limitations, etc. Architectural design and function of astronomical units of Maraghe observatory site after discovery of its foundation in the course of explorations before Islamic Revolution remained unclear until recent years. After conducting required studies and investigations, the author managed to find significant cues and after some precise comparisons, he succeeded to recover the main design and function of some astronomical units of this international center. Based on these findings these astronomical structures can reliably be rebuilt. This research showed that every circular or polygonal building cannot be considered as an observatory. For example form and function of cemetery structures are completely different with astronomical ones. Following this research also valuable results were obtained in relation to stone architectural structures present on Maraghe observatory hill. In addition, claims about invention of astronomical units of Maraghe observatory by non-Iranian scientists are rejected and rights of Iranian scientists are rationally defended in this regard.

  3. The National Astronomical Observatory of Japan and Post-war Japanese Optical Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tajima, Toshiyuki

    This paper depicts some aspects of the formative process of the Japanese optical and infrared astronomical community in the post-war period, featuring the transition of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan(NAOJ). We take up three cases of telescope construction, examining their background and their contribution to the Japanese astronomical community. Through these cases, the characteristics of traditions and cultures of optical and infrared astronomy in Japan are considered. Although the Tokyo Astronomical Observatory (TAO) of the University of Tokyo, the predecessor of NAOJ, was originally founded as an agency for practical astronomical observation such as time and almanac service, it has become an international centre for all types of astrophysical research. Research and development of telescopes and observational instruments have become an important part of the astronomers' practice. Now, however, a number of Japanese universities are planning to have their own large to middle-sized telescopes, and a new style of astronomical research is emerging involving astrophysical studies utilising data acquired from the Virtual Observatory, so there is a distinct possibility that the status of the NAOJ will change even further in the future.

  4. BOOK REVIEW: The Wandering Astronomer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swinbank, Elizabeth

    2000-09-01

    Fans of Patrick Moore will like this book. I enjoyed it more than I expected, having anticipated a collection of personal anecdotes of the type favoured by certain tedious after-dinner speakers. Some of the 41 short items it contains do tend towards that category, but there are also some nuggets which might enliven your physics teaching. For example, did you know that, in a murder trial in 1787, the defendant's belief that the Sun was inhabited was cited as evidence of his insanity? This was despite his views being shared by many astronomers of the day including William Herschel. Or that Clyde Tombaugh had a cat called Pluto after the planet he discovered, which was itself named by an eleven-year-old girl? Another gem concerns a brief flurry, in the early 1990s, over a suspected planet orbiting a pulsar; variations in the arrival time of its radio pulses indicated the presence of an orbiting body. These shifts were later found to arise from an error in a computer program that corrected for the Earth's motion. The programmer had assumed a circular orbit for the Earth whereas it is actually elliptical. The book is clearly intended for amateur astronomers and followers of Patrick Moore's TV programmes. There is plenty of astronomy, with an emphasis on the solar system, but very little astrophysics. The author's metricophobia means that quantities are given in imperial units throughout, with metric equivalents added in brackets (by an editor, I suspect) which can get irritating, particularly as powers-of-ten notation is avoided. It is quite a novelty to see the temperature for hydrogen fusion quoted as 18 000 000 °F (10 000 000 °C). By way of contrast, astronomical terms are used freely - ecliptic, first-magnitude star, and so on. Such terms are defined in a glossary at the end, but attention is not drawn to this and I only stumbled across it by chance. Patrick Moore obviously knows his public, and this book will serve them well. For physics teachers and students

  5. Astronomical theory of climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berger, A.; Loutre, M.F. [Universite Catholique de Louvain (UCL), Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium). Inst. d' Astronomie et de Geophysique G. Lemaitre

    2004-12-01

    The astronomical theory of paleo-climates aims to explain the climatic variations occurring with quasi-periodicities lying between tens and hundreds of thousands of years. The origin of these quasi-cycles lies in the astronomically driven changes in the latitudinal and seasonal distributions of the energy that the Earth receives from the Sun. These changes are then amplified by the feedback mechanisms which characterize the natural behaviour of the climate system like those involving the albedo-, the water vapor-, and the vegetation- temperature relationships. Climate models of different complexities are used to explain the chain of processes which finally link the long-term variations of three astronomical parameters to the long-term climatic variations at time scale of tens to hundreds of thousands of years. In particular, sensitivity analysis to the astronomically driven insolation changes and to the CO{sub 2} atmospheric concentrations have been performed with the 2-dimension climate model of Louvain-la-Neuve. It could be shown that this model simulates more or less correctly the entrance into glaciation around 2.75 million year (Myr) BP (before present), the late Pliocene-early Pleistocene 41-kyr (thousand years) cycle, the emergence of the 100-kyr cycle around 850 kyr BP and the glacial-interglacial cycles of the last 600 kyr. During the Late Pliocene (in an ice-free - warm world) ice sheets can only develop during times of sufficiently low summer insolation. This occurs during large eccentricity times when climatic precession and obliquity combine to obtain such low values, leading to the 41-kyr period between 3 and 1 million years BP. On the contrary in a glacial world, ice sheets persist most of the time except when insolation is very high in polar latitudes, requiring large eccentricity again, but leading this time to interglacial and finally to the 100-kyr period of the last 1 Myr. Using CO{sub 2} scenarios, it has been shown that stage 11 and stage 1

  6. An astronomical observatory for Peru

    Science.gov (United States)

    del Mar, Juan Quintanilla; Sicardy, Bruno; Giraldo, Víctor Ayma; Callo, Víctor Raúl Aguilar

    2011-06-01

    Peru and France are to conclude an agreement to provide Peru with an astronomical observatory equipped with a 60-cm diameter telescope. The principal aims of this project are to establish and develop research and teaching in astronomy. Since 2004, a team of researchers from Paris Observatory has been working with the University of Cusco (UNSAAC) on the educational, technical and financial aspects of implementing this venture. During an international astronomy conference in Cusco in July 2009, the foundation stone of the future Peruvian Observatory was laid at the top of Pachatusan Mountain. UNSAAC, represented by its Rector, together with the town of Oropesa and the Cusco regional authority, undertook to make the sum of 300,000€ available to the project. An agreement between Paris Observatory and UNSAAC now enables Peruvian students to study astronomy through online teaching.

  7. Asteroids astronomical and geological bodies

    CERN Document Server

    Burbine, Thomas H

    2016-01-01

    Asteroid science is a fundamental topic in planetary science and is key to furthering our understanding of planetary formation and the evolution of the Solar System. Ground-based observations and missions have provided a wealth of new data in recent years, and forthcoming missions promise further exciting results. This accessible book presents a comprehensive introduction to asteroid science, summarising the astronomical and geological characteristics of asteroids. The interdisciplinary nature of asteroid science is reflected in the broad range of topics covered, including asteroid and meteorite classification, chemical and physical properties of asteroids, observational techniques, cratering, and the discovery of asteroids and how they are named. Other chapters discuss past, present and future space missions and the threat that these bodies pose for Earth. Based on an upper-level course on asteroids and meteorites taught by the author, this book is ideal for students, researchers and professional scientists ...

  8. Preparing Colorful Astronomical Images II

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levay, Z. G.; Frattare, L. M.

    2002-12-01

    We present additional techniques for using mainstream graphics software (Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator) to produce composite color images and illustrations from astronomical data. These techniques have been used on numerous images from the Hubble Space Telescope to produce photographic, print and web-based products for news, education and public presentation as well as illustrations for technical publication. We expand on a previous paper to present more detail and additional techniques, taking advantage of new or improved features available in the latest software versions. While Photoshop is not intended for quantitative analysis of full dynamic range data (as are IRAF or IDL, for example), we have had much success applying Photoshop's numerous, versatile tools to work with scaled images, masks, text and graphics in multiple semi-transparent layers and channels.

  9. IAU Public Astronomical Organisations Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canas, Lina; Cheung, Sze Leung

    2015-08-01

    The Office for Astronomy Outreach has devoted intensive means to create and support a global network of public astronomical organisations around the world. Focused on bringing established and newly formed amateur astronomy organizations together, providing communications channels and platforms for disseminating news to the global community and the sharing of best practices and resources among these associations around the world. In establishing the importance that these organizations have for the dissemination of activities globally and acting as key participants in IAU various campaigns social media has played a key role in keeping this network engaged and connected. Here we discuss the implementation process of maintaining this extensive network, the processing and gathering of information and the interactions between local active members at a national and international level.

  10. Astronomical Data in Undergraduate courses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarkson, William I.; Swift, Carrie; Hughes, Kelli; Burke, Christopher J. F.; Burgess, Colin C.; Elrod, Aunna V.; Howard, Brittany; Stahl, Lucas; Matzke, David; Bord, Donald J.

    2016-06-01

    We present status and plans for our ongoing efforts to develop data analysis and problem-solving skills through Undergraduate Astronomy instruction. While our initiatives were developed with UM-Dearborn’s student body primarily in mind, they should be applicable for a wide range of institution and of student demographics. We focus here on two strands of our effort.Firstly, students in our Introductory Astronomy (ASTR 130) general-education course now perform several “Data Investigations”, in which they interrogate the Hubble Legacy Archive to illustrate important course concepts. This was motivated in part by the realization that typical public data archives now include tools to interrogate the observations that are sufficiently accessible that introductory astronomy students can use them to perform real science, albeit mostly at a descriptive level. We are continuing to refine these investigations, and, most importantly, to critically assess their effectiveness in terms of the student learning outcomes we wish to achieve. This work is supported by grant HST-EO-13758, provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS 5-26555.Secondly, at the advanced-undergraduate level, students taking courses in our Astronomy minor are encouraged to gain early experience in techniques of astronomical observation and analysis that are used by professionals. We present two example projects from the Fall 2015 iteration of our upper-division course ASTR330 (The Cosmic Distance Ladder), one involving Solar System measurements, the second producing calibrated aperture photometry. For both projects students conducted, analysed, and interpreted observations using our 0.4m campus telescope, and used many of the same analysis tools as professional astronomers. This work is supported partly from a Research Initiation and Seed grant from the

  11. The Russian-Ukrainian Observatories Network for the European Astronomical Observatory Route Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andrievsky, S. M.; Bondar, N. I.; Karetnikov, V. G.; Kazantseva, L. V.; Nefedyev, Y. A.; Pinigin, G. I.; Pozhalova, Zh. A.; Rostopchina-Shakhovskay, A. N.; Stepanov, A. V.; Tolbin, S. V.

    2011-09-01

    In 2004,the Center of UNESCO World Heritage has announced a new initiative "Astronomy & World Heritage" directed for search and preserving of objects,referred to astronomy,its history in a global value,historical and cultural properties. There were defined a strategy of thematic programme "Initiative" and general criteria for selecting of ancient astronomical objects and observatories. In particular, properties that are situated or have significance in relation to celestial objects or astronomical events; representations of sky and/or celestial bodies and astronomical events; observatories and instruments; properties closely connected with the history of astronomy. In 2005-2006,in accordance with the program "Initiative", information about outstanding properties connected with astronomy have been collected.In Ukraine such work was organized by astronomical expert group in Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory. In 2007, Nikolaev observatory was included to the Tentative List of UNESCO under # 5116. Later, in 2008, the network of four astronomical observatories of Ukraine in Kiev,Crimea, Nikolaev and Odessa,considering their high authenticities and integrities,was included to the Tentative List of UNESCO under # 5267 "Astronomical Observatories of Ukraine". In 2008-2009, a new project "Thematic Study" was opened as a successor of "Initiative". It includes all fields of astronomical heritage from earlier prehistory to the Space astronomy (14 themes in total). We present the Ukraine-Russian Observatories network for the "European astronomical observatory Route project". From Russia two observatories are presented: Kazan Observatory and Pulkovo Observatory in the theme "Astronomy from the Renaissance to the mid-twentieth century".The description of astronomical observatories of Ukraine is given in accordance with the project "Thematic study"; the theme "Astronomy from the Renaissance to the mid-twentieth century" - astronomical observatories in Kiev,Nikolaev and Odessa; the

  12. ISO Results Presented at International Astronomical Union

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-08-01

    . Astronomers can now combine ISO's results with observations of the same object and others like it, at sub-millimetre radio wavelengths, to build up a detailed picture of the earliest stages of star formation. Ward-Thompson says: "Our fellow-astronomers thought we had no chance of detecting pre-stellar cores with any instruments available today. Now that we've done it, with the radio telescopes on the ground and with ISO in space, a new chapter in the study of star formation can begin. Already our results contradict the theory that a pre-stellar core should spin rapidly. It doesn't. In addition, our observations have shown us that the manner in which a newly-forming star first collapses is different from that which was previously predicted." Looking for the origin of planets Our immediate cosmic mother was the Solar Nebula, the cloud of gas and dust that supposedly swirled around the Sun at its birth about 4.5 billion years ago. Gravity flattened the gas and dust into a disk, like a giant version of the rings of Saturn. Stony and icy grains of dust congealed to make the Sun's family of planets, including the Earth. The comets are relics of the construction of the Solar System, and ISO has investigated their chemical composition. Yet the concept of planet-making in the dusty disk of the Solar Nebula was just a theory until the advent of infrared space astronomy. One of the more time-intensive programmes of ISO deals with the existence of disks of dust particles around normal stars. The Sun still has a disk, visible as the Zodiacal Light seen close to the horizon after sunset in spring or before sunrise in autumn. The dust is, however, too sparse to be detected, if one were looking for a similar feature in the surroundings of another star. Therefore it came as a big surprise when ISO's predecessor, the Dutch-US-UK Infrared Astronomical Satellite (1983), detected similar dust disks around a few nearby stars, notably Vega and Beta Pictoris, with much more material than the Sun

  13. A SURVEY OF ASTRONOMICAL RESEARCH: A BASELINE FOR ASTRONOMICAL DEVELOPMENT

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ribeiro, V. A. R. M.; Russo, P.; Cárdenas-Avendaño, A.

    2013-01-01

    Measuring scientific development is a difficult task. Different metrics have been put forward to evaluate scientific development; in this paper we explore a metric that uses the number of peer-reviewed, and when available non-peer-reviewed, research articles as an indicator of development in the field of astronomy. We analyzed the available publication record, using the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/NASA Astrophysics Database System, by country affiliation in the time span between 1950 and 2011 for countries with a gross national income of less than 14,365 USD in 2010. This represents 149 countries. We propose that this metric identifies countries in ''astronomical development'' with a culture of research publishing. We also propose that for a country to develop in astronomy, it should invest in outside expert visits, send its staff abroad to study, and establish a culture of scientific publishing. Furthermore, we propose that this paper may be used as a baseline to measure the success of major international projects, such as the International Year of Astronomy 2009

  14. The Growth of Interest in Astronomical X-Ray Polarimetry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frédéric Marin

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Astronomical X-ray polarimetry was first explored in the end of the 1960s by pioneering rocket instruments. The craze arising from the first discoveries of stellar and supernova remnant X-ray polarization led to the addition of X-ray polarimeters to early satellites. Unfortunately, the inadequacy of the diffraction and scattering technologies required to measure polarization with respect to the constraints driven by X-ray mirrors and detectors, coupled with long integration times, slowed down the field for almost 40 years. Thanks to the development of new, highly sensitive, compact X-ray polarimeters in the beginning of the 2000s, observing astronomical X-ray polarization has become feasible, and scientists are now ready to explore our high-energy sky thanks to modern X-ray polarimeters. In the forthcoming years, several X-ray missions (rockets, balloons, and satellites will create new observational opportunities. Interest in astronomical X-ray polarimetry field has thus been renewed, and this paper presents for the first time a quantitative assessment, all based on scientific literature, of the growth of this interest.

  15. Astronomers Discover Six-Image Gravitational Lens

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-08-01

    galaxies and the relationships of the individual cluster galaxies to the 'halo' of dark matter in which they are embedded," he added. Clusters of galaxies are known to produce gravitational lenses with up to eight images of a single background object. However, the number of galaxies in such a cluster makes it difficult for astronomers to decipher just how their gravitational effects have combined to produce the multiple images. Researchers hope to be able to understand the lensing effect well enough to use the lenses to show them how galaxies, gas and unseen dark matter in clusters are distributed. A system such as B1359+154, with only three galaxies involved in the lensing, can help astronomers learn how complex gravitational lenses work. "The next big step is to use HST to see the pattern of rings produced by the galaxy surrounding the black hole. We already see hints of them, but with the upgrades to HST in the next servicing mission we should be able to trace it completely both to pin down the structure of the lens and to have an enormously magnified image for studying the distant host galaxy," Kochanek said. In addition to Rusin, Kochanek and Norbury, the researchers are: Emilio Falco of the CfA; Chris Impey of Steward Observatory at the University of Arizona; Joseph Lehar of the CfA; Brian McLeod of the CfA; Hans-Walter Rix of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy in Germany; Chuck Keeton of Steward Observatory; Jose Munoz of the Astrophysical Institute of the Canaries in Tenerife, Spain; and Chien Peng of Steward Observatory. The team published its results in the Astrophysical Journal. The VLBA is a system of 10 radio-telescope antennas that work together as a single astronomical instrument. The antennas are spread across the United States, from Hawaii in the west to the U.S. Virgin Islands in the east. A radio telescope system more than 5,000 miles across, the VLBA produces extremely detailed images. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the

  16. "Movie Star" Acting Strangely, Radio Astronomers Find

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-01-01

    Astronomers have used the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope to make the first-ever time-lapse "movie" showing details of gas motions around a star other than our Sun. The study, the largest observational project yet undertaken using Very Long Baseline Interferometry, has produced surprising results that indicate scientists do not fully understand stellar atmospheres. The "movie" shows that the atmosphere of a pulsating star more than 1,000 light-years away continues to expand during a part of the star's pulsation period in which astronomers expected it to start contracting. Philip Diamond and Athol Kemball, of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Socorro, New Mexico, announced their findings at the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Austin, TX, today. "The continued expansion we're seeing contradicts current theoretical models for how these stars work," Diamond said. "The models have assumed spherical symmetry in the star's atmosphere, and our movie shows that this is not the case. Such models suggest that a shock wave passes outward from the star. Once it's passed, then the atmosphere should begin to contract because of the star's gravity. We've long passed that point and the contraction has not begun." The time-lapse images show that the gas motions are not uniform around the star. Most of the motion is that of gas moving directly outward from the star's surface. However, in about one-fourth of the ring, there are peculiar motions that do not fit this pattern. The scientists speculate that the rate of mass loss may not be the same from all parts of the star's surface. "A similar star behaved as predicted when studied a few years ago, so we're left to wonder what's different about this one," Diamond said. "Right now, we think that different rates of mass loss in the two stars may be the cause of the difference. This star is losing mass at 100 times the rate of the star in the earlier study." "This

  17. A Mythological, Philosophical and Astronomical approach of our solar system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drivas, Sotirios; Kastanidou, Sofia

    2016-04-01

    Teaching Geography in the first Class of Gymnasium - secondary education we will focus in Solar System: Astronomical approach: Students will look and find the astronomical data of the planets, they will make comparisons between the sizes of their radius, they will find the distance from the Sun, they will search the relative motion, they will calculate the gravity on each planet, etc. Mythological approach: We will search the names and meanings of the planets based on Greek mythological origin. Philosophical approach: Regarding the philosophical approach of the "solar system" we will look and find: • Why planets are called so? • How did planets get their names? • What are the periods of Greek astronomy? • What were the astronomical instruments of ancient Greeks and who did built them? • What were the Greek philosophers and astronomers? When did they live and what did they discover? • Which method did Eratosthenes of Cyrene apply about 206B.C. to serve a real measurement of the earth's radius? • What was the relationship between science and religion in ancient Greece? Literature approach: At the end of the program students will write their opinion in subject "Having a friend from another planet" based on the book of Antoine de Saint - Exupéry "The little prince". Law approach: A jurist working in Secondary Education will visits our school and engages students in the Space Law. Artistic approach: Students will create their own posters of our planetary system. The best posters will be posted on the school bulletin board to display their work. Visit: Students and teachers will visit the Observatory of Larissa where they will see how observatory works and talk with scientists about their job. They will look through telescopes and observe the sun.

  18. Reporting Astronomical Discoveries: Past, Now, and Future

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, Hitoshi; Green, Daniel W. E.; Samus, Nikolai N.; West, Richard

    2015-08-01

    Many new astronomical objects have been discovered over the years by amateur astronomers, and this continues to be the case. They have traditionally reported them (as have professional astronomers) to the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams (CBAT), which was established in the 19th century. This procedure has worked very well throughout the 20th century, moving under the umbrella of the newly established IAU in 1920. The discoverers have been honored by the formal announcement of their discoveries in the publications of the CBAT.In recent years, some professional research groups have established other ways of announcing their discoveries of explosive objects such as novae and supernovae; some do not now report their discoveries or spectroscopic confirmations of the transients to the CBAT, including often spectroscopic reports of objects posted to the CBAT "Transient Objects Confirmation Page" -- the highly successful TOCP webpage, which assigns official positional designations to new transients posted there by approved, registered users. This leads to a delay in formal announcements of discoveries by amateur astronomers in many cases, as well as inconsistent designations being put into use by individual groups. Amateur astronomers are feeling frustrated about this situation, and they hope that the IAU will help to settle the situation.We have proposed the new IAU commission NC-52, which will treat these phenomena in a continuation of Commission 6, through the CBAT. We hope to continuously support the reporting of the discoveries by amateur astronomers, as well as professional astronomers, who all deserve and desire proper recognition. Our strategy will maintain the firm trust between the amateur and professional astronomers, which is necessary for true collaboration. The plan is for the CBAT to work with collaborators to assure that discoveries posted on the TOCP are promptly designated and announced by the CBAT, even when confirmations are made elsewhere

  19. Astronomical Surveys and Big Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mickaelian Areg M.

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Recent all-sky and large-area astronomical surveys and their catalogued data over the whole range of electromagnetic spectrum, from γ-rays to radio waves, are reviewed, including such as Fermi-GLAST and INTEGRAL in γ-ray, ROSAT, XMM and Chandra in X-ray, GALEX in UV, SDSS and several POSS I and POSS II-based catalogues (APM, MAPS, USNO, GSC in the optical range, 2MASS in NIR, WISE and AKARI IRC in MIR, IRAS and AKARI FIS in FIR, NVSS and FIRST in radio range, and many others, as well as the most important surveys giving optical images (DSS I and II, SDSS, etc., proper motions (Tycho, USNO, Gaia, variability (GCVS, NSVS, ASAS, Catalina, Pan-STARRS, and spectroscopic data (FBS, SBS, Case, HQS, HES, SDSS, CALIFA, GAMA. An overall understanding of the coverage along the whole wavelength range and comparisons between various surveys are given: galaxy redshift surveys, QSO/AGN, radio, Galactic structure, and Dark Energy surveys. Astronomy has entered the Big Data era, with Astrophysical Virtual Observatories and Computational Astrophysics playing an important role in using and analyzing big data for new discoveries.

  20. Astronomical Knowledge in Holy Books

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmanyan, Sona V.; Mickaelian, Areg M.

    2015-08-01

    We investigate religious myths related to astronomy from different cultures in an attempt to identify common subjects and characteristics. The paper focuses on astronomy in religion. The initial review covers records from Holy books about sky related superstitious beliefs and cosmological understanding. The purpose of this study is to introduce sky related religious and national traditions (particularly based on different calendars; Solar or Lunar). We carried out a comparative study of astronomical issues contained in a number of Holy books: Ancient Egyptian Religion (Pyramid Texts), Zoroastrianism (Avesta), Hinduism (Vedas), Buddhism (Tipitaka), Confucianism (Five Classics), Sikhism (Guru Granth Sahib), Christianity (Bible), Islam (Quran), Druidism (Mabinogion) and Maya Religion (Popol Vuh). These books include various information on the creation of the Universe, Sun and Moon, the age of the Universe, Cosmic sizes, understanding about the planets, stars, Milky Way and description of the Heavens in different religions. We come to the conclusion that the perception of celestial objects varies from culture to culture, and from religion to religion and preastronomical views had a significant impact on humankind, particularly on religious diversities. We prove that Astronomy is the basis of cultures, and that national identity and mythology and religion were formed due to the special understanding of celestial objects.

  1. Infrared astronomical satellite (IRAS) catalogs and atlases. Volume 1: Explanatory supplement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beichman, C. A. (Editor); Neugebauer, G. (Editor); Habing, H. J. (Editor); Clegg, P. E. (Editor); Chester, Thomas J. (Editor)

    1988-01-01

    The Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) was launched on January 26, 1983. During its 300-day mission, IRAS surveyed over 96 pct of the celestial sphere at four infrared wavelengths, centered approximately at 12, 25, 60, and 100 microns. Volume 1 describes the instrument, the mission, and data reduction.

  2. Longwave Imaging for Astronomical Applications, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — We propose to develop a compact portable longwave camera for astronomical applications. In Phase 1, we successfully developed the eye of the camera, i.e. the focal...

  3. Astronomers no longer in the dark

    CERN Multimedia

    MacMillan, L

    2002-01-01

    In a significant breakthrough, British and US astronomers have begun to pin down the most elusive material in the universe. They have made a map of dark matter - the heavy, invisible stuff that gives the galaxies their shape (1 page).

  4. Astronomers find distant planet like Jupiter

    CERN Multimedia

    2003-01-01

    Astronomers searching for planetary systems like our solar system have found a planet similar to Jupiter orbiting a nearby star similar to our Sun, about 90 light-years from Earth, according to researchers (1/2 page).

  5. The Soviet center of astronomical data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dluzhnevskaya, O.B.

    1982-01-01

    On the basis of the current French-Soviet cooperation in science and technology, the Astronomical Council of the U.S.S.R. Academy of Sciences and the Strasbourg Center signed in 1977 an agreement on setting up the Soviet Center of Astronomical Data as its filial branch. The Soviet Center was created on the basis of a computation center at the Zvenigorod station of the Astronomical Council of the U.S.S.R. Academy of Sciences, which had already had considerable experience of working with stellar catalogues. In 1979 the Center was equipped with a EC-1033 computer. In 1978-1979 the Soviet Center of Astronomical Data (C.A.D.) received from Strasbourg 96 of the most important catalogues. By September 1981 the list of catalogues available at the Soviet Center has reached 140 catalogues some of which are described. (Auth.)

  6. The infrared astronomical mission AKARI

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Murakami, Hiroshi; Baba, Hajime; Barthel, Peter; Clements, David L.; Cohen, Martin; Doi, Yasuo; Enya, Keigo; Figueredo, Elysandra; Fujishiro, Naofumi; Fujiwara, Hideaki; Fujiwara, Mikio; Garcia-Lario, Pedro; Goto, Tomotsugu; Hasegawa, Sunao; Hibi, Yasunori; Hirao, Takanori; Hiromoto, Norihisa; Hong, Seung Soo; Imai, Koji; Ishigaki, Miho; Ishiguro, Masateru; Ishihara, Daisuke; Ita, Yoshifusa; Jeong, Woong-Seob; Jeong, Kyung Sook; Kaneda, Hidehiro; Kataza, Hirokazu; Kawada, Mitsunobu; Kawai, Toshihide; Kawamura, Akiko; Kessler, Martin F.; Kester, Do; Kii, Tsuneo; Kim, Dong Chan; Kim, Wjung; Kobayashi, Hisato; Koo, Bon Chul; Kwon, Suk Minn; Lee, Hyung Mok; Lorente, Rosario; Makiuti, Sin'itirou; Matsuhara, Hideo; Matsumoto, Toshio; Matsuo, Hiroshi; Matsuura, Shuji; Mueller, Thomas G.; Murakami, Noriko; Nagata, Hirohisa; Nakagawa, Takao; Naoi, Takahiro; Narita, Masanao; Noda, Manabu; Oh, Sang Hoon; Ohnishi, Akira; Ohyama, Youichi; Okada, Yoko; Okuda, Haruyuki; Oliver, Sebastian; Onaka, Takashi; Ootsubo, Takafumi; Oyabu, Shinki; Pak, Sojong; Park, Yong-Sun; Pearson, Chris P.; Rowan-Robinson, Michael; Saito, Toshinobu; Sakon, Itsuki; Salama, Alberto; Sato, Shinji; Savage, Richard S.; Serjeant, Stephen; Shibai, Hiroshi; Shirahata, Mai; Sohn, Jungjoo; Suzuki, Toyoaki; Takagi, Toshinobu; Takahashi, Hidenori; Tanabe, Toshihiko; Takeuchi, Tsutomu T.; Takita, Satoshi; Thomson, Matthew; Uemizu, Kazunori; Ueno, Munetaka; Usui, Fumihiko; Verdugo, Eva; Wada, Takehiko; Wang, Lingyu; Watabe, Toyoki; Watarai, Hidenori; White, Glenn J.; Yamamura, Issei; Yamauchi, Chisato; Yasuda, Akiko

    2007-01-01

    AKARI, the first Japanese satellite dedicated to infrared astronomy, was launched on 2006 February 21, and started observations in May of the same year. AKARI has a 68.5 cm cooled telescope, together with two focal-plane instruments, which survey the sky in six wavelength bands from mid- to

  7. Astronomers Unveiling Life's Cosmic Origins

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-02-01

    Processes that laid the foundation for life on Earth -- star and planet formation and the production of complex organic molecules in interstellar space -- are yielding their secrets to astronomers armed with powerful new research tools, and even better tools soon will be available. Astronomers described three important developments at a symposium on the "Cosmic Cradle of Life" at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago, IL. Chemistry Cycle The Cosmic Chemistry Cycle CREDIT: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF Full Size Image Files Chemical Cycle Graphic (above image, JPEG, 129K) Graphic With Text Blocks (JPEG, 165K) High-Res TIFF (44.2M) High-Res TIFF With Text Blocks (44.2M) In one development, a team of astrochemists released a major new resource for seeking complex interstellar molecules that are the precursors to life. The chemical data released by Anthony Remijan of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and his university colleagues is part of the Prebiotic Interstellar Molecule Survey, or PRIMOS, a project studying a star-forming region near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. PRIMOS is an effort of the National Science Foundation's Center for Chemistry of the Universe, started at the University of Virginia (UVa) in October 2008, and led by UVa Professor Brooks H. Pate. The data, produced by the NSF's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia, came from more than 45 individual observations totalling more than nine GigaBytes of data and over 1.4 million individual frequency channels. Scientists can search the GBT data for specific radio frequencies, called spectral lines -- telltale "fingerprints" -- naturally emitted by molecules in interstellar space. "We've identified more than 720 spectral lines in this collection, and about 240 of those are from unknown molecules," Remijan said. He added, "We're making available to all scientists the best collection of data below 50 GHz ever produced for

  8. Information seeking behavior of Greek astronomers

    OpenAIRE

    Brindesi, Hara; Kapidakis, Sarantos

    2011-01-01

    This study examines three aspects of information seeking behaviour of astronomers in Greece including a) the importance they place in keeping up- to-date with current developments b) the methods they depend on for keeping up-to-date and c) the information sources they mostly use. We adopted an intradisciplinary approach in order to investigate similarities and differences in information seeking behaviour among astronomers when examining them as groups bearing different characteristics, includ...

  9. An Information Retrieval and Recommendation System for Astronomical Observatories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mukund, Nikhil; Thakur, Saurabh; Abraham, Sheelu; Aniyan, A. K.; Mitra, Sanjit; Sajeeth Philip, Ninan; Vaghmare, Kaustubh; Acharjya, D. P.

    2018-03-01

    We present a machine-learning-based information retrieval system for astronomical observatories that tries to address user-defined queries related to an instrument. In the modern instrumentation scenario where heterogeneous systems and talents are simultaneously at work, the ability to supply people with the right information helps speed up the tasks for detector operation, maintenance, and upgradation. The proposed method analyzes existing documented efforts at the site to intelligently group related information to a query and to present it online to the user. The user in response can probe the suggested content and explore previously developed solutions or probable ways to address the present situation optimally. We demonstrate natural language-processing-backed knowledge rediscovery by making use of the open source logbook data from the Laser Interferometric Gravitational Observatory (LIGO). We implement and test a web application that incorporates the above idea for LIGO Livingston, LIGO Hanford, and Virgo observatories.

  10. Astronomers debate diamonds in space

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-04-01

    This is not the first time the intriguing carbonaceous compound has been detected in space. A peculiar elite of twelve stars are known to produce it. The star now added by ISO to this elite is one of the best representatives of this exclusive family, since it emits a very strong signal of the compound. Additionally ISO found a second new member of the group with weaker emission, and also observed with a spectral resolution never achieved before other already known stars in this class. Astronomers think these ISO results will help solve the mystery of the true nature of the compound. Their publication by two different groups, from Spain and Canada, has triggered a debate on the topic, both in astronomy institutes and in chemistry laboratories. At present, mixed teams of astrophysicists and chemists are investigating in the lab compounds whose chemical signature or "fingerprint" matches that detected by ISO. Neither diamonds nor fullerenes have ever been detected in space, but their presence has been predicted. Tiny diamonds of pre-solar origin --older than the Solar System-- have been found in meteorites, which supports the as yet unconfirmed theory of their presence in interstellar space. The fullerene molecule, made of 60 carbon atoms linked to form a sphere (hence the name "buckyball"), has also been extensively searched for in space but never found. If the carbonaceous compound detected by ISO is a fullerene or a diamond, there will be new data on the production of these industrially interesting materials. Fullerenes are being investigated as "capsules" to deliver new pharmaceuticals to the body. Diamonds are commonly used in the electronics industry and for the development of new materials; if they are formed in the dust surrounding some stars, at relatively low temperatures and conditions of low pressure, companies could learn more about the ideal physical conditions to produce them. A textbook case The latest star in which the compound has been found is

  11. Astronomers celebrate a year of new Hubble results

    Science.gov (United States)

    1995-02-01

    "We are beginning to understand that because of these observations we are going to have to change the way we look at the Universe," said ESA's Dr Duccio Macchetto, Associate Director for Science Programs at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI), Baltimore, Maryland, USA. The European Space Agency plays a major role in the Hubble Space Telescope programme. The Agency provided one of the telescope's four major instruments, called the Faint Object Camera, and two sets of electricity-generating solar arrays. In addition, 15 ESA scientific and technical staff work at the STScI. In return for this contribution, European astronomers are entitled to 15 percent of the telescope's observing time, although currently they account for 20 percent of all observations. "This is a testimony to the quality of the European science community", said Dr Roger Bonnet, Director of Science at ESA. "We are only guaranteed 15 percent of the telescope's use, but consistently receive much more than that." Astronomers from universities, observatories and research institutes across Europe lead more than 60 investigations planned for the telescope's fifth observing cycle, which begins this summer. Many more Europeans contribute to teams led by other astronomers. Looking back to the very start of time European astronomer Dr Peter Jakobsen used ESA's Faint Object Camera to confirm that helium was present in the early Universe. Astronomers had long predicted that 90 percent of the newly born Universe consisted of hydrogen, with helium making up the remainder. Before the refurbished Hubble came along, it was easy to detect the hydrogen, but the primordial helium remained elusive. The ultraviolet capabilities of the telescope, combined with the improvement in spatial resolution following the repair, made it possible for Dr Jakobsen to obtain an image of a quasar close to the edge of the known Universe. A spectral analysis of this picture revealed the quasar's light, which took 13 billion years

  12. Astronomers Get New Tools for Gravitational-Wave Detection

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Teamwork between gamma-ray and radio astronomers has produced a breakthrough in finding natural cosmic tools needed to make the first direct detections of the long-elusive gravitational waves predicted by Albert Einstein nearly a century ago. An orbiting gamma-ray telescope has pointed radio astronomers to specific locations in the sky where they can discover new millisecond pulsars. Millisecond pulsars, rapidly-spinning superdense neutron stars, can serve as extremely precise and stable natural clocks. Astronomers hope to detect gravitational waves by measuring tiny changes in the pulsars' rotation caused by the passage of the gravitational waves. To do this, they need a multitude of millisecond pulsars dispersed widely throughout the sky. However, nearly three decades after the discovery of the first millisecond pulsar, only about 150 of them had been found, some 90 of those clumped tightly in globular star clusters and thus unusable for detecting gravitational waves. The problem was that millisecond pulsars could only be discovered through arduous, computing-intensive searches of small portions of sky. "We've probably found far less than one percent of the millisecond pulsars in the Milky Way Galaxy," said Scott Ransom of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). The breakthrough came when an instrument aboard NASA's Fermi Gamma-Ray Space Telescope began surveying the sky in 2008. This instrument located hundreds of gamma-ray-emitting objects throughout our Galaxy, and astronomers suspected many of these could be millisecond pulsars. Paul Ray of the Naval Research Laboratory initiated an international collaboration to use radio telescopes to confirm the identity of these objects as millisecond pulsars. "The data from Fermi were like a buried-treasure map," Ransom said. "Using our radio telescopes to study the objects located by Fermi, we found 17 millisecond pulsars in three months. Large-scale searches had taken 10-15 years to find that many," Ransom

  13. Astronomers Without Borders: A Global Astronomy Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, M.

    2011-10-01

    Astronomers Without Borders (AWB) brings together astronomy enthusiasts of all types - amateur astronomers, educators, professionals and "armchair" astronomers for a variety of online and physicalworld programs. The AWB web site provides social networking and a base for online programs that engage people worldwide in astronomy activities that transcend geopolitical and cultural borders. There is universal interest in astronomy, which has been present in all cultures throughout recorded history. Astronomy is also among the most accessible of sciences with the natural laboratory of the sky being available to people worldwide. There are few other interests for which people widely separated geographically can engage in activities involving the same objects. AWB builds on those advantages to bring people together. AWB also provides a platform where projects can reach a global audience. AWB also provides unique opportunities for multidisciplinary collaboration in EPO programs. Several programs including The World at Night, Global Astronomy Month and others will be described along with lessons learned.

  14. Early results from the Infrared Astronomical Satellite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neugebauer, G.; Beichman, C.A.; Soifer, B.T.

    1984-01-01

    For 10 months the Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) provided astronomers with what might be termed their first view of the infrared sky on a clear, dark night. Without IRAS, atmospheric absorption and the thermal emission from both the atmosphere and Earthbound telescopes make the task of the infrared astronomer comparable to what an optical astronomer would face if required to work only on cloudy afternoons. IRAS observations are serving astronomers in the same manner as the photographic plates of the Palomar Observatory Sky Survey; just as the optical survey has been used by all astronomers for over three decades, as a source of quantitative information about the sky and as a roadmap for future observations, the results of IRAS will be studied for years to come. IRAS has demonstrated the power of infrared astronomy from space. Already, from a brief look at a miniscule fraction of the data available, we have learned much about the solar system, about nearby stars, about the Galaxy as a whole and about distant extragalactic systems. Comets are much dustier than previously thought. Solid particles, presumably the remnants of the star-formation process, orbit around Vega and other stars and may provide the raw material for planetary systems. Emission from cool interstellar material has been traced throughout the Galaxy all the way to the galactic poles. Both the clumpiness and breadth of the distribution of this material were previously unsuspected. The far-infrared sky away from the galactic plane has been found to be dominate by spiral galaxies, some of which emit more than 50% and as much as 98% of their energy in the infrared - an exciting and surprising revelation. The IRAS mission is clearly the pathfinder for future mission that, to a large extent, will be devoted to the discoveries revealed by IRAS. 8 figures

  15. A Brief History of Manchester Astronomical Society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilburn, K. J.

    Manchester Astronomical Society celebrated its centenary in September 2003. But that centenary was of a hundred years as the MAS: the history of the society goes back much further, and can be traced directly to that great era of.public awareness of astronomy and amateur interest in Victorian England in the last half of the nineteenth century. Allan Chapman has discussed this period in detail, so the present paper concentrates on the MAS's particular influence on Manchester astronomers and recent work on the history of the society.

  16. Astronomers gossip about the (cosmic) neighborhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayawardhana, R

    1994-09-09

    The Hague, Netherlands, last month welcomed 2000 astronomers from around the world for the 22nd General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union (IAU). From 15 to 27 August, they participated in symposia and discussions on topics ranging from the down-to-Earth issue of light and radio-frequency pollution to the creation of elements at the farthest reaches of time and space, in the big bang. Some of the most striking news, however, came in new findings from our galaxy and its immediate surroundings.

  17. Novel Algorithms for Astronomical Plate Analyses

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hudec, René; Hudec, L.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 32, 1-2 (2011), s. 121-123 ISSN 0250-6335. [Conference on Multiwavelength Variability of Blazars. Guangzhou, 22,09,2010-24,09,2010] R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/08/1207 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA102/09/0997; MŠMT(CZ) ME09027 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : astronomical plates * plate archives archives * astronomical algorithms Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.400, year: 2011

  18. A buyer's and user's guide to astronomical telescopes and binoculars

    CERN Document Server

    Mullaney, James

    2014-01-01

    Amateur astronomers of all skill levels are always contemplating their next telescope, and this book points the way to the most suitable instruments. Similarly, those who are buying their first telescopes – and these days not necessarily a low-cost one – will be able to compare and contrast different types and manufacturers. This revised new guide provides an extensive overview of binoculars and telescopes. It includes detailed up-to-date information on sources, selection and use of virtually every major type, brand, and model on today’s market, a truly invaluable treasure-trove of information and helpful advice for all amateur astronomers. Originally written in 2006, much of the first edition is inevitably now out of date, as equipment advances and manufacturers come and go. This second edition not only updates all the existing sections but adds two new ones: Astro-imaging and Professional-Amateur collaboration. Thanks to the rapid and amazing developments that have been made in digital cameras it is...

  19. Strategies for personnel sustainable lifecycle at astronomical observatories and local industry development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendek, Eduardo A.; Leatherbee, Michael; Smith, Heather; Strappa, Valentina; Zinnecker, Hans; Perez, Mario

    2014-08-01

    Specialized manpower required to efficiently operate world-class observatories requires large investments in time and resources to train personnel in very specific areas of engineering. Isolation and distances to mayor cities pose a challenge to retain motivated and qualified personnel on the mountain. This paper presents strategies that we believe may be effective for retaining this specific know-how in the astronomy field; while at the same time develop a local support industry for observatory operations and astronomical instrumentation development. For this study we choose Chile as a research setting because it will host more than 60% of the world's ground based astronomical infrastructure by the end of the decade, and because the country has an underdeveloped industry for astronomy services. We identify the astronomical infrastructure that exists in the country as well as the major research groups and industrial players. We further identify the needs of observatories that could be outsourced to the local economy. As a result, we suggest spin-off opportunities that can be started by former observatory employees and therefore retaining the knowhow of experienced people that decide to leave on-site jobs. We also identify tools to facilitate this process such as the creation of a centralized repository of local capabilities and observatory needs, as well as exchange programs within astronomical instrumentation groups. We believe that these strategies will contribute to a positive work environment at the observatories, reduce the operation and development costs, and develop a new industry for the host country.

  20. Emerging technology for astronomical optics metrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trumper, Isaac; Jannuzi, Buell T.; Kim, Dae Wook

    2018-05-01

    Next generation astronomical optics will enable science discoveries across all fields and impact the way we perceive the Universe in which we live. To build these systems, optical metrology tools have been developed that push the boundary of what is possible. We present a summary of a few key metrology technologies that we believe are critical for the coming generation of optical surfaces.

  1. Cosmological field theory for observational astronomers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zel'Dovich, Y.B.

    1987-01-01

    Theories of the very early Universe that use scalar fields (i.e., the so-called inflationary models of the Universe) have now come into wide use. The inflationary universe approach may perhaps solve some of the most difficult enigmas about the Universe as a whole. The inflationary universe forms a good bridge between the quantum theory of the birth of the Universe (which is still in the initial stages of development) and the standard hot Big Bang theory (which is well established, at least qualitatively). Therefore, an understanding of the basic ideas of inflation is a must for astronomers interested in the broad picture of the science. Astronomers are mathematically oriented enough (via celestial mechanics, electromagnetic theory, magnetohydrodynamics, nuclear reactions,etc.) that there is no negative attitude towards formulae in general. What the astronomer lacks is a knowledge of recent developments in particle physics and field theory. The astronomer should not be blamed for this, because these branches of physics are developing in a very peculiar fashion: some subfields of it are progressing comparatively slowly, with experimental verifications at each and every step, while other subfields progress rapidly

  2. Astronomía en la cultura

    Science.gov (United States)

    López, A.; Giménez Benitez, S.; Fernández, L.

    La Astronomía en la Cultura es el estudio interdisciplinario a nivel global de la astronomía prehistórica, antigua y tradicional, en el marco de su contexto cultural. Esta disciplina abarca cualquier tipo de estudios o líneas de investigación en que se relacione a la astronomía con las ciencias humanas o sociales. En ella se incluyen tanto fuentes escritas, relatos orales como fuentes arqueológicas, abarcando entre otros, los siguientes temas: calendarios, observación práctica, cultos y mitos, representación simbólica de eventos, conceptos y objetos astronómicos, orientación astronómica de tumbas, templos, santuarios y centros urbanos, cosmología tradicional y la aplicación ceremonial de tradiciones astronómicas, la propia historia de la astronomía y la etnoastronomía (Krupp, 1989) (Iwaniszewski, 1994). En nuestro trabajo abordamos la historia y situación actual de esta disciplina, sus métodos y sus relaciones con otras áreas de investigación.

  3. Reducing the Requirements and Cost of Astronomical Telescopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, W. Scott; Whitakter, Ann F. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Limits on astronomical telescope apertures are being rapidly approached. These limits result from logistics, increasing complexity, and finally budgetary constraints. In an historical perspective, great strides have been made in the area of aperture, adaptive optics, wavefront sensors, detectors, stellar interferometers and image reconstruction. What will be the next advances? Emerging data analysis techniques based on communication theory holds the promise of yielding more information from observational data based on significant computer post-processing. This paper explores some of the current telescope limitations and ponders the possibilities increasing the yield of scientific data based on the migration computer post-processing techniques to higher dimensions. Some of these processes hold the promise of reducing the requirements on the basic telescope hardware making the next generation of instruments more affordable.

  4. The Undergraduate Research Resources at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, Michael W.

    2016-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI), a former NASA tracking station located in western North Carolina, has been offering programs, campus, and instrument use for undergraduate research and learning experiences since 2000. Over these years, PARI has collaborated with universities and colleges in the Southeastern U.S. Sharing its campus with institutions of higher learning is a priority for PARI as part of its mission to "to providing hands-on educational and research opportunities for a broad cross-section of users in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines."PARI is a 200 acre campus for environmental, earth, geological, physical, and astronomical sciences. For example, the PARI 26-m and 4.6-m radio telescopes are excellent for teaching electromagnetic theory, spectroscopy, atomic and molecular emission processes, and general physics and astronomy concepts. The PARI campus has lab and office space, data centers with high speed internet, distance learning capabilities, radio and optical telescopes, earth science sensors, housing and cafeteria.Also, the campus is in an excellent spot for environmental and biological sciences lab and classroom experiences for students. The campus has the capability to put power and Internet access almost anywhere on its 200 acre campus so experiments can be set up in a protected area of a national forest. For example, Earthscope operates a Plate Boundary Observatory sensor on campus to measure plate tectonic motion. And, Clemson University has an instrument measuring winds and temperatures in the Thermsophere. The use of thePARI campus is limited only by the creativity faculty to provide a rich educational environment for their students. An overview of PARI will be presented along with a summary of programs, and a summary of undergraduate research experiences over the past 15 years. Access to PARI and collaboration possibilities will be presented.

  5. Commissioning Instrument for the GTC

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuevas, S.; Sánchez, B.; Bringas, V.; Espejo, C.; Flores, R.; Chapa, O.; Lara, G.; Chavolla, A.; Anguiano, G.; Arciniega, S.; Dorantes, A.; González, J. L.; Montoya, J. M.; Toral, R.; Hernández, H.; Nava, R.; Devaney, N.; Castro, J.; Cavaller-Marqués, L.

    2005-12-01

    During the GTC integration phase, the Commissioning Instrument (CI) will be a diagnostic tool for performance verification. The CI features four operation modes: imaging, pupil imaging, Curvature WFS, and high resolution Shack-Hartmann WFS. This instrument was built by the Instituto de Astronomía UNAM and the Centro de Ingeniería y Desarrollo Industrial (CIDESI) under GRANTECAN contract after a public bid. In this paper we made a general instrument overview and we show some of the performance final results obtained when the Factory Acceptance tests previous to its transport to La Palma.

  6. Finding Hidden Treasures: Investigations in US Astronomical Plate Archives

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hudec, René; Hudec, L.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 53, č. 1 (2013), s. 23-26 ISSN 1210-2709 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/08/1207 Institutional support: RVO:67985815 Keywords : astronomical data archives * astronomical photography * astronomical photographic archives Subject RIV: BH - Optics, Masers, Lasers

  7. Enrique Gaviola and the Astronomical Observatory of Cordoba. Its impact in the Argentine science development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bernaola, Omar A.

    2001-01-01

    The history of the Astronomical Observatory of Cordoba (Argentina), opened in 1871, is related. The physicist Enrique Gaviola (1900-1989) has been the director of the Observatory from 1940 to 1945 and again from 1956 to 1957. He was instrumental in the construction of the Observatory's big telescope (inaugurated in 1942, diameter 152 cm). The influence that E. Gaviola exerted upon the development of physics in Argentina, including the nuclear sciences, is also related

  8. Astronomical Photometry Past, Present, and Future

    CERN Document Server

    Milone, Eugene F

    2011-01-01

    This book brings together experts in the field of astronomical photometry to discuss how their subfields provide the precision and accuracy in astronomical energy flux measurements that are needed to permit tests of astrophysical theories. Differential photometers and photometry, improvements in infrared precision, the improvements in precision and accuracy of CCD photometry, the absolute calibration of flux, the development of the Johnson UBVRI photometric system and other passband systems to measure and precisely classify specific types of stars and astrophysical quantities, and the current capabilities of spectrophotometry and polarimetry to provide precise and accurate data, are all discussed in this volume. The discussion of `differential’ or `two-star’ photometers ranges from early experiments in visual photometry through the Harvard and Princeton polarizing photometers to the pioneering work of Walraven and differential photometers designed to minimize effects of atmospheric extinction and to count...

  9. Division B Commission 6: Astronomical Telegrams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamaoka, H.; Green, D. W. E.; Samus, N. N.; Aksnes, K.; Gilmore, A. C.; Nakano, S.; Sphar, T.; Tichá, J.; Williams, G. V.

    2016-04-01

    IAU Commission 6 ``Astronomical Telegrams'' had a single business meeting during Honolulu General Assembly of the IAU. It took place on Tuesday, 11 August 2015. The meeting was attended by Hitoshi Yamaoka (President), Daniel Green (Director of the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, CBAT, via Skype), Steven Chesley (JPL), Paul Chodas (JPL), Alan Gilmore (Canterbury University), Shinjiro Kouzuma (Chukyo University), Paolo Mazzali (Co-Chair of the Supernova Working Group), Elena Pian (Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa), Marion Schmitz (chair IAU Working Group Designations + NED), David Tholen (University of Hawaii), Jana Ticha (Klet Observatory), Milos Tichy (Klet Observatory), Giovanni Valsecchi (INAF\\slash Italy), Gareth Williams (Minor Planet Center). Apologies: Nikolai Samus (General Catalogue of Variable Stars, GCVS).

  10. Statistical methods for astronomical data analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Chattopadhyay, Asis Kumar

    2014-01-01

    This book introduces “Astrostatistics” as a subject in its own right with rewarding examples, including work by the authors with galaxy and Gamma Ray Burst data to engage the reader. This includes a comprehensive blending of Astrophysics and Statistics. The first chapter’s coverage of preliminary concepts and terminologies for astronomical phenomenon will appeal to both Statistics and Astrophysics readers as helpful context. Statistics concepts covered in the book provide a methodological framework. A unique feature is the inclusion of different possible sources of astronomical data, as well as software packages for converting the raw data into appropriate forms for data analysis. Readers can then use the appropriate statistical packages for their particular data analysis needs. The ideas of statistical inference discussed in the book help readers determine how to apply statistical tests. The authors cover different applications of statistical techniques already developed or specifically introduced for ...

  11. International Astronomical Union Sympoisum No.50

    CERN Document Server

    Westerlund, B

    1973-01-01

    Dr J. Landi Dessy, Director of the Astronomical Observatory, Cordoba, Argentina, invited the International Astronomical Union to hold a Symposium in Cordoba in connection with the celebration of the Centennial of the Cordoba Observatory; the date of foundation is October 24, 1871. He proposed that the Symposium should deal with Spectral Classification and Multicolour Photometry as seven years had elapsed since the Symposium No. 24 in Saltsj6baden, and much development had occurred in the field. The invitation and the proposal were accepted by the IAU, and the Symposium was held in Villa Carlos Paz, near Cordoba, between October 18 and October 24, 1971. It was attended by about 50 scientists representing Argentina, Canada, Chile, Den­ mark, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Sweden, Switzerland, U.K., U.S.A., Vatican City State and Venezuela. The Symposium was divided into four sessions: 1. Classification of slit spectra, 2. Classification of objective-prism spectra, 3. Photometric classification, 4. Catalogues ...

  12. Isaac Newton and the astronomical refraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehn, Waldemar H

    2008-12-01

    In a short interval toward the end of 1694, Isaac Newton developed two mathematical models for the theory of the astronomical refraction and calculated two refraction tables, but did not publish his theory. Much effort has been expended, starting with Biot in 1836, in the attempt to identify the methods and equations that Newton used. In contrast to previous work, a closed form solution is identified for the refraction integral that reproduces the table for his first model (in which density decays linearly with elevation). The parameters of his second model, which includes the exponential variation of pressure in an isothermal atmosphere, have also been identified by reproducing his results. The implication is clear that in each case Newton had derived exactly the correct equations for the astronomical refraction; furthermore, he was the first to do so.

  13. EDUCATIONAL ASTRONOMICAL OBSERVATIONS ON REMOTE ACCESS TELESCOPES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan P. Kriachko

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this article is to show the way of overcoming one of the major problems of astronomy teaching methods in upper secondary school – organization of educational astronomical observations. Nowadays it became possible to perform such observations on remote access telescopes. By using up-to-date informational and communicational technologies, having an opportunity to work with robotic telescopes allows us to organize a unique cognitive and research oriented activities for students while conducting their specialized astronomical studies. Below here is given a brief description of the most significant robotic telescopes and the way of the usage of open remote access telescopic network which was created by professors and scientists of Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, USA.

  14. Recruitment and Retention of LGBTIQ Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, William Van Dyke

    2012-01-01

    While lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, or questioning (LGBTIQ) astronomers face many of the same workplace challenges as women and racial/ethnic minorities, from implicit bias to overt discrimination, other challenges are unique to this group. An obvious example is the absence at many institutions of health insurance and other benefits for the same-sex domestic partners of their employees. More subtle is the psychological toll paid by LGBTIQ astronomers who remain "in the closet," self-censoring every statement about their personal lives. Paradoxically, the culture of the physical sciences, in which sexuality, gender identity, and gender expression are considered irrelevant, can discourage their discussion, further isolating LGBTIQ researchers. Addressing these challenges is not just a matter of fairness; it is an essential tool in the recruitment and retention of the brightest researchers and in assuring their productivity. We will discuss these issues and what individuals and departments can to make their institutions more welcoming to their LGBTIQ colleagues.

  15. Astronomía Mocoví

    Science.gov (United States)

    López, A.; Giménez Benitez, S.; Fernández, L.

    El presente trabajo, es una revisión crítica de la astronomía en la cultura Mocoví, aportando a lo realizado previamente por Lehmann Nistche (Lehmann Nistche, 1924 y 1927) el resultado de nuestro trabajo de campo. Un mayor conocimiento de las cosmovisiones de las etnias de esta área es fundamental para una mejor comprensión de la dispersión de las ideas cosmológicas entre los pueblos aborígenes americanos, dada la importancia del corredor chaqueño como conexión entre las altas culturas andinas, la mesopotamia y la región pampeana (Susnik, 1972). Para ello se realiza una comparación con otras cosmovisiones del área americana. Nuestro aporte se enmarca dentro de las actuales líneas de trabajo mundialmente en desarrollo en Astronomía en la Cultura.

  16. Astronomical dating in the 19th century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilgen, Frederik J.

    2010-01-01

    Today astronomical tuning is widely accepted as numerical dating method after having revolutionised the age calibration of the geological archive and time scale over the last decades. However, its origin is not well known and tracing its roots is important especially from a science historic perspective. Astronomical tuning developed in consequence of the astronomical theory of the ice ages and was repeatedly used in the second half of the 19th century before the invention of radio-isotopic dating. Building upon earlier ideas of Joseph Adhémar, James Croll started to formulate his astronomical theory of the ice ages in 1864 according to which precession controlled ice ages occur alternatingly on both hemispheres at times of maximum eccentricity of the Earth's orbit. The publication of these ideas compelled Charles Lyell to revise his Principles of Geology and add Croll's theory, thus providing an alternative to his own geographical cause of the ice ages. Both Croll and Lyell initially tuned the last glacial epoch to the prominent eccentricity maximum 850,000 yr ago. This age was used as starting point by Lyell to calculate an age of 240 million years for the beginning of the Cambrium. But Croll soon revised the tuning to a much younger less prominent eccentricity maximum between 240,000 and 80,000 yr ago. In addition he tuned older glacial deposits of late Miocene and Eocene ages to eccentricity maxima around 800,000 and 2,800,000 yr ago. Archibald and James Geikie were the first to recognize interglacials during the last glacial epoch, as predicted by Croll's theory, and attempted to tune them to precession. Soon after Frank Taylor linked a series of 15 end-moraines left behind by the retreating ice sheet to precession to arrive at a possible age of 300,000 yr for the maximum glaciation. In a classic paper, Axel Blytt (1876) explained the scattered distribution of plant groups in Norway to precession induced alternating rainy and dry periods as recorded by the

  17. The data analysis facilities that astronomers want

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Disney, M.

    1985-01-01

    This paper discusses the need and importance of data analysis facilities and what astronomers ideally want. A brief survey is presented of what is available now and some of the main deficiencies and problems with today's systems are discussed. The main sources of astronomical data are presented incuding: optical photographic, optical TV/CCD, VLA, optical spectros, imaging x-ray satellite, and satellite planetary camera. Landmark discoveries are listed in a table, some of which include: our galaxy as an island, distance to stars, H-R diagram (stellar structure), size of our galaxy, and missing mass in clusters. The main problems at present are discussed including lack of coordinated effort and central planning, differences in hardware, and measuring performance

  18. Young Astronomers' Observe with ESO Telescopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    1995-11-01

    Today, forty 16-18 year old students and their teachers are concluding a one-week, educational `working visit' to the ESO Headquarters in Garching (See ESO Press Release 14/95 of 8 November 1995). They are the winners of the Europe-wide contest `Europe Towards the Stars', organised by ESO with the support of the European Union, under the auspices of the Third European Week for Scientific and Technological Culture. From November 14-20, they have worked with professional ESO astronomers in order to get insight into the methods and principles of modern astronomy and astrophysics, as carried out at one of the world's foremost international centres. This included very successful remote observations with the ESO 3.5-m New Technology Telescope (NTT) and the 1.4-m Coude Auxiliary Telescope (CAT) via a satellite link between the ESO Headquarters and the La Silla observatory in Chile, 12,000 kilometres away. After a general introduction to modern astronomy on the first day of the visit, the participants divided into six teams, according to their interests. Some chose to observe distant galaxies, others prefered to have a closer look on binary stars, and one team decided to investigate a star which is thought to be surrounded by a proto-planetary system. Each team was supported by an experienced ESO astronomer. Then followed the observations at the remote consoles during three nights, the first at the NTT and the following at the CAT. Each team had access to the telescope during half a night. Although the work schedule - exactly as in `real' science - was quite hard, especially during the following data reduction and interpretative phase, all teams managed extremely well and in high spirits. The young astronomers' observations were favoured by excellent atmospheric conditions. At the NTT, the seeing was better than 0.5 arcsecond during several hours, an exceptional value that allows very good images to be obtained. All observations represent solid and interesting science, and

  19. A website for astronomical news in Spanish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortiz-Gil, A.

    2008-06-01

    Noticias del Cosmos is a collection of web pages within the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Valencia's website where we publish short daily summaries of astronomical press releases. Most, if not all of, the releases are originally written in English, and often Spanish readers may find them difficult to understand because not many people are familiar with the scientific language employed in these releases. Noticias del Cosmos has two principal aims. First, we want to communicate the latest astronomical news on a daily basis to a wide Spanish-speaking public who would otherwise not be able to read them because of the language barrier. Second, daily news can be used as a tool to introduce the astronomical topics of the school curriculum in a more immediate and relevant way. Most of the students at school have not yet reached a good enough level in their knowledge of English to fully understand a press release, and Noticias del Cosmos offers them and their teachers this news in their mother tongue. During the regular programme of school visits at the Observatory we use the news as a means of showing that there is still a lot to be discovered. So far the visits to the website have been growing steadily. Between June 2003 and June 2007 we had more than 30,000 visits (excluding 2006). More than 50% of the visits come from Spain, followed by visitors from South and Central America. The feedback we have received from teachers so far has been very positive, showing the usefulness of news items in the classroom when teaching astronomy.

  20. Astronomical random numbers for quantum foundations experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leung, Calvin; Brown, Amy; Nguyen, Hien; Friedman, Andrew S.; Kaiser, David I.; Gallicchio, Jason

    2018-04-01

    Photons from distant astronomical sources can be used as a classical source of randomness to improve fundamental tests of quantum nonlocality, wave-particle duality, and local realism through Bell's inequality and delayed-choice quantum eraser tests inspired by Wheeler's cosmic-scale Mach-Zehnder interferometer gedanken experiment. Such sources of random numbers may also be useful for information-theoretic applications such as key distribution for quantum cryptography. Building on the design of an astronomical random number generator developed for the recent cosmic Bell experiment [Handsteiner et al. Phys. Rev. Lett. 118, 060401 (2017), 10.1103/PhysRevLett.118.060401], in this paper we report on the design and characterization of a device that, with 20-nanosecond latency, outputs a bit based on whether the wavelength of an incoming photon is greater than or less than ≈700 nm. Using the one-meter telescope at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Table Mountain Observatory, we generated random bits from astronomical photons in both color channels from 50 stars of varying color and magnitude, and from 12 quasars with redshifts up to z =3.9 . With stars, we achieved bit rates of ˜1 ×106Hz/m 2 , limited by saturation of our single-photon detectors, and with quasars of magnitudes between 12.9 and 16, we achieved rates between ˜102 and 2 ×103Hz /m2 . For bright quasars, the resulting bitstreams exhibit sufficiently low amounts of statistical predictability as quantified by the mutual information. In addition, a sufficiently high fraction of bits generated are of true astronomical origin in order to address both the locality and freedom-of-choice loopholes when used to set the measurement settings in a test of the Bell-CHSH inequality.

  1. International astronomical remote present observation on IRC.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Kaifan; Cao, Wenda; Song, Qian

    On March 6 - 7, 1997, an international astronomical remote present observation (RPO) was made on Internet Relay Chat (IRC) for the first time. Seven groups in four countries, China, United States, Canada and Great Britain, used the 1 meter telescope of Yunnan observatory together by the way of remote present observation. Within minutes, images were "On-line" by FTP, and every one was able to get them by anonymous ftp and discuss them on IRC from different widely separated sites.

  2. AstroWeb -- Internet Resources for Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, R. E.; Adorf, H.-M.; Egret, D.; Heck, A.; Koekemoer, A.; Murtagh, F.; Wells, D. C.

    AstroWeb is a World Wide Web (WWW) interface to a collection of Internet accessible resources aimed at the astronomical community. The collection currently contains more than 1000 WWW, Gopher, Wide Area Information System (WAIS), Telnet, and Anonymous FTP resources, and it is still growing. AstroWeb provides the additional value-added services: categorization of each resource; descriptive paragraphs for some resources; searchable index of all resource information; 3 times daily search for ``dead'' or ``unreliable'' resources.

  3. The Astronomical Pulse of Global Extinction Events

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David F.V. Lewis

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The linkage between astronomical cycles and the periodicity of mass extinctions is reviewed and discussed. In particular, the apparent 26 million year cycle of global extinctions may be related to the motion of the solar system around the galaxy, especially perpendicular to the galactic plane. The potential relevance of Milankovitch cycles is also explored in the light of current evidence for the possible causes of extinction events over a geological timescale.

  4. Preserving and Archiving Astronomical Photographic Plates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castelaz, M. W.; Cline, J. D.

    2005-05-01

    Astronomical objects change with time. New observations complement past observations recorded on photographic plates. Analyses of changes provide essential routes to information about an object's formation, constitution and evolution. Preserving a century of photographic plate observations is thus of paramount importance. Plate collections are presently widely dispersed; plates may be stored in poor conditions, and are effectively inaccessible to both researchers and historians. We describe a planned project at Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute to preserve the collections of astronomical plates in the United States by gathering them into a single storage location. Collections will be sorted, cleaned, and cataloged on-line so as to provide access to researchers. Full scientific and historic use of the material then requires the observations themselves to be accessible digitally. The project's goal will be the availability of these data as a unique, fully-maintained scientific and educational resource. The new archive will support trans-disciplinary research such as the chemistry of the Earth's atmosphere, library information science, trends in local weather patterns, and impacts of urbanization on telescope use, while the hand-written observatory logs will be a valuable resource for science historians and biographers.

  5. Elizabeth Brown (1830-1899), solar astronomer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creese, M.

    1998-08-01

    Were it not for the fact that she was a woman, Elizabeth Brown might well be thought of as a fairly typical nineteenth-century British amateur astronomer. She has a place, although a relatively modest one, in the distinguished group of people who, with their own fortunes, carried out much of the astronomical research being done in the country at a time before extensive government support was forthcoming for the work.1 Her career in fact follows a pattern common to several of the nineteenth-century men astronomers in that her full productive period came only after she was freed from her primary responsibilities; she did not have to amass the necessary financial resources as did many of the men,2 but she had the time-consuming responsibility, not unusual for a Victorian woman, of caring for a parent through a lengthy old age. Only after her father died at the age of ninety-one, did Elizabeth, then in her early fifties, begin her sixteen years of remarkable public activity in astronomy.

  6. AESoP: Astronomical Extinction Spectrophotometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linford, Justin; McGraw, J.; Zimmer, P.; Ackermann, M.; Fitch, J.

    2009-01-01

    The Earth's atmosphere is a major obstruction to the precision and accuracy of ground-based photometry. The atmosphere removes light from astronomical objects both by absorption and scattering by constituent molecules, aerosols and clouds. These effects can change significantly over short time periods and over modest angles on the sky. To further understand these effects, the UNM Measurement Astrophysics Group has designed, built and recently deployed the Astronomical Extinction Spectrophotometer (AESoP), a 100mm objective grating spectrometer. By monitoring bright stars in sensibly the same direction as a larger photometric telescope is observing, AESoP will measure the wavelength-dependent extinction due to the Earth's atmosphere from 450nm to 900nm on time scales of approximately one minute. The collocated Astronomical LIDAR for Extinction (ALE) provides a high-precision monochromatic extinction measurement at 527nm. Knowing the extinction at a single wavelength allows us to pin the relative spectra generated by AESoP. These extinction spectra can then be integrated over the bandpass of the photometric telescope system to create real time corrections of observations. We present the design and construction of AESoP along with the preliminary results of our first combined observing campaign. This effort is our first step toward breaking the 1% photometry barrier. This project is funded by AFRL Grant FA9451-04-2-0355

  7. GalileoMobile: Astronomical activities in schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dasi Espuig, Maria; Vasquez, Mayte; Kobel, Philippe

    GalileoMobile is an itinerant science education initiative run on a voluntary basis by an international team of astronomers, educators, and science communicators. Our team's main goal is to make astronomy accessible to schools and communities around the globe that have little or no access to outreach actions. We do this by performing teacher workshops, activities with students, and donating educational material. Since the creation of GalileoMobile in 2008, we have travelled to Chile, Bolivia, Peru, India, and Uganda, and worked with 56 schools in total. Our activities are centred on the GalileoMobile Handbook of Activities that comprises around 20 astronomical activities which we adapted from many different sources, and translated into 4 languages. The experience we gained in Chile, Bolivia, Peru, India, and Uganda taught us that (1) bringing experts from other countries was very stimulating for children as they are naturally curious about other cultures and encourages a collaboration beyond borders; (2) high-school students who were already interested in science were always very eager to interact with real astronomers doing research to ask for career advice; (3) inquiry-based methods are important to make the learning process more effective and we have therefore, re-adapted the activities in our Handbook according to these; (4) local teachers and university students involved in our activities have the potential to carry out follow-up activities, and examples are those from Uganda and India.

  8. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-01-01

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface

  9. Astronomical Virtual Observatories Through International Collaboration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masatoshi Ohishi

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Astronomical Virtual Observatories (VOs are emerging research environment for astronomy, and 16 countries and a region have funded to develop their VOs based on international standard protocols for interoperability. The 16 funded VO projects have established the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (http://www.ivoa.net/ to develop the standard interoperable interfaces such as registry (meta data, data access, query languages, output format (VOTable, data model, application interface, and so on. The IVOA members have constructed each VO environment through the IVOA interfaces. National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ started its VO project (Japanese Virtual Observatory - JVO in 2002, and developed its VO system. We have succeeded to interoperate the latest JVO system with other VOs in the USA and Europe since December 2004. Observed data by the Subaru telescope, satellite data taken by the JAXA/ISAS, etc. are connected to the JVO system. Successful interoperation of the JVO system with other VOs means that astronomers in the world will be able to utilize top-level data obtained by these telescopes from anywhere in the world at anytime. System design of the JVO system, experiences during our development including problems of current standard protocols defined in the IVOA, and proposals to resolve these problems in the near future are described.

  10. AWOB: A Collaborative Workbench for Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, J. W.; Lemson, G.; Bulatovic, N.; Makarenko, V.; Vogler, A.; Voges, W.; Yao, Y.; Kiefl, R.; Koychev, S.

    2015-09-01

    We present the Astronomers Workbench (AWOB1), a web-based collaboration and publication platform for a scientific project of any size, developed in collaboration between the Max-Planck institutes of Astrophysics (MPA) and Extra-terrestrial Physics (MPE) and the Max-Planck Digital Library (MPDL). AWOB facilitates the collaboration between geographically distributed astronomers working on a common project throughout its whole scientific life cycle. AWOB does so by making it very easy for scientists to set up and manage a collaborative workspace for individual projects, where data can be uploaded and shared. It supports inviting project collaborators, provides wikis, automated mailing lists, calendars and event notification and has a built in chat facility. It allows the definition and tracking of tasks within projects and supports easy creation of e-publications for the dissemination of data and images and other resources that cannot be added to submitted papers. AWOB extends the project concept to larger scale consortia, within which it is possible to manage working groups and sub-projects. The existing AWOB instance has so far been limited to Max-Planck members and their collaborators, but will be opened to the whole astronomical community. AWOB is an open-source project and its source code is available upon request. We intend to extend AWOB's functionality also to other disciplines, and would greatly appreciate contributions from the community.

  11. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bergin, Edwin A. [University of Michigan, Department of Astronomy, 500 Church Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States)

    2014-12-08

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.

  12. AAS Publishing News: Astronomical Software Citation Workshop

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2015-07-01

    Do you write code for your research? Use astronomical software? Do you wish there were a better way of citing, sharing, archiving, or discovering software for astronomy research? You're not alone! In April 2015, AAS's publishing team joined other leaders in the astronomical software community in a meeting funded by the Sloan Foundation, with the purpose of discussing these issues and potential solutions. In attendance were representatives from academic astronomy, publishing, libraries, for-profit software sharing platforms, telescope facilities, and grantmaking institutions. The goal of the group was to establish “protocols, policies, and platforms for astronomical software citation, sharing, and archiving,” in the hopes of encouraging a set of normalized standards across the field. The AAS is now collaborating with leaders at GitHub to write grant proposals for a project to develop strategies for software discoverability and citation, in astronomy and beyond. If this topic interests you, you can find more details in this document released by the group after the meeting: http://astronomy-software-index.github.io/2015-workshop/ The group hopes to move this project forward with input and support from the broader community. Please share the above document, discuss it on social media using the hashtag #astroware (so that your conversations can be found!), or send private comments to julie.steffen@aas.org.

  13. Amateur astronomers in support of observing campaigns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, P.

    2014-07-01

    The Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy (PACA) project evolved from the observational campaign of C/2012 S1 or C/ISON. The success of the paradigm shift in scientific research is now implemented in other comet observing campaigns. While PACA identifies a consistent collaborative approach to pro-am collaborations, given the volume of data generated for each campaign, new ways of rapid data analysis, mining access, and storage are needed. Several interesting results emerged from the synergistic inclusion of both social media and amateur astronomers: - the establishment of a network of astronomers and related professionals that can be galvanized into action on short notice to support observing campaigns; - assist in various science investigations pertinent to the campaign; - provide an alert-sounding mechanism should the need arise; - immediate outreach and dissemination of results via our media/blogger members; - provide a forum for discussions between the imagers and modelers to help strategize the observing campaign for maximum benefit. In 2014, two new comet observing campaigns involving pro-am collaborations have been identified: (1) C/2013 A1 (C/Siding Spring) and (2) 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (CG). The evolving need for individual customized observing campaigns has been incorporated into the evolution of PACA (Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy) portal that currently is focused on comets: from supporting observing campaigns for current comets, legacy data, historical comets; interconnected with social media and a set of shareable documents addressing observational strategies; consistent standards for data; data access, use, and storage, to align with the needs of professional observers. The integration of science, observations by professional and amateur astronomers, and various social media provides a dynamic and evolving collaborative partnership between professional and amateur astronomers. The recent observation of comet 67P, at a magnitude of 21.2, from Siding

  14. Education and Outreach Opportunities in New Astronomical Facilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mould, J. R.; Pompea, S.

    2002-12-01

    Astronomy presents extraordinary opportunities for engaging young people in science from an early age. The National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO), supported by the National Science Foundation, leverages the attraction of astronomy with a suite of formal and informal education programs that engage our scientists and education and public outreach professionals in effective, strategic programs that capitalize on NOAO's role as a leader in science and in the design of new astronomical facilities. The core of the science education group at NOAO in Tucson consists of a group of Ph.D.-level scientists with experience in educational program management, curriculum and instructional materials development, teacher/scientist partnerships, and teacher professional development. This core group of scientist/educators hybrids has a strong background in earth and space science education as well as experience in working with and teaching about the technology that has enabled new astronomical discoveries. NOAO has a vigorous public affairs/media program and a history of effectively working locally, regionally, and nationally with the media, schools, science centers, and, planetaria. In particular, NOAO has created successful programs exploring how research data and tools can be used most effectively in the classroom. For example, the Teacher Leaders in Research Based Science Education explores how teachers can most effectively integrate astronomical research on novae, active galactic nuclei, and the Sun into classroom-based investigations. With immersive summer workshops at Kitt Peak National Observatory and the National Solar Observatory at Sacramento Peak, teachers learn research and instrumentation skills and how to encourage and maintain research activities in their classrooms. Some of the new facilities proposed in the recent decadal plan, Astronomy and Astrophysics in the New Millennium (National Academy Press), can provide extended opportunities for incorporating

  15. Astronomers Make First Images With Space Radio Telescope

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-07-01

    part of the VLBA instrument, was modified over the past four years to allow it to incorporate data from the satellite. Correlation of the observational data was completed successfully on June 12, after the exact timing of the satellite recording was established. Further computer processing produced an image of PKS 1519-273 -- the first image ever produced using a radio telescope in space. For Jim Ulvestad, the NRAO astronomer who made the first image, the success ended a long quest for this new capability. Ulvestad was involved in an experiment more than a decade ago in which a NASA communications satellite, TDRSS, was used to test the idea of doing radio astronomical imaging by combining data from space and ground radio telescopes. That experiment showed that an orbiting antenna could, in fact, work in conjunction with ground-based radio observatories, and paved the way for HALCA and a planned Russian radio astronomy satellite called RadioAstron. "This first image is an important technical milestone, and demonstrates the feasibility of a much more advanced mission, ARISE, currently being considered by NASA," Ulvestad said. The first image showed no structure in the object, even at the extremely fine level of detail achievable with HALCA; it is what astronomers call a "point source." This object also appears as a point source in all-ground-based observations. In addition, the 1986 TDRSS experiment observed the object, and, while this experiment did not produce an image, it indicated that PKS 1519-273 should be a point source. "This simple point image may not appear very impressive, but its beauty to us is that it shows our entire, complex system is functioning correctly. The system includes not only the orbiting and ground-based antennas, but also the orbit determination, tracking stations, the correlator, and the image-processing software," said Jonathan Romney, the NRAO astronomer who led the development of the VLBA correlator, and its enhancement to process data

  16. Algorithms for classification of astronomical object spectra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wasiewicz, P.; Szuppe, J.; Hryniewicz, K.

    2015-09-01

    Obtaining interesting celestial objects from tens of thousands or even millions of recorded optical-ultraviolet spectra depends not only on the data quality but also on the accuracy of spectra decomposition. Additionally rapidly growing data volumes demands higher computing power and/or more efficient algorithms implementations. In this paper we speed up the process of substracting iron transitions and fitting Gaussian functions to emission peaks utilising C++ and OpenCL methods together with the NOSQL database. In this paper we implemented typical astronomical methods of detecting peaks in comparison to our previous hybrid methods implemented with CUDA.

  17. Penn State astronomical image processing system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Truax, R.J.; Nousek, J.A.; Feigelson, E.D.; Lonsdale, C.J.

    1987-01-01

    The needs of modern astronomy for image processing set demanding standards in simultaneously requiring fast computation speed, high-quality graphic display, large data storage, and interactive response. An innovative image processing system was designed, integrated, and used; it is based on a supermicro architecture which is tailored specifically for astronomy, which provides a highly cost-effective alternative to the traditional minicomputer installation. The paper describes the design rationale, equipment selection, and software developed to allow other astronomers with similar needs to benefit from the present experience. 9 references

  18. Le Verrier magnificent and detestable astronomer

    CERN Document Server

    Lequeux, James

    2013-01-01

    Le Verrier was a superb scientist. His discovery of Neptune in 1846 made him the most famous astronomer of his time. He produced a complete theory of the motions of the planets which served as a basis for planetary ephemeris for a full century. Doing this, he discovered an anomaly in the motion of Mercury which later became the first proof of General Relativity. He also founded European meteorology. However his arrogance and bad temper created many enemies, and he was even fired from his position of Director of the Paris Observatory.

  19. The astronomical revolution Copernicus, Kepler, Borelli

    CERN Document Server

    Koyre, Alexandre

    2013-01-01

    Originally published in English in 1973. This volume traces the development of the revolution which so drastically altered man's view of the universe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The ""astronomical revolution"" was accomplished in three stages, each linked with the work of one man. With Copernicus, the sun became the centre of the universe. With Kepler, celestial dynamics replaced the kinematics of circles and spheres used by Copernicus. With Borelli the unification of celestial and terrestrial physics was completed by abandonment of the circle in favour the straight line to inf

  20. Astronomical Plate Archives and Binary Blazars Studies

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hudec, René

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 32, 1-2 (2011), s. 91-95 ISSN 0250-6335. [Conference on Multiwavelength Variability of Blazars. Guangzhou, 22,09,2010-24,09,2010] R&D Projects: GA ČR GA205/08/1207 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA102/09/0997; MŠMT(CZ) ME09027 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z10030501 Keywords : astronomical plates * plate archives archives * binary blazars Subject RIV: BN - Astronomy, Celestial Mechanics, Astrophysics Impact factor: 0.400, year: 2011

  1. Formation Flying and Deformable Instruments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rio, Yvon

    2009-01-01

    Astronomers have always attempted to build very stable instruments. They fight all that can cause mechanical deformation or image motion. This has led to well established technologies (autoguide, active optics, thermal control, tip/tilt correction), as well as observing methods based on the use of controlled motion (scanning, micro scanning, shift and add, chopping and nodding). Formation flying disturbs this practice. It is neither possible to reduce the relative motion to very small amplitudes, nor to control it at will. Some impacts on Simbol-X instrument design, and operation are presented.

  2. Formation Flying and Deformable Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rio, Yvon

    2009-05-01

    Astronomers have always attempted to build very stable instruments. They fight all that can cause mechanical deformation or image motion. This has led to well established technologies (autoguide, active optics, thermal control, tip/tilt correction), as well as observing methods based on the use of controlled motion (scanning, micro scanning, shift and add, chopping and nodding). Formation flying disturbs this practice. It is neither possible to reduce the relative motion to very small amplitudes, nor to control it at will. Some impacts on Simbol-X instrument design, and operation are presented.

  3. Care of astronomical telescopes and accessories a manual for the astronomical observer and amateur telescope maker

    CERN Document Server

    Pepin, M Barlow

    2005-01-01

    Commercially-made astronomical telescopes are better and less expensive than ever before, and their optical and mechanical performance can be superb. When a good-quality telescope fails to perform as well as it might, the reason is quite probably that it needs a little care and attention! Here is a complete guide for anyone who wants to understand more than just the basics of astronomical telescopes and accessories, and how to maintain them in the peak of condition. The latest on safely adjusting, cleaning, and maintaining your equipment is combined with thoroughly updated methods from the old masters. Here, too, are details of choosing new and used optics and accessories, along with enhancements you can make to extend their versatility and useful lifetime. This book is for you. Really. Looking after an astronomical telescope isn't only for the experts - although there are some things that only an expert should attempt - and every serious amateur astronomer will find invaluable information here, gleaned from ...

  4. 150th Anniversary of the Astronomical Observatory Library of Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solntseva, T.

    The scientific library of the Astronomical observatory of Kyiv Taras Shevchenko University is one of the oldest ones of such a type in Ukraine. Our Astronomical Observatory and its scientific library will celebrate 150th anniversary of their foundation. 900 volumes of duplicates of Olbers' private library underlay our library. These ones were acquired by Russian Academy of Sciences for Poulkovo observatory in 1841 but according to Struve's order were transmitted to Kyiv Saint Volodymyr University. These books are of great value. There are works edited during Copernicus', Kepler's, Galilei's, Newton's, Descartes' lifetime. Our library contains more than 100000 units of storage - monographs, periodical astronomical editions from the first (Astronomische Nachrichten, Astronomical journal, Monthly Notices etc.), editions of the majority of the astronomical observatories and institutions of the world, unique astronomical atlases and maps

  5. Radio Astronomers Develop New Technique for Studying Dark Energy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    capabilities of current instruments -- the team used their intensity-mapping technique to accumulate the radio waves emitted by the hydrogen gas in large volumes of space including many galaxies. "Since the early part of the 20th Century, astronomers have traced the expansion of the Universe by observing galaxies. Our new technique allows us to skip the galaxy-detection step and gather radio emissions from a thousand galaxies at a time, as well as all the dimly-glowing material between them," said Jeffrey Peterson, of Carnegie Mellon University. The astronomers also developed new techniques that removed both man-made radio interference and radio emission caused by more-nearby astronomical sources, leaving only the extremely faint radio waves coming from the very distant hydrogen gas. The result was a map of part of the "cosmic web" that correlated neatly with the structure shown by the earlier optical study. The team first proposed their intensity-mapping technique in 2008, and their GBT observations were the first test of the idea. "These observations detected more hydrogen gas than all the previously-detected hydrogen in the Universe, and at distances ten times farther than any radio wave-emitting hydrogen seen before," said Ue-Li Pen of the University of Toronto. "This is a demonstration of an important technique that has great promise for future studies of the evolution of large-scale structure in the Universe," said National Radio Astronomy Observatory Chief Scientist Chris Carilli, who was not part of the research team. In addition to Chang, Peterson, and Pen, the research team included Kevin Bandura of Carnegie Mellon University. The scientists reported their work in the July 22 issue of the scientific journal Nature.

  6. Astronomers Reveal Extinct Extra-Terrestrial Fusion Reactor

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-06-01

    improve our understanding of the life-cycle of stars.' The Chandra X-ray data also reveal the signatures of neon, an expected by-product of helium fusion. However, a big surprise was the presence of magnesium in similar quantities. This result may provide a key to the unique composition of H1504+65 and validate theoretical predictions that, if massive enough, some stars can extend their lives by tapping yet another energy source: the fusion of carbon into magnesium. However, as magnesium can also be produced by helium fusion, proof of the theory is not yet ironclad. The final link in the puzzle would be the detection of sodium, which will require data from yet another observatory: the Hubble Space Telescope. The team has already been awarded time on the Hubble Space Telescope to search for sodium in H1504+65 next year, and will, hopefully, discover the final answer as to the origin of this unique star. This work will be published in July in the 'Astronomy & Astrophysics' journal. The Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE) were both launched into orbit by NASA in 1999. Their instruments make use of a technique called spectroscopy, which spreads the light obtained from astronomical objects into its constituent X-ray and ultraviolet 'colours', in the same way visible light is dispersed into a rainbow naturally, by water droplets in the atmosphere, or artificially, by a prism. When studied in fine detail each spectrum is a unique 'fingerprint' which tells us what elements are present and reveals the physical conditions in the object being studied. Related Internet Address http://www.ras.org.uk/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=673&Itemid=2

  7. What Lies Behind NSF Astronomer Demographics? Subjectivities of Women, Minorities and Foreign-born Astronomers within Meshworks of Big Science Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guillen, Reynal; Gu, D.; Holbrook, J.; Murillo, L. F.; Traweek, S.

    2011-01-01

    Our current research focuses on the trajectory of scientists working with large-scale databases in astronomy, following them as they strategically build their careers, digital infrastructures, and make their epistemological commitments. We look specifically at how gender, ethnicity, nationality intersect in the process of subject formation in astronomy, as well as in the process of enrolling partners for the construction of instruments, design and implementation of large-scale databases. Work once figured as merely technical support, such assembling data catalogs, or as graphic design, generating pleasing images for public support, has been repositioned at the core of the field. Some have argued that such databases enable a new kind of scientific inquiry based on data exploration, such as the "fourth paradigm" or "data-driven" science. Our preliminary findings based on oral history interviews and ethnography provide insights into meshworks of women, African-American, "Hispanic," Asian-American and foreign-born astronomers. Our preliminary data suggest African-American men are more successful in sustaining astronomy careers than Chicano and Asian-American men. A distinctive theme in our data is the glocal character of meshworks available to and created by foreign-born women astronomers working at US facilities. Other data show that the proportion of Asian to Asian American and foreign-born Latina/o to Chicana/o astronomers is approximately equal. Futhermore, Asians and Latinas/os are represented in significantly greater numbers than Asian Americans and Chicanas/os. Among professional astronomers in the US, each ethnic minority group is numbered on the order of tens, not hundreds. Project support is provided by the NSF EAGER program to University of California, Los Angeles under award 0956589.

  8. Astronomical Alignments in a Neolithic Chinese Site?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, S.; Stencel, R. E.

    1997-12-01

    In the Manchurian province of Liaoning, near 41N19' and 119E30', exist ruins of a middle Neolithic society (2500 to 4000 BC) known as the Hongshan culture. This location, called Niuheliang, is comprised of 16 locations with monumental structures scattered over 80 square kilometers of hills. Most are stone burial structures that contain jade artifacts implying wealth and power. One structure is unique in being unusually shaped and containing oversized effigies of goddess figures. This structure also has a commanding view of the surrounding landscape. The presence of decorated pottery, jade and worked copper suggests the Hongshan people were sophisticated artisans and engaged in long-distance trading. During 1997, we've conducted a course at Denver as part of our Core Curriculum program for upper division students, that has examined the astronomical and cultural aspects of the Niuheliang site, to attempt to determine whether these contemporaries of the builders of Stonehenge may have included astronomical alignments into their constructions. The preliminary result of our studies suggests that certain monuments have potential for lunar standstill observation from the "goddess temple". For updates on these results, please see our website: www.du.edu/ rstencel/core2103.html.

  9. Large Astronomical Surveys, Catalogs and Databases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mickaelian A. M.

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available We review the status of all-sky and large astronomical surveys and their catalogued data over the whole range of electromagnetic spectrum, from gamma-ray to radio, such as ROSAT in X-ray, GALEX in UV, SDSS and several POSS1/2 based catalogs (APM, MAPS, USNO, GSC in optical, 2MASS and WISE in NIR, IRAS and AKARI in MIR/FIR, NVSS and FIRST in radio range and others. Present astronomical archives contain billions of objects, Galactic as well as extragalactic, and the vast amount of data in them permit new studies and discoveries. Cross-correlations result in revealing new objects and new samples. Very often, dozens of thousands of sources hide a few very interesting ones that are needed to be discovered by comparison of various physical characteristics. Most of the modern databases currently provide VO access to the stored information. This permits not only open access but also fast analysis and managing of these data.

  10. Sketching the moon an astronomical artist's guide

    CERN Document Server

    Handy, Richard; McCague, Thomas; Rix, Erika; Russell, Sally

    2012-01-01

    Soon after you begin studying the sky through your small telescope or binoculars, you will probably be encouraged by others to make sketches of what you see. Sketching is a time-honored tradition in amateur astronomy and dates back to the earliest times, when telescopes were invented. Even though we have lots of new imaging technologies nowadays, including astrophotography, most observers still use sketching to keep a record of what they see, make them better observers, and in hopes of perhaps contributing something to the body of scientific knowledge about the Moon. Some even sketch because it satisfies their artistic side. The Moon presents some unique challenges to the astronomer-artist, the Moon being so fond of tricks of the light. Sketching the Moon: An Astronomical Artist’s Guide, by five of the best lunar observer-artists working today, will guide you along your way and help you to achieve really high-quality sketches. All the major types of lunar features are covered, with a variety of sketching te...

  11. Non Relational Models for the Management of Large Amount of Astronomical Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. L. Martino

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this paper is the comparison between two different database typologies: the relational and the nonrelational architecture, in the context of the applications related to the use and distribution of astronomical data. The specific context is focused to problems quite different from those related to administrative and managerial environments within which were developed the leading technologies on which are based the modern systems of massive storage of data. The data provided by astronomical instrumentation are usually filtered out by the front-end system (trigger, anticoincidence, DSP etc., so they do not require special controls of congruence. Moreover, the related storage systems must be able to ensure an easy growth, minimizing human systemistic interventions and automating the related actions. The use of a non-relational architecture (NoSQL, offers great advantages during the insertion of informations within a data base, while the response speed of the queries is mainly tied to their type and complexity.

  12. Supporting Evidence for the Astronomically Calibrated Age of Fish Canyon Sanidine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rivera, Tiffany; Storey, Michael; Zeeden, Christian

    The relative nature of the 40Ar/39Ar radio-isotopic dating technique requires that the age and error of the monitor mineral be accurately known. The most widely accepted monitor for Cenozoic geochronology is the Fish Canyon sanidine (FCs), whose recommended published ages have varied by up to 2...... tuned stratigraphic sections. The increasingly robust quality of the astronomical timescale, with precision better than 0.1% for the last 10 million years, suggests this method of intercalibration as the best way to proceed with addressing the true age of FCs. Recently, Kuiper, et al. (2008) determined...... Noblesse multi-collector noble gas mass spectrometer for the 40Ar/39Ar experiments, analyzing single crystals of FCs relative to sanidines from the astronomically dated tephra. The use of the multi-collector instrument allowed us to obtain high precision analyses with a level of precision for fully...

  13. New astronomical references in two Catalonian late medieval documents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martínez, María José; Marco, Francisco J

    2014-01-01

    In 2008, after 13 years of preparation, the Generalitat of Catalunya finished the publication of the 10 volumes of the Dietaris de la Generalitat de Catalunya. The Dietaris, as well as a closely related source, the llibre de Jornades 1411/1484 de Jaume Safont, cover the period of 1411 to 1539. In this article, we examine astronomical references contained in these two sources, and place them in their historical context. Our main focus lies on astronomical phenomena that have not previously been published in the astronomical literature. In fact, relatively few astronomical records are accessible in Spanish medieval and early modern history, and our paper intends to fill this gap partially.

  14. The First Astronomical Observatory in Cluj-Napoca

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szenkovits, Ferenc

    2008-09-01

    One of the most important cities of Romania is Cluj-Napoca (Kolozsvár, Klausenburg). This is a traditional center of education, with many universities and high schools. From the second half of the 18th century the University of Cluj has its own Astronomical Observatory, serving for didactical activities and scientific researches. The famous astronomer Maximillian Hell was one of those Jesuits who put the base of this Astronomical Observatory. Our purpose is to offer a short history of the beginnings of this Astronomical Observatory.

  15. STEM and the Evolution of the Astronomical Star Party

    Science.gov (United States)

    Day, B. H.; Munive, P.; Franco, J.; Jones, A. P.; Shaner, A. J.; Buxner, S.; Bleacher, L.

    2015-12-01

    The astronomical star party has long been a powerful and effective way to engage the public and enhance cohesiveness within the amateur astronomy community. Early star parties tended to be strictly small, local events. But with improvements in transportation, larger regional star parties became popular. These advanced the considerable capabilities for citizen science in the amateur community, shared technology and engineering innovations in the field of telescope making, and refined numerous mathematical techniques in areas such instrument design and ephemeris generation, covering the full breadth of STEM. Advancements in astrophotography showcased at these events brought the star party from STEM to STEAM. Now, the advent of social media, web streaming, and virtual presence has facilitated the phenomenon of very large, networked star parties with international scope. These mega star parties take public engagement to a new, far greater levels, giving a vastly larger and more diverse public the opportunity to directly participate in exciting first-hand STEM activities. This presentation will recount the evolution of the star party and will focus on two examples of large, multinational, networked star parties, International Observe the Moon Night and Noche de las Estrellas. We will look at lessons learned and ways to participate.

  16. POLYCOMP: Efficient and configurable compression of astronomical timelines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomasi, M.

    2016-07-01

    This paper describes the implementation of polycomp, a open-sourced, publicly available program for compressing one-dimensional data series in tabular format. The program is particularly suited for compressing smooth, noiseless streams of data like pointing information, as one of the algorithms it implements applies a combination of least squares polynomial fitting and discrete Chebyshev transforms that is able to achieve a compression ratio Cr up to ≈ 40 in the examples discussed in this work. This performance comes at the expense of a loss of information, whose upper bound is configured by the user. I show two areas in which the usage of polycomp is interesting. In the first example, I compress the ephemeris table of an astronomical object (Ganymede), obtaining Cr ≈ 20, with a compression error on the x , y , z coordinates smaller than 1 m. In the second example, I compress the publicly available timelines recorded by the Low Frequency Instrument (LFI), an array of microwave radiometers onboard the ESA Planck spacecraft. The compression reduces the needed storage from ∼ 6.5 TB to ≈ 0.75 TB (Cr ≈ 9), thus making them small enough to be kept in a portable hard drive.

  17. Simon Newcomb: America's Unofficial Astronomer Royal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, John

    2007-10-01

    Bill Carter and Merri Sue Carter Mantazas; xiii + 213 pp.; ISBN 1-59113-803-5 2006; $26.95 This book introduced me to a commanding figure in American science from the late nineteenth century: Simon Newcomb. Newcomb has been called the nineteenth-century equivalent of Carl Sagan and Albert Einstein. He rose from humble beginnings to be the preeminent American astronomer of his generation. He made basic, far-reaching, and enduring contributions to positional astronomy and planetary dynamics. On the more practical side, he determined a remarkably accurate value for the velocity of light, one within 0.01% of the value accepted today. His work provided an experimental grounding for the special and general theories of relativity to be formulated by Einstein in the coming twentieth century.

  18. Shirakatsi Astronomical and Natural Philosophical Views

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mkrtchyan, Lilit

    2016-12-01

    Our work is aimed at presenting Shirakatsi astronomical and natural philosophical views. Karl Anania Shirakatsi is classified as one of the world-class intellectual geniuses. He was endowed with exceptional talent and analyzing scientific understanding of natural phenomena. He refers his philosophical works to almost all fields of science, cosmography, mathematics, calendarology, historiography, etc. Shirakatsy's earnings of natural science and natural philosophy in medieval is too big He was the first prominent scholar and thinker of his time, creating a unique, comprehensive gitapilisopayakan system that still feeds the human mind. The scientific value of Shirakatsi has great importance not only for Armenians but also for the whole world of science, history, culture and philosophy. Shirakatsi can be considered not only national but also universal greatness.

  19. From Casual Stargazer to Amateur Astronomer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eagle, Dave

    The word amateur stems from the French word Amour, meaning "Lover Of". And there is a whole army of amateur astronomers around the world who just love doing astronomy. They don't get paid for the privilege of experiencing the sky in all its glory, but by making detailed observations they do make a very important contribution towards the Science. These observations are especially useful when organized as a collective effort. Citizen science has really taken off in the last few years and the GAIA project will soon be producing so much data, that the professionals just will not have enough manpower to tackle all the data. They will rely on amateurs sitting on their computers at home. But it is under a dark sky that astronomy really comes alive. The fact that you have picked up this book, must mean that you are interested in taking the hobby a step forward.

  20. Leslie Peltier, Amateur Astronomer and Observer Extraordinaire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbin, B. G.

    2003-12-01

    Leslie Copus Peltier, (Jan. 2, 1900-May 10, 1980) was called "the world's greatest non-professional astronomer" by none other than Harlow Shapley, and also referred to as the "the world's greatest living amateur astronomer". He began observing variable stars on March 1, 1918 with an observation of R. Leonis and at the time of his death had made a total of 132,123 observations of variable stars. These were reported to the AAVSO on a consecutive monthly basis stretching from 1918 to his death in 1980. As of October 2003, he was still on AAVSO's list of the top 25 observers in its history. Born on a farm near Delphos, Ohio, his parents were well read and their home was filled with books on different subjects, including nature guides. As a young man he studied the flora and fauna of the area and in 1915 began his study of the heavens with Vega being the first star he identified. After the purchase of a 2-inch spyglass, his observations of variable stars began to be noticed by professional astronomers and the AAVSO loaned him a 4-inch Mogey refractor; shortly thereafter Henry Norris Russell of Princeton loaned him via the AAVSO a 6-inch refractor, a comet seeker of short focus. He discovered 12 comets, 10 of which carry his name, and 6 novae or recurring novae. His design of the "Merry-Go-Round Observatory" was a novel approach with the whole observatory revolving around the observer while seated in his observing chair. Miami University (Ohio) later donated to him their 12-inch Clark refractor with its dome. His first book, Starlight Nights: The Adventures of a Star-Gazer, appeared in 1965. This autobiography, an ode to the joys of observing both the night sky and nature, was written in beautifully descriptive language that helped lead countless readers into astronomy. Departing from astronomy, in 1977 he published The Place on Jennings Creek. Written in the style of the 19th century naturalist, the book was devoted to his family's home, Brookhaven, and its natural

  1. Fundamental and applied aspects of astronomical seeing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coulman, C.E.

    1985-01-01

    It is pointed out that despite recent advances in the use of spacecraft as observatory platforms, much astronomy is still conducted from the surface of the earth. The literature on astronomical seeing and observatory site selection is widely scattered throughout journals and conference reports concerned with various disciplines. This survey has the objective to represent the state of the subject up to 1982. A description of the history and prospects of the considered subject is presented, and the optics of seeing are examined. The meteorology of seeing is discussed, taking into account aspects of micrometeorology and small-scale turbulence near the surface, the diurnal cycle in the planetary boundary layer, the temperature structure above the planetary boundary layer, and the effects of terrain. Attention is given to the calculation of system performance from microthermal data, optical methods for the measurement of seeing, and techniques for minimizing image-degrading effects of the atmosphere. 279 references

  2. Preparing Colorful Astronomical Images and Illustrations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levay, Z. G.; Frattare, L. M.

    2001-12-01

    We present techniques for using mainstream graphics software, specifically Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, for producing composite color images and illustrations from astronomical data. These techniques have been used with numerous images from the Hubble Space Telescope to produce printed and web-based news, education and public presentation products as well as illustrations for technical publication. While Photoshop is not intended for quantitative analysis of full dynamic range data (as are IRAF or IDL, for example), we have had much success applying Photoshop's numerous, versatile tools to work with scaled images, masks, text and graphics in multiple semi-transparent layers and channels. These features, along with its user-oriented, visual interface, provide convenient tools to produce high-quality, full-color images and graphics for printed and on-line publication and presentation.

  3. Dacic Ancient Astronomical Research in Sarmizegetuza

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emanuel George Oprea

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The actual Romanian territory belongs to Carpatho-Danubian Space and to Ancient Europe. The Ancient European Society was a vast cultural entity based on a theocratic, matriarchal society, peaceful and art creating.Temples of Sarmizegetusa have given rise to several theories over time, proven by historians with the most diverse arguments. The largest complex of temples and sanctuaries was founded in Sarmizegetusa Regia, the Dacian’s main fortress and ancient capital of Dacia in the time of King Decebalus. The mysterious form of settlements has led researchers to the conclusion that the locations were astronomical observation shrines. Among the places of Dacian worship in Orastie Mountains the most impressive is the Great Circular Sanctuary, used to perform some celestial observations, and also as original solar calendar. This paper had the purpose to re-discover the Dacian Civilization and Dacian cosmogony based on the accumulated knowledge upon our country’s past.

  4. The Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neugebauer, G.; Habing, H. J.; Van Duinen, R.; Aumann, H. H.; Beichman, C. A.; Baud, B.; Beintema, D. A.; Boggess, N.; Clegg, P. E.; De Jong, T.

    1984-01-01

    The Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) consists of a spacecraft and a liquid helium cryostat that contains a cooled IR telescope. The telescope's focal plane assembly is cooled to less than 3 K, and contains 62 IR detectors in the survey array which are arranged so that every source crossing the field of view can be seen by at least two detectors in each of four wavelength bands. The satellite was launched into a 900 km-altitude near-polar orbit, and its cryogenic helium supply was exhausted on November 22, 1983. By mission's end, 72 percent of the sky had been observed with three or more hours-confirming scans, and 95 percent with two or more hours-confirming scans. About 2000 stars detected at 12 and 25 microns early in the mission, and identified in the SAO (1966) catalog, have a positional uncertainty ellipse whose axes are 45 x 9 arcsec for an hours-confirmed source.

  5. Astronomical knowledge transmission through illustrated Aratea manuscripts

    CERN Document Server

    Dolan, Marion

    2017-01-01

    This carefully researched monograph is a historical investigation of the illustrated Aratea astronomical manuscript and its many interpretations over the centuries. Aratus' 270 B.C.E. Greek poem describing the constellations and astrological phenomena was translated and copied over 800 years into illuminated manuscripts that preserved and illustrated these ancient stories about the constellations. The Aratea survives in its entirety due to multiple translations from Greek to Latin and even to Arabic, with many illuminated versions being commissioned over the ages. The survey encompasses four interrelated disciplines: history of literature, history of myth, history of science, and history of art. Aratea manuscripts by their nature are a meeting place of these distinct branches, and the culling of information from historical literature and from the manuscripts themselves focuses on a wider, holistic view; a narrow approach could not provide a proper prospective. What is most essential to know about this work is...

  6. Astronomers Gain Clues About Fundamental Physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-12-01

    An international team of astronomers has looked at something very big -- a distant galaxy -- to study the behavior of things very small -- atoms and molecules -- to gain vital clues about the fundamental nature of our entire Universe. The team used the National Science Foundation's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) to test whether the laws of nature have changed over vast spans of cosmic time. The Green Bank Telescope The Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF (Click on image for GBT gallery) "The fundamental constants of physics are expected to remain fixed across space and time; that's why they're called constants! Now, however, new theoretical models for the basic structure of matter indicate that they may change. We're testing these predictions." said Nissim Kanekar, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), in Socorro, New Mexico. So far, the scientists' measurements show no change in the constants. "We've put the most stringent limits yet on some changes in these constants, but that's not the end of the story," said Christopher Carilli, another NRAO astronomer. "This is the exciting frontier where astronomy meets particle physics," Carilli explained. The research can help answer fundamental questions about whether the basic components of matter are tiny particles or tiny vibrating strings, how many dimensions the Universe has, and the nature of "dark energy." The astronomers were looking for changes in two quantities: the ratio of the masses of the electron and the proton, and a number physicists call the fine structure constant, a combination of the electron charge, the speed of light and the Planck constant. These values, considered fundamental physical constants, once were "taken as time independent, with values given once and forever" said German particle physicist Christof Wetterich. However, Wetterich explained, "the viewpoint of modern particle theory has changed in recent years," with ideas such as

  7. Old Star's "Rebirth" Gives Astronomers Surprises

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-04-01

    Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope are taking advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to watch an old star suddenly stir back into new activity after coming to the end of its normal life. Their surprising results have forced them to change their ideas of how such an old, white dwarf star can re-ignite its nuclear furnace for one final blast of energy. Sakurai's Object Radio/Optical Images of Sakurai's Object: Color image shows nebula ejected thousands of years ago. Contours indicate radio emission. Inset is Hubble Space Telescope image, with contours indicating radio emission; this inset shows just the central part of the region. CREDIT: Hajduk et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF, ESO, StSci, NASA Computer simulations had predicted a series of events that would follow such a re-ignition of fusion reactions, but the star didn't follow the script -- events moved 100 times more quickly than the simulations predicted. "We've now produced a new theoretical model of how this process works, and the VLA observations have provided the first evidence supporting our new model," said Albert Zijlstra, of the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom. Zijlstra and his colleagues presented their findings in the April 8 issue of the journal Science. The astronomers studied a star known as V4334 Sgr, in the constellation Sagittarius. It is better known as "Sakurai's Object," after Japanese amateur astronomer Yukio Sakurai, who discovered it on February 20, 1996, when it suddenly burst into new brightness. At first, astronomers thought the outburst was a common nova explosion, but further study showed that Sakurai's Object was anything but common. The star is an old white dwarf that had run out of hydrogen fuel for nuclear fusion reactions in its core. Astronomers believe that some such stars can undergo a final burst of fusion in a shell of helium that surrounds a core of heavier nuclei such as carbon and oxygen. However, the

  8. Effectiveness of Amateur Astronomers as Informal Science Educators

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, Michael G.; Berendsen, Margaret

    2007-01-01

    The Astronomical Society of the Pacific (ASP) conducted a national survey of in-service teachers participating in Project ASTRO. The survey results document (1) the value that teachers place on supplemental astronomy education provided by professional and amateur astronomers, and (2) the difference that teachers perceive in the value provided by…

  9. Astronomical Books and Charts in the Book of Bibliographie Coreenne

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ki-Won Lee

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available We investigate astronomical materials listed in the book of Bibliographie Coreenne written by Maurice Courant. He classified ancient Korean books into nine Divisions (部 and thirty six Classes (類, and published them as three volumes (ranging from 1894 to 1896 and one supplement (in 1901. In total, 3,821 books including astronomical ones are listed together with information on physical size, possessional place, bibliographical note, and so forth. Although this book is an essential one in the field of Korea bibliography and contains many astronomical materials such as Cheon-Mun-Ryu-Cho 天文類抄, Si-Heon-Seo 時憲書, and Cheon-Sang-Yeol-Cha-Bun-Ya-Ji-Do 天象列次分野之圖, it has not been well known to the public nor to astronomical society. Of 3,821 catalogues, we found that about 50 Items (種 are related to astronomy or astrology, and verified that most of them are located in the Kyujanggak Royal Library 奎章閣. We also found an unknown astronomical chart, Hon-Cheon-Chong-Seong-Yeol-Cha-Bun-Ya-Ji-Do 渾天總星列次分野之圖. Because those astronomical materials are not well known to international astronomical community and there have been few studies on the materials in Korea, we here introduce and review them, particularly with the astronomical viewpoint.

  10. Astronomical Books and Charts in the Book of Bibliographie Coreenne

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ki-Won; Yang, Hong-Jin; Park, Myeong-Gu

    2008-06-01

    We investigate astronomical materials listed in the book of Bibliographie Coréenne written by Maurice Courant. He classified ancient Korean books into nine Divisions (?) and thirty six Classes (?), and published them as three volumes (ranging from 1894 to 1896) and one supplement (in 1901). In total, 3,821 books including astronomical ones are listed together with information on physical size, possessional place, bibliographical note, and so forth. Although this book is an essential one in the field of Korea bibliography and contains many astronomical materials such as Cheon-Mun-Ryu-Cho ????, Si-Heon-Seo ??????, and Cheon-Sang-Yeol-Cha-Bun-Ya-Ji-Do ????????, it has not been well known to the public nor to astronomical society. Of 3,821 catalogues, we found that about 50 Items (?) are related to astronomy or astrology, and verified that most ! of them are located in the Kyujanggak Royal Library ???. We also found an unknown astronomical chart, Hon-Cheon-Chong-Seong-Yeol-Cha-Bun-Ya-Ji-Do ??????????. Because those astronomical materials are not well known to international astronomical community and there have been few studies on the materials in Korea, we here introduce and review them, particularly with the astronomical viewpoint.

  11. Karl Friedrich Zollner and the historical dimension of astronomical photometry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterken, C.; Staubermann, K. B.

    This book results from presentations and discussions of a group of astronomers and historians during a one-day workshop held at Archenhold Observatory, Berlin-Treptow, on April 4, 1997. This meeting was the first forum in a series dedicated to historical aspects of observational astrophysics in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. The basic principle of these meetings is to reflect during one or more days on the work and personality of a single individual or of a group of persons, at the same time avoiding the really dominant figures that typify the age. By focusing on key people who epitomize a way of thinking and working that has formed many of the ideas by which we do astrophysical research today, we also attempt to evoke the scientific spirit of the era under consideration. In 1858, the German physicist Karl Friedrich Zoellner introduced a new type of astronomical photometer which became a bestseller in the second half of the nineteenth century and which led him to the first German professorship in astrophysics. His type of photometer allowed most accurate photometric measurements and was used at several observatories for almost half a century. This book outlines four major themes. The first part describes the observing instruments that were used by Zoellner and his contemporaries: photometers and spectrographs that complemented his original design, but also competed with his most versatile prototype photometer. The description also includes an account of technical aspects associated with the replication of such a photometer today. The second part analyses the astrophysical data that were obtained with Zoellner's tools, and extracts information hidden in the published data --- scientific information as well as diverse aspects related to the observer himself. These nineteenth-century data are now published for the first time on a modern magnitude scale and are directly accessible in tabular form, and are thus fully applicable to archeophotometric studies

  12. Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) science instruments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ramos, R.; Hing, S.M.; Leidich, C.A.; Fazio, G.; Houck, J.R.

    1989-01-01

    Concepts of scientific instruments designed to perform infrared astronomical tasks such as imaging, photometry, and spectroscopy are discussed as part of the Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) project under definition study at NASA/Ames Research Center. The instruments are: the multiband imaging photometer, the infrared array camera, and the infrared spectograph. SIRTF, a cryogenically cooled infrared telescope in the 1-meter range and wavelengths as short as 2.5 microns carrying multiple instruments with high sensitivity and low background performance, provides the capability to carry out basic astronomical investigations such as deep search for very distant protogalaxies, quasi-stellar objects, and missing mass; infrared emission from galaxies; star formation and the interstellar medium; and the composition and structure of the atmospheres of the outer planets in the solar sytem. 8 refs

  13. Radio Astronomers Set New Standard for Accurate Cosmic Distance Measurement

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-06-01

    estimate of the age of the universe. In order to do this, you need an unambiguous, absolute distance to another galaxy. We are pleased that the NSF's VLBA has for the first time determined such a distance, and thus provided the calibration standard astronomers have always sought in their quest for accurate distances beyond the Milky Way," said Morris Aizenman, Executive Officer of the National Science Foundation's (NSF) Division of Astronomical Sciences. "For astronomers, this measurement is the golden meter stick in the glass case," Aizenman added. The international team of astronomers used the VLBA to measure directly the motion of gas orbiting what is generally agreed to be a supermassive black hole at the heart of NGC 4258. The orbiting gas forms a warped disk, nearly two light-years in diameter, surrounding the black hole. The gas in the disk includes water vapor, which, in parts of the disk, acts as a natural amplifier of microwave radio emission. The regions that amplify radio emission are called masers, and work in a manner similar to the way a laser amplifies light emission. Determining the distance to NGC 4258 required measuring motions of extremely small shifts in position of these masers as they rotate around the black hole. This is equivalent to measuring an angle one ten-thousandth the width of a human hair held at arm's length. "The VLBA is the only instrument in the world that could do this," said Moran. "This work is the culmination of a 20-year effort at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics to measure distances to cosmic masers," said Irwin Shapiro, Director of that institution. Collection of the data for the NGC 4258 project was begun in 1994 and was part of Herrnstein's Ph.D dissertation at Harvard University. Previous observations with the VLBA allowed the scientists to measure the speed at which the gas is orbiting the black hole, some 39 million times more massive than the Sun. They did this by observing the amount of change in the

  14. Astronomers Discover Fastest-Spinning Pulsar

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-01-01

    Astronomers using the National Science Foundation's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope have discovered the fastest-spinning neutron star ever found, a 20-mile-diameter superdense pulsar whirling faster than the blades of a kitchen blender. Their work yields important new information about the nature of one of the most exotic forms of matter known in the Universe. Pulsar Graphic Pulsars Are Spinning Neutron Stars CREDIT: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF (Click on image for larger version) "We believe that the matter in neutron stars is denser than an atomic nucleus, but it is unclear by how much. Our observations of such a rapidly rotating star set a hard upper limit on its size, and hence on how dense the star can be.," said Jason Hessels, a graduate student at McGill University in Montreal. Hessels and his colleagues presented their findings to the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Washington, DC. Pulsars are spinning neutron stars that sling "lighthouse beams" of radio waves or light around as they spin. A neutron star is what is left after a massive star explodes at the end of its "normal" life. With no nuclear fuel left to produce energy to offset the stellar remnant's weight, its material is compressed to extreme densities. The pressure squeezes together most of its protons and electrons to form neutrons; hence, the name "neutron star." "Neutron stars are incredible laboratories for learning about the physics of the fundamental particles of nature, and this pulsar has given us an important new limit," explained Scott Ransom, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and one of Hessels' collaborators on this work. The scientists discovered the pulsar, named PSR J1748-2446ad, in a globular cluster of stars called Terzan 5, located some 28,000 light-years from Earth in the constellation Sagittarius. The newly-discovered pulsar is spinning 716 times per second, or at 716 Hertz (Hz), readily beating the previous record of 642 Hz from a pulsar

  15. Progress on the New York State Observatory: a new 12-meter astronomical telescope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sebring, T.; O'Dea, C.; Baum, S.; Teran, J.; Loewen, N.; Stutzki, C.; Egerman, R.; Bonomi, G.

    2014-07-01

    Over the past two years, the New York Astronomical Corporation (NYAC), the business arm of the Astronomical Society of New York (ASNY), has continued planning and technical studies toward construction of a 12-meter class optical telescope for the use of all New York universities and research institutions. Four significant technical studies have been performed investigating design opportunities for the facility, the dome, the telescope optics, and the telescope mount. The studies were funded by NYAC and performed by companies who have provided these subsystems for large astronomical telescopes in the past. In each case, innovative and cost effective approaches were identified, developed, analyzed, and initial cost estimates developed. As a group, the studies show promise that this telescope could be built at historically low prices. As the project continues forward, NYAC intends to broaden the collaboration, pursue funding, to continue to develop the telescope and instrument designs, and to further define the scientific mission. The vision of a historically large telescope dedicated to all New York institutions continues to grow and find new adherents.

  16. Catching Stardust and Bringing it Home: The Astronomical Importance of Sample Return

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brownlee, D.

    2002-12-01

    The return of lunar samples by the Apollo program provided the first opportunity to perform detailed laboratory studies of ancient solid materials from a known astronomical body. The highly detailed study of the samples, using the best available laboratory instruments and techniques, revolutionized our understanding of the Moon and provided fundamental insight into the remarkable and violent processes that occur early in the history of moons and terrestrial planets. This type of astronomical paleontology is only possible with samples and yet the last US sample return was made by Apollo 17- over thirty years ago! The NASA Stardust mission, began a new era of sample missions with its 1999 launch to retrieve samples from the short period comet Wild 2. Genesis (a solar wind collector) was launched in 2001, the Japanese MUSES-C asteroid sample return mission will launch in 2003 and Mars sample return missions are under study. All of these missions will use sophisticated ground-based instrumentation to provide types of information that cannot be obtained by astronomical and spacecraft remote sensing methods. In the case of Stardust, the goal is to determine the fundamental nature of the initial solid building blocks of solar systems at atomic-scale spatial resolution. The samples returned by the mission will be samples from the Kuiper Belt region and they are probably composed of submicron silicate and organic materials of both presolar and nebular origin. Unlocking the detailed records contained in the elemental, chemical, isotopic and mineralogical composition of these tiny components can only be appropriately explored with full power, precision and flexibility of laboratory instrumentation. Laboratory instrumentation has the advantage that is state-of-the-art and is not limited by serious considerations of power, mass, cost or even reliability. The comparison of the comet sample, accumulated beyond Neptune, with asteroidal meteorites that accumulated just beyond the

  17. Optimization of graded multilayer designs for astronomical x-ray telescopes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mao, P.H.; Harrison, F.A.; Windt, D.L.

    1999-01-01

    We developed a systematic method for optimizing the design of depth-graded multilayers for astronomical hard-x-ray and soft-gamma-ray telescopes based on the instrument's bandpass and the field of view. We apply these methods to the design of the conical-approximation Wolter I optics employed...... by the balloon-borne High Energy Focusing Telescope, using W/Si as the multilayer materials. In addition, we present optimized performance calculations of mirrors, using other material pairs that are capable of extending performance to photon energies above the W K-absorption edge (69.5 keV), including Pt/C, Ni...

  18. NRAO Astronomer Wins Prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    Dr. Dale Frail, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Socorro, New Mexico, has been awarded a prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship, according to the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. The Guggenheim Foundation describes its fellowships as "mid-career" awards "intended for men and women who have already demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts." Frail, 48, has worked at the NRAO for more than 20 years, first as a postdoctoral fellow, and then as a staff scientist. He received his bachelor's degree in physics from Acadia University in Nova Scotia, and his Ph.D in astronomy from the University of Toronto. Frail is best known for his landmark contributions to the understanding of gamma ray bursts, making critical measurements that provided key insights into the mechanisms of these superenergetic and once-mysterious explosions. He also has made important contributions to the understanding of other astronomical phenomena, including pulsars and their neighborhoods, supernova remnants, and magnetars. In 1992, he was the co-discoverer, with Alex Wolszczan, of the first planets outside our own solar system. "We congratulate Dale on this well-deserved honor that recognizes not only his past achievements but also his potential for exciting scientific work in the future," said Dr. Fred K.Y. Lo, NRAO Director. "We're very proud to see one of our scientists receive such a great honor," Lo added. Frail is one of 180 recipients of this year's Guggenheim Fellowships, chosen from some 3,000 applicants. The fellowships were established in 1925 and past recipients include photographer Ansel Adams, author Saul Bellow, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and chemist Linus Pauling. 102 Guggenheim Fellows have subsequently won Nobel Prizes, and others have received Pulitzer Prizes and other honors. As a Guggenheim Fellow, Frail intends to intensify his research in the areas of pulsars

  19. Radioisotope instruments

    CERN Document Server

    Cameron, J F; Silverleaf, D J

    1971-01-01

    International Series of Monographs in Nuclear Energy, Volume 107: Radioisotope Instruments, Part 1 focuses on the design and applications of instruments based on the radiation released by radioactive substances. The book first offers information on the physical basis of radioisotope instruments; technical and economic advantages of radioisotope instruments; and radiation hazard. The manuscript then discusses commercial radioisotope instruments, including radiation sources and detectors, computing and control units, and measuring heads. The text describes the applications of radioisotop

  20. Astronomical Content in Rongorongo Tablet Keiti

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wieczorek, Rafal

    2011-01-01

    Th e fi eld of rongorongo research: the study of Easter Island’s native script is in a peculiar state at the moment. While relative progress has been made in structural and statistical analysis in the last decades, at the level of both single glyphs as well as entire texts, little to no advanceme...... has been achieved in the actual decipherment. To shed new light on rongorongo research, a hypothesis regarding the contents of tablet Keiti, one of the 25 obtained artifacts, is proposed. Th e content, as well as the meaning, of all but one of these 25 rongorongo texts is still unknown....... In this publication, an interpretation for the recto side of tablet Keiti is presented. It is argued that the tablet contains astronomical observations or instructions regarding the Rapa Nui lunar calendar, and is similar in content to the only other rongorongo text whose function has been partially ascertained......: tablet Mamari. If the calendrical contents of this artifact were confi rmed, this would be a major boost to our understanding of Oceania’s only native script....

  1. Book Review: Scientific Writing for Young Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uyttenhove, Jos

    2011-12-01

    EDP Sciences, Les Ulis, France. Part 1 : 162 pp. € 35 ISBN 978-2-7598-0506-8 Part 2 : 298 pp. € 60 ISBN 978-2-7598-0639-3 The journal Astronomy & Astrophysics (A&A) and EDP Sciences decided in 2007 to organize a School on the various aspects of scientific writing and publishing. In 2008 and 2009 Scientific Writing for Young Astronomers (SWYA) Schools were held in Blankenberge (B) under the direction of Christiaan Sterken (FWO-VUB). These two books (EAS publication series, Vol. 49 and 50) reflect the outcome of these Schools. Part 1 contains a set of contributions that discuss various aspects of scientific publication; it includes A&A Editors' view of the peer review and publishing process. A very interesting short paper by S.R. Pottasch (Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, Groningen, and one of the two first Editors-in Chief of A&A) deals with the history of the creation of the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics. Two papers by J. Adams et al. (Observatoire de Paris) discuss language editing, including a detailed guide for any non-native user of the English language. In 2002 the Board of Directors decided that all articles in A&A must be written in clear and correct English. Part 2 consists of three very extensive and elaborated papers by Christiaan Sterken, supplying guidelines to PhD students and postdoctoral fellows to help them compose scientific papers for different forums (journals, proceedings, thesis, etc.). This part is of interest not only for young astronomers but it is very useful for scholars of all ages and disciplines. Paper I "The writing process" (60 pp.) copes with the preparation of manuscripts, with communicating with editors and referees and with avoiding common errors. Delicate problems on authorship, refereeing, revising multi-authored papers etc. are treated in 26 FAQ's. Paper II "Communication by graphics" (120 pp.) is entirely dedicated to the important topic of communication with images, graphs, diagrams, tables etc. Design types of graphs

  2. Conceptualizing Astronomical Distances for Urban Populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popinchalk, Mark; Olson, Kristen; Ingber, Jenny; O'Brien, Mariel

    2017-01-01

    Students living in urban environments may have a washed-out night sky, but their enthusiasm for astronomy can still shine bright. As an educator, it can sometimes be a challenge to see the opportunities afforded by city living to the teaching of astronomy; however, several benefits can be identified. For example, the intrinsic understanding children have of the distances and scales involved in their everyday life is enhanced when they live in a regimented urban structure. This existing understanding of scale is critical to building a foundation for later conceptualizing of the universe.Leveraging the assets of New York City and the resources found in the American Museum of Natural History, The Science and Nature Program offers students (PreK through 8th grade) robust science learning experiences. To address concepts important for studying astronomy, we present a novel twist on the classic lesson “Earth as a Peppercorn,” by scaling the solar system to the size of New York City. Using local landmarks and their distance in relation to the Museum to represent the planets, students can use their prior knowledge of their surroundings to appreciate the impressive scale of our neighborhood in space in the context of their own neighborhoods. We correlate the activity with NGSS standards, present preliminary feedback on it’s success, and discuss the opportunities to apply a similar model lesson to other astronomical systems.

  3. Electronic Publishing and The American Astronomical Society

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milkey, R. W.

    1999-12-01

    Electronic Publishing has created, and will continue to create, new opportunities and challenges for representing scientific work in new media and formats. The AAS will position itself to take advantage of these, both for newly created works and for improved representation of works already published. It is the view of the AAS that we hold the works that we publish in trust for our community and are obligated to protect the integrity of these works and to assure that they continue to be available to the research community. Assignment of copyright to the AAS by the author plays a central role in the preservation of the integrity and accessability of the literature published by the American Astronomical Society. In return for such assignment the AAS allows the author to freely use the work for his/her own purpose and to control the grant of permission to third parties to use such materials. The AAS retains the right to republish the work in whatever format or medium, and to retain the rights after the author's death. Specific advantages to this approach include: Assurance of the continued availability of the materials to the research and educational communities; A guarantee of the intellectual integrity of the materials in the archive; Stimulation of the development of new means of presentation or of access to the archival literature; and Provision of a uniformity of treatment for copyright issues and to relieve the individual authors of much of the administrative work.

  4. Is astronomical research appropriate for developing countries?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snowden, Michael S.

    An unproductive 45-cm astronomical telescope, given by JICA (Japan) to Sri Lanka, raises general questions as to the reasons for unproductive pure science in developing countries. Before installation, site, maintenance, and scientific objectives were discussed. The facility was launched with a conference organised by the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs. Unfortunately, no research or significant education has resulted after four years. The annual operating cost is U.S. $5000 per year, including salary for a trainee, maintenance, and a modest promotional programme. Comparison with a similar installation in Auckland suggests lack of funding or technical competence do not explain the failure in Sri Lanka. The facility in New Zealand, on the roof of Auckland University's Physics Department, has a slightly smaller budget but has led to modest but useful research and teaching. Lack of financial backing and expertise are often blamed for weak science in developing countries, but examination shows most of these countries have adequately skilled people, and plenty of resources for religion and military. General lack of motivation for science appears to be the principal reason. This lack of interest and highly inefficient bureaucracies are common to scientifically unproductive countries. They mostly lack the cultural and philosophical base of the European Renaissance that motivate the pursuit of modern science, an activity that violates human preferences. There are excellent facilities (ESO, SAAO, Cerro Tololo, and GONG) in some of these same countries, when administered from the West.

  5. Serbian Astronomers in Science Citation Index in the XX Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimitrijevic, Milan S.

    The book is written paralelly in Serbian and English. The presence of works of Serbian astronomers and works in astronomical journals published by other Serbian scientists, in Science Citation Index within the period from 1945 up to the end of 2000, has been analyzed. Also is presented the list of 38 papers which had some influence on the development of astronomy in the twentieth century. A review of the development of astronomy in Serbia in the last century is given as well. Particular attention is payed to the Astronomical Observatory, the principal astronomical institution in Serbia, where it is one of the oldest scientific organizations and the only autonomous astronomical institute. Its past development forms an important part of the history of science and culture in these regions. In the book is also considered and the history of the university teaching of astronomy in Serbia after the second world war. First of all the development of the Chair of Astronomy at the Faculty of Mathematics in Belgrade, but also the teaching of astronomy at University in Novi Sad, Ni and Kragujevac is discussed. In addition to professional Astronomy, well developed in Serbia is also the amateur Astronomy. In the review is first of all included the largest and the oldest organization of amateur-astronomers in Serbia, founded in 1934. Besides, here are the Astronomical Society "Novi Sad", ADNOS and Research Station "Petnica". In Valjevo, within the framework of the Society of researchers "Vladimir Mandic - Manda", there is active also the Astronomical Group. In Kragujevac, on the roof of the Institute of Physics of the Faculty of Sciences, there is the "Belerofont" Observatory. In Ni, at the close of the sixties and the start of the seventies, there was operating a branch of the Astronomical Society "Rudjer Bokovic", while at the Faculty of Philosophy there existed in the period 1976-1980 the "Astro-Geophysical Society". In the year 1996 there was founded Astronomical Society

  6. Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade from 1924 to 1955

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radovanac, M.

    2014-12-01

    History of the Astronomical Observatory in Belgrade, as the presentation is done here, become the field of interest to the author of the present monograph in early 2002. Then, together with Luka C. Popovic, during the Conference "Development of Astronomy among Serbs II" held in early April of that year, he prepared a paper entitled "Astronomska opservatorija tokom Drugog Svetskog rata" (Astronomical Observatory in the Second World War). This paper was based on the archives material concerning the Astronomical Observatory which has been professionally bearing in mind the author's position the subject of his work.

  7. POST WWII Astronomy and Rebuilding U.S. Astronomical Institutions--The U.S. Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, W. E.

    1993-12-01

    A belief that technology contributed substantially to the winning of World War II spurred the formation of ONR, then NSF which was formed in ONR's image. NASA's space support, cold war competition, and ARPA's funding of high risk, high payoff technologies led to state-of-the-art instrumentation in astronomy. Limits on funding for instrumentation at individual institutions led to the concept and growth of national astronomy observatories that made observing time available to the best ideas from astronomers who had no access to big telescopes at home. Success of these major observatories lay also in their treatment of visitors who were made to feel a part of the institution. As federal funding became available, several issues were heavily debated, among which were overhead costs on grant awards, what the breakdown of responsibility should be for institutional vs. federal funding, spreading vs. concentrating the available funding, the role of the AAS and advisory groups, federal vs. researcher specification of the research program, and the roots of the modern debate concerning research relevance. U.S. astronomers are unique because of our eclecticism, our development of a winning system of workplaces, our peer review system, our united front presented by our projective planning and our periodic decade reviews, our international orientation, all in the context of national support that is preeminent in the world. These features operate within an economic system that enables us to communicate and travel easily, and scientific and academic administrations that permit astronomers to concentrate on their research without excess internal or external politics.

  8. Astronomers Trace Microquasar's Path Back in Time

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-01-01

    Astronomers have traced the orbit through our Milky Way Galaxy of a voracious neutron star and a companion star it is cannibalizing, and conclude that the pair joined more than 30 million years ago and probably were catapulted out of a cluster of stars far from the Galaxy's center. Path of Microquasar and Sun Path of Microquasar (red) and Sun (yellow) through the Milky Way Galaxy for the past 230 million years. Animations: GIF Version MPEG Version CREDIT: Mirabel & Rodrigues, NRAO/AUI/NSF The pair of stars, called Scorpius X-1, form a "microquasar," in which material sucked from the "normal" star forms a rapidly-rotating disk around the superdense neutron star. The disk becomes so hot it emits X-rays, and also spits out "jets" of subatomic particles at nearly the speed of light. Using precise positional data from the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) and from optical telescopes, Felix Mirabel, an astrophysicist at the Institute for Astronomy and Space Physics of Argentina and French Atomic Energy Commission, and Irapuan Rodrigues, also of the French Atomic Energy Commission, calculated that Scorpius X-1 is not orbiting the Milky Way's center in step with most other stars, but instead follows an eccentric path far above and below the Galaxy's plane. Scorpius X-1, discovered with a rocket-borne X-ray telescope in 1962, is about 9,000 light-years from Earth. It is the brightest continuous source of X-rays beyond the Solar System. The 1962 discovery and associated work earned a share of the 2002 Nobel Prize in physics for Riccardo Giacconi. Mirabel and Rodrigues used a number of published observations to calculate the path of Scorpius X-1 over the past few million years. "This is the most accurate determination we have made of the path of an X-ray binary," said Mirabel. By tracing the object's path backward in time, the scientists were able to conclude that the neutron star and its companion have been traveling together for more than 30

  9. Spectroscopy for amateur astronomers recording, processing, analysis and interpretation

    CERN Document Server

    Trypsteen , Marc F M

    2017-01-01

    This accessible guide presents the astrophysical concepts behind astronomical spectroscopy, covering both the theory and the practical elements of recording, processing, analysing and interpreting your spectra. It covers astronomical objects, such as stars, planets, nebulae, novae, supernovae, and events such as eclipses and comet passages. Suitable for anyone with only a little background knowledge and access to amateur-level equipment, the guide's many illustrations, sketches and figures will help you understand and practise this scientifically important and growing field of amateur astronomy, up to the level of Pro-Am collaborations. Accessible to non-academics, it benefits many groups from novices and learners in astronomy clubs, to advanced students and teachers of astrophysics. This volume is the perfect companion to the Spectral Atlas for Amateur Astronomers, which provides detailed commented spectral profiles of more than 100 astronomical objects.

  10. Astronomical sketching a step-by-step introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Handy, Richard; Perez, Jeremy; Rix, Erika; Robbins, Sol

    2007-01-01

    This book presents the amateur with fine examples of astronomical sketches and step-by-step tutorials in each medium, from pencil to computer graphics programs. This unique book can teach almost anyone to create beautiful sketches of celestial objects.

  11. Database retrieval systems for nuclear and astronomical data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suda, Takuma; Korennov, Sergei; Otuka, Naohiko; Yamada, Shimako; Katsuta, Yutaka; Ohnishi, Akira; Kato, Kiyoshi; Fujimoto, Masayuki Y.

    2006-01-01

    Data retrieval and plot systems of nuclear and astronomical data are constructed on a common platform. Web-based systems will soon be opened to the users of both fields of nuclear physics and astronomy. (author)

  12. PPARC: Grid technology helps astronomers keep pace with the Universe

    CERN Multimedia

    2003-01-01

    "Intelligent Agent" computer programs are roaming the Internet and watching the skies. These programs, using Grid computing technology, will help astronomers detect some of the most dramatic events in the universe, such as massive supernova explosions (1 page).

  13. The Educational Activities of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fraknoi, Andrew

    1981-01-01

    Describes educational activities of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific including learning packets on various astronomy concepts, Morrison lectures, newspaper columns, teacher workshops, cosponsoring astronomy oriented lectures, and providing speakers for various groups. (DS)

  14. High energy astrophysics in radio-astronomical form

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Laan, H. van der

    1980-01-01

    The application of high energy astrophysics in observational astronomy, and in particular in radioastronomy, is considered. The current situation of extragalactic HEA, as brought to light by radio-astronomical techniques, is sketched. (C.F.)

  15. Lessons from the masters current concepts in astronomical image processing

    CERN Document Server

    2013-01-01

    There are currently thousands of amateur astronomers around the world engaged in astrophotography at increasingly sophisticated levels. Their ranks far outnumber professional astronomers doing the same and their contributions both technically and artistically are the dominant drivers of progress in the field today. This book is a unique collaboration of individuals, all world-renowned in their particular area, and covers in detail each of the major sub-disciplines of astrophotography. This approach offers the reader the greatest opportunity to learn the most current information and the latest techniques directly from the foremost innovators in the field today.   The book as a whole covers all types of astronomical image processing, including processing of eclipses and solar phenomena, extracting detail from deep-sky, planetary, and widefield images, and offers solutions to some of the most challenging and vexing problems in astronomical image processing. Recognized chapter authors include deep sky experts su...

  16. The Frontiers of the Astronomical Universe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pecker, Jean-Claude

    1977-01-01

    Reviews the current state of knowledge obtained by means of observations using the increasingly powerful or proficient instruments of astrophysics, radio astronomy, and space astronomy by satellite. In conclusion, he refers to certain mathematical entities introduced into the theory of the origins and evolution of the cosmos. (Author/MA)

  17. Efficient morphological tools for astronomical image processing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Moschini, Ugo

    2016-01-01

    Nowadays, many applications rely on a huge quantity of images at high resolution and with high quantity of information per pixel, due either to the technological improvements of the instruments or to the type of measurement observed. This thesis is focused on exploring and developing tools and new

  18. Instrumental interaction

    OpenAIRE

    Luciani , Annie

    2007-01-01

    International audience; The expression instrumental interaction as been introduced by Claude Cadoz to identify a human-object interaction during which a human manipulates a physical object - an instrument - in order to perform a manual task. Classical examples of instrumental interaction are all the professional manual tasks: playing violin, cutting fabrics by hand, moulding a paste, etc.... Instrumental interaction differs from other types of interaction (called symbolic or iconic interactio...

  19. Astronomical fire: Richard Carrington and the solar flare of 1859.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Stuart

    2007-09-01

    An explosion on the Sun in 1859, serendipitously witnessed by amateur astronomer Richard Carrington, plunged telegraphic communications into chaos and bathed two thirds of the Earth's skies in aurorae. Explaining what happened to the Sun and how it could affect Earth, 93 million miles away, helped change the direction of astronomy. From being concerned principally with charting the stars to aid navigation, astronomers became increasingly concerned with what the celestial objects were, how they behaved and how they might affect life on Earth.

  20. Applying artificial intelligence to astronomical databases - a surveyof applicable technology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosenthal, D. A.

    This paper surveys several emerging technologies which are relevant to astronomical database issues such as interface technology, internal database representation, and intelligent data reduction aids. Among the technologies discussed are natural language understanding, frame and object representations, planning, pattern analysis, machine learning and the nascent study of simulated neural nets. These techniques will become increasingly important for astronomical research, and in particular, for applications with large databases.

  1. Preservation and maintenance of the astronomical sites in Armenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2008-01-01

    Astronomy in Armenia was popular since ancient times. There are signs of astronomical observations coming from a few thousands years ago. Two ancient observatories, Karahunge and Metzamor are especially well known. Karahunge is the Armenian twin of the Stonehenge and is even older. However, there is no proper attention from the state authorities and efforts are needed for preservation of such historical-astronomical monuments. The Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO) is the modern famous Armenian observatory founded in 1946 by the outstanding scientist Victor Ambartsumian. It was one of the world astronomical centres in 1950-s to 1970-s, and at present is the largest observatory in the Middle East area. As the ancient astronomical sites, Byurakan also needs a proper attitude from the state authorities and corresponding international organizations to preserve its values and importance for the present and future astronomical activities in the region, including its rich observational archive, telescopes, and human resources. Despite all the difficulties, the Armenian astronomers keep high international level of research and display various activities organizing international meetings and schools, preparing new young generation for the future research. The Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS) is an affiliated member of EAS. Armenia has its Virtual Observatory project (ArVO) as well. The next Joint European and National Astronomy Meeting (JENAM-2007) will be held in Yerevan, Armenia, in August 2007. There are plans to organize astronomical tours to Armenia for making observations from various sites, including the ancient observatories. The future of astronomy in Armenia strongly depends on all of this activities and the proper attention both from state authorities and society.

  2. The 2013 Summer Undergraduate Research Internship Program at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castelaz, Michael W.; Cline, J. D.; Whitworth, C.; Clavier, D.; Barker, T.

    2014-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) offers summer undergraduate research internships. PARI has received support for the internships from the EMC Corporation, private donations, private foundations, and through a collaboration with the Pisgah Astronomical Research and Education Center of the University of North Carolina - Asheville. The internship program began in 2001 with 4 students. This year 10 funded students participated. Mentors for the interns include PARI’s Directors of Science, Education, and Information Technology and visiting faculty who are members of the PARI Research Faculty Affiliate program. Students work with mentors on radio and optical astronomy research, electrical engineering for robotic control of instruments, software development for instrument control and and science education by developing curricula and multimedia and teaching high school students in summer programs at PARI. At the end of the summer interns write a paper about their research which is published in the PARI Summer Student Proceedings. Students are encouraged to present their research at AAS Meetings. We will present a summary of specific research conducted by the students with their mentors.

  3. Investigating Student Understanding of the Universe: Perceptions of Astronomical Sizes and Distances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camarillo, Carmelita; Coble, K.; Hayes, V.; Nickerson, M.; Cochran, G. L.; Bailey, J. M.; McLin, K. M.; Cominsky, L. R.

    2011-05-01

    Student perceptions regarding astronomical sizes and distances are being analyzed for Chicago State University's Basic Astronomy course. This area is of great interest to further understand the students’ learning processes and to produce more effective instruction. Insights from cognitive psychology have shown that perceptions are related to prior experiences and current knowledge. Students enter into this course with different mental representations, and these representations can affect their learning. Through a repeated measures design, perceptions are analyzed through several instruments. The instruments implemented are pre-tests surveys (before lab), exams (after lab), lab comments, and interviews. Preliminary analysis reveals that students who have difficulty with astronomical sizes and distances have been more strongly influenced by culture and the media whereas those who had less difficulty expanded on their personal prior experiences. This project is part of a larger study; also see our posters on the structure of the universe, dark matter, the age and expansion of the universe. This work was supported by NASA ROSES E/PO Grant #NNXlOAC89G, as well as by the Illinois Space Grant Consortium and National Science Foundation CCLI Grant #0632563 at Chicago State University and the Fermi E/PO program at Sonoma State University.

  4. The Summer Undergraduate Research Internship Program at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, M.; Whitworth, C.; Clavier, D.; Owen, L.; Barker, T.

    2012-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) offers summer undergraduate research internships. PARI has received support for the internships from the NC Space Grant Consortium, NSF awards for public science education, private donations, private foundations, and through a collaboration with the Pisgah Astronomical Research and Education Center of the University of North Carolina - Asheville. The internship program began in 2001 with 4 students. This year 7 funded students participated in 2011. Mentors for the interns include PARI's Science, Education, and Information Technology Directors and visiting faculty who are members of the PARI Research Affiliate Faculty program. Students work with mentors on radio and optical astronomy research, electrical engineering for robotic control of instruments, software development for instrument control and software for citizen science projects, and science education by developing curricula and multimedia and teaching high school students in summer programs at PARI. At the end of the summer interns write a paper about their research which is published in the PARI Summer Student Proceedings. Several of the students have presented their results at AAS Meetings. We will present a summary of specific research conducted by the students with their mentors, the logistics for hosting the PARI undergraduate internship program, and plans for growth based on the impact of an NSF supported renovation to the Research Building on the PARI campus.

  5. A Binary Offset Effect in CCD Readout and Its Impact on Astronomical Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boone, K.; Aldering, G.; Copin, Y.; Dixon, S.; Domagalski, R. S.; Gangler, E.; Pecontal, E.; Perlmutter, S.

    2018-06-01

    We have discovered an anomalous behavior of CCD readout electronics that affects their use in many astronomical applications. An offset in the digitization of the CCD output voltage that depends on the binary encoding of one pixel is added to pixels that are read out one, two, and/or three pixels later. One result of this effect is the introduction of a differential offset in the background when comparing regions with and without flux from science targets. Conventional data reduction methods do not correct for this offset. We find this effect in 16 of 22 instruments investigated, covering a variety of telescopes and many different front-end electronics systems. The affected instruments include LRIS and DEIMOS on the Keck telescopes, WFC3 UVIS and STIS on HST, MegaCam on CFHT, SNIFS on the UH88 telescope, GMOS on the Gemini telescopes, HSC on Subaru, and FORS on VLT. The amplitude of the introduced offset is up to 4.5 ADU per pixel, and it is not directly proportional to the measured ADU level. We have developed a model that can be used to detect this “binary offset effect” in data, and correct for it. Understanding how data are affected and applying a correction for the effect is essential for precise astronomical measurements.

  6. Considerations for the Use of STEREO -HI Data for Astronomical Studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tappin, S. J., E-mail: james.tappin@stfc.ac.uk [RAL Space, STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Harwell Oxford, Didcot, Oxon. OX11 0QX (United Kingdom)

    2017-04-01

    Recent refinements to the photometric calibrations of the Heliospheric Imagers (HI) on board the Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory ( STEREO ) have revealed a number of subtle effects in the measurement of stellar signals with those instruments. These effects need to be considered in the interpretation of STEREO -HI data for astronomy. In this paper we present an analysis of these effects and how to compensate for them when using STEREO -HI data for astronomical studies. We determine how saturation of the HI CCD detectors affects the apparent count rates of stars after the on-board summing of pixels and exposures. Single-exposure calibration images are analyzed and compared with binned and summed science images to determine the influence of saturation on the science images. We also analyze how the on-board cosmic-ray scrubbing algorithm affects stellar images. We determine how this interacts with the variations of instrument pointing to affect measurements of stars. We find that saturation is a significant effect only for the brightest stars, and that its onset is gradual. We also find that degraded pointing stability, whether of the entire spacecraft or of the imagers, leads to reduced stellar count rates and also increased variation thereof through interaction with the on-board cosmic-ray scrubbing algorithm. We suggest ways in which these effects can be mitigated for astronomical studies and also suggest how the situation can be improved for future imagers.

  7. The NASA Astrophysics Data System Free Access to the Astronomical Literature On-Line and through Email

    CERN Document Server

    Eichhorn, G; Grant, C S; Kurtz, M J; Murray, S S

    2001-01-01

    The Astrophysics Data System (ADS) provides access to the astronomical literature through the World Wide Web. It is a NASA funded project and access to all the ADS services is free to everybody world-wide.The ADS Abstract Service allows the searching of four databases with abstracts in Astronomy, Instrumentation, Physics/Geophysics, and the LANL Preprints with a total of over 2.2 million references. The system also provides access to reference and citation information, links to on-line data, electronic journal articles, and other on-line information. The ADS Article Service contains the articles for most of the astronomical literature back to volume 1. It contains the scanned pages of all the major journals (Astrophysical Journal, Astronomical Journal, Astronomy & Astrophysics, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, and Solar Physics), as well as most smaller journals back to volume 1. The ADS can be accessed through any web browser without signup or login. Alternatively an email interface is ...

  8. European astronomers' successes with the Hubble Space Telescope*

    Science.gov (United States)

    1997-02-01

    [Figure: Laguna Nebula] Their work spans all aspects of astronomy, from the planets to the most distant galaxies and quasars, and the following examples are just a few European highlights from Hubble's second phase, 1994-96. A scarcity of midget stars Stars less massive and fainter than the Sun are much numerous in the Milky Way Galaxy than the big bright stars that catch the eye. Guido De Marchi and Francesco Paresce of the European Southern Observatory as Garching, Germany, have counted them. With the wide-field WFPC2 camera, they have taken sample censuses within six globular clusters, which are large gatherings of stars orbiting independently in the Galaxy. In every case they find that the commonest stars have an output of light that is only one-hundredth of the Sun's. They are ten times more numerous than stars like the Sun. More significant for theories of the Universe is a scarcity of very faint stars. Some astronomers have suggested that vast numbers of such stars could account for the mysterious dark matter, which makes stars and galaxies move about more rapidly than expected from the mass of visible matter. But that would require an ever-growing count of objects at low brightnesses, and De Marchi and Paresce find the opposite to be the case -- the numbers diminish. There may be a minimum size below which Nature finds starmaking difficult. The few examples of very small stars seen so far by astronomers may be, not the heralds of a multitude of dark-matter stars, but rareties. Unchanging habits in starmaking Confirmation that very small stars are scarce comes from Gerry Gilmore of the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge (UK). He leads a European team that analyses long-exposure images in the WFPC2 camera, obtained as a by-product when another instrument is examining a selected object. The result is an almost random sample of well-observed stars and galaxies. The most remarkable general conclusion is that the make-up of stellar populations never seems to

  9. A new technique of characterization of intrapixel response dedicated to astronomical detectors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ketchazo, C.; Viale, T.; Boulade, O.; Druart, G.; Moreau, V.; Mugnier, L.; Dubrueil, D.; Derelle, S.; Ronayette, S.; Guérineau, N.; Berthé, M.

    2015-01-01

    This paper is devoted to the presentation of a new technique of characterization of the intra-pixel sensitivity variations (IPSVs) of astronomical detectors. The IPSV is the spatial variation of the pixel response function (PRF). In the case of under-sampled instruments for high quality imaging and accurate photometry, IPSV can contribute to the instrument global error and it should be considered carefully. Our measurement technique is based in the Fourier transform (FT) approach. It consists into the sampling of the pixel transfer function (PTF) by projecting high-resolution periodic patterns onto the whole sensor without classic optics but using the self-imaging property (the Talbot effect) of a continuously self imaging grating (CSIG) illuminated by a plane wave. The PRF is determined by computing the inverse FT. Our measurement technique permits to determine the PRF with a resolution of pixel/10 (10 times Nyquist frequency)

  10. The boundaries of the astronomical universe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pecker, J.-C.

    1977-01-01

    An up-to-date review is presented of the observed data which have been gained with using the more and more powerful and skillful instruments of astrophysics, radioastronomy or satellite astronomy. Some mathematical entities involved in the theory of the origin and evolution of cosmology are also discussed (galaxies, the Hubble law, quasars, the expanding universe and big-bang, red shift, interstellar and circumstellar spaces, are successively envisaged) [fr

  11. Astronomical Data Integration Beyond the Virtual Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemson, G.; Laurino, O.

    2015-09-01

    "Data integration" generally refers to the process of combining data from different source data bases into a unified view. Much work has been devoted in this area by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA), allowing users to discover and access databases through standard protocols. However, different archives present their data through their own schemas and users must still select, filter, and combine data for each archive individually. An important reason for this is that the creation of common data models that satisfy all sub-disciplines is fraught with difficulties. Furthermore it requires a substantial amount of work for data providers to present their data according to some standard representation. We will argue that existing standards allow us to build a data integration framework that works around these problems. The particular framework requires the implementation of the IVOA Table Access Protocol (TAP) only. It uses the newly developed VO data modelling language (VO-DML) specification, which allows one to define extensible object-oriented data models using a subset of UML concepts through a simple XML serialization language. A rich mapping language allows one to describe how instances of VO-DML data models are represented by the TAP service, bridging the possible mismatch between a local archive's schema and some agreed-upon representation of the astronomical domain. In this so called local-as-view approach to data integration, “mediators" use the mapping prescriptions to translate queries phrased in terms of the common schema to the underlying TAP service. This mapping language has a graphical representation, which we expose through a web based graphical “drag-and-drop-and-connect" interface. This service allows any user to map the holdings of any TAP service to the data model(s) of choice. The mappings are defined and stored outside of the data sources themselves, which allows the interface to be used in a kind of crowd-sourcing effort

  12. SPHEREx: Science Opportunities for the Astronomical Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooray, Asantha; SPHEREx Science Team

    2018-01-01

    SPHEREx, a mission in NASA's Medium Explorer (MIDEX) program that was selected for Phase A study in August 2017, will perform an all-sky near-infrared spectral survey between 0.75 - 5.0 microns. The survey will reach 18.3 AB mag (5 sigma) in R=41 filters, with R=135 coverage between 4.2 - 5.0 microns. The key science topics of the SPHEREx team are: (a) primordial non-Gaussianity through 3-dimensional galaxy clustering; (b) extragalactic background light fluctuations; and (c) ices and biogenic molecules in the interstellar medium and towards protoplanetary environments.The large legacy dataset of SPHEREx will enable a large number of scientific studies and find interesting targets for follow-up observations with Hubble, JWST, ALMA, among other facilities. The SPHEREx catalog will include 1.4 billion galaxies, with redshifts secured for more than 10 and 120 million with fractional accuracies in error/(1+z) better than 0.3% and 3%, respectively. The spectral coverage and resolution provided by SPHEREx are adequate to determine redshifts for most WISE-detected sources with an accuracy better than 3%. The catalog will contain close to 1.5 million quasars including 300 bright QSOs at z > 7 during the epoch of reionization, based on observational extrapolations. The catalog will be adequate to obtain redshifts for all 25,000 galaxy clusters expected to be detected in X-rays with e-Rosita. SPHEREx produces all-sky maps of the Galactic emission lines, including hydrocarbon emission around 3 microns.In this poster, we will show example science studies the broader astronomical community will be able to lead using the SPHEREx database. We will also outline existing plans within the SPHEREx team to develop software tools to enable easy access to the data and to conduct catalog searches, and ways in which the community can provide input to the SPHEREx Science Team on scientific studies and data/software requirements for those studies. The team is eager to develop best software

  13. NRAO Astronomer Wins Max-Planck Research Award

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-04-01

    Dr. Christopher Carilli, a National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) astronomer in Socorro, New Mexico, has been chosen to receive the prestigious Max Planck Research Award from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and the Max Planck Society in Germany. Christopher Carilli Dr. Christopher Carilli Click on image for more photos CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF Carilli, a radio astronomer, and German particle physicist Christof Wetterich are the 2005 recipients of the award, conferred on "one researcher working in Germany and one working abroad who have already gained an international reputation and who are expected to produce outstanding achievements in the framework of international collaboration," according to an announcement from the Humboldt Foundation. "This is a great honor for Chris, and we are proud to see him receive such important international recognition for the excellence of his research," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. Carilli's research has focused on studying very distant galaxies in the early Universe, and a quest to find the first luminous objects, such as stars or galaxies, to emerge. His most recent interests focus on unveiling the mysteries of what cosmologists call the "Epoch of Reionization," when the first stars and galaxies ionized the neutral hydrogen that pervaded the young Universe. Carilli and his research colleagues have used NRAO's Very Large Array and other radio telescopes to discover that the molecular raw material for star formation already was present in a galaxy seen as it was about 800 million years after the Big Bang, less than 1/16 the current age of the Universe. The Max Planck Research Award provides 750,000 Euros (currently about $900,000), to be used over five years, for research. The funding is provided by the German Ministry of Education and Research. Carilli will use the funding to support young researchers and to build scientific instrumentation, with a focus on fostering radio studies of cosmic reionization and the first

  14. Imagineering the astronomical revolution - Essay review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jardine, Nicholas.

    2006-11-01

    Concerning following Books: (I) Transmitting knowledge - words, images, and instruments in early modern Europe. Kusukawa and Maclean (eds.), OUP, Oxford, 2006; (II) Widmung, Welterklärung und Wissenschaftslegitimierung: Titelbilder und ihre Funktionen in der wissenschaftlichen Revolution. Remmert, Harrassowitz, Wiesbaden, 2005; (III) The power of images in early modern science. Lefevre, Renn and Schoepflin (eds.), Birkhäuser, Basel, 2003; (IV) Immagini per conoscere - dal Rinascimento alla rivoluzione scientifica. Meroi and Pogliano (eds.), Olschki, Florenz, 2001; (V) Erkenntnis Erfindung Konstruktion - Studien zur Bildgeschichte von Naturwissenschaften und Technik vom 16. bis zum 19. Jahrhundert. Holländer (ed.), Mann, Berlin, 2000.

  15. Instrumentation Facility

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Provides instrumentation support for flight tests of prototype weapons systems using a vast array of airborne sensors, transducers, signal conditioning and encoding...

  16. Astronomical optical interferometry, II: Astrophysical results

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jankov S.

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Optical interferometry is entering a new age with several ground- based long-baseline observatories now making observations of unprecedented spatial resolution. Based on a great leap forward in the quality and quantity of interferometric data, the astrophysical applications are not limited anymore to classical subjects, such as determination of fundamental properties of stars; namely, their effective temperatures, radii, luminosities and masses, but the present rapid development in this field allowed to move to a situation where optical interferometry is a general tool in studies of many astrophysical phenomena. Particularly, the advent of long-baseline interferometers making use of very large pupils has opened the way to faint objects science and first results on extragalactic objects have made it a reality. The first decade of XXI century is also remarkable for aperture synthesis in the visual and near-infrared wavelength regimes, which provided image reconstructions from stellar surfaces to Active Galactic Nuclei. Here I review the numerous astrophysical results obtained up to date, except for binary and multiple stars milliarcsecond astrometry, which should be a subject of an independent detailed review, taking into account its importance and expected results at microarcsecond precision level. To the results obtained with currently available interferometers, I associate the adopted instrumental settings in order to provide a guide for potential users concerning the appropriate instruments which can be used to obtain the desired astrophysical information.

  17. Astronomers Detect Powerful Bursting Radio Source Discovery Points to New Class of Astronomical Objects

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-03-01

    Astronomers at Sweet Briar College and the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) have detected a powerful new bursting radio source whose unique properties suggest the discovery of a new class of astronomical objects. The researchers have monitored the center of the Milky Way Galaxy for several years and reveal their findings in the March 3, 2005 edition of the journal, “Nature”. This radio image of the central region of the Milky Way Galaxy holds a new radio source, GCRT J1745-3009. The arrow points to an expanding ring of debris expelled by a supernova. CREDIT: N.E. Kassim et al., Naval Research Laboratory, NRAO/AUI/NSF Principal investigator, Dr. Scott Hyman, professor of physics at Sweet Briar College, said the discovery came after analyzing some additional observations from 2002 provided by researchers at Northwestern University. “"We hit the jackpot!” Hyman said referring to the observations. “An image of the Galactic center, made by collecting radio waves of about 1-meter in wavelength, revealed multiple bursts from the source during a seven-hour period from Sept. 30 to Oct. 1, 2002 — five bursts in fact, and repeating at remarkably constant intervals.” Hyman, four Sweet Briar students, and his NRL collaborators, Drs. Namir Kassim and Joseph Lazio, happened upon transient emission from two radio sources while studying the Galactic center in 1998. This prompted the team to propose an ongoing monitoring program using the National Science Foundation’s Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope in New Mexico. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory, which operates the VLA, approved the program. The data collected, laid the groundwork for the detection of the new radio source. “Amazingly, even though the sky is known to be full of transient objects emitting at X- and gamma-ray wavelengths,” NRL astronomer Dr. Joseph Lazio pointed out, “very little has been done to look for radio bursts, which are often easier for astronomical objects to produce

  18. The Binary Offset Effect in CCDs: an Anomalous Readout Artifact Affecting Most Astronomical CCDs in Use

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boone, Kyle Robert; Aldering, Gregory; Copin, Yannick; Dixon, Samantha; Domagalski, Rachel; Gangler, Emmanuel; Pecontal, Emmanuel; Perlmutter, Saul; Nearby Supernova Factory Collaboration

    2018-01-01

    We discovered an anomalous behavior of CCD readout electronics that affects their use in many astronomical applications, which we call the “binary offset effect”. Due to feedback in the readout electronics, an offset is introduced in the values read out for each pixel that depends on the binary encoding of the previously read-out pixel values. One consequence of this effect is that a pathological local background offset can be introduced in images that only appears where science data are present on the CCD. The amplitude of this introduced offset does not scale monotonically with the amplitude of the objects in the image, and can be up to 4.5 ADU per pixel for certain instruments. Additionally, this background offset will be shifted by several pixels from the science data, potentially distorting the shape of objects in the image. We tested 22 instruments for signs of the binary offset effect and found evidence of it in 16 of them, including LRIS and DEIMOS on the Keck telescopes, WFC3-UVIS and STIS on HST, MegaCam on CFHT, SNIFS on the UH88 telescope, GMOS on the Gemini telescopes, HSC on Subaru, and FORS on VLT. A large amount of archival data is therefore affected by the binary offset effect, and conventional methods of reducing CCD images do not measure or remove the introduced offsets. As a demonstration of how to correct for the binary offset effect, we have developed a model that can accurately predict and remove the introduced offsets for the SNIFS instrument on the UH88 telescope. Accounting for the binary offset effect is essential for precision low-count astronomical observations with CCDs.

  19. Supervised detection of anomalous light curves in massive astronomical catalogs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nun, Isadora; Pichara, Karim; Protopapas, Pavlos; Kim, Dae-Won

    2014-01-01

    The development of synoptic sky surveys has led to a massive amount of data for which resources needed for analysis are beyond human capabilities. In order to process this information and to extract all possible knowledge, machine learning techniques become necessary. Here we present a new methodology to automatically discover unknown variable objects in large astronomical catalogs. With the aim of taking full advantage of all information we have about known objects, our method is based on a supervised algorithm. In particular, we train a random forest classifier using known variability classes of objects and obtain votes for each of the objects in the training set. We then model this voting distribution with a Bayesian network and obtain the joint voting distribution among the training objects. Consequently, an unknown object is considered as an outlier insofar it has a low joint probability. By leaving out one of the classes on the training set, we perform a validity test and show that when the random forest classifier attempts to classify unknown light curves (the class left out), it votes with an unusual distribution among the classes. This rare voting is detected by the Bayesian network and expressed as a low joint probability. Our method is suitable for exploring massive data sets given that the training process is performed offline. We tested our algorithm on 20 million light curves from the MACHO catalog and generated a list of anomalous candidates. After analysis, we divided the candidates into two main classes of outliers: artifacts and intrinsic outliers. Artifacts were principally due to air mass variation, seasonal variation, bad calibration, or instrumental errors and were consequently removed from our outlier list and added to the training set. After retraining, we selected about 4000 objects, which we passed to a post-analysis stage by performing a cross-match with all publicly available catalogs. Within these candidates we identified certain known

  20. Supervised Detection of Anomalous Light Curves in Massive Astronomical Catalogs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nun, Isadora; Pichara, Karim; Protopapas, Pavlos; Kim, Dae-Won

    2014-09-01

    The development of synoptic sky surveys has led to a massive amount of data for which resources needed for analysis are beyond human capabilities. In order to process this information and to extract all possible knowledge, machine learning techniques become necessary. Here we present a new methodology to automatically discover unknown variable objects in large astronomical catalogs. With the aim of taking full advantage of all information we have about known objects, our method is based on a supervised algorithm. In particular, we train a random forest classifier using known variability classes of objects and obtain votes for each of the objects in the training set. We then model this voting distribution with a Bayesian network and obtain the joint voting distribution among the training objects. Consequently, an unknown object is considered as an outlier insofar it has a low joint probability. By leaving out one of the classes on the training set, we perform a validity test and show that when the random forest classifier attempts to classify unknown light curves (the class left out), it votes with an unusual distribution among the classes. This rare voting is detected by the Bayesian network and expressed as a low joint probability. Our method is suitable for exploring massive data sets given that the training process is performed offline. We tested our algorithm on 20 million light curves from the MACHO catalog and generated a list of anomalous candidates. After analysis, we divided the candidates into two main classes of outliers: artifacts and intrinsic outliers. Artifacts were principally due to air mass variation, seasonal variation, bad calibration, or instrumental errors and were consequently removed from our outlier list and added to the training set. After retraining, we selected about 4000 objects, which we passed to a post-analysis stage by performing a cross-match with all publicly available catalogs. Within these candidates we identified certain known

  1. Astroinformatics, data mining and the future of astronomical research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brescia, Massimo, E-mail: longo@na.infn.it [INAF, Astronomical Obs. of Capodimonte, Via Moiariello 16, I-80131 Napoli (Italy); Longo, Giuseppe [Department of Physics, University Federico II, Via Cintia 6, 80126 Napoli (Italy); Department of Astronomy, Caltech, Pasadena (United States)

    2013-08-21

    Astronomy, as many other scientific disciplines, is facing a true data deluge which is bound to change both the praxis and the methodology of every day research work. The emerging field of astroinformatics, while on the one end appears crucial to face the technological challenges, on the other is opening new exciting perspectives for new astronomical discoveries through the implementation of advanced data mining procedures. The complexity of astronomical data and the variety of scientific problems, however, call for innovative algorithms and methods as well as for an extreme usage of ICT technologies.

  2. Dante, astrología y astronomía

    OpenAIRE

    Gangui, Alejandro

    2017-01-01

    En este artículo, los versos de Dante Alighieri nos llevan a reflexionar acerca de los diferentes métodos -cada vez más divergentes- con los que la ciencia y las creencias se aproximan a la realidad. Fil: Gangui, Alejandro. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciónes Científicas y Técnicas. Oficina de Coordinación Administrativa Ciudad Universitaria. Instituto de Astronomía y Física del Espacio. - Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Naturales. Instituto de Astronomía y Físi...

  3. Astroinformatics, data mining and the future of astronomical research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brescia, Massimo; Longo, Giuseppe

    2013-01-01

    Astronomy, as many other scientific disciplines, is facing a true data deluge which is bound to change both the praxis and the methodology of every day research work. The emerging field of astroinformatics, while on the one end appears crucial to face the technological challenges, on the other is opening new exciting perspectives for new astronomical discoveries through the implementation of advanced data mining procedures. The complexity of astronomical data and the variety of scientific problems, however, call for innovative algorithms and methods as well as for an extreme usage of ICT technologies

  4. A new astronomical dating of Odysseus return to Ithaca.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papamarinopoulos, St. P.; Preka-Papadema, P.; Antonopoulos, P.; Mitropetrou, H.; Tsironi, A.; Mitropetros, P.

    The annular solar eclipse, of 30 October 1207 B.C. (Julian Day-JD 1280869), calculated by NASA together with the analysis of the weather's and the environment's description (long nights, plants, animals and peoples' habits) and the astronomical data (guiding constellations and Venus in the east horizon) mentioned by Homer in the epic, constitute an autumn return of Odysseus to Ithaca five days before the above characterized day. The latter offers a precise astronomical dating of the event and dates the legendary Trojan War's end as well.

  5. Instrumentation development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ubbes, W.F.; Yow, J.L. Jr.

    1988-01-01

    Instrumentation is developed for the Civilian Radioactive Waste Management Program to meet several different (and sometimes conflicting) objectives. This paper addresses instrumentation development for data needs that are related either directly or indirectly to a repository site, but does not touch on instrumentation for work with waste forms or other materials. Consequently, this implies a relatively large scale for the measurements, and an in situ setting for instrument performance. In this context, instruments are needed for site characterization to define phenomena, develop models, and obtain parameter values, and for later design and performance confirmation testing in the constructed repository. The former set of applications is more immediate, and is driven by the needs of program design and performance assessment activities. A host of general technical and nontechnical issues have arisen to challenge instrumentation development. Instruments can be classed into geomechanical, geohydrologic, or other specialty categories, but these issues cut across artificial classifications. These issues are outlined. Despite this imposing list of issues, several case histories are cited to evaluate progress in the area

  6. Astronomical phenomena: events with high impact factor in teaching optics and photonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curticapean, Dan

    2014-07-01

    Astronomical phenomena fascinate people from the very beginning of mankind up to today. They have a enthusiastic effect, especially on young people. Among the most amazing and well-known phenomena are the sun and moon eclipses. The impact factor of such events is very high, as they are being covered by mass media reports and the Internet, which provides encyclopedic content and discussion in social networks. The principal optics and photonics topics that can be included in such lessons originate from geometrical optics and the basic phenomena of reflection, refraction and total internal reflection. Lenses and lens systems up to astronomical instruments also have a good opportunity to be presented. The scientific content can be focused on geometrical optics but also diffractive and quantum optics can be incorporated successfully. The author will present how live streams of the moon eclipses can be used to captivate the interest of young listeners for optics and photonics. The gathered experience of the last two moon eclipses visible from Germany (on Dec, 21 2010 and Jun, 15 2011) will be considered. In an interactive broadcast we reached visitors from more than 135 countries.

  7. Anders Celsius’ Contributions to Meridian Arc Measurements and the Establishment of an Astronomical Observatory in Uppsala

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stempels H. C.

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Astronomy has been on the curriculum of Uppsala University from at least the middle of the 15th century. However, since Uppsala also was the ecclesiastical centre of Sweden, the acceptance of new ideas, such as the Copernican heliocentric system, was slow. At the same time, more peripheral universities in the Swedish empire, including Dorpat/Tartu, enjoyed a larger freedom. It was not until the early 18th century that a ‘modern’ astronomy emerged in Uppsala. This effort was to a large extent led by Anders Celsius (1701-1744, who was able to establish good international contacts with astronomers in continental Europe. Celsius participated in De Maupertuis’ expedition to the far north of Sweden, in order to measure the meridian arc and determine the shape of the Earth. This paper explores how Celsius became involved in De Maupertuis’ expedition, and how this effort paved the way to the establishment of a fully equipped astronomical observatory, including an extensive collection of books and instruments, most of which survives up to this day.

  8. Working data together: the accountability and reflexivity of digital astronomical practice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoeppe, Götz

    2014-04-01

    Drawing on ethnomethodology, this article considers the sequential work of astronomers who combine observations from telescopes at two observatories in making a data set for scientific analyses. By witnessing the induction of a graduate student into this work, it aims at revealing the backgrounded assumptions that enter it. I find that these researchers achieved a consistent data set by engaging diverse evidential contexts as contexts of accountability. Employing graphs that visualize data in conventional representational formats of observational astronomy, experienced practitioners held each other accountable by using an 'implicit cosmology', a shared (but sometimes negotiable) characterization of 'what the universe looks like' through these formats. They oriented to data as malleable, that is, as containing artifacts of the observing situation which are unspecified initially but can be defined and subsequently removed. Alternating between reducing data and deducing astronomical phenomena, they ascribed artifacts to local observing conditions or computational procedures, thus maintaining previously stabilized phenomena reflexively. As researchers in data-intensive sciences are often removed from the instruments that generated the data they use, this example demonstrates how scientists can achieve agreement by engaging stable 'global' data sets and diverse contexts of accountability, allowing them to bypass troubling features and limitations of data generators.

  9. On the Astronomical Knowledge and Traditions of Aboriginal Australians

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamacher, Duane W.

    2011-12-01

    Historian of science David Pingree defines science in a broad context as the process of systematically explaining perceived or imaginary phenomena. Although Westerners tend to think of science being restricted to Western culture, I argue in this thesis that astronomical scientific knowledge is found in Aboriginal traditions. Although research into the astronomical traditions of Aboriginal Australians stretches back for more than 150 years, it is relatively scant in the literature. We do know that the sun, moon, and night sky have been an important and inseparable component of the landscape to hundreds of Australian Aboriginal groups for thousands (perhaps tens-of-thousands) of years. The literature reveals that astronomical knowledge was used for time keeping, denoting seasonal change and the availability of food sources, navigation, and tidal prediction. It was also important for rituals and ceremonies, birth totems, marriage systems, cultural mnemonics, and folklore. Despite this, the field remains relatively unresearched considering the diversity of Aboriginal cultures and the length of time people have inhabited Australia (well over 40,000 years). Additionally, very little research investigating the nature and role of transient celestial phenomena has been conducted, leaving our understanding of Indigenous astronomical knowledge grossly incomplete. This thesis is an attempt to overcome this deficiency, with a specific focus on transient celestial phenomena. My research, situated in the field of cultural astronomy, draws from the sub-disciplines of archaeoastronomy, ethnoastronomy, historical astronomy, and geomythology. This approach incorporates the methodologies and theories of disciplines in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. This thesis, by publication, makes use of archaeological, ethnographic, and historical records, astronomical software packages, and geographic programs to better understand the ages of astronomical traditions and the

  10. Deep sky observing an astronomical tour

    CERN Document Server

    Coe, Steven R

    2016-01-01

    This updated second edition has all of the information needed for your successful forays into deep sky observing. Coe uses his years of experience to give detailed practical advice about how to find the best observing site, how to make the most of the time spent there, and what equipment and instruments to take along. There are comprehensive lists of deep sky objects of all kinds, along with Steve's own observations describing how they look through telescopes with apertures ranging from 4 inches to 36 inches (0.1 - 0.9 meters). Binocular observing also gets its due, while the lists of objects have been amended to highlight only the best targets. A new index makes finding targets easier than ever before, while the selection of viewing targets has been revised from the first edition. Most of all, this book is all about how to enjoy astronomy. The author's enthusiasm and sense of wonder shine through every page as he invites you along on a tour of some of the most beautiful and fascinating sites in the deep ...

  11. Immersive 3D Visualization of Astronomical Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schaaff, A.; Berthier, J.; Da Rocha, J.; Deparis, N.; Derriere, S.; Gaultier, P.; Houpin, R.; Normand, J.; Ocvirk, P.

    2015-09-01

    The immersive-3D visualization, or Virtual Reality in our study, was previously dedicated to specific uses (research, flight simulators, etc.) The investment in infrastructure and its cost was reserved to large laboratories or companies. Lately we saw the development of immersive-3D masks intended for wide distribution, for example the Oculus Rift and the Sony Morpheus projects. The usual reaction is to say that these tools are primarily intended for games since it is easy to imagine a player in a virtual environment and the added value to conventional 2D screens. Yet it is likely that there are many applications in the professional field if these tools are becoming common. Introducing this technology into existing applications or new developments makes sense only if interest is properly evaluated. The use in Astronomy is clear for education, it is easy to imagine mobile and light planetariums or to reproduce poorly accessible environments (e.g., large instruments). In contrast, in the field of professional astronomy the use is probably less obvious and it requires to conduct studies to determine the most appropriate ones and to assess the contributions compared to the other display modes.

  12. Detection and Implications of Laser-Induced Raman Scattering at Astronomical Observatories

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frédéric P. A. Vogt

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Laser guide stars employed at astronomical observatories provide artificial wavefront reference sources to help correct (in part the impact of atmospheric turbulence on astrophysical observations. Following the recent commissioning of the 4 Laser Guide Star Facility (4LGSF on Unit Telescope 4 (UT4 of the Very Large Telescope (VLT, we characterize the spectral signature of the uplink beams from the 22-W lasers to assess the impact of laser scattering from the 4LGSF on science observations. We use the Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE optical integral field spectrograph mounted on the Nasmyth B focus of UT4 to acquire spectra at a resolution of R≅3000 of the uplink laser beams over the wavelength range of 4750 Å–9350 Å. We report the first detection of laser-induced Raman scattering by N_{2}, O_{2}, CO_{2}, H_{2}O, and (tentatively CH_{4} molecules in the atmosphere above the astronomical observatory of Cerro Paranal. In particular, our observations reveal the characteristic spectral signature of laser photons—but 480 Å to 2210 Å redder than the original laser wavelength of 5889.959 Å—landing on the 8.2-m primary mirror of UT4 after being Raman-scattered on their way up to the sodium layer. Laser-induced Raman scattering, a phenomenon not usually discussed in the astronomical context, is not unique to the observatory of Cerro Paranal, but it is common to any astronomical telescope employing a laser guide star (LGS system. It is thus essential for any optical spectrograph coupled to a LGS system to thoroughly handle the possibility of a Raman spectral contamination via a proper baffling of the instrument and suitable calibrations procedures. These considerations are particularly applicable for the HARMONI optical spectrograph on the upcoming Extremely Large Telescope (ELT. At sites hosting multiple telescopes, laser-collision-prediction tools should also account for the presence of Raman emission from the uplink laser beam

  13. Instrumental analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Seung Jae; Seo, Seong Gyu

    1995-03-15

    This textbook deals with instrumental analysis, which consists of nine chapters. It has Introduction of analysis chemistry, the process of analysis and types and form of the analysis, Electrochemistry on basic theory, potentiometry and conductometry, electromagnetic radiant rays and optical components on introduction and application, Ultraviolet rays and Visible spectrophotometry, Atomic absorption spectrophotometry on introduction, flame emission spectrometry and plasma emission spectrometry. The others like infrared spectrophotometry, X-rays spectrophotometry and mass spectrometry, chromatography and the other instrumental analysis like radiochemistry.

  14. Instrumental analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Seung Jae; Seo, Seong Gyu

    1995-03-01

    This textbook deals with instrumental analysis, which consists of nine chapters. It has Introduction of analysis chemistry, the process of analysis and types and form of the analysis, Electrochemistry on basic theory, potentiometry and conductometry, electromagnetic radiant rays and optical components on introduction and application, Ultraviolet rays and Visible spectrophotometry, Atomic absorption spectrophotometry on introduction, flame emission spectrometry and plasma emission spectrometry. The others like infrared spectrophotometry, X-rays spectrophotometry and mass spectrometry, chromatography and the other instrumental analysis like radiochemistry.

  15. LOFT instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bixby, W.W.

    1979-01-01

    A description of instrumentation used in the Loss-of-Fluid Test (LOFT) large break Loss-of-Coolant Experiments is presented. Emphasis is placed on hydraulic and thermal measurements in the primary system piping and components, reactor vessel, and pressure suppression system. In addition, instrumentation which is being considered for measurement of phenomena during future small break testing is discussed. (orig.) 891 HP/orig. 892 BRE [de

  16. How did the Supreme Court ruling on DOMA affect astronomers?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rigby, Jane R.; The AAS Working Group on LGBTIQ Equality

    2014-01-01

    In June 2013, the United States Supreme Court ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was unconstitutional. Section 3 had barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages. The decision in United States v. Windsor, made headlines around the world, and particularly affected astronomers, since astronomers in the US are more likely than the general population to be foreign nationals, to have a foreign-born spouse, or to work for the federal government. In this poster, we highlight some of the real-world ways that the Windsor case has affected US astronomers and our profession. Bi-national couples can now apply for green cards granting permanent residency. Scientists who work for the federal government, including NASA and the NSF, can now obtain health insurance for a same-sex spouse. From taxes to death benefits, health insurance to daycare, immigration to ethics laws, the end of S3 of DOMA has had profoundly improved the lives of US scientists who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT). Here we, highlight several real-world examples of how DOMA's demise has improved the lives and careers of US astronomer.

  17. The High Road to Astronomical Photometric Precision : Differential Photometry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Milone, E. F.; Pel, Jan Willem

    2011-01-01

    Differential photometry offers the most precise method for measuring the brightness of astronomical objects. We attempt to demonstrate why this should be the case, and then describe how well it has been done through a review of the application of differential techniques from the earliest visual

  18. Factors Contributing to Lifelong Science Learning: Amateur Astronomers and Birders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, M. Gail; Corin, Elysa Nicole; Andre, Thomas; Childers, Gina M.; Stevens, Vanessa

    2017-01-01

    This research examined lifelong science learning reported by amateur astronomers and birders. One hundred seven adults who reported engaging in an informal (out-of-school) science interest were interviewed as part of an ongoing series of studies of lifelong science learners. The goal of the study was to gain insight into how and why amateur…

  19. Astronomy for Astronomical Numbers: A Worldwide Massive Open Online Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Impey, Chris D.; Wenger, Matthew C.; Austin, Carmen L.

    2015-01-01

    Astronomy: State of the Art is a massive, open, online class (MOOC) offered through Udemy by an instructional team at the University of Arizona. With nearly 24,000 enrolled as of early 2015, it is the largest astronomy MOOC available. The astronomical numbers enrolled do not translate into a similar level of engagement. The content consists of 14…

  20. Recent Advances for LGBT Astronomers in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dixon, William V.; Rigby, Jane; Oppenheimer, Rebecca

    2015-08-01

    The legal environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) astronomers in the United States has changed dramatically in recent years. In 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which had barred the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages, was unconstitutional. This decision particularly affects astronomers, since astronomers in the U.S. are more likely than the general population to be foreign nationals, to have a foreign-born spouse, or to work for the federal government. In 2014, the Attorney General directed the Department of Justice to take the position in litigation that the protection of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 extends to claims of discrimination based on an individual’s gender identity, including transgender status. Title VII makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate in the employment of an individual “because of such individual’s... sex,” among other protected characteristics. As of March 2015, more than 70% of the population lives in states that recognize same-sex marriage, and the Supreme Court is expected to rule on the constitutionality of the remaining same-sex marriage bans during the current term. In this poster, we discuss these advances and their implications for the personal and professional lives of LGBT astronomers across the United States.

  1. Paired and Interacting Galaxies: International Astronomical Union Colloquium No. 124

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sulentic, Jack W. (Editor); Keel, William C. (Editor); Telesco, C. M. (Editor)

    1990-01-01

    The proceedings of the International Astronomical Union Colloquium No. 124, held at the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa, on December 4 to 7, are given. The purpose of the conference was to describe the current state of theoretical and observational knowledge of interacting galaxies, with particular emphasis on galaxies in pairs.

  2. Radio Recombination Lines Their Physics and Astronomical Applications

    CERN Document Server

    Gordon, MA

    2008-01-01

    Includes the history of RRL detections, the astrophysics underlying their intensities and line shapes including topics like departures from LTE and Stark broadening, the maximum possible size of an atom, and descriptions of the astronomical topics for which RRLs have proved to be effective tools.

  3. Radio astronomical interferometry and x-ray's computerized tomography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodriguez, L F [Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, Mexico City. Inst. de Astronomia

    1982-01-01

    Radio astronomical interferometry and computerized tomography are techniques of great importance for astronomy and medicine, respectively. In this paper we emphasize that both techniques are based on the same mathematical principles, and present them as an example of interaction between basic and applied science.

  4. The Top Ten Astronomical 'breakthroughs' of the 20th century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hughes, D. W.

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Astronomy was revolutionized in the 20th century. The electron was discovered in 1897 and this transformed spectroscopy and introduced plasma and magnetohydrodynamic physics and astro-chemistry. Einstein’s E = mc2, solved the problem of stellar energy generation and spawned the study of elemental nuclear synthesis. Large telescopes led to a boom in astronomical spectroscopic and photometric data collection, leading to such cornerstones as the Hertzprung-Russell diagram and the mass-luminosity relationship, and to the realization that the Universe contained a multitude of galaxies and was expanding. Radio astronomy was introduced and the advent of the space age saw the astronomical wavelength range expand into the ultraviolet, X-ray and gamma-ray regions, as well as the infrared and millimetre. We also startedwandering around roaming the Solar System instead of merely glimpsing its members from the bottom of our warm, turbulent atmosphere. Astronomical “breakthroughs” abounded. We have asked astronomers to select their “top ten” and these are listed and discussed in this paper.

  5. Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) Catalogs and Atlases. Explanatory Supplement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beichman, C. A. (Editor); Neugebauer, G. (Editor); Habing, H. J. (Editor); Clegg, P. E. (Editor); Chester, T. J. (Editor)

    1985-01-01

    The Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) mission is described. An overview of the mission, a description of the satellite and its telescope system, and a discussion of the mission design, requirements, and inflight modifications are given. Data reduction, flight tests, flux reconstruction and calibration, data processing, and the formats of the IRAS catalogs and atlases are also considered.

  6. Study of Modern Instrumentation and Methods for Astronomic Positioning in the Field

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-03-01

    CALL AMAT(A.Y, UKK, KALPHA, DELTA) DO 40 kl.,2*K WR ITE( 3.300 )( A( I.M),.M=1,3) 300 FORMAT M, 3F18.12) 40 CONTINUE CALL BMAT (BY, UKKK, ALPHA, DELTA...1 20 CONTINUE RETURN END C C C SUBROUTINE BMAT (B, YU, KK, KALPHA, DELTA) C BMAT constructs the matrix 8 DIMENSION B(2*KK,3*KK)LY(KK,3),U(3),ALPHA(KK

  7. CZT Detector Development for New Generation Hard-X Astronomical Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uslenghi, Michela; Conti, Giancarlo; D'Angelo, Sergio; Fiorini, Mauro; Quadrini, Egidio M.; Natalucci, Lorenzo; Ubertini, Pietro

    2006-04-01

    In the context of the definition of a future European gamma-ray mission, following the now on-orbit INTEGRAL observatory, we are carrying out a feasibility study on a Gamma Ray Wide Field Camera (5-500 KeV) for transient event detection. Recent achievements in high energy astronomy have validated the CZT detectors performances in terms of good spatial resolution, detection efficiency, energy resolution and low noise at room temperature. We started a development program aimed to explore the possibilities to improve and optimize the performance of this kind of detectors, acting at the level of both the readout system and crystal quality. Preliminary results of characterization of pixelated crystals provided by IMARAD (now Orbotech) are presented, along with their analysis and interpretation based on an analytical model of signal formation.

  8. The Architectural and Instrumental Heritage of the Strasbourg University Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davoigneau, Jean

    When, in 1872, Alsace was handed over to Germany, Empperor Wilhelm I decided to make Strasbourg the showcase of his empire, and in particular to build a prestigious university and an observatory. The construction of the observatory was entrusted to the astronomer August Winnecke (1835-1897), former director of the Pulkovo observatory, and to the Baumeister Hermann Eggert. Begun in 1876, the work was completed in 1880. The astronomical instruments, ordered from German makers, were installed during the winter of 1880-1881, and the observatory was inaugurated on September 22, 1881 at the general assembly of the Astronomische Gesellschaft, the international association of astronomers, whose secretary was Winnecke. Marking the south-eastern extremity of the ‘imperial axis’, the architecture of the university observatory harmonizes perfectly with the new German city built on the former French parade grounds. The astronomical heritage operation conducted at the beginning of the present decade provides a richly docurnented and illustrated inventory of both the architecture and instruments of this institution. This work has also highlighted the unique quality of the collection of instruments, befitting the long and complex history of this institution.

  9. Cooperation for Common Use of SEE Astronomical Database as a Regional Virtual Observatory in Different Scientific Projects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinigin, Gennady; Protsyuk, Yuri; Shulga, Alexander

    The activity of scientific collaborative and co-operative research between South-Eastern European (SEE) observatories is enlarged in the last time. The creation of a common database as a regional virtual observatory is very desirable. The creation of astronomical information resource with a capability of interactive access to databases and telescopes on the base of the general astronomical database of the SEE countries is presented. This resource may be connected with the European network. A short description of the NAO database is presented. The total amount of the NAO information makes about 90 GB, the one obtained from other sources - about 15 GB. The mean diurnal level of the new astronomical information produced with the NAO CCD instruments makes from 300 MB up to 2 GB, depending on the purposes and conditions of observations. The majority of observational data is stored in FITS format. Possibility of using of VO-table format for displaying these data in the Internet is studied. Activities on development and the further refinement of storage, exchange and data processing standards are conducted.

  10. Instrumental Capital

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriel Valerio

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available During the history of human kind, since our first ancestors, tools have represented a mean to reach objectives which might otherwise seemed impossibles. In the called New Economy, where tangibles assets appear to be losing the role as the core element to produce value versus knowledge, tools have kept aside man in his dairy work. In this article, the author's objective is to describe, in a simple manner, the importance of managing the organization's group of tools or instruments (Instrumental Capital. The characteristic conditions of this New Economy, the way Knowledge Management deals with these new conditions and the sub-processes that provide support to the management of Instrumental Capital are described.

  11. Innovative instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1983-01-01

    At this year's particle physics conference at Brighton, a parallel session was given over to instrumentation and detector development. While this work is vital to the health of research and its continued progress, its share of prime international conference time is limited. Instrumentation can be innovative three times — first when a new idea is outlined, secondly when it is shown to be feasible, and finally when it becomes productive in a real experiment, amassing useful data rather than operational experience. Hyams' examples showed that it can take a long time for a new idea to filter through these successive stages, if it ever makes it at all

  12. Innovative instrumentation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anon.

    1983-11-15

    At this year's particle physics conference at Brighton, a parallel session was given over to instrumentation and detector development. While this work is vital to the health of research and its continued progress, its share of prime international conference time is limited. Instrumentation can be innovative three times — first when a new idea is outlined, secondly when it is shown to be feasible, and finally when it becomes productive in a real experiment, amassing useful data rather than operational experience. Hyams' examples showed that it can take a long time for a new idea to filter through these successive stages, if it ever makes it at all.

  13. Instrumental aspects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qureshi Navid

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Every neutron scattering experiment requires the choice of a suited neutron diffractometer (or spectrometer in the case of inelastic scattering with its optimal configuration in order to accomplish the experimental tasks in the most successful way. Most generally, the compromise between the incident neutron flux and the instrumental resolution has to be considered, which is depending on a number of optical devices which are positioned in the neutron beam path. In this chapter the basic instrumental principles of neutron diffraction will be explained. Examples of different types of experiments and their respective expectable results will be shown. Furthermore, the production and use of polarized neutrons will be stressed.

  14. Top astronomers head to the city. Experts to talk on exciting quasar discoveries.

    CERN Multimedia

    Grant, S

    2002-01-01

    The UK National Astronomy Meeting - NAM 2002 - is at Bristol University this week. The meeting is one of the most important regular gatherings of astronomers in the UK. Sponsored by the Royal Astronomical Society and PPARC, it should attract about 300 astronomers from the UK and beyond.

  15. The PACA Project: When Amateur Astronomers Become Citizen Scientists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanamandra-Fisher, P. A.

    2014-12-01

    The Pro-Am Collaborative Astronomy (PACA) project evolved from the observational campaign of C/2012 S1 or C/ISON in 2013. Following the success of the professional-amateur astronomer collaboration in scientific research via social media, it is now implemented in other comet observing campaigns. While PACA identifies a consistent collaborative approach to pro-am collaborations, given the volume of data generated for each campaign, new ways of rapid data analysis, mining access and storage are needed. Several interesting results emerged from the synergistic inclusion of both social media and amateur astronomers: (1) the establishment of a network of astronomers and related professionals, that can be galvanized into action on short notice to support observing campaigns; (2) assist in various science investigations pertinent to the campaign; (3) provide an alert-sounding mechanism should the need arise; (4) immediate outreach and dissemination of results via our media/blogger members; (5) provide a forum for discussions between the imagers and modelers to help strategize the observing campaign for maximum benefit. In 2014, two new comet observing campaigns involving pro-am collaborations have been initiated: (1) C/2013 A1 (C/SidingSpring) and (2) 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko (CG), target for ESA/Rosetta mission. The evolving need for individual customized observing campaigns has been incorporated into the evolution of PACA portal that currently is focused on comets: from supporting observing campaigns of current comets, legacy data, historical comets; interconnected with social media and a set of shareable documents addressing observational strategies; consistent standards for data; data access, use, and storage, to align with the needs of professional observers. The integration of science, observations by professional and amateur astronomers, and various social media provides a dynamic and evolving collaborative partnership between professional and amateur astronomers

  16. Surgical Instrument

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dankelman, J.; Horeman, T.

    2009-01-01

    The present invention relates to a surgical instrument for minimall-invasive surgery, comprising a handle, a shaft and an actuating part, characterised by a gastight cover surrounding the shaft, wherein the cover is provided with a coupler that has a feed- through opening with a loskable seal,

  17. Weather Instruments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brantley, L. Reed, Sr.; Demanche, Edna L.; Klemm, E. Barbara; Kyselka, Will; Phillips, Edwin A.; Pottenger, Francis M.; Yamamoto, Karen N.; Young, Donald B.

    This booklet presents some activities to measure various weather phenomena. Directions for constructing a weather station are included. Instruments including rain gauges, thermometers, wind vanes, wind speed devices, humidity devices, barometers, atmospheric observations, a dustfall jar, sticky-tape can, detection of gases in the air, and pH of…

  18. Astrophysics is easy! an introduction for the amateur astronomer

    CERN Document Server

    Inglis, Mike

    2007-01-01

    With some justification, many amateur astronomers believe astrophysics is a very difficult subject, requiring at least degree-level mathematics to understand it properly. This isn’t necessarily the case. Mike Inglis' quantitative approach to the subject explains all aspects of astrophysics in simple terms and cuts through the incomprehensible mathematics with which this fascinating subject is all too often associated. Astrophysics is Easy! begins by looking at the H-R diagram and other basic tools of astrophysics, then ranges across the universe, from a first look at the interstellar medium and nebulae, through the birth, evolution and death of stars, to the physics of galaxies and clusters of galaxies. A unique feature of this book is the way that Dr. Inglis lists example objects for practical observation at every stage, so that practical astronomers can go and look at the object or objects under discussion – using only easily-available commercial amateur equipment.

  19. Alexander the Great's Tomb at Siwa: The Astronomical Orientation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papathanassiou, M.; Souvaltzis, Em.; Souvaltzi, L.; Moussas, X.

    A preliminary report on the possible astronomical orientation of the Tomb of Alexander the Great, recently found and excavated by the greek archaeologist Liana Souvaltzi. The tomb is a greek building of doric style. Its enormous dimensions make it the largest amongst the found macedonian tombs (much bigger than the tomb of Philip II, Alexander's father). The tomb faces generally south---west and its orientation could be related either to the constellation of Centaurus or to the star Canopus. The walls of the two long sides of the building have strickingly different widhts. Moreover each wall has three doors (opposite in pairs) of slightly different sizes. We examine the possibility the openings of the doors and their assymetries to be designed and constructed according to some astronomical (solar or stellar) orientations.

  20. Unveiling galaxies the role of images in astronomical discovery

    CERN Document Server

    Roy, Jean-René

    2017-01-01

    Galaxies are known as the building blocks of the universe, but arriving at this understanding has been a thousand-year odyssey. This journey is told through the lens of the evolving use of images as investigative tools. Initial chapters explore how early insights developed in line with new methods of scientific imaging, particularly photography. The volume then explores the impact of optical, radio and x-ray imaging techniques. The final part of the story discusses the importance of atlases of galaxies; how astronomers organised images in ways that educated, promoted ideas and pushed for new knowledge. Images that created confusion as well as advanced knowledge are included to demonstrate the challenges faced by astronomers and the long road to understanding galaxies. By examining developments in imaging, this text places the study of galaxies in its broader historical context, contributing to both astronomy and the history of science.

  1. Using Modern Technologies to Capture and Share Indigenous Astronomical Knowledge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakata, Martin; Hamacher, Duane W.; Warren, John; Byrne, Alex; Pagnucco, Maurice; Harley, Ross; Venugopal, Srikumar; Thorpe, Kirsten; Neville, Richard; Bolt, Reuben

    2014-06-01

    Indigenous Knowledge is important for Indigenous communities across the globe and for the advancement of our general scientific knowledge. In particular, Indigenous astronomical knowledge integrates many aspects of Indigenous Knowledge, including seasonal calendars, navigation, food economics, law, ceremony, and social structure. Capturing, managing, and disseminating this knowledge in the digital environment poses a number of challenges, which we aim to address using a collaborative project emerging between experts in the higher education, library, archive and industry sectors. Using Microsoft's WorldWide Telescope and Rich Interactive Narratives technologies, we propose to develop software, media design, and archival management solutions to allow Indigenous communities to share their astronomical knowledge with the world on their terms and in a culturally sensitive manner.

  2. Astronomically speaking a dictionary of quotations on astronomy and physics

    CERN Document Server

    Gaither, CC

    2003-01-01

    To understand the history, accomplishments, failures, and meanings of astronomy requires a knowledge of what has been said about astronomy by philosophers, novelists, playwrights, poets, scientists, and laymen. With this in mind, Astronomically Speaking: A Dictionary of Quotations on Astronomy and Physics serves as a guide to what has been said about astronomy through the ages. Containing approximately 1,550 quotations and numerous illustrations, this resource is the largest compilation of astronomy and astrophysics quotations published to date.Devoted to astronomy and the closely related areas of mathematics and physics, this resource helps form an accurate picture of these interconnected disciplines. It is designed as an aid for general readers with little knowledge of astronomy who are interested in astronomical topics. Students can use the book to increase their understanding of the complexity and richness that exists in scientific disciplines. In addition, experienced scientists will find it as a handy s...

  3. Visualization of Multi-mission Astronomical Data with ESASky

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baines, Deborah; Giordano, Fabrizio; Racero, Elena; Salgado, Jesús; López Martí, Belén; Merín, Bruno; Sarmiento, María-Henar; Gutiérrez, Raúl; Ortiz de Landaluce, Iñaki; León, Ignacio; de Teodoro, Pilar; González, Juan; Nieto, Sara; Segovia, Juan Carlos; Pollock, Andy; Rosa, Michael; Arviset, Christophe; Lennon, Daniel; O'Mullane, William; de Marchi, Guido

    2017-02-01

    ESASky is a science-driven discovery portal to explore the multi-wavelength sky and visualize and access multiple astronomical archive holdings. The tool is a web application that requires no prior knowledge of any of the missions involved and gives users world-wide simplified access to the highest-level science data products from multiple astronomical space-based astronomy missions plus a number of ESA source catalogs. The first public release of ESASky features interfaces for the visualization of the sky in multiple wavelengths, the visualization of query results summaries, and the visualization of observations and catalog sources for single and multiple targets. This paper describes these features within ESASky, developed to address use cases from the scientific community. The decisions regarding the visualization of large amounts of data and the technologies used were made to maximize the responsiveness of the application and to keep the tool as useful and intuitive as possible.

  4. MYRaf: A new Approach with IRAF for Astronomical Photometric Reduction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kilic, Y.; Shameoni Niaei, M.; Özeren, F. F.; Yesilyaprak, C.

    2016-12-01

    In this study, the design and some developments of MYRaf software for astronomical photometric reduction are presented. MYRaf software is an easy to use, reliable, and has a fast IRAF aperture photometry GUI tools. MYRaf software is an important step for the automated software process of robotic telescopes, and uses IRAF, PyRAF, matplotlib, ginga, alipy, and Sextractor with the general-purpose and high-level programming language Python and uses the QT framework.

  5. The Panchasiddhhantika : The Astronomical Work of Varaha Mihira

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thibaut, G.; Dvivedi, Mahamahopadhyaya Sudhakara

    The lamentable state of the text as appearing in the two original manuscripts (of Varah Mihira) at the disposal of the authors, was a lesser problem then the greater disadvantage under which they laboured with the absence of a commentary. Commentaries can be hardly done without in the case of any Sanskrit astronomical work; much less so, when the text, as that of the Panchasiddhantika, describes many mathematical processes more or less diverging from those commonly employed.

  6. The Organization and Management of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.; Szalay, Alexander; Fabbiano, Giussepina

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO; http://www.us-vao.org/) has been in operation since May 2010. Its goal is to enable new science through efficient integration of distributed multi-wavelength data. This paper describes the management and organization of the VAO, and emphasizes the techniques used to ensure efficiency in a distributed organization. Management methods include using an annual program plan as the basis for establishing contracts with member organizations, regular communication, and monitoring of processes.

  7. The Astronomical Orientation of the Urban Plan of Alexandria

    OpenAIRE

    Luisa, Ferro; Giulio, Magli

    2012-01-01

    Alexander the Great founded Alexandria in 331 BC. The newly founded town was conceived as an orthogonal grid based on a main longitudinal axis, later called Canopic Road. We analyse here the astronomical orientation of the project and propose that the main axis was deliberately oriented towards the rising sun on the day of birth of Alexander the Great. The argument is admittedly speculative as any Archaeoastronomy argument not backed up by written sources. However, it is nested accurately int...

  8. A Case of Racial Discrimination: Azeglio Bemporad, Astronomer Poet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mangano, A.

    2015-04-01

    The stories from our archives do not only speak of scientific progress, tools, and data, but also of the events of the astronomers as men, and how their work is intertwined in their private, political, and social life. In the case of Azeglio Bemporad, who worked at Catania Astrophysical Observatory until 1938, year of purge against Jews in Italy, the painful history of Fascism fully enters our scientific institutions, changing the life of a person who had never dealt with politics.

  9. Structure of matter and the structure of the astronomical universe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Layzer, D.

    1977-01-01

    It is suggested that the central problem of modern cosmology, the origin of astronomical systems, may be closely related to certain problems in solid-state physics. The arguments presented therefore afford some grounds for the claim that cosmology is a province of quantum chemistry--as well as for the opposite claim that quantum chemistry is a province of cosmology. The diameter-mass relation, gravitational clustering, cold universe prehistory, and radiation backgrounds are considered

  10. Astronomers Travel in Time and Space with Light

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mather, John C.

    2016-01-01

    This is an excerpt of John Mather's in a book titled: INSPIRED BY LIGHT, Reflections from the International Year of Light 2015. It was produced in January 2016 by SPIE, the European Physical Society (EPS), and The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) to commemorate the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies 2015. The excerpt discusses how astronomers use light.

  11. Explaining formation of Astronomical Jets using Dynamic Universe Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naga Parameswara Gupta, Satyavarapu

    2016-07-01

    Astronomical jets are observed from the centres of many Galaxies including our own Milkyway. The formation of such jet is explained using SITA simulations of Dynamic Universe Model. For this purpose the path traced by a test neutron is calculated and depicted using a set up of one densemass of the mass equivalent to mass of Galaxy center, 90 stars with similar masses of stars near Galaxy center, mass equivalents of 23 Globular Cluster groups, 16 Milkyway parts, Andromeda and Triangulum Galaxies at appropriate distances. Five different kinds of theoretical simulations gave positive results The path travelled by this test neutron was found to be an astronomical jet emerging from Galaxy center. This is another result from Dynamic Universe Model. It solves new problems like a. Variable Mass Rocket Trajectory Problem b. Explaining Very long baseline interferometry (VLBI) observations c. Astronomical jets observed from Milkyway Center d. Prediction of Blue shifted Galaxies e. Explaining Pioneer Anomaly f. Prediction of New Horizons satellite trajectory etc. Dynamic Universe Model never reduces to General relativity on any condition. It uses a different type of mathematics based on Newtonian physics. This mathematics used here is simple and straightforward. As there are no differential equations present in Dynamic Universe Model, the set of equations give single solution in x y z Cartesian coordinates for every point mass for every time step

  12. Astronomical Image Compression Techniques Based on ACC and KLT Coder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Schindler

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper deals with a compression of image data in applications in astronomy. Astronomical images have typical specific properties — high grayscale bit depth, size, noise occurrence and special processing algorithms. They belong to the class of scientific images. Their processing and compression is quite different from the classical approach of multimedia image processing. The database of images from BOOTES (Burst Observer and Optical Transient Exploring System has been chosen as a source of the testing signal. BOOTES is a Czech-Spanish robotic telescope for observing AGN (active galactic nuclei and the optical transient of GRB (gamma ray bursts searching. This paper discusses an approach based on an analysis of statistical properties of image data. A comparison of two irrelevancy reduction methods is presented from a scientific (astrometric and photometric point of view. The first method is based on a statistical approach, using the Karhunen-Loeve transform (KLT with uniform quantization in the spectral domain. The second technique is derived from wavelet decomposition with adaptive selection of used prediction coefficients. Finally, the comparison of three redundancy reduction methods is discussed. Multimedia format JPEG2000 and HCOMPRESS, designed especially for astronomical images, are compared with the new Astronomical Context Coder (ACC coder based on adaptive median regression.

  13. The Amateur Astronomer's Introduction to the Celestial Sphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Millar, William

    2005-12-01

    This introduction to the night sky is for amateur astronomers who desire a deeper understanding of the principles and observations of naked-eye astronomy. It covers topics such as terrestrial and astronomical coordinate systems, stars and constellations, the relative motions of the sky, sun, moon and earth leading to an understanding of the seasons, phases of the moon, and eclipses. Topics are discussed and compared for observers located in both the northern and southern hemispheres. Written in a conversational style, only addition and subtraction are needed to understand the basic principles and a more advanced mathematical treatment is available in the appendices. Each chapter contains a set of review questions and simple exercises to reinforce the reader's understanding of the material. The last chapter is a set of self-contained observation projects to get readers started with making observations about the concepts they have learned. William Charles Millar, currently Professor of Astronomy at Grand Rapids Community College in Michigan, has been teaching the subject for almost twenty years and is very involved with local amateur astronomy groups. Millar also belongs to The Planetary Society and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific and has traveled to Europe and South America to observe solar eclipses. Millar holds a Masters degree in Physics from Western Michigan University.

  14. The Production Rate and Employment of Ph.D. Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metcalfe, Travis S.

    2008-02-01

    In an effort to encourage self-regulation of the astronomy job market, I examine the supply of, and demand for, astronomers over time. On the supply side, I document the production rate of Ph.D. astronomers from 1970 to 2006 using the UMI Dissertation Abstracts database, along with data from other independent sources. I compare the long-term trends in Ph.D. production with federal astronomy research funding over the same time period, and I demonstrate that additional funding is correlated with higher subsequent Ph.D. production. On the demand side, I monitor the changing patterns of employment using statistics about the number and types of jobs advertised in the AAS Job Register from 1984 to 2006. Finally, I assess the sustainability of the job market by normalizing this demand by the annual Ph.D. production. The most recent data suggest that there are now annual advertisements for about one postdoctoral job, half a faculty job, and half a research/support position for every new domestic Ph.D. recipient in astronomy and astrophysics. The average new astronomer might expect to hold up to 3 jobs before finding a steady position.

  15. Breakthrough! 100 astronomical images that changed the world

    CERN Document Server

    Gendler, Robert

    2015-01-01

    This unique volume by two renowned astrophotographers unveils the science and history behind 100 of the most significant astronomical images of all time. The authors have carefully selected their list of images from across time and technology to bring to the reader the most relevant photographic images spanning all eras of modern astronomical history.    Based on scientific evidence today we have a basic notion of how Earth and the universe came to be. The road to this knowledge was paved with 175 years of astronomical images acquired by the coupling of two revolutionary technologies – the camera and telescope. With ingenuity and determination humankind would quickly embrace these technologies to tell the story of the cosmos and unravel its mysteries.   This book presents in pictures and words a photographic chronology of our aspiration to understand the universe. From the first fledgling attempts to photograph the Moon, planets, and stars to the marvels of orbiting observatories that record the cosmos a...

  16. The War's Positive Impact on the Canadian Astronomical Community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broughton, Peter

    2015-01-01

    At the beginning of WWI, the Canadian astronomical community was tiny and astrophysical research was just beginning. By the end of the war, the country had established the forerunner of its National Research Council and had the world's largest fully operational telescope, thanks to the late entry of the USA into the conflict. By 1918, Canada was on the verge of making significant contributions to science.In spite of the immense loss of life in this pointless war, I am aware of only one casualty affecting Canadian professional astronomers, and that was the indirect death of James Chant, son of University of Toronto's only professor of astronomy. Other Canadian astronomers, including Tom Parker, Bert Topham, and Harry Plaskett were on active service; each of their stories is unique.Among those engaged in scientific work during the war were two Canadians temporarily in England: John McLennan whose helium research for dirigibles led him to establish a cryogenic lab in Toronto where the green line in the spectrum of the aurora was identified in 1925, and Allie Douglas who worked as a statistician in the War Office. Later work with Eddington led her to become his biographer and to her distinction as the first person in Canada to earn a PhD in astronomy (in 1926).

  17. Astronomy Against Terrorism: an Educational Astronomical Observatory Project in Peru

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishitsuka, M.; Montes, H.; Kuroda, T.; Morimoto, M.; Ishitsuka, J.

    2003-05-01

    The Cosmos Coronagraphic Observatory was completely destroyed by terrorists in 1988. In 1995, in coordination with the Minister of Education of Peru, a project to construct a new Educational Astronomical Observatory has been executed. The main purpose of the observatory is to promote an interest in basic space sciences in young students from school to university levels, through basic astronomical studies and observations. The planned observatory will be able to lodge 25 visitors; furthermore an auditorium, a library and a computer room will be constructed to improve the interest of people in astronomy. Two 15-cm refractor telescopes, equipped with a CCD camera and a photometer, will be available for observations. Also a 6-m dome will house a 60-cm class reflector telescope, which will be donated soon, thanks to a fund collected and organized by the Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory in Japan. In addition a new modern planetarium donated by the Government of Japan will be installed in Lima, the capital of Peru. These installations will be widely open to serve the requirements of people interested in science.

  18. Science Initiatives of the US Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanisch, R. J.

    2012-09-01

    The United States Virtual Astronomical Observatory program is the operational facility successor to the National Virtual Observatory development project. The primary goal of the US VAO is to build on the standards, protocols, and associated infrastructure developed by NVO and the International Virtual Observatory Alliance partners and to bring to fruition a suite of applications and web-based tools that greatly enhance the research productivity of professional astronomers. To this end, and guided by the advice of our Science Council (Fabbiano et al. 2011), we have focused on five science initiatives in the first two years of VAO operations: 1) scalable cross-comparisons between astronomical source catalogs, 2) dynamic spectral energy distribution construction, visualization, and model fitting, 3) integration and periodogram analysis of time series data from the Harvard Time Series Center and NASA Star and Exoplanet Database, 4) integration of VO data discovery and access tools into the IRAF data analysis environment, and 5) a web-based portal to VO data discovery, access, and display tools. We are also developing tools for data linking and semantic discovery, and have a plan for providing data mining and advanced statistical analysis resources for VAO users. Initial versions of these applications and web-based services are being released over the course of the summer and fall of 2011, with further updates and enhancements planned for throughout 2012 and beyond.

  19. Skype Me! Astronomers, Students, and Cutting-Edge Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hickox, Ryan C.; Gauthier, Adrienne J.

    2014-06-01

    A primary goal of many university science courses is to promote understanding of the process of contemporary scientific inquiry. One powerful way to achieve this is for students to explore current research and then interact directly with the leading scientist, the feasibility of which has recently increased dramatically due to free online video communication tools. We report on a program implemented at Dartmouth College in which students connect with a guest astronomer through Skype (video chat). The Skype session is wrapped in a larger activity where students explore current research articles, interact with the astronomer, and then reflect on the experience. The in-class Skype discussions require a small time commitment from scientists (20-30 minutes, with little or no need for preparation) while providing students direct access to researchers at the cutting edge of modern astronomy. We outline the procedures used to implement these discussions, and present qualitative assessments of student's understanding of the process of research, as well as feedback from the guest astronomers.

  20. Automatic astronomical coordinate determination using digital zenith cameras

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S Farzaneh

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Celestial positioning has been used for navigation purposes for many years. Stars as the extra-terrestrial benchmarks provide unique opportunity in absolute point positioning. However, astronomical field data acquisition and data processing of the collected data is very time-consuming. The advent of the Global Positioning System (GPS nearly made the celestial positioning system obsolete. The new satellite-based positioning system has been very popular since it is very efficient and convenient for many daily life applications. Nevertheless, the celestial positioning method is never replaced by satellite-based positioning in absolute point positioning sense. The invention of electro-optical devices at the beginning of the 21st century was really a rebirth in geodetic astronomy. Today, the digital cameras with relatively high geometric and radiometric accuracy has opened a new insight in satellite attitude determination and the study of the Earth's surface geometry and physics of its interior, i.e., computation of astronomical coordinates and the vertical deflection components. This method or the so-called astrogeodetic vision-based method help us to determine astronomical coordinates with an accuracy better than 0.1 arc second. The theoretical background, an innovative transformation approach and the preliminary numerical results are addressed in this paper.

  1. Science Initiatives of the US Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanisch Robert J.

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The United States Virtual Astronomical Observatory program is the operational facility successor to the National Virtual Observatory development project. The primary goal of the US VAO is to build on the standards, protocols, and associated infrastructure developed by NVO and the International Virtual Observatory Alliance partners and to bring to fruition a suite of applications and web-based tools that greatly enhance the research productivity of professional astronomers. To this end, and guided by the advice of our Science Council (advisory committee, we are focusing on five science initiatives in the first two years of VAO operations: (1 scalable cross-comparisons between astronomical source catalogs, (2 dynamic spectral energy distribution construction, visualization, and model fitting, (3 integration and periodogram analysis of time series data from the Harvard Time Series Center and NASA Star and Exoplanet Database, (4 integration of VO data discovery and access tools into the IR AF data analysis environment, and (5 a web-based portal to VO data discovery, access, and display tools. We are also developing tools for data linking and semantic discovery, and have a plan for providing data mining and advanced statistical analysis resources for VAO users. Initial versions of these applications and web-based services are being released over the course of the summer and fall of 2011, with further updates and enhancements planned for throughout 2012 and beyond.

  2. Astronomical relativistic reference systems with multipolar expansion: the global one

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xie Yi

    2014-01-01

    With the rapid development of techniques for astronomical observations, the precision of measurements has been significantly increasing. Theories describing astronomical relativistic reference systems, which are the foundation for processing and interpreting these data now and in the future, may require extensions to satisfy the needs of these trends. Besides building a framework compatible with alternative theories of gravity and the pursuit of higher order post-Newtonian approximation, it will also be necessary to make the first order post-Newtonian multipole moments of celestial bodies be explicitly expressed in the astronomical relativistic reference systems. This will bring some convenience into modeling the observations and experiments and make it easier to distinguish different contributions in measurements. As a first step, the global solar system reference system is expressed as a multipolar expansion and the post-Newtonian mass and spin moments are shown explicitly in the metric which describes the coordinates of the system. The full expression of the global metric is given. (research papers)

  3. Radio and Optical Telescopes for School Students and Professional Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosmer, Laura; Langston, G.; Heatherly, S.; Towner, A. P.; Ford, J.; Simon, R. S.; White, S.; O'Neil, K. L.; Haipslip, J.; Reichart, D.

    2013-01-01

    The NRAO 20m telescope is now on-line as a part of UNC's Skynet worldwide telescope network. The NRAO is completing integration of radio astronomy tools with the Skynet web interface. We present the web interface and astronomy projects that allow students and astronomers from all over the country to become Radio Astronomers. The 20 meter radio telescope at NRAO in Green Bank, WV is dedicated to public education and also is part of an experiment in public funding for astronomy. The telescope has a fantastic new web-based interface, with priority queuing, accommodating priority for paying customers and enabling free use of otherwise unused time. This revival included many software and hardware improvements including automatic calibration and improved time integration resulting in improved data processing, and a new ultra high resolution spectrometer. This new spectrometer is optimized for very narrow spectral lines, which will allow astronomers to study complex molecules and very cold regions of space in remarkable detail. In accordance with focusing on broader impacts, many public outreach and high school education activities have been completed with many confirmed future activities. The 20 meter is now a fully automated, powerful tool capable of professional grade results available to anyone in the world. Drop by our poster and try out real-time telescope control!

  4. Nuclear instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weill, Jacky; Fabre, Rene.

    1981-01-01

    This article sums up the Research and Development effort at present being carried out in the five following fields of applications: Health physics and Radioprospection, Control of nuclear reactors, Plant control (preparation and reprocessing of the fuel, testing of nuclear substances, etc.), Research laboratory instrumentation, Detectors. It also sets the place of French industrial activities by means of an estimate of the French market, production and flow of trading with other countries [fr

  5. Divided Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapman, A.; Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Although the division of the zodiac into 360° probably derives from Egypt or Assyria around 2000 BC, there is no surviving evidence of Mesopotamian cultures embodying this division into a mathematical instrument. Almost certainly, however, it was from Babylonia that the Greek geometers learned of the 360° circle, and by c. 80 BC they had incorporated it into that remarkably elaborate device gener...

  6. Instrumentation development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1976-01-01

    Areas being investigated for instrumentation improvement during low-level pollution monitoring include laser opto-acoustic spectroscopy, x-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, optical fluorescence spectroscopy, liquid crystal gas detectors, advanced forms of atomic absorption spectroscopy, electro-analytical chemistry, and mass spectroscopy. Emphasis is also directed toward development of physical methods, as opposed to conventional chemical analysis techniques for monitoring these trace amounts of pollution related to energy development and utilization

  7. Instrumentation maintenance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mack, D.A.

    1976-09-01

    It is essential to any research activity that accurate and efficient measurements be made for the experimental parameters under consideration for each individual experiment or test. Satisfactory measurements in turn depend upon having the necessary instruments and the capability of ensuring that they are performing within their intended specifications. This latter requirement can only be achieved by providing an adequate maintenance facility, staffed with personnel competent to understand the problems associated with instrument adjustment and repair. The Instrument Repair Shop at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory is designed to achieve this end. The organization, staffing and operation of this system is discussed. Maintenance policy should be based on studies of (1) preventive vs. catastrophic maintenance, (2) records indicating when equipment should be replaced rather than repaired and (3) priorities established to indicate the order in which equipment should be repaired. Upon establishing a workable maintenance policy, the staff should be instructed so that they may provide appropriate scheduled preventive maintenance, calibration and corrective procedures, and emergency repairs. The education, training and experience of the maintenance staff is discussed along with the organization for an efficient operation. The layout of the various repair shops is described in the light of laboratory space and financial constraints

  8. Spectral atlas for amateur astronomers a guide to the spectra of astronomical objects and terrestrial light sources

    CERN Document Server

    Walker, Richard

    2017-01-01

    Featuring detailed commented spectral profiles of more than one hundred astronomical objects, in colour, this spectral guide documents most of the important and spectroscopically observable objects accessible using typical amateur equipment. It allows you to read and interpret the recorded spectra of the main stellar classes, as well as most of the steps from protostars through to the final stages of stellar evolution as planetary nebulae, white dwarfs or the different types of supernovae. It also presents integrated spectra of stellar clusters, galaxies and quasars, and the reference spectra of some terrestrial light sources, for calibration purposes. Whether used as the principal reference for comparing with your recorded spectra or for inspiring independent observing projects, this atlas provides a breathtaking view into our Universe's past. The atlas is accompanied and supplemented by Spectroscopy for Amateur Astronomers, which explains in detail the methods for recording, processing, analysing and interp...

  9. Astronomers Find World with Thick, Inhospitable Atmosphere and an Icy Heart

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-12-01

    planets, they found that the observed radius exceeds the models' predictions: there is something more than the planet's solid surface blocking the star's light - a surrounding atmosphere, 200 km thick. "This atmosphere is much thicker than that of the Earth, so the high pressure and absence of light would rule out life as we know it," says Charbonneau, "but these conditions are still very interesting, as they could allow for some complex chemistry to take place." "Because the planet is too hot to have kept an atmosphere for long, GJ1214b represents the first opportunity to study a newly formed atmosphere enshrouding a world orbiting another star," adds team member Xavier Bonfils. "Because the planet is so close to us, it will be possible to study its atmosphere even with current facilities." The planet was first discovered as a transiting object within the MEarth project, which follows about 2000 low-mass stars to look for transits by exoplanets [4]. To confirm the planetary nature of GJ1214b and to obtain its mass (using the so-called Doppler method), the astronomers needed the full precision of the HARPS spectrograph, attached to ESO's 3.6-metre telescope at La Silla. An instrument with unrivalled stability and great precision, HARPS is the world's most successful hunter for small exoplanets. "This is the second super-Earth exoplanet for which the mass and radius could be obtained, allowing us to determine the density and to infer the inner structure," adds co-author Stephane Udry. "In both cases, data from HARPS was essential to characterise the planet." "The differences in composition between these two planets are relevant to the quest for habitable worlds," concludes Charbonneau. If super-Earth planets in general are surrounded by an atmosphere similar to that of GJ1214b, they may well be inhospitable to the development of life as we know it on our own planet. Notes [1] A super-Earth is defined as a planet between one and ten times the mass of the Earth. An exoplanet

  10. Astronomer's new guide to the galaxy: largest map of cold dust revealed

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-07-01

    Astronomers have unveiled an unprecedented new atlas of the inner regions of the Milky Way, our home galaxy, peppered with thousands of previously undiscovered dense knots of cold cosmic dust -- the potential birthplaces of new stars. Made using observations from the APEX telescope in Chile, this survey is the largest map of cold dust so far, and will prove an invaluable map for observations made with the forthcoming ALMA telescope, as well as the recently launched ESA Herschel space telescope. ESO PR Photo 24a/09 View of the Galactic Plane from the ATLASGAL survey (annotated and in five sections) ESO PR Photo 24b/09 View of the Galactic Plane from the ATLASGAL survey (annotated) ESO PR Photo 24c/09 View of the Galactic Plane from the ATLASGAL survey (in five sections) ESO PR Photo 24d/09 View of the Galactic Plane from the ATLASGAL survey ESO PR Photo 24e/09 The Galactic Centre and Sagittarius B2 ESO PR Photo 24f/09 The NGC 6357 and NGC 6334 nebulae ESO PR Photo 24g/09 The RCW120 nebula ESO PR Video 24a/09 Annotated pan as seen by the ATLASGAL survey This new guide for astronomers, known as the APEX Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy (ATLASGAL) shows the Milky Way in submillimetre-wavelength light (between infrared light and radio waves [1]). Images of the cosmos at these wavelengths are vital for studying the birthplaces of new stars and the structure of the crowded galactic core. "ATLASGAL gives us a new look at the Milky Way. Not only will it help us investigate how massive stars form, but it will also give us an overview of the larger-scale structure of our galaxy", said Frederic Schuller from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy, leader of the ATLASGAL team. The area of the new submillimetre map is approximately 95 square degrees, covering a very long and narrow strip along the galactic plane two degrees wide (four times the width of the full Moon) and over 40 degrees long. The 16 000 pixel-long map was made with the LABOCA submillimetre

  11. The caracol tower at chichen itza: an ancient astronomical observatory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aveni, A F; Gibbs, S L; Hartung, H

    1975-06-06

    Although our investigations reveal a number of significant astronomical events coinciding with many of the measured alignments presented in Table 1, not every alignment appears to have an astronomical match which we can recognize. It may be that only some of the sighting possibilities we have discussed were actually functional. Moreover, our search of significant astronomical events to match the alignments has included only those which seem of obvious functional importance to us: sun, moon, and planetary extremes and the setting positions of the brightest stars. We have emphasized those celestial bodies which are documented in the literature as having been of importance. Perhaps hitherto unrecognized constellations were sighted in the windows, perhaps fainter stars, the heliacal rising and setting times of which could have served to mark important dates in the calendar. While we propose no grand cosmic scheme for the astronomical design of the Caracol it can be inferred that the building, apart from being a monument related to Quetzalcoatl, was erected primarily for the purpose of embodying in its architecture certain significant astronomical event alignments, in the same sense that a modern astronomical ephemeris exhibits information of importance to us in the keeping of the current calendar. There are examples in the Mesoamerican historical literature of deliberate attempts to align buildings with astronomical directions of importance. For example, Maudslay (33) quotes Father Motolinia, who tells us that in Tenochtitlan the festival called Tlacaxipeualistli "took place when the sun stood in the middle of Huicholobos, which was at the equinox, and because it was a little out of the straight, Montezuma wished to pull it down and set it right." According to Maudslay, worshipers were probably facing east to watch the sun rise between the two oratories on the Great Temple of Tenochtitlan at the time of the equinox. The directions of the faces of the Lower and Upper

  12. Astronomers Win Protection for Key Part of Radio Spectrum

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-06-01

    Astronomers using the millimeter-wave region of the radio spectrum have won crucial protection for their science. Dedicated allocations for radio astronomy have been given final approval by the 2,500 delegates to the World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-00), which recently concluded a month of deliberations in Istanbul, Turkey. Radio services can transmit in these parts of the spectrum as long as they don't hinder astronomers' attempts to catch faint signals from the cosmos. The new allocations represent the culmination of more than three years of cooperative planning by radio astronomers in many countries. Millimeter waves -- high-frequency radio waves -- have come of age as an astronomical tool in the last ten years. They are one of the last technological frontiers for astronomers. WRC-00 has protected for science all the frequencies between 71 and 275 Gigahertz (GHz) that radio astronomers currently use, adding more than 90 GHz of spectrum to the 44 GHz already set aside in this frequency range. As a result, radio astronomy is now allocated most of the frequencies between 71 and 275 GHz that can get through the Earth's atmosphere. "We have formal access to all three atmospheric 'windows', apart from their very edges," said Dr. Tom Gergely of the National Science Foundation, one of the U.S. delegates to WRC-00. The WRC also changed most of the frequencies allocated to satellite downlinks within the 71-275 GHz range to frequencies not used for science. Since no satellites yet operate at these high frequencies, no equipment needs to be altered. "Commercial technologies are just starting to develop above 50 GHz," said Dr. Klaus Ruf, Chairman of the Inter-Union Commission for the Allocation of Frequencies. "The WRC's actions mean that, when they are, radio astronomers should be able to share this part of the spectrum with most terrestrial services." The World Radiocommunication Conference is held every two or three years. Here member countries of the

  13. Preventing Rape of the Observatory: Thoughts on the Urgency of Preserving Historic Astronomical Artifacts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, T. E.

    2005-12-01

    "What good is this century-old monster refractor? Sell it and use the money to buy a brand new go-to reflector useful for teaching students and advancing astronomy." So argues logic that is endangering an increasing number of university observatories around the U.S. (if not the rest of the world), even up to the Yerkes Observatory and its 40-inch Clark, world's largest refractor by the acknowledged world's best lens-makers. While most non-historians readily accept the value of preserving our cultural heritage in rare and precious documents (such as the Declaration of Independence), artifacts (such as Stradivarius violins), and institutions (such as the birthplaces of U.S. Presidents), they tend not to think of astronomical observatories as part of cultural heritage-with a result that history is crumbling apace to the wrecking ball. In early October, the Antique Telescope Society convened a special 60-minute session discussing philosophical why's and practical how's of preserving astronomical assets (including historically significant telescopes, observatory buildings, auxiliary equipment used to make observations or calculate results, and libraries of books and papers). This paper will summarize the discussion's key insights - including the assessing and assigning of value to old vs. new telescopes, and the roles of politics, funding and fund-raising, publicity (positive and negative), education, use as a form of preservation, innovative solutions by private collectors (including "half-way houses" for homeless instruments), restoration vs. renovation, special problems facing very large telescopes, and lessons learned from both failures and success.

  14. 2012 Summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates at Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castelaz, Michael W.; Cline, J. D.; Whitworth, C.; Clavier, D.; Owen, L.

    2013-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) offers research experiences for undergraduates (REU). PARI receives support for the internships from the NC Space Grant Consortium, NSF awards, private donations, and industry partner funding. The PARI REU program began in 2001 with 4 students and has averaged 6 students per year over the past 11 years. This year PARI hosted 8 funded REU students. Mentors for the interns include PARI’s Science, Education, and Information Technology staff and visiting faculty who are members of the PARI Research Faculty Affiliate program. Students work with mentors on radio and optical astronomy research, electrical engineering for robotic control of instruments, software development for instrument control and software for citizen science projects, and science education by developing curricula and multimedia and teaching high school students in summer programs at PARI. At the end of the summer interns write a paper about their research which is published in the annually published PARI Summer Student Proceedings. Several of the students have presented their results at AAS Meetings. We will present a summary of specific research conducted by the students with their mentors and the logistics for hosting the PARI undergraduate internship program.

  15. Ticking Stellar Time Bomb Identified - Astronomers find prime suspect for a Type Ia supernova

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-11-01

    Using ESO's Very Large Telescope and its ability to obtain images as sharp as if taken from space, astronomers have made the first time-lapse movie of a rather unusual shell ejected by a "vampire star", which in November 2000 underwent an outburst after gulping down part of its companion's matter. This enabled astronomers to determine the distance and intrinsic brightness of the outbursting object. It appears that this double star system is a prime candidate to be one of the long-sought progenitors of the exploding stars known as Type Ia supernovae, critical for studies of dark energy. "One of the major problems in modern astrophysics is the fact that we still do not know exactly what kinds of stellar system explode as a Type Ia supernova," says Patrick Woudt, from the University of Cape Town and lead author of the paper reporting the results. "As these supernovae play a crucial role in showing that the Universe's expansion is currently accelerating, pushed by a mysterious dark energy, it is rather embarrassing." The astronomers studied the object known as V445 in the constellation of Puppis ("the Stern") in great detail. V445 Puppis is the first, and so far only, nova showing no evidence at all for hydrogen. It provides the first evidence for an outburst on the surface of a white dwarf [1] dominated by helium. "This is critical, as we know that Type Ia supernovae lack hydrogen," says co-author Danny Steeghs, from the University of Warwick, UK, "and the companion star in V445 Pup fits this nicely by also lacking hydrogen, instead dumping mainly helium gas onto the white dwarf." In November 2000, this system underwent a nova outburst, becoming 250 times brighter than before and ejecting a large quantity of matter into space. The team of astronomers used the NACO adaptive optics instrument [2] on ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT) to obtain very sharp images of V445 Puppis over a time span of two years. The images show a bipolar shell, initially with a very narrow

  16. Astronomers' Do-It-Yourself Project Opening A New Window on the Universe

    Science.gov (United States)

    1999-05-01

    -it-yourself project." In the first observing session using the new equipment, astronomers from four continents studied a wide range of celestial objects, and the results "were a spectacular success. We proved that you can make good images with the VLA at this frequency. The problem always was the difficulty in processing data to correct for ionospheric effects on the incoming radio waves. New computing techniques now have solved that problem." "We have shattered the ionospheric barrier and solved the wide- field imaging problem," Kassim said. The research results presented at the AAS meeting "show the great value of this new capability," Kassim said. "In addition to our work on supernova remnants, active galaxies and galaxy clusters, other papers presented at this meeting show that this frequency range is extremely valuable for solar research," Kassim added. "In fact, the success of the VLA at this frequency shows that we could learn even more from this new window on the universe by building a much larger and more sensitive instrument dedicated to long-wavelength radio astronomy -- the Low Frequency Array (LOFAR). An international consortium, initially involving NRL, NRAO, and the Netherlands Foundation for Radio Astronomy, currently is forming to develop LOFAR, an instrument which would see more detail and fainter objects than we can today," Kassim said. The VLA is an instrument of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, a facility of the National Science Foundation, operated under cooperative agreement by Associated Universities, Inc. Basic research in radio astronomy at the Naval Research Laboratory is supported by the Office of Naval Research.

  17. Constructing Concept Schemes From Astronomical Telegrams Via Natural Language Clustering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Matthew; Zhang, M.; Djorgovski, S. G.; Donalek, C.; Drake, A. J.; Mahabal, A.

    2012-01-01

    The rapidly emerging field of time domain astronomy is one of the most exciting and vibrant new research frontiers, ranging in scientific scope from studies of the Solar System to extreme relativistic astrophysics and cosmology. It is being enabled by a new generation of large synoptic digital sky surveys - LSST, PanStarrs, CRTS - that cover large areas of sky repeatedly, looking for transient objects and phenomena. One of the biggest challenges facing these is the automated classification of transient events, a process that needs machine-processible astronomical knowledge. Semantic technologies enable the formal representation of concepts and relations within a particular domain. ATELs (http://www.astronomerstelegram.org) are a commonly-used means for reporting and commenting upon new astronomical observations of transient sources (supernovae, stellar outbursts, blazar flares, etc). However, they are loose and unstructured and employ scientific natural language for description: this makes automated processing of them - a necessity within the next decade with petascale data rates - a challenge. Nevertheless they represent a potentially rich corpus of information that could lead to new and valuable insights into transient phenomena. This project lies in the cutting-edge field of astrosemantics, a branch of astroinformatics, which applies semantic technologies to astronomy. The ATELs have been used to develop an appropriate concept scheme - a representation of the information they contain - for transient astronomy using hierarchical clustering of processed natural language. This allows us to automatically organize ATELs based on the vocabulary used. We conclude that we can use simple algorithms to process and extract meaning from astronomical textual data.

  18. A novel type of very long baseline astronomical intensity interferometer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borra, Ermanno F.

    2013-12-01

    This article presents a novel type of very long baseline astronomical interferometer that uses the fluctuations, as a function of time, of the intensity measured by a quadratic detector, which is a common type of astronomical detector. The theory on which the technique is based is validated by laboratory experiments. Its outstanding principal advantages comes from the fact that the angular structure of an astronomical object is simply determined from the visibility of the minima of the spectrum of the intensity fluctuations measured by the detector, as a function of the frequency of the fluctuations, while keeping the spacing between mirrors constant. This would allow a simple setup capable of high angular resolutions because it could use an extremely large baseline. Another major interest is that it allows for a more efficient use of telescope time because observations at a single baseline are sufficient, while amplitude and intensity interferometers need several observations at different baselines. The fact that one does not have to move the telescopes would also allow detecting faster time variations because having to move the telescopes sets a lower limit to the time variations that can be detected. The technique uses wave interaction effects and thus has some characteristics in common with intensity interferometry. A disadvantage of the technique, like in intensity interferometry, is that it needs strong sources if observing at high frequencies (e.g. the visible). This is a minor disadvantage in the radio region. At high frequencies, this disadvantage is mitigated by the fact that, like in intensity interferometry, the requirements of the optical quality of the mirrors used are far less severe than in amplitude interferometry so that poor quality large reflectors (e.g. Cherenkov telescopes) can be used in the optical region.

  19. Laboratory measurements and astronomical search for the HSO radical.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazzoli, Gabriele; Lattanzi, Valerio; Kirsch, Till; Gauss, Jürgen; Tercero, Belén; Cernicharo, José; Puzzarini, Cristina

    2016-07-01

    Despite the fact that many sulfur-bearing molecules, ranging from simple diatomic species up to astronomical complex molecules, have been detected in the interstellar medium, the sulfur chemistry in space is largely unknown and a depletion in the abundance of S-containing species has been observed in the cold, dense interstellar medium (ISM). The chemical form of the missing sulfur has yet to be identified. For these reasons, in view of the fact that there is a large abundance of triatomic species harbouring sulfur, oxygen, and hydrogen, we decided to investigate the HSO radical in the laboratory to try its astronomical detection. High-resolution measurements of the rotational spectrum of the HSO radical were carried out within a frequency range well up into the THz region. Subsequently, a rigorous search for HSO in the two most studied high-mass star-forming regions, Orion KL and Sagittarius (Sgr) B2, and in the cold dark cloud Barnard 1 (B1-b) was performed. The frequency coverage and the spectral resolution of our measurements allowed us to improve and extend the existing dataset of spectroscopic parameters, thus enabling accurate frequency predictions up to the THz range. These were used to derive the synthetic spectrum of HSO, by means of the MADEX code, according to the physical parameters of the astronomical source under consideration. For all sources investigated, the lack of HSO lines above the confusion limit of the data is evident. The derived upper limit to the abundance of HSO clearly indicates that this molecule does not achieve significant abundances in either the gas phase or in the ice mantles of dust grains.

  20. The Red Rectangle: An Astronomical Example of Mach Bands?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brecher, K.

    2005-12-01

    Recently, the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) produced spectacular images of the "Red Rectangle". This appears to be a binary star system undergoing recurrent mass loss episodes. The image-processed HST photographs display distinctive diagonal lightness enhancements. Some of the visual appearance undoubtedly arises from actual variations in the luminosity distribution of the light of the nebula itself, i.e., due to limb brightening. Psychophysical enhancement similar to the Vasarely or pyramid effect also seems to be involved in the visual impression conveyed by the HST images. This effect is related to Mach bands (as well as to the Chevreul and Craik-O'Brien-Cornsweet effects). The effect can be produced by stacking concentric squares (or other geometrical figures such as rectangles or hexagons) of linearly increasing or decreasing size and lightness, one on top of another. We have constructed controllable Flash applets of this effect as part of the NSF supported "Project LITE: Light Inquiry Through Experiments". They can be found in the vision section of the LITE web site at http://lite.bu.edu. Mach band effects have previously been seen in medical x-ray images. Here we report for the first time the possibility that such effects play a role in the interpretation of astronomical images. Specifically, we examine to what extent the visual impressions of the Red Rectangle and other extended astronomical objects are purely physical (photometric) in origin and to what degree they are enhanced by psychophysical processes. To help assess the relative physical and psychophysical contributions to the perceived lightness effects, we have made use of a center-surround (Difference of Gaussians) filter we developed for MatLab. We conclude that local (lateral inhibition) and longer range human visual perception effects probably do contribute to the lightness features seen in astronomical objects like the Red Rectangle. Project LITE is supported by NSF Grant # DUE-0125992.

  1. In the Jungle of Astronomical On--line Data Services

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egret, D.

    The author tried to survive in the jungle of astronomical on--line data services. In order to find efficient answers to common scientific data retrieval requests, he had to collect many pieces of information, in order to formulate typical user scenarios, and try them against a number of different data bases, catalogue services, or information systems. He discovered soon how frustrating treasure coffers may be when their keys are not available, but he realized also that nice widgets and gadgets are of no help when the information is not there. And, before long, he knew he would have to navigate through several systems because no one was yet offering a general answer to all his questions. I will present examples of common user scenarios and show how they were tested against a number of services. I will propose some elements of classification which should help the end-user to evaluate how adequate the different services may be for providing satisfying answers to specific queries. For that, many aspects of the user interaction will be considered: documentation, access, query formulation, functionalities, qualification of the data, overall efficiency, etc. I will also suggest possible improvements to the present situation: the first of them being to encourage system managers to increase collaboration between one another, for the benefit of the whole astronomical community. The subjective review I will present, is based on publicly available astronomical on--line services from the U.S. and from Europe, most of which (excepting the newcomers) were described in ``Databases and On-Line Data in Astronomy", (Albrecht & Egret, eds, 1991): this includes databases (such as NED and Simbad ), catalog services ( StarCat , DIRA , XCatScan , etc.), and information systems ( ADS and ESIS ).

  2. SIP: A Web-Based Astronomical Image Processing Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simonetti, J. H.

    1999-12-01

    I have written an astronomical image processing and analysis program designed to run over the internet in a Java-compatible web browser. The program, Sky Image Processor (SIP), is accessible at the SIP webpage (http://www.phys.vt.edu/SIP). Since nothing is installed on the user's machine, there is no need to download upgrades; the latest version of the program is always instantly available. Furthermore, the Java programming language is designed to work on any computer platform (any machine and operating system). The program could be used with students in web-based instruction or in a computer laboratory setting; it may also be of use in some research or outreach applications. While SIP is similar to other image processing programs, it is unique in some important respects. For example, SIP can load images from the user's machine or from the Web. An instructor can put images on a web server for students to load and analyze on their own personal computer. Or, the instructor can inform the students of images to load from any other web server. Furthermore, since SIP was written with students in mind, the philosophy is to present the user with the most basic tools necessary to process and analyze astronomical images. Images can be combined (by addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division), multiplied by a constant, smoothed, cropped, flipped, rotated, and so on. Statistics can be gathered for pixels within a box drawn by the user. Basic tools are available for gathering data from an image which can be used for performing simple differential photometry, or astrometry. Therefore, students can learn how astronomical image processing works. Since SIP is not part of a commercial CCD camera package, the program is written to handle the most common denominator image file, the FITS format.

  3. Managing distributed software development in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Janet D.; Plante, Raymond L.; Boneventura, Nina; Busko, Ivo; Cresitello-Dittmar, Mark; D'Abrusco, Raffaele; Doe, Stephen; Ebert, Rick; Laurino, Omar; Pevunova, Olga; Refsdal, Brian; Thomas, Brian

    2012-09-01

    The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is a product-driven organization that provides new scientific research capabilities to the astronomical community. Software development for the VAO follows a lightweight framework that guides development of science applications and infrastructure. Challenges to be overcome include distributed development teams, part-time efforts, and highly constrained schedules. We describe the process we followed to conquer these challenges while developing Iris, the VAO application for analysis of 1-D astronomical spectral energy distributions (SEDs). Iris was successfully built and released in less than a year with a team distributed across four institutions. The project followed existing International Virtual Observatory Alliance inter-operability standards for spectral data and contributed a SED library as a by-product of the project. We emphasize lessons learned that will be folded into future development efforts. In our experience, a well-defined process that provides guidelines to ensure the project is cohesive and stays on track is key to success. Internal product deliveries with a planned test and feedback loop are critical. Release candidates are measured against use cases established early in the process, and provide the opportunity to assess priorities and make course corrections during development. Also key is the participation of a stakeholder such as a lead scientist who manages the technical questions, advises on priorities, and is actively involved as a lead tester. Finally, frequent scheduled communications (for example a bi-weekly tele-conference) assure issues are resolved quickly and the team is working toward a common vision.

  4. Kepler-Astronomer in Astrology and Astrologer in Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fempl-Madjarevic, Jasna

    The author is discussing a very complicated subject: the astrological aspects in the scientific activity of Johannes Kepler. Sometimes Kepler is considered the last astronomer which confused astrology with astronomy. In fact he composed horoscopes, but he was conscious finally that the astrology was a confusion. The author is discussing also the mistic aspects of the scientifc creation by Kepler. Particularly she emphasized that the "Mysterium Cosmographicum" is one of such works. Meanwhile, that work led to discovery of famous third laws of planets motion.

  5. Astronomical Observations Astronomy and the Study of Deep Space

    CERN Document Server

    2010-01-01

    Our Search for knowledge about the universe has been remarkable, heartbreaking, fantastical, and inspiring, and this search is just beginning. Astronomical Observations is part of a 7 book series that takes readers through a virtual time warp of our discovery. From the nascent space programs of the 1960's to today's space tourism and the promise of distant planet colonization, readers will be transfixed. Throughout this journey of the mind, Earth-bound explorers gain keen insight into the celestial phenomena that have fascinated humans for centuries. Thrilling narratives about indefatigable sc

  6. Hera: High Energy Astronomical Data Analysis via the Internet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valencic, Lynne A.; Chai, P.; Pence, W.; Snowden, S.

    2011-09-01

    The HEASARC at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center has developed Hera, a data processing facility for analyzing high energy astronomical data over the internet. Hera provides all the software packages, disk space, and computing resources needed to do general processing of and advanced research on publicly available data from High Energy Astrophysics missions. The data and data products are kept on a server at GSFC and can be downloaded to a user's local machine. This service is provided for free to students, educators, and researchers for educational and research purposes.

  7. Mingantu, 18th-Century Mongol Astronomer and Radioheliograph Namesake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasachoff, Jay M.

    2013-01-01

    The 18th-century Mongol astronomer Mingantu (1692-1765) has been honored with a city named after him and a nearby solar telescope array. During the IAU/Beijing, my wife and I went to the new Chinese solar radioheliograph, the Mingantu Observing Station, in Inner Mongolia, ~400 km northwest of Beijing, a project of the National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences. It currently contains 40 dishes each 4.5 m across, with a correlator from Beijing. Within a year, 60 2-m dishes will be added. We passed by the 12-century ruins of Xanadu (about 20 km north of Zhangbei) about halfway. The radioheliograph is in a plane about 1 km across, forming a three-armed spiral for interferometric solar mapping, something colleagues and I had carried out with the Jansky Very Large Array, taking advantage of the lunar occultation before annularity at the 20 May 2012 solar eclipse. In the central square of Mingantu city, a statue ~10-m high of the Mongol astronomer Mingantu appears. Its base bears a plaque ~1-m high of IAU Minor Planet Circular MPC 45750 announcing the naming in 2002 of asteroid 28242 Mingantu, discovered at a Chinese observatory in 1999. Mingantu carried out orbital calculations, mapping, mathematical work on infinite series, and other scientific research. He is honored by a modern museum behind the statue. The museum's first 40% describes Mingantu and his work, and is followed by some artifacts of the region from thousands of years ago. The final, large room contains a two-meter-square scale model of the radioheliograph, flat-screen televisions running Solar Dynamics Observatory and other contemporary visualizations, orreries and other objects, and large transparencies of NASA and other astronomical imagery. See my post at http://www.skyandtelescope.com/community/skyblog/newsblog/ specfically Astro-Sightseeing_in_Inner_Mongolia-167712965.html. We thank Yihua Yan for arranging the visit and Wang Wei (both NAOC) for accompanying us. My solar research

  8. ASTRONOMICAL PLATE ARCHIVES AND SUPERMASSIVE BLACK HOLE BINARIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    René Hudec

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The recent extensive digitisation of astronomical photographic plate archives, the development of new dedicated software and the use of powerful computers have for the first time enabled effective data mining in extensive plate databases, with wide applications in various fields of recent astrophysics. As an example, analyses of supermassive binary black holes (binary blazars require very long time intervals (50 years and more, which cannot be provided by other data sources. Examples of data obtained from data mining in plate archives are presented and briefly discussed.

  9. Illustrated Guide to Astronomical Wonders From Novice to Master Observer

    CERN Document Server

    Thompson, Robert

    2011-01-01

    With the advent of inexpensive, high-power telescopes priced at under 250, amateur astronomy is now within the reach of anyone, and this is the ideal book to get you started. The Illustrated Guide to Astronomical Wonders offers you a guide to the equipment you need, and shows you how and where to find hundreds of spectacular objects in the deep sky -- double and multiple stars as well as spectacular star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies. You get a solid grounding in the fundamental concepts and terminology of astronomy, and specific advice about choosing, buying, using, and maintaining the eq

  10. Tot Graeci Tot Sententiae: Astronomical Perspective Multiplicity in Ancient Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, O.

    2011-06-01

    Ancient Greece was made of a multiplicity of thinking heads, in an atmosphere of (relative) freedom of opinions, in every field of knowledge. then we should not wonder if many astronomical and cosmological theories, survived until our 17th century, had already been formulated by different philosophers and in different regions, cities and periods of Greek history. Geocentric and heliocentric theories, as well as an atomistic theory of an infinite universe (with infinite worlds), could survive without crashing with one another. In the same time, religious opinions regarding the planets and Sun as a series of gods were present, however not on a scientific ground.

  11. The Future is Hera! Analyzing Astronomical Over the Internet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valencic, L. A.; Chai, P.; Pence, W.; Shafer, R.; Snowden, S.

    2008-01-01

    Hera is the data processing facility provided by the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC) at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center for analyzing astronomical data. Hera provides all the pre-installed software packages, local disk space, and computing resources need to do general processing of FITS format data files residing on the users local computer, and to do research using the publicly available data from the High ENergy Astrophysics Division. Qualified students, educators and researchers may freely use the Hera services over the internet of research and educational purposes.

  12. Towards a robust and consistent middle Eocene astronomical timescale

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boulila, Slah; Vahlenkamp, Maximilian; De Vleeschouwer, David; Laskar, Jacques; Yamamoto, Yuhji; Pälike, Heiko; Kirtland Turner, Sandra; Sexton, Philip F.; Westerhold, Thomas; Röhl, Ursula

    2018-03-01

    Until now, the middle Eocene has remained a poorly constrained interval of efforts to produce an astrochronological timescale for the entire Cenozoic. This has given rise to a so-called "Eocene astronomical timescale gap" (Vandenberghe et al., 2012). A high-resolution astrochronological calibration for this interval has proven to be difficult to realize, mainly because carbonate-rich deep-marine sequences of this age are scarce. In this paper, we present records from middle Eocene carbonate-rich sequences from the North Atlantic Southeast Newfoundland Ridge (IODP Exp. 342, Sites U1408 and U1410), of which the cyclical sedimentary patterns allow for an orbital calibration of the geologic timescale between ∼38 and ∼48 Ma. These carbonate-rich cyclic sediments at Sites U1408 and U1410 were deposited as drift deposits and exhibit prominent lithological alternations (couplets) between greenish nannofossil-rich clay and white nannofossil ooze. The principal lithological couplet is driven by the obliquity of Earth's axial tilt, and the intensity of their expression is modulated by a cyclicity of about 173 kyr. This cyclicity corresponds to the interference of secular frequencies s3 and s6 (related to the precession of nodes of the Earth and Saturn, respectively). This 173-kyr obliquity amplitude modulation cycle is exceptionally well recorded in the XRF (X-ray fluorescence)-derived Ca/Fe ratio. In this work, we first demonstrate the stability of the (s3-s6) cycles using the latest astronomical solutions. Results show that this orbital component is stable back to at least 50 Ma, and can thus serve as a powerful geochronometer in the mid-Eocene portion of the Cenozoic timescale. We then exploit this potential by calibrating the geochronology of the recovered middle Eocene timescale between magnetic polarity Chrons C18n.1n and C21n. Comparison with previous timescales shows similarities, but also notable differences in durations of certain magnetic polarity chrons. We

  13. Stray radiation and the Infrared Astronomical Satellite /IRAS/ telescope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noll, R. J.; Harned, R.; Breault, R. P.; Malugin, R.

    1981-01-01

    Stray light control is a major consideration in the design of infrared cryogenically cooled telescopes such as the Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS). The basic design of the baffle system, and the placement, shape, and coating of the secondary support struts for the telescope subsystem are described. The intent of this paper is to highlight the stray light problems encountered while designing the system, and to illustrate how computer analysis can be a useful design aid. Scattering measurements of the primary mirror, and a full system level scatter measurement are presented. Comparisons of predicted performance with the measured results are also presented.

  14. Astronomical Polarimetry with the RIT Polarization Imaging Camera

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vorobiev, Dmitry V.; Ninkov, Zoran; Brock, Neal

    2018-06-01

    In the last decade, imaging polarimeters based on micropolarizer arrays have been developed for use in terrestrial remote sensing and metrology applications. Micropolarizer-based sensors are dramatically smaller and more mechanically robust than other polarimeters with similar spectral response and snapshot capability. To determine the suitability of these new polarimeters for astronomical applications, we developed the RIT Polarization Imaging Camera to investigate the performance of these devices, with a special attention to the low signal-to-noise regime. We characterized the device performance in the lab, by determining the relative throughput, efficiency, and orientation of every pixel, as a function of wavelength. Using the resulting pixel response model, we developed demodulation procedures for aperture photometry and imaging polarimetry observing modes. We found that, using the current calibration, RITPIC is capable of detecting polarization signals as small as ∼0.3%. The relative ease of data collection, calibration, and analysis provided by these sensors suggest than they may become an important tool for a number of astronomical targets.

  15. Astronomers, Transits of Venus, and the Birth of Experimental Psychology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheehan, William; Thurber, S.

    2012-01-01

    The eighteenth century transits of Venus were regarded as the most important astronomical events of their era. Halley's expectation was that by observing the contact points between the limbs of Venus and the Sun, this distance could be determined to an accuracy of one part in 500. But in the event, it proved otherwise. But, as the British historian Agnes Clerke wrote in 1902: "A transit of Venus seems, at first sight, full of promise for solving the problem of the sun's distance. For nothing would appear easier than to determine exactly either the duration of the passage of a small, dark orb across a large brilliant disc, or the instant of its entry upon or exit from it". But in that word `exactly' what snares and pitfalls lie hid!” In the post-mortem analysis of the disappointing results, astronomers devoted a great deal of effort to understand the sources of errors. They rehearsed their observational techniques by observing, under strictly controlled conditions, transits of artificial planets across artificial Suns, and studied such parameters as attention and reflex reaction. In the process, the transits of Venus provided an important impetus to the early development of experimental psychology.

  16. Authentic Astronomical Discovery in Planetariums: Bringing Data to Domes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Ryan Jason; Subbarao, Mark; Christensen, Lars; Emmons, Ben; Hurt, Robert

    2018-01-01

    Planetariums offer a unique opportunity to disseminate astronomical discoveries using data visualization at all levels of complexity: the technical infrastructure to display data and a sizeable cohort of enthusiastic educators to interpret results. “Data to Dome” is an initiative the International Planetarium Society to develop our community’s capacity to integrate data in fulldome planetarium systems—including via open source software platforms such as WorldWide Telescope and OpenSpace. We are cultivating a network of planetarium professionals who integrate data into their presentations and share their content with others. Furthermore, we propose to shorten the delay between discovery and dissemination in planetariums. Currently, the “latest science” is often presented days or weeks after discoveries are announced, and we can shorten this to hours or even minutes. The Data2Dome (D2D) initiative, led by the European Southern Observatory, proposes technical infrastructure and data standards that will streamline content flow from research institutions to planetariums, offering audiences a unique opportunity to access to the latest astronomical data in near real time.

  17. Authentic Astronomical Discovery in Planetariums: Data-Driven Immersive Lectures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyatt, Ryan Jason

    2018-01-01

    Planetariums are akin to “branch offices” for astronomy in major cities and other locations around the globe. With immersive, fulldome video technology, modern digital planetariums offer the opportunity to integrate authentic astronomical data into both pre-recorded shows and live lectures. At the California Academy of Sciences Morrison Planetarium, we host the monthly Benjamin Dean Astronomy Lecture Series, which features researchers describing their cutting-edge work to well-informed lay audiences. The Academy’s visualization studio and engineering teams work with researchers to visualize their data in both pre-rendered and real-time formats, and these visualizations are integrated into a variety of programs—including lectures! The assets are then made available to any other planetariums with similar software to support their programming. A lecturer can thus give the same immersive presentation to audiences in a variety of planetariums. The Academy has also collaborated with Chicago’s Adler Planetarium to bring Kavli Fulldome Lecture Series to San Francisco, and the two theaters have also linked together in live “domecasts” to share real-time content with audiences in both cities. These lecture series and other, similar projects suggest a bright future for astronomers to bring their research to the public in an immersive and visually compelling format.

  18. 156th Symposium of the International Astronomical Union

    CERN Document Server

    Kołaczek, Barbara

    1993-01-01

    In this review talk, I would like to report on the proper motion analysis, which has been recently carried out together with M. Soma and M. Yoshizawa: There has been a persistent demand in astronomy for accurate stellar positions and proper motions, which are represented by an inertial reference system constructed on the basis of a set of consistent astronomical constants. In the reference system the precessional constant plays a primary role. In a series of papers Fricke (1967a,b, 1977a,b) has deter­ mined the luni-solar precessional correction to Newcomb's value and the fictitious motion of the equinox, which have been adopted in the "IAU (1976) System of Astronomical Con­ stants". Based on the precessional correction and the equinoctial motion thus established, the fundamental reference system, the FK5 system (Fricke et al. 1988) for positions and proper motions, has been constructed. However, for several years geodetic VLBI (McCarthy & Luzum 1991) and LLR (Williams et at. 1991) observations have bee...

  19. Test facility for astronomical x-ray optics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Finn Erland; Lewis, Robert A.; Bordas, J.

    1990-01-01

    Grazing incidence x-ray optics for x-ray astronomical applications are used outside the earth's atmosphere. These devices require a large collection aperture and the imaging of an x-ray source that is essentially placed at infinity. The ideal testing system for these optical elements has to appro......Grazing incidence x-ray optics for x-ray astronomical applications are used outside the earth's atmosphere. These devices require a large collection aperture and the imaging of an x-ray source that is essentially placed at infinity. The ideal testing system for these optical elements has...... to approximate that encountered under working conditions; however, the testing of these optical elements is notoriously difficult with conventional x-ray generators. Synchrotron radiation (SR) sources are sufficiently brilliant to produce a nearly perfect parallel beam over a large area while still retaining...... a flux considerably higher than that available from conventional x-ray generators. A facility designed for the testing of x-ray optics, particularly in connection with x-ray telescopes, is described. It is proposed that this facility will be accommodated at the Synchrotron Radiation Source...

  20. Astronomical Heritage and Aboriginal People: Conflicts and Possibilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    López, Alejandro Martín

    2016-10-01

    In this presentation we address issues relating to the astronomical heritage of contemporary aboriginal groups and other minorities. We deal specially with intangible astronomical heritage and its particularities. Also, we study (from ethnographic experience with Aboriginal groups, Creoles and Europeans in the Argentine Chaco) the conflicts referring to the different ways in which the natives' knowledge and practice are categorized by the natives themselves, by scientists, state politicians, professional artists and NGOs. Furthermore, we address several cases that illustrate these kinds of conflicts. We aim to analyze the complexities of patrimonial policies when they are applied to practices and representations of contemporary communities involved in power relations with national states and the global system. The essentialization of identities, the folklorization of representations and practices, and the fossilization of aboriginal peoples are some of the risks of applying the label ``cultural heritage'' without a careful consideration of each specific case. In particular we suggest possible ways in which the international scientific community could collaborate to improve the agenda of national states instead of reproducing colonial prejudices. In this way, we aim to contribute to the promotion of respect for ethnic and religious minorities.

  1. Brazilian Participations in the International Astronomical Search Collaboration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rojas, G. A.; Dalla-Costa, L. J.; Kalmus, A. T.; Kroth, E. C.; Matos, M. F.; Silva, A. L.; Silva, G. G.

    2014-10-01

    International Astronomical Search Collaboration (IASC) is an international educational project between universities, schools, observatories and research institutions. Its main objective is to enroll high school and college students in the monitoring and discovery of asteroids and Near Earth Objects (NEOs), especially Potentially Hazardous Asteroids. The methodology consists in the analysis of astronomical images obtained in several observatories in North America and Hawaii. The images are distributed throughout the school network and the results must be delivered in a 72-hour timeframe. Since 2010 Brazilian universities and schools have joined IASC, resulting in over a dozen new asteroids found (3 of them NEOs), and hundreds of measurements for already known asteroids. A major event in this collaboration was the All-Brazil Asteroid Search Campaign, which was conducted in September 2012. 2013 marks the fourth year of Brazilian participations in IASC, with one important milestone: the third straight appearance of a Brazilian institution in the Pan-STARRS campaign, which uses the PS1 telescope in Haleakala, Hawaii. We will present a summary of the overall results, as well as the latest news from 2013 campaigns. We will discuss the impact promoted by the past events, such as how the interest in astronomy changed before and after the campaigns, and it has helped the students to choose their future careers.

  2. The unforgotten sisters female astronomers and scientists before Caroline Herschel

    CERN Document Server

    Bernardi, Gabriella

    2016-01-01

    Taking inspiration from Siv Cedering’s poem in the form of a fictional letter from Caroline Herschel that refers to “my long, lost sisters, forgotten in the books that record our science”, this book tells the lives of twenty-five female scientists, with specific attention to astronomers and mathematicians. Each of the presented biographies is organized as a kind of "personal file" which sets the biographee’s life in its historical context, documents her main works, highlights some curious facts, and records citations about her. The selected figures are among the most representative of this neglected world, including such luminaries as Hypatia of Alexandra, Hildegard of Bingen, Elisabetha Hevelius, and Maria Gaetana Agnesi. They span a period of about 4000 years, from En HeduAnna, the Akkadian princess, who was one of the first recognized female astronomers, to the dawn of the era of modern astronomy with Caroline Herschel and Mary Somerville. The book will be of interest to all who wish to learn more ...

  3. Linear feature detection algorithm for astronomical surveys - I. Algorithm description

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bektešević, Dino; Vinković, Dejan

    2017-11-01

    Computer vision algorithms are powerful tools in astronomical image analyses, especially when automation of object detection and extraction is required. Modern object detection algorithms in astronomy are oriented towards detection of stars and galaxies, ignoring completely the detection of existing linear features. With the emergence of wide-field sky surveys, linear features attract scientific interest as possible trails of fast flybys of near-Earth asteroids and meteors. In this work, we describe a new linear feature detection algorithm designed specifically for implementation in big data astronomy. The algorithm combines a series of algorithmic steps that first remove other objects (stars and galaxies) from the image and then enhance the line to enable more efficient line detection with the Hough algorithm. The rate of false positives is greatly reduced thanks to a step that replaces possible line segments with rectangles and then compares lines fitted to the rectangles with the lines obtained directly from the image. The speed of the algorithm and its applicability in astronomical surveys are also discussed.

  4. Celestial delights the best astronomical events through 2020

    CERN Document Server

    Reddy, Francis

    2012-01-01

    Celestial Delights is the essential 'TV Guide' for the sky. Through extensive graphics integrated with an eight-year-long calendar of sky events, it provides a look at "don't miss" sky events, mostly for naked-eye and binocular observing. It is organized by ease of observation – lunar phases and the brighter planets come first, with solar eclipses, the aurora, and comets coming later. This third edition also includes a hefty dose of sky lore, astronomical history, and clear overviews of current science. It provides a handy reference to upcoming naked-eye events, with information broken out in clear and simple diagrams and tables that are cross-referenced against a detailed almanac for each year covered. This book puts a variety of information all in one place, presents it in a friendly way that does not require prior in-depth astronomical knowledge, and provides the context and historical background for understanding events that astronomy software or web sites lack.

  5. Weird astronomical theories of the solar system and beyond

    CERN Document Server

    Seargent, David

    2016-01-01

    After addressing strange cosmological hypotheses in Weird Universe, David Seargent tackles the no-less bizarre theories closer to home. Alternate views on the Solar System's formation, comet composition, and the evolution of life on Earth are only some of the topics he addresses in this new work. Although these ideas exist on the fringe of mainstream astronomy, they can still shed light on the origins of life and the evolution of the planets. Continuing the author's series of books popularizing strange astronomy facts and knowledge, Weird Astronomical Theories presents an approachable exploration of the still mysterious questions about the origin of comets, the pattern of mass extinctions on Earth, and more. The alternative theories discussed here do not come from untrained amateurs. The scientists whose work is covered includes the mid-20th century Russian S. K. Vsekhsvyatskii, cosmologist Max Tegmark, British astronomers Victor Clube and William Napier, and American Tom Van Flandern, a special...

  6. Explanatory Supplement to the Astronomical Almanac, Third Edition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seidelmann, P. Kenneth; Urban, S. E.

    2010-01-01

    "The Explanatory Supplement to the Astronomical Almanac" (hereafter "The Explanatory Supplement") is a comprehensive reference book on the topic of positional astronomy, covering the theories and algorithms used to produce "The Astronomical Almanac" (AsA), an annual publication produced jointly by the Nautical Almanac Office of the US Naval Observatory (USNO) and Her Majesty's Nautical Almanac Office (HMNAO) of the UK Hydrographic Office. The first edition of The Explanatory Supplement appeared in 1961 and was reprinted with amendments during the 1970s. The second edition was printed in 1992 and reprinted until 2006. Since the second edition, several changes have taken place in positional astronomy regarding reference systems and internationally accepted models, data sets, and computational methods; these have been incorporated into the AsA. Additionally, the data presented in the AsA have been modified over the years, with new tables being added and some being discontinued. Given these changes, a new edition of The Explanatory Supplement is appropriate. The third edition has been in development for the last few years and will be available in 2010. The book is organized similarly to the second (1991) edition, with each chapter written by subject matter experts. Authors from USNO and HMNAO contributed to the majority of the book, but there are authors from Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Technical University of Dresden, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, University of Texas Austin, and University of Virginia. This paper will discuss this latest edition of the Explanatory Supplement.

  7. Seismic instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1984-06-01

    RFS or Regles Fondamentales de Surete (Basic Safety Rules) applicable to certain types of nuclear facilities lay down requirements with which compliance, for the type of facilities and within the scope of application covered by the RFS, is considered to be equivalent to compliance with technical French regulatory practice. The object of the RFS is to take advantage of standardization in the field of safety, while allowing for technical progress in that field. They are designed to enable the operating utility and contractors to know the rules pertaining to various subjects which are considered to be acceptable by the Service Central de Surete des Installations Nucleaires, or the SCSIN (Central Department for the Safety of Nuclear Facilities). These RFS should make safety analysis easier and lead to better understanding between experts and individuals concerned with the problems of nuclear safety. The SCSIN reserves the right to modify, when considered necessary, any RFS and specify, if need be, the terms under which a modification is deemed retroactive. The aim of this RFS is to define the type, location and operating conditions for seismic instrumentation needed to determine promptly the seismic response of nuclear power plants features important to safety to permit comparison of such response with that used as the design basis

  8. Meteorological instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1982-06-01

    RFS or ''Regles Fondamentales de Surete'' (Basic Safety Rules) applicable to certain types of nuclear facilities lay down requirements with which compliance, for the type of facilities and within the scope of application covered by the RFS, is considered to be equivalent to compliance with technical French regulatory practice. The object of the RFS is to take advantage of standardization in the field of safety , while allowing for technical progress in that field. They are designed to enable the operating utility and contractors to know the rules pertaining to various subjects which are considered to be acceptable by the ''Service Central de Surete des Installations Nucleaires'' or the SCSIN (Central Department for the Safety of Nuclear Facilities). These RFS should make safety analysis easier and lead to better understanding between experts and individuals concerned with the problems of nuclear safety. The SCSIN reserves the right to modify, when considered necessary any RFS and specify, if need be, the terms under which a modification is deemed retroactive. The purpose of this RFS is to specify the meteorological instrumentation required at the site of each nuclear power plant equipped with at least one pressurized water reactor

  9. 40+ Years of Instrumentation for the La Silla Paranal Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Odorico, S.

    2018-03-01

    As ESO Period 100 comes to a close, I look back at the development of ESO's instrumentation programme over more than 40 years. Instrumentation and detector activities were initially started by a small group of designers, engineers, technicians and astronomers while ESO was still at CERN in Geneva in the late 1970s. They have since led to the development of a successful suite of optical and infrared instruments for the La Silla Paranal Observatory, as testified by the continuous growth in the number of proposals for observing time and in the publications based on data from ESO telescopes. The instrumentation programme evolved significantly with the VLT and most instruments were developed by national institutes in close cooperation with ESO. This policy was a cornerstone of the VLT programme from the beginning and a key to its success.

  10. The first astronomical hypothesis based on cinematographical observations: Costa Lobo's 1912 evidence for polar flattening of the moon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonifácio, Vitor; Malaquias, Isabel; Fernandes, João

    2010-07-01

    Acceptance by the scientific community of results obtained with new technology can be a complex process. A particularly good example is provided by the unexpected hypothesis raised by Francisco Miranda da Costa Lobo upon examination of the cinematographic film obtained during the solar eclipse of 17 April 1912. Contrary to contemporary practice this eclipse was eagerly awaited in view of its astrometrical rather than astrophysical scientific interest. The observation of this hybrid eclipse provided, in theory, a good opportunity to improve several astrometric parameters, and in particular the Moon's apparent diameter. Observations were performed from Portugal to Russia and, for the first time, movie cameras were widely deployed to register astronomical phenomena. Upon analysing the film obtained at Ovar (Portugal), Costa Lobo realised that during totality Baily's Beads were not symmetrically distributed around the Moon. As an explanation and opposing current belief he proposed a lunar flattening in the range 1/1156 to 1/380. Initially other eclipse observers supported Costa Lobo's claim. In particular, Father Willaert obtained a flattening value of 1/2050 from his cinematographic film taken at Namur (Belgium). However, these results were quickly disregarded by the international astronomical community which favoured an explanation based upon the irregularities of the lunar profile. In this paper we recall the characteristics of the 17 April 1912 eclipse and the cinematographic observations, and review the results obtained. We conclude that the lack of attention paid by the astronomical community to the new cinematographical results and Camille Flammarion's superficial analysis of the data were instrumental in the rejection of Costa Lobo's hypothesis.

  11. Radiological instrument

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kronenberg, S.; McLaughlin, W.L.; Seibentritt, C.R. Jr.

    1986-01-01

    An instrument is described for measuring radiation, particularly nuclear radiation, comprising: a radiation sensitive structure pivoted toward one end and including a pair of elongated solid members contiguously joined together along their length dimensions and having a common planar interface therebetween. One of the pairs of members is comprised of radiochromic material whose index of refraction changes due to anomolous dispersion as a result of being exposed to nuclear radiation. The pair of members further has mutually different indices of refraction with the member having the larger index of refraction further being transparent for the passage of light and of energy therethrough; means located toward the other end of the structure for varying the angle of longitudinal elevation of the pair of members; means for generating and projecting a beam of light into one end of the member having the larger index of refraction. The beam of light is projected toward the planar interface where it is reflected out of the other end of the same member as a first output beam; means projecting a portion of the beam of light into one end of the member having the larger index of refraction where it traverses therethrough without reflection and out of the other end of the same member as a second output beam; and means adjacent the structure for receiving the first and second output beams, whereby a calibrated change in the angle of elevation of the structure between positions of equal intensity of the first and second output beams prior to and following exposure provides a measure of the radiation sensed due to a change of refraction of the radiochromic material

  12. Astronomical Research with the MicroObservatory Net

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brecher, K.; Sadler, P.; Gould, R.; Leiker, S.; Antonucci, P.; Deutsch, F.

    1997-05-01

    We have developed a fully integrated automated astronomical telescope system which combines the imaging power of a cooled CCD, with a self-contained and weatherized 15 cm reflecting optical telescope and mount. The MicroObservatory Net consists of five of these telescopes. They are currently being deployed around the world at widely distributed longitudes. Remote access to the MicroObservatories over the Internet has now been implemented. Software for computer control, pointing, focusing, filter selection as well as pattern recognition have all been developed as part of the project. The telescopes can be controlled in real time or in delay mode, from a Macintosh, PC or other computer using Web-based software. The Internet address of the telescopes is http://cfa- www.harvard.edu/cfa/sed/MicroObservatory/MicroObservatory.html. In the real-time mode, individuals have access to all of the telescope control functions without the need for an `on-site' operator. Users can sign up for a specific period of ti me. In the batch mode, users can submit requests for delayed telescope observations. After a MicroObservatory completes a job, the user is automatically notified by e-mail that the image is available for viewing and downloading from the Web site. The telescopes were designed for classroom instruction, as well as for use by students and amateur astronomers for original scientific research projects. We are currently examining a variety of technical and educational questions about the use of the telescopes including: (1) What are the best approaches to scheduling real-time versus batch mode observations? (2) What criteria should be used for allocating telescope time? (3) With deployment of more than one telescope, is it advantageous for each telescope to be used for just one type of observation, i.e., some for photometric use, others for imaging? And (4) What are the most valuable applications of the MicroObservatories in astronomical research? Support for the Micro

  13. The French Jesuit Mission to Thailand in the 1680s and the Establishment of a Major Astronomical Observatory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soonthornthum, Boonrucksar; Orchiston, Wayne; Komonjinda, Siramas

    2012-09-01

    The first great Thai ruler to encourage the adoption of Western culture and technology was King Narai, and his enlightened attitude led to the rapid development of Thailand. King Narai also had a passion for astronomy, and he pursued this interest by allowing French Jesuit missionaries to set up a large modern well-equipped astronomical observatory in Lopburi Province between AD 1685 and 1687. This was known as the Wat San Paolo Observatory, and King Narai and the missionaries observed a total lunar eclipse on 10 December 1685 and a partial solar eclipse on 30 April 1688. These observations and others made at Wat San Paolo Observatory during the 1680s marked the start of modern scientific astronomy in Thailand. In this paper we discuss King Narai's scientific and other interests, the founding of the Wat San Paolo Observatory, the missionaries who conducted the astronomical programs, their instruments and their observations. We also describe the surviving ruins of the Observatory and their interpretation as a site of national scientific importance in Thailand.

  14. Modeling astronomical adaptive optics performance with temporally filtered Wiener reconstruction of slope data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Correia, Carlos M.; Bond, Charlotte Z.; Sauvage, Jean-François; Fusco, Thierry; Conan, Rodolphe; Wizinowich, Peter L.

    2017-10-01

    We build on a long-standing tradition in astronomical adaptive optics (AO) of specifying performance metrics and error budgets using linear systems modeling in the spatial-frequency domain. Our goal is to provide a comprehensive tool for the calculation of error budgets in terms of residual temporally filtered phase power spectral densities and variances. In addition, the fast simulation of AO-corrected point spread functions (PSFs) provided by this method can be used as inputs for simulations of science observations with next-generation instruments and telescopes, in particular to predict post-coronagraphic contrast improvements for planet finder systems. We extend the previous results and propose the synthesis of a distributed Kalman filter to mitigate both aniso-servo-lag and aliasing errors whilst minimizing the overall residual variance. We discuss applications to (i) analytic AO-corrected PSF modeling in the spatial-frequency domain, (ii) post-coronagraphic contrast enhancement, (iii) filter optimization for real-time wavefront reconstruction, and (iv) PSF reconstruction from system telemetry. Under perfect knowledge of wind velocities, we show that $\\sim$60 nm rms error reduction can be achieved with the distributed Kalman filter embodying anti- aliasing reconstructors on 10 m class high-order AO systems, leading to contrast improvement factors of up to three orders of magnitude at few ${\\lambda}/D$ separations ($\\sim1-5{\\lambda}/D$) for a 0 magnitude star and reaching close to one order of magnitude for a 12 magnitude star.

  15. Astronomical Calendar and Restoration Design of Clepsydra in the Silla era

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yong Sam Lee

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available We study on the astronomical calendars that was used in the Silla era. The calendars are deduced from the records in Samguksagi. They were influenced from calendaric system of Tang Dynasty, which are Lin duk calendar(?, Ta yen calendar(? and Sun myung calendar(?. We analyse them in detail according to the time and duration of use. Water clock system of Unified Silla was used four water vessels for supplying water. We found the model from documents on ancient water clock that are appeared in the old Korean, Chinese and Japanese historical records. We have assumed the model of Unified Silla clepsydra is similar type with Chinese records during Tang dynasty and with Japanese reconstructed water clock in Temple Asoka. After fluid dynamic experiment, we decide the suitable diameter of supplying pipe and volume of the vessels used in the clepsydra. We introduce the experimental instruments and methods for accomplishing the clock. We designed and reconstructed the water clock of Unified Silla and float rods for measuring time, that is based on the Silla's calendaric system.

  16. Search for Best Astronomical Observatory Sites in the MENA Region using Satellite Measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abdelaziz, G; Guebsi, R; Flamant, C; Guessoum, N

    2017-01-01

    We perform a systematic search for astronomical observatory sites in the MENA (Middle-East and North Africa) region using space-based data for all the relevant factors, i.e. altitude (DEM), cloud fraction (CF), light pollution (NTL), precipitable water vapor (PWV), aerosol optical depth (AOD), relative humidity (RH), wind speed (WS), Richardson Number (RN), and diurnal temperature range (DTR). We look for the best locations overall even where altitudes are low (the threshold that we normally consider being 1,500 m) or where the combination of the afore-mentioned determining factors had previously excluded all locations in a given country. In this aim, we use the rich data that Earth-observing satellites provide, e.g. the Terra and Aqua multi-national NASA research satellites, with their MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) and AIRS (Atmospheric Infrared Sounder) instruments, the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP-OLS), and other products from climate diagnostics archives (e.g. MERRA). We present preliminary results on the best locations for the region. (paper)

  17. Search for Best Astronomical Observatory Sites in the MENA Region using Satellite Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdelaziz, G.; Guebsi, R.; Guessoum, N.; Flamant, C.

    2017-06-01

    We perform a systematic search for astronomical observatory sites in the MENA (Middle-East and North Africa) region using space-based data for all the relevant factors, i.e. altitude (DEM), cloud fraction (CF), light pollution (NTL), precipitable water vapor (PWV), aerosol optical depth (AOD), relative humidity (RH), wind speed (WS), Richardson Number (RN), and diurnal temperature range (DTR). We look for the best locations overall even where altitudes are low (the threshold that we normally consider being 1,500 m) or where the combination of the afore-mentioned determining factors had previously excluded all locations in a given country. In this aim, we use the rich data that Earth-observing satellites provide, e.g. the Terra and Aqua multi-national NASA research satellites, with their MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) and AIRS (Atmospheric Infrared Sounder) instruments, the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP-OLS), and other products from climate diagnostics archives (e.g. MERRA). We present preliminary results on the best locations for the region.

  18. Astronomical Calendar and Restoration Design of Clepsydra in the Silla era

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Yong Sam; Jeong, Jang Hae; Sang, Hyuk Kim; Lee, Yong Bok

    2008-09-01

    We study on the astronomical calendars that was used in the Silla era. The calendars are deduced from the records in Samguksagi. They were influenced from calendaric system of Tang Dynasty, which are Lin duk calendar(?), Ta yen calendar(?) and Sun myung calendar(?). We analyse them in detail according to the time and duration of use. Water clock system of Unified Silla was used four water vessels for supplying water. We found the model from documents on ancient water clock that are appeared in the old Korean, Chinese and Japanese historical records. We have assumed the model of Unified Silla clepsydra is similar type with Chinese records during Tang dynasty and with Japanese reconstructed water clock in Temple Asoka. After fluid dynamic experiment, we decide the suitable diameter of supplying pipe and volume of the vessels used in the clepsydra. We introduce the experimental instruments and methods for accomplishing the clock. We designed and reconstructed the water clock of Unified Silla and float rods for measuring time, that is based on the Silla's calendaric system.

  19. Atmospheres in a Test Tube: state of the art at the Astronomical Observatory of Padova.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erculiani, M. S.; Claudi, R.; Cocola, L.; Giro, E.; La Rocca, N.; Morosinotto, T.; Poletto, L.; Barbisan, D.; Billi, D.; Bonato, M.; D'Alessandro, M.; Galletta, G.; Meneghini, M.; Trivellin, N.; Cestelli Guidi, M.; Pace, E.; Schierano, D.; Micela, G.

    At the Astronomical observatory of Padova we are trying to answer some questions about the detectability of biosignatures in the exoplanetary atmospheres, working in the framework of the project Atmosphere in a Test Tube. In particular we are investigating how the presence of photosynthetic biota living on the surface of a planet orbiting in the HZ of an M type star may modify the atmospheric gas abundances. This can be achieved in laboratory with an environmental simulator called MINI - LISA. The simulator allows to modify the temperature and the pressure inside a test chamber, where a selected population of photosynthetic bacteria is arranged. We'll focalize our experiments on the following bacteria: Acaryochloris marina, Halomicronema hongdechloris, Leptolyngbya sp.1 and Chlorogloeopsis fritschii. The first two bacteria are naturally provided with NIR light metabolizers, like Chl-d and Chl-f, while the last two can develop such pigments if grown in NIR light. The experiment will lead us to obtain useful data to be compared with the ones expected either by the future space missions (JWST, ARIEL) and ground based new instrumentation (SPHERE@VLT; GPI@GEMINI; PCS@E-ELT). In this talk we discuss the layout of the experiment and its state of art.

  20. Distributed Framework for Dynamic Telescope and Instrument Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ames, Troy J.; Case, Lynne

    2002-01-01

    Traditionally, instrument command and control systems have been developed specifically for a single instrument. Such solutions are frequently expensive and are inflexible to support the next instrument development effort. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is developing an extensible framework, known as Instrument Remote Control (IRC) that applies to any kind of instrument that can be controlled by a computer. IRC combines the platform independent processing capabilities of Java with the power of the Extensible Markup Language (XML). A key aspect of the architecture is software that is driven by an instrument description, written using the Instrument Markup Language (IML). IML is an XML dialect used to describe graphical user interfaces to control and monitor the instrument, command sets and command formats, data streams, communication mechanisms, and data processing algorithms. The IRC framework provides the ability to communicate to components anywhere on a network using the JXTA protocol for dynamic discovery of distributed components. JXTA (see httD://www.jxta.org,) is a generalized protocol that allows any devices connected by a network to communicate in a peer-to-peer manner. IRC uses JXTA to advertise a device's IML and discover devices of interest on the network. Devices can join or leave the network and thus join or leave the instrument control environment of IRC. Currently, several astronomical instruments are working with the IRC development team to develop custom components for IRC to control their instruments. These instruments include: High resolution Airborne Wideband Camera (HAWC), a first light instrument for the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA); Submillimeter And Far Infrared Experiment (SAFIRE), a Principal Investigator instrument for SOFIA; and Fabry-Perot Interferometer Bolometer Research Experiment (FIBRE), a prototype of the SAFIRE instrument, used at the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory (CSO). Most recently, we have

  1. Conducting Original, Hands-On Astronomical Research in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corneau, M. J.

    2009-12-01

    Since 2007 I have been a Team Leader for the Tzec Maun Foundation, a non-profit foundation dedicated to providing free, research grade, Internet telescopes to students, teachers and researchers around the world. The name Tzec Maun (pronounced “Teh-Zeck-Moan”) comes from Mayan culture. Tzec Maun was the jovial messenger, laughed at adversity. Based on the challenges students, researchers and professional astronomers face with finances, equipment, and telescope access, the jovial mascot seems to fit. Hundreds of hours performing astronomical outreach as a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador and Astronomical League Master of outreach taught me that the best way to inspirationally teach astronomy and space science (and most subjects) is actually being at the eyepiece. I’m NOT a fan of the traditional planetarium experience as a teaching tool because it inhibits inspiration and the learning experience to a 2-D mat on a faux horizon with artificial representations. Once, a student at my dark sky observatory excitedly commented that the night sky was like a 3-D planetarium. I have hosted several classes at my own personal dark sky observatory, but this resource is impractical for all but a few lucky students. Experience has taught me that the next best thing to being at the eyepiece is to control a remote telescope via the Internet. Tzec Maun’s arsenal of telescopes is all research capable, linked to the Internet and positioned for round-the-clock dark skies. The final conditions described above, mean that I can enter an 8:30am science class, log onto the Tzec Maun telescope Portal and turn over control of an Australian system (where it is night) to a student or teacher. Working as a group, the class can either begin their investigations. My Tzec Maun science team (TARP) is engaged in searching for potentially hazardous asteroids (PHAs). PHA work excites student and teacher alike. Teaching from telescopes can unleash powerful attention-getting tools that enable

  2. High Energy Astronomical Data Processing and Analysis via the Internet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valencic, Lynne A.; Snowden, S.; Pence, W.

    2012-01-01

    The HEASARC at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and the US XMM-Newton GOF has developed Hera, a data processing facility for analyzing high energy astronomical data over the internet. Hera provides all the disk space and computing resources needed to do general processing of and advanced research on publicly available data from High Energy Astrophysics missions. The data and data products are kept on a server at GSFC and can be downloaded to a user's local machine. Further, the XMM-GOF has developed scripts to streamline XMM data reduction. These are available through Hera, and can also be downloaded to a user's local machine. These are free services provided to students, educators, and researchers for educational and research purposes.

  3. A Test Facility For Astronomical X-Ray Optics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lewis, R. A.; Bordas, J.; Christensen, Finn Erland

    1989-01-01

    Grazing incidence x-ray optics for x-ray astronomical applications are used outside the earths atmosphere. These devices require a large collection aperture and the imaging of an x-ray source which is essentially placed at infinity. The ideal testing system for these optical elements has...... to approximate that encountered under working conditions, however the testing of these optical elements is notoriously difficult with conventional x-ray generators. Synchrotron Radiation (SR) sources are sufficiently brilliant to produce a nearly perfect parallel beam over a large area whilst still retaining...... a flux considerably higher than that available from conventional x-ray generators. A facility designed for the testing of x-ray optics, particularly in connection with x-ray telescopes is described below. It is proposed that this facility will be accommodated at the Synchrotron Radiation Source...

  4. Progresos recientes en Astronomía de Rayos Gamma

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero, G. E.

    Tras la exitosa misión del Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory durante los años 1990, la astronomía de rayos gamma ha entrado en una etapa de madurez, convirtiéndose en una de las principales herramientas para el estudio de procesos relativistas en el universo. En este reporte, presentaré una revisión de los principales tópicos abordados a través de estudios con rayos gamma en los últimos años, con particular énfasis en los intentos más recientes por establecer la naturaleza de las fuentes de rayos gamma no identificadas, detectadas por el instrumento EGRET.

  5. Global Vlasov simulation on magnetospheres of astronomical objects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Umeda, Takayuki; Ito, Yosuke; Fukazawa, Keiichiro

    2013-01-01

    Space plasma is a collisionless, multi-scale, and highly nonlinear medium. There are various types of self-consistent computer simulations that treat space plasma according to various approximations. We develop numerical schemes for solving the Vlasov (collisionless Boltzmann) equation, which is the first-principle kinetic equation for collisionless plasma. The weak-scaling benchmark test shows that our parallel Vlasov code achieves a high performance and a high scalability. Currently, we use more than 1000 cores for parallel computations and apply the present parallel Vlasov code to various cross-scale processes in space plasma, such as a global simulation on the interaction between solar/stellar wind and magnetospheres of astronomical objects

  6. Laboratory spectrum of the PS radical and related astronomical search

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ohishi, M.; Yamamoto, S.; Saito, S.; Kawaguchi, K.; Suzuki, H.

    1988-01-01

    The millimeter-wave rotational spectrum of the PS radical (X 2Pi r) was observed in the laboratory for the first time in the frequency region of 79-293 GHz by discharging the mixture of PSCl3 and He. Some 44 lines were measured, and the rotational constant, the centrifugal distortion constant, the centrifugal distortion term of the spin-orbit coupling constant, the Lambda-type doubling constants, and the hyperfine coupling constants were determined. Based on the measured and calculated frequencies, an astronomical search for the interstellar and circumstellar PS radical was made without success in Orion KL, Sgr B2, L134N,IRC + 10216, VY CMa, and OH 231.8 + 4.2. 29 references

  7. A List of Astronomical Meetings Available via Mosaic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryson, E.; Crabtree, D.

    We have been making a list of astronomical and related meetings available electronically for a number of years. Recently, several meeting organizers have made information about their meetings available via anonymous ftp or even NCSA Mosaic. We have produced a new version of our electronic meeting list available via NCSA Mosaic which provides links to the information being provided electronically. Depending upon the amount of information being provided for an individual meeting, it may be possible for a user browsing the list of meetings to click on the meeting of interest, fill out a registration form, download maps, browse abstracts, etc. We hope the availability of this service will encourage other meeting organizers to make information about their meetings available electronically and to take advantage of new technology such as NCSA Mosaic. URL: http:// cadcwww.dao.nrc.calmeetings/meetings.html

  8. Astronomy for older eyes a guide for aging backyard astronomers

    CERN Document Server

    Chen, James L

    2017-01-01

    This book is for the aging amateur astronomy population, including newcomers to astronomy in their retirement and hobbyists who loved peering through a telescope as a child. Whether a novice or an experienced observer, the practice of astronomy differs over the years. This guide will extend the enjoyment of astronomy well into the Golden Years by addressing topics such as eye and overall health issues, recommendations on telescope equipment, and astronomy-related social activities especially suited for seniors. Many Baby-Boomers reaching retirement age are seeking new activities, and amateur astronomy is a perfect fit as a leisure time activity. Established backyard astronomers who began their love of astronomy in their youth , meanwhile, may face many physical and mental challenges in continuing their lifelong hobby as they age beyond their 55th birthdays. That perfect telescope purchased when they were thirty years old now suddenly at sixty years old feels like an immovable object in the living room. The 20...

  9. An Overview of X-Ray Polarimetry of Astronomical Sources

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin C. Weisskopf

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available We review the history of astronomical X-ray polarimetry based on the author’s perspective, beginning with early sounding-rocket experiments by Robert Novick at Columbia University and his team, of which the author was a member. After describing various early techniques for measuring X-ray polarization, we discuss the polarimeter aboard the Orbiting Solar Observatory 8 (OSO-8 and its scientific results. Next, we describe the X-ray polarimeter to have flown aboard the ill-fated original Spectrum-X mission, which provided important lessons on polarimeter design, systematic effects, and the programmatics of a shared focal plane. We conclude with a description of the Imaging X-ray Polarimetry Explorer (IXPE and its prospective scientific return. IXPE, a partnership between NASA and ASI, has been selected as a NASA Astrophysics Small Explorers Mission and is currently scheduled to launch in April of 2021.

  10. Parsley: a Command-Line Parser for Astronomical Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deich, William

    Parsley is a sophisticated keyword + value parser, packaged as a library of routines that offers an easy method for providing command-line arguments to programs. It makes it easy for the user to enter values, and it makes it easy for the programmer to collect and validate the user's entries. Parsley is tuned for astronomical applications: for example, dates entered in Julian, Modified Julian, calendar, or several other formats are all recognized without special effort by the user or by the programmer; angles can be entered using decimal degrees or dd:mm:ss; time-like intervals as decimal hours, hh:mm:ss, or a variety of other units. Vectors of data are accepted as readily as scalars.

  11. 125th Colloquium of the International Astronomical Union

    CERN Document Server

    Sorochenko, R

    1990-01-01

    Text no 1 Radio Recombination Lines (RRLs), discovered in the USSR in 1964, have become a powerful research tool for astronomers. Available throughout the radio spectrum, these lines carry information regarding the density, temperature, turbulence and velocity of thermal plasmas. Their very existance shows the presence of thermal gas. They also can carry information regarding magnetic fields if Zeeman splitting were to be detected. Containing the proceedings of an IAU Colloquium celebrating the 25th anniversary of their detection, this volume tells us what has happened since. It contains the story of the detection of RRLs and reviews of many areas of physics of the interstellargas from which stars form, HII regions excited by newly formed stars, planetary nebulae involving dying stars, and the structure of our Milky Way and other galaxies reflecting the large-scale morphology of the star formation process. In addition there is an article describing modern laboratory studies of Rydberg atoms to probe the basic...

  12. Survival Strategies for African American Astronomers and Astrophysicists

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holbrook, Jarita C.

    2012-08-01

    The question of how to increase the number of women and minorities in astronomy has been approached from several directions in the United States including examination of admission policies, mentoring, and hiring practices. These point to departmental efforts to improve conditions for some of the students which has the overall benefit of improving conditions for all of the students. However, women and minority astronomers have managed to obtain doctorates even within the non-welcoming environment of certain astronomy and physics departments. I present here six strategies used by African American men and women to persevere if not thrive long enough to earn their doctorate. Embedded in this analysis is the idea of `astronomy culture' and experiencing astronomy culture as a cross-cultural experience including elements of culture shock. These survival strategies are not exclusive to this small subpopulation but have been used by majority students, too.

  13. Future Nuisance Flooding at Boston Caused by Astronomical Tides Alone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ray, Richard D.; Foster, Grant

    2016-01-01

    Sea level rise necessarily triggers more occurrences of minor, or nuisance, flooding events along coastlines, a fact well documented in recent studies. At some locations nuisance flooding can be brought about merely by high spring tides, independent of storms, winds, or other atmospheric conditions. Analysis of observed water levels at Boston indicates that tidal flooding began to occur there in 2011 and will become more frequent in subsequent years. A compilation of all predicted nuisance-flooding events, induced by astronomical tides alone, is presented through year 2050. The accuracy of the tide prediction is improved when several unusual properties of Gulf of Maine tides, including secular changes, are properly accounted for. Future mean sea-level rise at Boston cannot be predicted with comparable confidence, so two very different climate scenarios are adopted; both predict a large increase in the frequency and the magnitude of tidal flooding events.

  14. Radio Astronomers Get Their First Glimpse of Powerful Solar Storm

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-08-01

    Astronomers have made the first radio-telescope images of a powerful coronal mass ejection on the Sun, giving them a long-sought glimpse of hitherto unseen aspects of these potentially dangerous events. "These observations are going to provide us with a new and unique tool for deciphering the mechanisms of coronal mass ejections and how they are related to other solar events," said Tim Bastian, an astronomer at the National Science Foundation's National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Charlottesville, Virginia. Radio image of coronal mass ejection; circle indicates the size and location of the Sun. White dots are where radio spectral measurements were made. Bastian, along with Monique Pick, Alain Kerdraon and Dalmiro Maia of the Paris Observatory, and Angelos Vourlidas of the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, D.C., used a solar radio telescope in Nancay, France, to study a coronal mass ejection that occurred on April 20, 1998. Their results will be published in the September 1 edition of the Astrophysical Journal Letters. Coronal mass ejections are powerful magnetic explosions in the Sun's corona, or outer atmosphere, that can blast billions of tons of charged particles into interplanetary space at tremendous speeds. If the ejection is aimed in the direction of Earth, the speeding particles interact with our planet's magnetic field to cause auroral displays, radio-communication blackouts, and potentially damage satellites and electric-power systems. "Coronal mass ejections have been observed for many years, but only with visible-light telescopes, usually in space. While previous radio observations have provided us with powerful diagnostics of mass ejections and associated phenomena in the corona, this is the first time that one has been directly imaged in wavelengths other than visible light," Bastian said. "These new data from the radio observations give us important clues about how these very energetic events work," he added. The radio images show an

  15. The Associate Principal Astronomer for AI Management of Automatic Telescopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henry, Gregory W.

    1998-01-01

    This research program in scheduling and management of automatic telescopes had the following objectives: 1. To field test the 1993 Automatic Telescope Instruction Set (ATIS93) programming language, which was specifically developed to allow real-time control of an automatic telescope via an artificial intelligence scheduler running on a remote computer. 2. To develop and test the procedures for two-way communication between a telescope controller and remote scheduler via the Internet. 3. To test various concepts in Al scheduling being developed at NASA Ames Research Center on an automatic telescope operated by Tennessee State University at the Fairborn Observatory site in southern Arizona. and 4. To develop a prototype software package, dubbed the Associate Principal Astronomer, for the efficient scheduling and management of automatic telescopes.

  16. Properties of galactic dark matter: Constraints from astronomical observations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burch, B.; Cowsik, R.

    2013-01-01

    The distributions of normal matter and of dark matter in the Galaxy are coupled to each other as they both move in the common gravitational potential. In order to fully exploit this interplay and to derive the various properties of dark matter relevant to their direct and indirect detection, we have comprehensively reviewed the astronomical observations of the spatial and velocity distributions of the components of normal matter. We then postulate that the phase-space distribution of dark matter follows a lowered-isothermal form and self-consistently solve Poisson's equation to construct several models for the spatial and velocity distributions of dark matter. In this paper, we compute the total gravitational potential of the normal and dark matter components and investigate their consistency with current observations of the rotation curve of the Galaxy and of the spatial and velocity distributions of blue horizontal-branch and blue straggler stars. Even with this demand of consistency, a large number of models with a range of parameters characterizing the dark matter distribution remain. We find that the best choice of parameters, within the range of allowed values for the surface density of the disk 55 M ☉ pc –2 , are the following: the dark matter density at the Galactic center ρ DM, c ≈ 100-250 GeV cm –3 , the local dark matter density ρ DM (R 0 ) ≈ 0.56-0.72 GeV cm –3 , and the rms speed of dark matter particles 〈v DM 2 (R 0 )〉 1/2 ≈490−−550 km s –1 . We also discuss possible astronomical observations that may further limit the range of the allowed models. The predictions of the allowed models for direct and indirect detection will be discussed separately in a companion paper.

  17. Astronomical and Meteorological Conditions of a Solar System Operation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proszak-Miąsik, Danuta; Bukowska, Maria; Nowak, Krzysztof; Rabczak, Sławomir

    2017-10-01

    Acquisition and processing of as much solar energy for heating and electricity generation in Poland and in the world is a very important objective in the policy of alternative energy sources. The main problem with the reception of solar energy by solar collectors is vary energy supply at different times of day and year and low flux density of radiation. The term of solar radiation one mean transmission or emission of energy in the form of electromagnetic waves. The radiation emitted from the surface of the sun spreads out in all directions in space, reaches the Earth’s surface in only partly, especially the solar collectors. The most important parameters characterizing solar radiation are daily, monthly and annual sum of solar radiation. Its express the amount of solar energy which falls on a unit area at a given time. Number of hours of sunshine during the day are dependent on two key factors. The first one is the time from the sunrise to sunset, which strongly depends on the date and latitude. The second factor is the weather (clouds), influences solar radiation, radiation in touch with clouds is absorbed and dissipated. This publication shows the impact on the energy yield of the flat collector installation and astronomical conditions (angle of inclination and declination of solar), and climate. The calculations of determining the astronomical conditions of the place where the installation is located ware analyzed. The solar installation is located in Rzeszow (Poland) and the plate collector placed on the roof of building. Based on specific methodology for selected days the calculation of the elevation angle of the Sun, hourly angle, the sun azimuth and angle of incidence of the radiation on any plane were set. The results are shown in diagrams. The effect of cloud cover on the acquisition of solar energy by the collector is also shown.

  18. The application of artificial intelligence to astronomical scheduling problems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Mark D.

    1992-01-01

    Efficient utilization of expensive space- and ground-based observatories is an important goal for the astronomical community; the cost of modern observing facilities is enormous, and the available observing time is much less than the demand from astronomers around the world. The complexity and variety of scheduling constraints and goals has led several groups to investigate how artificial intelligence (AI) techniques might help solve these kinds of problems. The earliest and most successful of these projects was started at Space Telescope Science Institute in 1987 and has led to the development of the Spike scheduling system to support the scheduling of Hubble Space Telescope (HST). The aim of Spike at STScI is to allocate observations to timescales of days to a week observing all scheduling constraints and maximizing preferences that help ensure that observations are made at optimal times. Spike has been in use operationally for HST since shortly after the observatory was launched in Apr. 1990. Although developed specifically for HST scheduling, Spike was carefully designed to provide a general framework for similar (activity-based) scheduling problems. In particular, the tasks to be scheduled are defined in the system in general terms, and no assumptions about the scheduling timescale are built in. The mechanisms for describing, combining, and propagating temporal and other constraints and preferences are quite general. The success of this approach has been demonstrated by the application of Spike to the scheduling of other satellite observatories: changes to the system are required only in the specific constraints that apply, and not in the framework itself. In particular, the Spike framework is sufficiently flexible to handle both long-term and short-term scheduling, on timescales of years down to minutes or less. This talk will discuss recent progress made in scheduling search techniques, the lessons learned from early HST operations, the application of Spike

  19. Astronomers Get Closest Look Yet At Milky Way's Mysterious Core

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-11-01

    Astronomers have gotten their deepest glimpse into the heart of our Milky Way Galaxy, peering closer to the supermassive black hole at the Galaxy's core then ever before. Using the National Science Foundation's continent-wide Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA), they found that a radio-wave-emitting object at the Galaxy's center would nearly fit between the Earth and the Sun. This is half the size measured in any previous observation. "We're getting tantalizingly close to being able to see an unmistakable signature that would provide the first concrete proof of a supermassive black hole at a galaxy's center," said Zhi-Qiang Shen, of the Shanghai Astronomical Observatory and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. A black hole is a concentration of mass so dense that not even light can escape its powerful gravitational pull. Milky Way Nucleus The Milky Way's nucleus, as seen with the VLA. Sagittarius A* is the bright white dot at center. CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF, Jun-Hui Zhao, W.M. Goss (Click on Image for Larger Version) The astronomers used the VLBA to measure the size of an object called Sagittarius A* (pronounced "A-star") that marks the exact center of our Galaxy. Last year, a different team announced that their measurements showed the object would fit inside the complete circle of Earth's orbit around the Sun. Shen and his team, by observing at a higher radio frequency, measured Sagittarius A* as half that size. A mass equal to four million Suns is known to lie within Sagittarius A*, and the new measurement makes the case for a black hole even more compelling than it was previously. Scientists simply don't know of any long-lasting object other than a black hole that could contain this much mass in such a small area. However, they would like to see even stronger proof of a black hole. "The extremely strong gravitational pull of a black hole has several effects that would produce a distinctive 'shadow' that we think we could see if we can image details about half as small as

  20. A new technique of characterization of the intra-pixel response of astronomical detectors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ketchazo, C.; Boulade, O.; Moreau, V.; Dubreuil, D.; Ronayette, S.; Berthe, M.

    2014-01-01

    This paper is devoted to the presentation of a new technique of characterization of the Intra-Pixel Sensitivity Variations (IPSVs) of astronomical detectors. The IPSV is the spatial variation of the sensitivity within a pixel and it was demonstrated that this variation can contribute to the instrument global error. Then IPSV has not to be neglected especially in the case of under-sampled instruments for high quality imaging and accurate photometry. The common approaches to measure the IPSV consist in determining the pixel response function (PRF) by scanning an optical probe through the detector. These approaches require high-aperture optics, high precision mechanical devices and are time consuming. The original approach we will present in this paper consists in projecting high-resolution periodic patterns onto the whole sensor without classic optics but using the self-imaging property (the Talbot effect) of a Continuously Self Imaging Grating (CSIG) illuminated by a plane wave. This paper describes the test bench and its design rules. The methodology of the measurement is also presented. Two measurement procedures are available: global and local. In the global procedure, the mean PRF corresponding to the whole Focal Plane Array (FPA) or a sub-area of the FPA is evaluated. The results obtained applying this procedure on e2v CCD 204 are presented and discussed in detail. In the local procedure, a CSIG is moved in front of each pixel and a pixel PRF is reconstructed by resolving the inverse problem. The local procedure is presented and validated by simulations. (authors)

  1. Preserving Astronomy's Photographic Legacy: Current State and the Future of North American Astronomical Plates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osborn, W.; Robbins, L.

    2009-08-01

    This book contains articles on preserving astronomy's valuable heritage of photographic observations, most of which are on glass plates. It is intended to serve as a reference for institutions charged with preserving and managing plate archives and astronomers interested in using archival photographic plates in their research. The first portion of the book focuses on previous activities and recommendations related to plate archiving. These include actions taken by the International Astronomical Union, activities in Europe and a detailed account of a workshop on preserving astronomical photographic data held in 2007 at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute, North Carolina. The workshop discussions covered a wide range of issues that must be considered in any effort to archive plates and culminated in a set of recommendations on preserving, cataloging and making publicly available these irreplaceable data. The second part of the book reports on some recent efforts to implement the recommendations. These include essays on the recently established Astronomical Photographic Data Archive, projects to make photographic collections available electronically, evaluations of commercial scanners for digitization of astronomical plates and the case for the continuing value of these data along with a report on the census of astronomical plate collections in North America carried out in 2008. The census cataloged the locations, numbers, and types of astronomical plates in the US and Canada. Comprehensive appendices identify all the significant collections in North America and detail the current contents, state and status of their holdings.

  2. ``Orion, I Don't Love You'': The Astronomical Legacy of Carl Sandburg

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricca, B.

    2013-04-01

    Can poetry provide an accurate means of representing the scientific universe? This paper looks at the astronomical poetry of Carl Sandburg and how the poet employs a scientific framework to deepen his work. Sandburg's method is then compared to a class project of middle school students who use his poetry (and their own) to learn and understand astronomical facts.

  3. Support for the Astronomically Calibrated 40Ar/39Ar Age of Fish Canyon Sanidine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rivera, Tiffany; Storey, Michael; Zeeden, Christian

    2011-01-01

    al. (2008) determined an astronomically calibrated 40Ar/39Ar age of 28.201 0.046 Ma (2), relative to the indirect astronomically tuned Moroccan Melilla Basin Messâdit section. Here, we provide independent verification for the Kuiper, et al. (2008) FCs age using sanidines extracted from the A1 tephra...

  4. IYL Blog: Astronomers travel in time and space with light

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mather, John C.

    2015-01-01

    As an astronomer, I use light to travel through the universe, and to look back in time to when the universe was young. So do you! All of us see things as they were when the light was emitted, not as they are now. The farthest thing you can easily see without a telescope is the Andromeda Nebula, which is a galaxy like the Milky Way, about 2.5 million light years away. You see it as it was 2.5 million years ago, and we really don't know what it looks like today; the disk will have rotated a bit, new stars will have been born, there could have been all kinds of exploding stars, and the black hole in the middle could be lighting up. People may be skeptical of the Big Bang theory, even though we have a TV show named for it, but we (I should say Penzias and Wilson) measured its heat radiation 51 years ago at Bell Telephone Labs in New Jersey. Their discovery marks the beginning of the era of cosmology as a measurement science rather than speculation. Penzias and Wilson received the Nobel Prize in 1978 for their finding, which had been predicted in 1948 by Alpher and Herman. By the way, heat radiation is just another form of light - we call it radiation because we can't see it, but it's exactly the same phenomenon of electromagnetic waves, and the only difference is the wavelength. In the old days of analog television, if you tuned your TV in between channels, about 1% of the snow that you could see came from the Big Bang. So when we look at the heat radiation of the early universe, we really are gazing right at what seems to us a cosmic fireball, which surrounds us completely. It's a bit of an illusion; if you can imagine what astronomers in other galaxies would see, they would also feel surrounded by the fireball, and they would also think they were in the middle. So from a mathematical version of imagination, we conclude that there is no observable center and no edge of our universe, and that the heat of the fireball fills the entire universe uniformly. Astronomers are

  5. A buyer's and user's guide to astronomical telescopes & binoculars

    CERN Document Server

    Mullaney, James

    2007-01-01

    This exciting, upbeat new guide provides an extensive overview of binoculars and telescopes. It includes detailed up-to-date information on sources, selection and use of virtually every major type, brand and model of such instruments on today's market.

  6. Astronomers Take the Measure of Dark Matter in the universe

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-09-01

    Using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, astronomers have obtained their most accurate determination to date of the amount of dark matter in galaxy clusters, the most massive objects in the universe. The results provide an important step towards a precise measurement of the total matter density of the universe. These results were presented today by Steven W. Allen of the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, UK at a press conference at the `Two Years of Science with Chandra' symposium in Washington, DC. Allen and his colleagues Robert W. Schmidt and Andrew C. Fabian at the Institute of Astronomy observed a carefully chosen sample of five of the largest clusters of galaxies known, whose distances range from 1.5 to 4 billion light years. The team made temperature maps of the hot multimillion-degree gas that fills the clusters. "The temperature maps can be used to determine the mass needed to prevent the hot gas from escaping the clusters" explained Allen. "We found that the stars in the galaxies and hot gas together contribute only about 13 percent of the mass. The rest must be in the form of dark matter." The nature of the dark matter is not known, but most astronomers think that it is in the form of an as yet unknown type of elementary particle that contributes to gravity through its mass but otherwise interacts weakly with normal matter. These dark matter particles are often called WIMPs, an acronym for `weakly interacting massive particles'. Clusters of galaxies are vast concentrations of galaxies, hot gas and dark matter spanning millions of light years, held together by gravity. Because of their size, clusters of galaxies are thought to provide a fair sample of the proportion of dark matter in the universe as a whole. "The implication of our results is that we live in a low-density universe" said Allen. "The total mass-density is only about thirty percent of that needed to stop the universe from expanding forever." The result reinforces recent findings from

  7. Denver's Pioneer Astronomer: Herbert Alonso Howe (1858-1926)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howe, H. J.; Stencel, R. E.; Fisher, S.

    1999-05-01

    Herbert A. Howe arrived at Denver University (DU) to teach autumn 1880 classes, in math, astronomy and surveying. Howe established himself with clever solutions to the Kepler problem for orbit determinations in thesis work at Cincinnati Observatory. Riding the economic expansion of Colorado gold and silver mining in 1888, the University accepted a proposed gift of a major observatory, offered by Denver real estate baron, Humphrey Chamberlin. The result features a 20 inch aperture Alvan Clark refractor, which still ranks among the largest telescopes of the era. With the observatory building ready, the Silver Panic of 1893 -- when the US Congress dropped silver reserves from the currency basis -- burst the Denver economic bubble. Chamberlin was unable to complete payments on the balances due. Clark and G.N.Saegmuller (Fauth and Co.) at personal expense, delivered on the optics and telescope assemblies in 1894, but would wait for repayment. Sadly, this fiscal crisis affected DU for over a decade. Professor Howe, while observatory director, found himself consumed as Dean and Acting Chancellor for a young, struggling university, at the expense of the astronomy future that had looked so bright in 1892. Absent the Silver Panic, Howe would have probably been given an endowed chair in astronomy, as promised by Chamberlin. The complexion of American astronomy at the time of the birth of the American Astronomical Society in 1899 might have been different, in terms of US observing sites, etc. We are fortunate to have extensive Prof.Howe's daily diaries now in the University archives. These describe Howe's view of progress on the observatory, meetings with astronomy notables, plus vignettes of the life and times of Denver and the nation. Grandson, Herbert Julian Howe rediscovered their existence and is summarizing them in the form of a biography entitled: The Pioneer Astronomer. DU archival records contain numerous original letters from late 19th century astronomy luminaries

  8. Astronomical tunings of the Oligocene-Miocene transition from Pacific Ocean Site U1334 and implications for the carbon cycle

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beddow, Helen M.; Liebrand, Diederik; Wilson, Douglas S.; Hilgen, Frits J.; Sluijs, Appy; Wade, Bridget S.; Lourens, Lucas J.

    2018-01-01

    Astronomical tuning of sediment sequences requires both unambiguous cycle pattern recognition in climate proxy records and astronomical solutions, as well as independent information about the phase relationship between these two. Here we present two different astronomically tuned age models for the

  9. Instrumentation for Kinetic-Inductance-Detector-Based Submillimeter Radio Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Ran

    A substantial amount of important scientific information is contained within astronomical data at the submillimeter and far-infrared (FIR) wavelengths, including information regarding dusty galaxies, galaxy clusters, and star-forming regions; however, these wavelengths are among the least-explored fields in astronomy because of the technological difficulties involved in such research. Over the past 20 years, considerable efforts have been devoted to developing submillimeter- and millimeter-wavelength astronomical instruments and telescopes. The number of detectors is an important property of such instruments and is the subject of the current study. Future telescopes will require as many as hundreds of thousands of detectors to meet the necessary requirements in terms of the field of view, scan speed, and resolution. A large pixel count is one benefit of the development of multiplexable detectors that use kinetic inductance detector (KID) technology. This dissertation presents the development of a KID-based instrument including a portion of the millimeter-wave bandpass filters and all aspects of the readout electronics, which together enabled one of the largest detector counts achieved to date in submillimeter-/millimeter-wavelength imaging arrays: a total of 2304 detectors. The work presented in this dissertation has been implemented in the MUltiwavelength Submillimeter Inductance Camera (MUSIC), a new instrument for the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory (CSO).

  10. Evaluating musical instruments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campbell, D. Murray

    2014-01-01

    Scientific measurements of sound generation and radiation by musical instruments are surprisingly hard to correlate with the subtle and complex judgments of instrumental quality made by expert musicians

  11. Filling the Astronomical Void - A Visual Medium for a Visual Subject

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, J.

    1996-12-01

    Astronomy is fundamentally a visual subject. The modern science of astronomy has at its foundation the ancient art of observing the sky visually. The visual elements of astronomy are arguably the most important. Every person in the entire world is affected by visually-observed astronomical phenomena such as the seasonal variations in daylight. However, misconceptions abound and the average person cannot recognize the simple signs in the sky that point to the direction, the hour and the season. Educators and astronomy popularizers widely lament that astronomy is not appreciated in our society. Yet, there is a remarkable dearth of popular literature for teaching the visual elements of astronomy. This is what I refer to as *the astronomical void.* Typical works use illustrations sparsely, relying most heavily on text-based descriptions of the visual astronomical phenomena. Such works leave significant inferential gaps to the inexperienced reader, who is unequipped for making astronomical observations. Thus, the astronomical void remains unfilled by much of the currently available literature. I therefore propose the introduction of a visually-oriented medium for teaching the visual elements of Astronomy. To this end, I have prepared a series of astronomy "comic strips" that are intended to fill the astronomical void. By giving the illustrations the central place, the comic strip medium permits the depiction of motion and other sequential activity, thus effectively representing astronomical phenomena. In addition to the practical advantages, the comic strip is a "user friendly" medium that is inviting and entertaining to a reader. At the present time, I am distributing a monthly comic strip entitled *Starman*, which appears in the newsletters of over 120 local astronomy organizations and on the web at http://www.cyberdrive.net/ starman. I hope to eventually publish a series of full-length books and believe that astronomical comic strips will help expand the perimeter of

  12. Astronomers Break Ground on Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) - World's Largest Millimeter Wavelength Telescope

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-11-01

    for a spectacular new instrument, " stated Dr. Rita Colwell , director of the U.S. National Science Foundation. " ALMA will expand our vision of the Universe with "eyes" that pierce the shrouded mantles of space through which light cannot penetrate." On the occasion of this groundbreaking, the ALMA logo was unveiled. [ALMA Logo] Science with ALMA ALMA will capture millimetre and sub-millimetre radiation from space and produce images and spectra of celestial objects as they appear at these wavelengths. This particular portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, which is less energetic than visible and infrared light, yet more energetic than most radio waves, holds the key to understanding a great variety of fundamental processes, e.g., planet and star formation and the formation and evolution of galaxies and galaxy clusters in the early Universe. The possibility to detect emission from organic and other molecules in space is of particularly high interest. The millimetre and sub-millimetre radiation that ALMA will study is able to penetrate the vast clouds of dust and gas that populate interstellar (and intergalactic) space, revealing previously hidden details about astronomical objects. This radiation, however, is blocked by atmospheric moisture (water molecules) in the Earth's atmosphere. To conduct research with ALMA in this critical portion of the spectrum, astronomers thus need an exceptional observation site that is very dry, and at a very high altitude where the atmosphere above is thinner. Extensive tests showed that the sky above the high-altitude Chajnantor plain in the Atacama Desert has the unsurpassed clarity and stability needed to perform efficient observations with ALMA . ALMA operation ALMA will be the highest-altitude, full-time ground-based observatory in the world, at some 250 metres higher than the peak of Mont Blanc, Europe's tallest mountain. Work at this altitude is difficult. To help ensure the safety of the scientists and engineers at ALMA

  13. Astrophysics is easy! an introduction for the amateur astronomer

    CERN Document Server

    Inglis, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Astrophysics is often –with some justification – regarded as incomprehensible without the use of higher mathematics. Consequently, many amateur astronomers miss out on some of the most fascinating aspects of the subject. Astrophysics Is Easy! cuts through the difficult mathematics and explains the basics of astrophysics in accessible terms. Using nothing more than plain arithmetic and simple examples, the workings of the universe are outlined in a straightforward yet detailed and easy-to-grasp manner.   The original edition of the book was written over eight years ago, and in that time, advances in observational astronomy have led to new and significant changes to the theories of astrophysics. The new theories will be reflected in both the new and expanded chapters.   A unique aspect of this book is that, for each topic under discussion, an observing list is included so that observers can actually see for themselves the concepts presented –stars of the spectral sequence, nebulae, galaxies, even black ...

  14. Digging up the Earliest Astronomical Observatory in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Wei-Boa; Chen, Jiu-Jin

    2007-09-01

    At the town of Taosi, county of Xiangfen, Shanxi province the earliest (up to date about 4000 years ago) astronomical observatory and sacrificial altar relic was dug up, which consists of an observing site, some tamped soil columniations and slits between those columniations. This construction was used to observe the variations of the sunrise azimuth and determine the tropical year length in order to constitute the calendar. It is indicated from the simulated observations that the two slits located in the southeast and the northwest could be precisely used to determine the dates of the Winter Solstice and the Summer Solstice. Between those two slits there are 10 columniations which could indicate that the visual Sun moving from one columniation to another is a solar term. It implies that in the Emperor Yao time the calendar was the solar calendar in which one year was divided into 20 solar terms. The Yin-Yang five-element calendar, a 10-month calendar, in the very ancient time was based on this calendar.

  15. First light and beyond making a success of astronomical observing

    CERN Document Server

    Jenkins, D A

    2015-01-01

    Amateur astronomers who have been disappointed by the results of an observing session can still gain useful experience in a seemingly “failed” night at the telescope. In a world with imperfect seeing conditions, incredible observing sessions are often mixed with less inspiring ones, discouraging the amateur observer. This book is designed to help novice observers take something worthwhile away each and every time they go out under the night sky, regardless of what was originally planned. Almost every observer remembers his first sight of Ringed Saturn, hanging majestically in the blackness of space. Practitioners agree that visual observing is special. Real-time observations at the eyepiece can provide fleeting yet intense feelings that connect us with the universe. But when expectations aren’t met at the eyepiece, there are other ways to profit from the practice of astronomy. These rewards, though less showy, are well worth cultivating. This book will help you see what constitutes a “successful” vi...

  16. Young Star May Be Belching Spheres of Gas, Astronomers Say

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-05-01

    A young star more than 2,000 light-years away in the constellation Cepheus may be belching out spheres of gas, say astronomers who observed it with the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope. Not only is the star ejecting spheres of gas, the researchers say, but it also may be ejecting them repeatedly, phenomena not predicted by current theories of how young stars shed matter. Cepheus A star-forming region with blowups of detail In order to remain stable while accumulating matter, young stars have to throw off some of the infalling material to avoid "spinning up" so fast they would break apart, according to current theories. Infalling matter forms a thin spinning disk around the core of the new star, and material is ejected in twin "jets" perpendicular to the plane of the disk. "Twin jets have been seen emerging from many young stars, so we are quite surprised to see evidence that this object may be ejecting not jets, but spheres of gas," said Paul T.P. Ho, an astronomer at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. The research is reported in the May 17 edition of the scientific journal Nature. The astronomers observed a complex star-forming region in Cepheus and found an arc of water molecules that act like giant celestial amplifiers to boost the strength of radio signals at a frequency of 22 GHz. Such radio-wave amplifiers, called masers, show up as bright spots readily observed with radio telescopes. "With the great ability of the VLBA to show fine detail, we could track the motions of these maser spots over a period of weeks, and saw that this arc of water molecules is expanding at nearly 20,000 miles per hour," said Ho. "This was possible because we could detect detail equivalent to seeing Lincoln's nose on a penny in Los Angeles from the distance of New York," Ho added. "These observations pushed the tremendous capabilities of the VLBA and of modern computing power to their limits. This is an extremely complex

  17. Exoplanets and Other Modern Answers to Old Astronomical Questions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trimble, Virginia

    2002-04-01

    The Greeks were the first to ask, or at least to write about asking, questions like whether there are other planets like earth and whether the universe is finite or infinite. In all cases, they answered both yes and not (since there were lots of Greeks and not much data). A good deal later (but still in the period called history, unless you are very old), astronomers started asking whether the duration of the universe was finite or infinite, what the stars are made of and what keeps them shining, and whether there are other galaxies like ours. All of these now how answers at some confidence level. Close to 100 planets outside our solar system have been reported, starting in 1995, but selection effects mean that none are like earth. Data from many sources (supernovae, radioactive elements, microwave radiation, and all) combine to say that the universe has a finite past but probably an infinite future and an extent that, if not infinite, is anyhow very much larger than a breadbox. The stars run on nuclear fusion, and there are oodles of galaxies. The talk will explore how we have learned some of these things and try to look forward to current unsolved problems in astrophysics and cosmology.

  18. Surveying the skies how astronomers map the universe

    CERN Document Server

    Wynn-Williams, Gareth

    2016-01-01

    Since the time of Galileo, astronomy has been driven by technological innovation. With each major advance has come the opportunity and enthusiasm to survey the sky in a way that was not possible before. It is these surveys of discovery that are the subject of this book. In the first few chapters the author discusses what astronomers learned from visible-light surveys, first with the naked eye, then using telescopes in the seventeenth century, and photography in the nineteenth century. He then moves to the second half of the twentieth century when the skies started to be swept by radio, infrared, ultraviolet, x-ray and gamma ray telescopes, many of which had to be flown in satellites above the Earth’s atmosphere. These surveys led to the discovery of pulsars, quasars, molecular clouds, protostars, bursters, and black holes. He then returns to Earth to describe several currently active large-scale projects that methodically collect images, photometry and spectra that are then stored in vast publicly-accessibl...

  19. Deconvolution of astronomical images using SOR with adaptive relaxation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vorontsov, S V; Strakhov, V N; Jefferies, S M; Borelli, K J

    2011-07-04

    We address the potential performance of the successive overrelaxation technique (SOR) in image deconvolution, focusing our attention on the restoration of astronomical images distorted by atmospheric turbulence. SOR is the classical Gauss-Seidel iteration, supplemented with relaxation. As indicated by earlier work, the convergence properties of SOR, and its ultimate performance in the deconvolution of blurred and noisy images, can be made competitive to other iterative techniques, including conjugate gradients, by a proper choice of the relaxation parameter. The question of how to choose the relaxation parameter, however, remained open, and in the practical work one had to rely on experimentation. In this paper, using constructive (rather than exact) arguments, we suggest a simple strategy for choosing the relaxation parameter and for updating its value in consecutive iterations to optimize the performance of the SOR algorithm (and its positivity-constrained version, +SOR) at finite iteration counts. We suggest an extension of the algorithm to the notoriously difficult problem of "blind" deconvolution, where both the true object and the point-spread function have to be recovered from the blurred image. We report the results of numerical inversions with artificial and real data, where the algorithm is compared with techniques based on conjugate gradients. In all of our experiments +SOR provides the highest quality results. In addition +SOR is found to be able to detect moderately small changes in the true object between separate data frames: an important quality for multi-frame blind deconvolution where stationarity of the object is a necesessity.

  20. SUMO: operation and maintenance management web tool for astronomical observatories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mujica-Alvarez, Emma; Pérez-Calpena, Ana; García-Vargas, María. Luisa

    2014-08-01

    SUMO is an Operation and Maintenance Management web tool, which allows managing the operation and maintenance activities and resources required for the exploitation of a complex facility. SUMO main capabilities are: information repository, assets and stock control, tasks scheduler, executed tasks archive, configuration and anomalies control and notification and users management. The information needed to operate and maintain the system must be initially stored at the tool database. SUMO shall automatically schedule the periodical tasks and facilitates the searching and programming of the non-periodical tasks. Tasks planning can be visualized in different formats and dynamically edited to be adjusted to the available resources, anomalies, dates and other constrains that can arise during daily operation. SUMO shall provide warnings to the users notifying potential conflicts related to the required personal availability or the spare stock for the scheduled tasks. To conclude, SUMO has been designed as a tool to help during the operation management of a scientific facility, and in particular an astronomical observatory. This is done by controlling all operating parameters: personal, assets, spare and supply stocks, tasks and time constrains.

  1. Lewis Swift celebrated comet hunter and the people's astronomer

    CERN Document Server

    Kronk, Gary W

    2017-01-01

    This biography covers the life of Lewis Swift (1820-1913), who discovered 13 comets and nearly 1,200 other deep sky objects. All 13 comets found by Swift now bear his name, including three periodic comets with periods of 6 years (11P/Tempel-Swift-LINEAR), 9 years (64P/Swift-Gehrels), and 133 years (109P/Swift-Tuttle). Swift's enthusiasm and success as an amateur astronomer helped make him famous in the United States. With the help of others, Swift was able to buy a 16-inch refractor, the third largest telescope in the United States at the time. Hulbert Harrington Warner built "Warner Observatory" to house this telescope. As a prolific writer and lecturer, Swift's stories appeared in newspapers and magazines, while his lectures showed that he was able to explain anything in a way that everyone could understand.  When Warner went broke during the "Panic of 1893," Swift was forced to leave his home. Almost two dozen invitations arrived from around the United States asking him to bring his telescope to their ci...

  2. Weird Weather Tales of Astronomical and Atmospheric Anomalies

    CERN Document Server

    Seargent, David A J

    2012-01-01

    Have you ever heard the story of the tornado that lifted a man’s wallet right from his pants pocket? What about the myth of the Min-Min light in Australia?  Do you have a story about seeing the “Green Flash” or want an explanation of the mysterious Sun Dogs? Weird Weather: Tales of Astronomical and Atmospheric Anomalies is about the strange, unusual, and inexplicable events that take place in the air and sky. These include meteors that appear inside a darkened house, ghost lights that follow lone travelers, lightning emerging from patches of fog, and much more. Many of these climatic brainteasers occur within Earth’s skies, but there are parallel curiosities on other worlds, including: lightning on Venus, methane spouts on Titan, thunderstorms twice the size of Earth on Saturn, whirlwinds and dust storms on Mars , and auroras on Jupiter! Just as atmosphere and outer space are not separated by a sharp boundary, so the subject of this book is not confined to the skies. Earth is the way it is because of...

  3. Wide-Field Astronomical Surveys in the Next Decade

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Strauss, Michael A.; /Princeton U.; Tyson, J.Anthony; /UC, Davis; Anderson, Scott F.; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; Axelrod, T.S.; /LSST Corp.; Becker, Andrew C.; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; Bickerton, Steven J.; /Princeton U.; Blanton, Michael R.; /New York U.; Burke, David L.; /SLAC; Condon, J.J.; /NRAO, Socorro; Connolly, A.J.; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; Cooray, Asantha R.; /UC, Irvine; Covey, Kevin R.; /Harvard U.; Csabai, Istvan; /Eotvos U.; Ferguson, Henry C.; /Baltimore, Space Telescope Sci.; Ivezic, Zeljko; /Washington U., Seattle, Astron. Dept.; Kantor, Jeffrey; /LSST Corp.; Kent, Stephen M.; /Fermilab; Knapp, G.R.; /Princeton U.; Myers, Steven T.; /NRAO, Socorro; Neilsen, Eric H., Jr.; /Fermilab; Nichol, Robert C.; /Portsmouth U., ICG /Harish-Chandra Res. Inst. /Caltech, IPAC /Potsdam, Max Planck Inst. /Harvard U. /Hawaii U. /UC, Berkeley, Astron. Dept. /Baltimore, Space Telescope Sci. /NOAO, Tucson /Carnegie Mellon U. /Chicago U., Astron. Astrophys. Ctr.

    2011-11-14

    Wide-angle surveys have been an engine for new discoveries throughout the modern history of astronomy, and have been among the most highly cited and scientifically productive observing facilities in recent years. This trend is likely to continue over the next decade, as many of the most important questions in astrophysics are best tackled with massive surveys, often in synergy with each other and in tandem with the more traditional observatories. We argue that these surveys are most productive and have the greatest impact when the data from the surveys are made public in a timely manner. The rise of the 'survey astronomer' is a substantial change in the demographics of our field; one of the most important challenges of the next decade is to find ways to recognize the intellectual contributions of those who work on the infrastructure of surveys (hardware, software, survey planning and operations, and databases/data distribution), and to make career paths to allow them to thrive.

  4. TAU: a design for a thousand astronomical unit voyage

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eubanks, D.; Alvis, J.; Bechler, E.; Lyon, W. III; McFarlane, D.; Palmrose, D.; Schmitz, P.

    1987-01-01

    The Jet Propulsion Lab. (JPL) has proposed a deep-space probe to travel to a distance of one thousand astronomical units -25 times further from the Sun than Pluto. In order to achieve this goal within the lifetime of the investigators, the mission time is set at a maximum of 50 yr. The JPL proposal postulates a design in which the probe is under powered thrust for the first 10 yr of the mission and coasts for the next 40 yr. A continuous high specific impulse, Isp (the ratio of thrust to propellant mass flow rate), low thrust propulsion system (either magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) or ion thrusters) is required in order to achieve this goal. This in turn necessitates electrical power in the megawatt range. The only power source that is practical for this situation is a nuclear reactor. It was a this point that the Nuclear Engineering Dept. at Texas A and M Univ. began its ongoing work, looking into several areas of the proposal in which a more detailed description was needed. These areas of interest were power, propulsion, heavy lift launch capabilities, and trajectory analysis. In addition to all of the boundaries previously outlined, the technology level is assumed to be that of 1995, 8 yr from now

  5. Recurrent Neural Network Applications for Astronomical Time Series

    Science.gov (United States)

    Protopapas, Pavlos

    2017-06-01

    The benefits of good predictive models in astronomy lie in early event prediction systems and effective resource allocation. Current time series methods applicable to regular time series have not evolved to generalize for irregular time series. In this talk, I will describe two Recurrent Neural Network methods, Long Short-Term Memory (LSTM) and Echo State Networks (ESNs) for predicting irregular time series. Feature engineering along with a non-linear modeling proved to be an effective predictor. For noisy time series, the prediction is improved by training the network on error realizations using the error estimates from astronomical light curves. In addition to this, we propose a new neural network architecture to remove correlation from the residuals in order to improve prediction and compensate for the noisy data. Finally, I show how to set hyperparameters for a stable and performant solution correctly. In this work, we circumvent this obstacle by optimizing ESN hyperparameters using Bayesian optimization with Gaussian Process priors. This automates the tuning procedure, enabling users to employ the power of RNN without needing an in-depth understanding of the tuning procedure.

  6. Silicon carbide optics for space and ground based astronomical telescopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robichaud, Joseph; Sampath, Deepak; Wainer, Chris; Schwartz, Jay; Peton, Craig; Mix, Steve; Heller, Court

    2012-09-01

    Silicon Carbide (SiC) optical materials are being applied widely for both space based and ground based optical telescopes. The material provides a superior weight to stiffness ratio, which is an important metric for the design and fabrication of lightweight space telescopes. The material also has superior thermal properties with a low coefficient of thermal expansion, and a high thermal conductivity. The thermal properties advantages are important for both space based and ground based systems, which typically need to operate under stressing thermal conditions. The paper will review L-3 Integrated Optical Systems - SSG’s (L-3 SSG) work in developing SiC optics and SiC optical systems for astronomical observing systems. L-3 SSG has been fielding SiC optical components and systems for over 25 years. Space systems described will emphasize the recently launched Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI) developed for JHU-APL and NASA-GSFC. Review of ground based applications of SiC will include supporting L-3 IOS-Brashear’s current contract to provide the 0.65 meter diameter, aspheric SiC secondary mirror for the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope (ATST).

  7. Fastest Pulsar Speeding Out of Galaxy, Astronomers Discover

    Science.gov (United States)

    2005-08-01

    A speeding, superdense neutron star somehow got a powerful "kick" that is propelling it completely out of our Milky Way Galaxy into the cold vastness of intergalactic space. Its discovery is puzzling astronomers who used the National Science Foundation's Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) radio telescope to directly measure the fastest speed yet found in a neutron star. Pulsar's Path Across Sky Over about 2.5 million years, Pulsar B1508+55 has moved across about a third of the night sky as seen from Earth. CREDIT: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF (Click on image for larger version 67 KB) The neutron star is the remnant of a massive star born in the constellation Cygnus that exploded about two and a half million years ago in a titanic explosion known as a supernova. Ultra-precise VLBA measurements of its distance and motion show that it is on course to inevitably leave our Galaxy. "We know that supernova explosions can give a kick to the resulting neutron star, but the tremendous speed of this object pushes the limits of our current understanding," said Shami Chatterjee, of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. "This discovery is very difficult for the latest models of supernova core collapse to explain," he added. Chatterjee and his colleagues used the VLBA to study the pulsar B1508+55, about 7700 light-years from Earth. With the ultrasharp radio "vision" of the continent-wide VLBA, they were able to precisely measure both the distance and the speed of the pulsar, a spinning neutron star emitting powerful beams of radio waves. Plotting its motion backward pointed to a birthplace among groups of giant stars in the constellation Cygnus -- stars so massive that they inevitably explode as supernovae. "This is the first direct measurement of a neutron star's speed that exceeds 1,000 kilometers per second," said Walter Brisken, an NRAO astronomer. "Most earlier estimates of neutron-star speeds depended on educated

  8. Nicolas-Louis De La Caille astronomer and geodesist

    CERN Document Server

    Glass, I S

    2013-01-01

    La Caille was one of the observational astronomers and geodesists who followed Newton in developing ideas about celestial mechanics and the shape of the earth. He provided data to the great 18th-century mathematicians involved in understanding the complex gravitational effects that the heavenly bodies have on one another. Observing from the Cape of Good Hope, he made the first ever telescopic sky survey and gave many of the southern constellations their present-day names. He measured the paths of the planets and determined their distances by trigonometry. In addition, he made a controversial measurement of the radius of the earth that seemed to prove it was pear-shaped. On a practical level, La Caille developed the method of `Lunars' for determining longitudes at sea. He mapped the Cape. As an influential teacher he propagated Newton's theory of universal gravitation at a time when it was only beginning to be accepted on the European continent. This book gives the most comprehensive overview so far avail...

  9. Possible astronomical references in two megalithic building of ancient Latium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magli, G.

    In the wide area of the ancient Latium Vetus - roughly enclosed within the coast and the Apennines between Rome and Terracina, in Central Italy - there are several examples of town's walls and buildings constructed with the spectacular megalithic technique called polygonal, in which enormous blocks are cut in irregular shapes and perfectly fit together without mortar. In many cases, for instance in Alatri, Arpino, Circei, Norba and Segni, the megalithic size of the blocks and the ingenuity in construction reach the same magnificence and impression of power and pride which characterize the worldwide famous Mycenaean towns of Tiryns and Mycenae, constructed around the XIII century BC. In Italy however, all polygonal walls are currently attributed to the Romans, and dated to the first centuries of the Roman republic (V-III century BC), although for most of these constructions no reliable stratigraphy is available. In the present work, which is part of an ongoing project aiming at a complete study of these buildings, we investigate the possible astronomical references in the planning of two among the most imposing of them, namely the so called Acropolis of Alatri and Circei.

  10. 153rd Colloquium of the International Astronomical Union

    CERN Document Server

    Kosugi, Takeo; Hudson, Hugh

    1996-01-01

    These are the Proceedings of Colloquium No. 153 of the International Astro­ nomical Union, held at Makuhari near Tokyo on May 22 - 26, 1995, and hosted by the National Astronomical Observatory. This meeting was intended to be an interdisciplinary meeting between re­ searchers of solar and stellar activity, in order for them to exchange the newest information in each field. While each of these areas has seen remarkable advances in recent years, and while the researchers in each field have felt that information from the other's domain would be extremely useful in their own work, there have not been very many opportunities for intensive exchanges of information between these closely related fields. We therefore expected much from this meeting in pro­ viding stellar researchers with new results of research on the counterparts of their targets of research, spatially and temporarily resolved, as observed on the Sun. Likewise we hoped to provide solar researchers with new results on gigantic ver­ sions of their ...

  11. Initiating Young Children into Basic Astronomical Concepts and Phenomena

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kallery, M.

    2010-07-01

    In the present study we developed and implemented three units of activities aiming at acquainting very young children with basic astronomical concepts and phenomena such as the sphericity of the earth, the earth’s movements and the day/night cycle. The activities were developed by a group composed of a researcher/facilitator and six early-years teachers. In the activities children were presented with appropriate for their age scientific information along with conceptual tools such as a globe and an instructional video. Action research processes were used to optimize classroom practices and to gather useful information for the final shaping of the activities and the instruction materials. In these activities the adopted approach to learning can be characterized as socially constructed. The results indicated awareness of concepts and phenomena that the activities dealt with in high percentages of children, storage of the new knowledge in the long term memory and easy retrieval of it, and children’s enthusiasm for the subject.

  12. Evolution of the VLT instrument control system toward industry standards

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiekebusch, Mario J.; Chiozzi, Gianluca; Knudstrup, Jens; Popovic, Dan; Zins, Gerard

    2010-07-01

    The VLT control system is a large distributed system consisting of Linux Workstations providing the high level coordination and interfaces to the users, and VME-based Local Control Units (LCU's) running the VxWorks real-time operating system with commercial and proprietary boards acting as the interface to the instrument functions. After more than 10 years of VLT operations, some of the applied technologies used by the astronomical instruments are being discontinued making it difficult to find adequate hardware for future projects. In order to deal with this obsolescence, the VLT Instrumentation Framework is being extended to adopt well established Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) components connected through industry standard fieldbuses. This ensures a flexible state of the art hardware configuration for the next generation VLT instruments allowing the access to instrument devices via more compact and simpler control units like PC-based Programmable Logical Controllers (PLC's). It also makes it possible to control devices directly from the Instrument Workstation through a normal Ethernet connection. This paper outlines the requirements that motivated this work, as well as the architecture and the design of the framework extension. In addition, it describes the preliminary results on a use case which is a VLTI visitor instrument used as a pilot project to validate the concepts and the suitability of some COTS products like a PC-based PLCs, EtherCAT8 and OPC UA6 as solutions for instrument control.

  13. IOT Overview: IR Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, E.

    In this instrument review chapter the calibration plans of ESO IR instruments are presented and briefly reviewed focusing, in particular, on the case of ISAAC, which has been the first IR instrument at VLT and whose calibration plan served as prototype for the coming instruments.

  14. Health physics instrument manual

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gupton, E.D.

    1978-08-01

    The purpose of this manual is to provide apprentice health physics surveyors and other operating groups not directly concerned with radiation detection instruments a working knowledge of the radiation detection and measuring instruments in use at the Laboratory. The characteristics and applications of the instruments are given. Portable instruments, stationary instruments, personnel monitoring instruments, sample counters, and miscellaneous instruments are described. Also, information sheets on calibration sources, procedures, and devices are included. Gamma sources, beta sources, alpha sources, neutron sources, special sources, a gamma calibration device for badge dosimeters, and a calibration device for ionization chambers are described

  15. Astronomers Use Moon in Effort to Corral Elusive Cosmic Particles

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-01

    Seeking to detect mysterious, ultra-high-energy neutrinos from distant regions of space, a team of astronomers used the Moon as part of an innovative telescope system for the search. Their work gave new insight on the possible origin of the elusive subatomic particles and points the way to opening a new view of the Universe in the future. The team used special-purpose electronic equipment brought to the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope, and took advantage of new, more-sensitive radio receivers installed as part of the Expanded VLA (EVLA) project. Prior to their observations, they tested their system by flying a small, specialized transmitter over the VLA in a helium balloon. In 200 hours of observations, Ted Jaeger of the University of Iowa and the Naval Research Laboratory, and Robert Mutel and Kenneth Gayley of the University of Iowa did not detect any of the ultra-high-energy neutrinos they sought. This lack of detection placed a new limit on the amount of such particles arriving from space, and cast doubt on some theoretical models for how those neutrinos are produced. Neutrinos are fast-moving subatomic particles with no electrical charge that readily pass unimpeded through ordinary matter. Though plentiful in the Universe, they are notoriously difficult to detect. Experiments to detect neutrinos from the Sun and supernova explosions have used large volumes of material such as water or chlorine to capture the rare interactions of the particles with ordinary matter. The ultra-high-energy neutrinos the astronomers sought are postulated to be produced by the energetic, black-hole-powered cores of distant galaxies; massive stellar explosions; annihilation of dark matter; cosmic-ray particles interacting with photons of the Cosmic Microwave Background; tears in the fabric of space-time; and collisions of the ultra-high-energy neutrinos with lower-energy neutrinos left over from the Big Bang. Radio telescopes can't detect

  16. Catherine Cesarsky - President Elect of the International Astronomical Union (IAU)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2003-07-01

    The General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union (IAU), meeting in Sydney (Australia), has appointed the ESO Director General, Dr. Catherine Cesarsky, as President Elect for a three-year period (2003-2006). The IAU is the world's foremost organisation for astronomy, uniting almost 9000 professional scientists on all continents. The IAU General Assembly also elected Prof. Ron Ekers (Australia) as President (2003 - 2006). Dr. Cesarsky will then become President of the IAU in 2006, when the General Assembly next meets in Prague (The Czech Republic). Dr. Cesarsky is the first woman scientist to receive this high distinction. "The election of Catherine Cesarsky as President-Elect of the IAU is an important recognition for a scientist who has made impressive contributions to various areas of modern astrophysics, from cosmic rays to the interstellar medium and cosmology" , commented the outgoing IAU President, Prof. Franco Pacini. "It is also an honour and an important accolade for the European astronomical community in general and ESO in particular." Dr. Cesarsky, who assumed the function as ESO Director General in 1999, was born in France. She received a degree in Physical Sciences at the University of Buenos Aires and graduated with a PhD in Astronomy in 1971 from Harvard University (Cambridge, Mass., USA). Afterwards she worked at the California Institute of Technology (CALTECH). In 1974, she became a staff member of the Service d'Astrophysique (SAp), Direction des Sciences de la Matière (DSM), Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique (CEA) (France). As Director of DSM (1994 - 1999), she was leading about 3000 scientists, engineers and technicians active within a broad spectrum of basic research programmes in physics, chemistry, astrophysics and earth sciences. Dr. Cesarsky is known for her successful research activities in several central areas of modern astrophysics. She first worked on the theory of cosmic ray propagation and acceleration, and galactic gamma

  17. Astronomical High Tide Line, Geographic NAD83, NWRC (1995) [hightide_line_NWRC_1995

    Data.gov (United States)

    Louisiana Geographic Information Center — The astronomical high tide line was compiled from National Wetlands Inventory (NWI) 1:24,000-scale habitat maps that were photo-interpreted from color-infrared...

  18. A refined Astronomically Calibrated 40AR/39Ar age for Fish Canyon Sanidine

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rivera, T.A.; Storey, M.; Zeeden, C.; Hilgen, F.J.; Kuiper, K.F.

    2011-01-01

    Intercalibration between the astronomical and radio-isotopic dating methods provides a means to improving accuracy and reducing uncertainty of an integrated, multi-chronometer geologic timescale. Here we report a high-precision

  19. Far infrared extinction coefficients of minerals of interest for astronomical observations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hasegawa, H.

    1984-01-01

    Far infrared extinction coefficients of mineral grains of interest for astronomical observations have been measured. The measured mineral species are: amorphous carbon, high temperature magnesium silicates, hydrous silicates, iron oxides, and amorphous silicates. (author)

  20. Novel Algorithms for Astronomical Plate Analyses Rene Hudec1,2 ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2Czech Technical University in Prague, Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Technicka 2,. Prague 6 ... Abstract. Powerful computers and dedicated software allow effective data mining and scientific analyses in astronomical plate archives. We.

  1. Accuracy of lunar eclipse observations made by Jesuit astronomers in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fatoohi, L. J.; Stephenson, F. R.

    1996-02-01

    The Jesuit astronomers observed numerous lunar eclipses at Beijing and summaries of their observations - made between 1644 and 1785 - are preserved. The various lunar eclipse measurements that the Jesuits made are compared with the results of present-day computation.

  2. A survey of European astronomical tables in the late middle ages

    CERN Document Server

    Chabás, José

    2012-01-01

    This is a survey of the numerous astronomical tables compiled in the late Middle Ages, which represent a major intellectual enterprise. Such tables were often the best way available at the time for transmitting precise information to the reader.

  3. The Impact of the Qur'anic Conception of Astronomical Phenomena on Islamic Civilization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, I. A.

    Discussions of astronomical phenomena in religious texts usually center around either their literal astronomical content or their symbolic significance. We shall instead consider the use of frequent references to astronomical phenomena in the Qur'an as exhortations to a worldview that ushered in the modern era. The Qur'anic conception of astronomical phenomena had a critical impact on Islamic civilization and the civilizations that followed because it introduced and mandated the adoption of certain attitudes. Among these were a greater respect for empirical data than was common in the preceding Greek civilization and an insistence that the Universe is ruled by a single set of laws. Both of these were rooted in the Islamic concept of tawhîd, the unity of God.

  4. Creating and enhancing digital astro images a guide for practical astronomers

    CERN Document Server

    Privett, Grant

    2007-01-01

    This book clearly examines how to create the best astronomical images possible with a digital camera. It reveals the astonishing images that can be obtained with simple equipment, the right software, and knowledge of how to use it.

  5. Measuring FeO variation using astronomical spectroscopic observations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Unterguggenberger

    2017-03-01

    respectively. However, a comparison between the modelled O3 in the upper mesosphere and measurements of O3 made with the SABER satellite instrument suggests that these quantum yields may be a factor of ∼ 2 smaller.

  6. Hexabundles: imaging fibre arrays for low-light astronomical applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Bryant, Julie; Robertson, Gordon

    2010-01-01

    We demonstrate for the first time an imaging fibre bundle (“hexabundle”) that is suitable for low-light applications in astronomy. The most successful survey instruments at optical-infrared wavelengths today have obtained data on up to a million celestial sources using hundreds of multimode fibre...

  7. High School Astronomical Research at the Army and Navy Academy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyce, Pat; Boyce, Grady

    2016-06-01

    school counseling and curricula. Active assistance from amateur astronomers and parental engagement are critical to sustainability, growth, and outreach. Possibly most important is the continuing leadership of strong advocates at the school.

  8. Astronomy for Astronomical Numbers: a Worldwide Massive Open Online Class

    Science.gov (United States)

    Austin, Carmen; Impey, Chris David; Wenger, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    Astronomy: State of the Art is a massive, open, online class (MOOC) offered through Udemy by an instructional team at the University of Arizona. With over 18,000 enrolled, it is the largest astronomy MOOC available. The astronomical numbers enrolled do not translate into a similar level of engagement. The content consists of 14 hours of video lecture, nearly 1000 PowerPoint slides, 250 pages of background readings, and 20 podcast interviews with leading researchers. Perhaps in part because of the large amount of course content, the overall completion rate is low, about 3%. However, this number was four times higher for an early cohort of learners who were selected to have a prior interest in astronomy and who took the class in synchronous mode, with new content being added every week. Completion correlates with engagement as measured by posts to the online discussion board. For a subset of learners, social media like Facebook and Twitter provide an additional, important mode of engagement. For the asynchronous learners who have continuously enrolled for the past 15 months, those who complete the course do so quickly, with few persisting longer than two months. The availability of a completion certificate had no impact of completion rates. This experiment informs a future offering of this MOOC via Coursera, along with a co-convened 'flipped' introductory astronomy class at the University of Arizona, where the video lectures will be online and class time will be used exclusively for small group labs and hands-on activities. Despite their typically low completion rates, MOOCs have the potential to add significantly to public engagement with science.

  9. IMFIT: A FAST, FLEXIBLE NEW PROGRAM FOR ASTRONOMICAL IMAGE FITTING

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Erwin, Peter [Max-Planck-Insitut für Extraterrestrische Physik, Giessenbachstrasse, D-85748 Garching, GermanyAND (Germany); Universitäts-Sternwarte München, Scheinerstrasse 1, D-81679 München (Germany)

    2015-02-01

    I describe a new, open-source astronomical image-fitting program called IMFIT, specialized for galaxies but potentially useful for other sources, which is fast, flexible, and highly extensible. A key characteristic of the program is an object-oriented design that allows new types of image components (two-dimensional surface-brightness functions) to be easily written and added to the program. Image functions provided with IMFIT include the usual suspects for galaxy decompositions (Sérsic, exponential, Gaussian), along with Core-Sérsic and broken-exponential profiles, elliptical rings, and three components that perform line-of-sight integration through three-dimensional luminosity-density models of disks and rings seen at arbitrary inclinations. Available minimization algorithms include Levenberg-Marquardt, Nelder-Mead simplex, and Differential Evolution, allowing trade-offs between speed and decreased sensitivity to local minima in the fit landscape. Minimization can be done using the standard χ{sup 2} statistic (using either data or model values to estimate per-pixel Gaussian errors, or else user-supplied error images) or Poisson-based maximum-likelihood statistics; the latter approach is particularly appropriate for cases of Poisson data in the low-count regime. I show that fitting low-signal-to-noise ratio galaxy images using χ{sup 2} minimization and individual-pixel Gaussian uncertainties can lead to significant biases in fitted parameter values, which are avoided if a Poisson-based statistic is used; this is true even when Gaussian read noise is present.

  10. Troubleshooting in nuclear instruments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1987-06-01

    This report on troubleshooting of nuclear instruments is the product of several scientists and engineers, who are closely associated with nuclear instrumentation and with the IAEA activities in the field. The text covers the following topics: Preamplifiers, amplifiers, scalers, timers, ratemeters, multichannel analyzers, dedicated instruments, tools, instruments, accessories, components, skills, interfaces, power supplies, preventive maintenance, troubleshooting in systems, radiation detectors. The troubleshooting and repair of instruments is illustrated by some real examples

  11. Letters from Augustin Hallerstein, an eighteenth century Jesuit astronomer in Beijing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juznic, Stanislav

    2008-11-01

    Augustin Hallerstein (1703-1774) was the last astronomer sent to Beijing by the Society of Jesus. He left Europe for China in his mid-thirties, and continued to send letters back home until he died thirty-five years later. These letters and reports contained important information on Chinese astronomy, and were read in the courts of Europe; many were also published. Hallerstein was one of the most important European astronomers in Beijing, his European publications surpassing those of his predecessors.

  12. Division XII / Commission 41 / Working Group Historical Instruments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pigatto, Luisa; Il-Seong, Nha; Hamel, Jürgen; Johnson, Kevin; Kochhar, Rajesh K.; Nakamura, Tsuko; Orchiston, Wayne; Pettersen, Bjørn R.; Schechner, Sara J.; Yunli, Shi

    The Historical Instruments Working Group (WG-HI) and Commission 41 started planning an interdisciplinary conference titled Astronomy and its instruments before and after Galileo since January 2007. This conference, as an IYA2009 initiative, aims “to highlight mankind's path toward an improved knowledge of the sky using mathematical and mechanical tools as well as monuments and buildings, giving rise, in doing so, to scientific astronomy”. Commission 46 and Commission 55 also support this conference, to be held on the Isle of San Servolo, Venice (Italy), 27 September 3 October 2009. As a fact of history, it was in Venice that Galileo was advised and got material (glass) to make his telescope, and in Venice he presented an working instrument to Venetian Doge in August 1609. The conference is co-sponsored by IAU as a Joint Symposium with the INAF Astronomical Observatory of Padova, Italy.

  13. Advanced Technologies and Instrumentation at the National Science Foundation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurczynski, Peter; Neff, James E.

    2018-01-01

    Over its more than thirty-year history, the Advanced Technologies and Instrumentation (ATI) program within the Division of Astronomical Sciences has provided grants to support the development and deployment of detectors and instrumentation for ground-based astronomy. This program has enabled scientific advances in diverse fields from solar physics to exoplanets to cosmology. ATI has provided instrumentation for both small and large observatories from radio through visible wavebands. It has played a role in the early development of major initiatives such as the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope. Technology development for astronomy unfolds over a longer period than the lifetime of a single grant. This review will consider ATI from an historical perspective to assess its impact on astronomy.

  14. Mathematical instrumentation in fourteenth-century Egypt and Syria the illustrated treatise of Najm al-Din al-Misri

    CERN Document Server

    Charette, F

    2003-01-01

    An illustrated Arabic treatise, with an English translation and detailed commentary, on the construction of over 100 various astronomical instruments, many of which are otherwise unknown to specialists. It was composed by Najm al-Din al-Misri, a rather shadowy figure, in Cairo around 1330 CE.

  15. Colloid Microthruster Feed System Development for Fine Pointing and Drag-Free Control of Multi-Year Astronomical Observatories

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziemer, John; Mueller, J.; Spence, D.; Hruby, V.

    2014-01-01

    A new Colloid Microthruster feed system, including a propellant tank and redundant Microvalves, is being developed for fine pointing and drag-free operations of multi-year astronomical observatories under the PCOS SAT program. Almost all Gravitational Wave Observatory (GWO) concepts require microthrusters to maintain a drag-free environment for the inertial sensor instrument to meet the mission science objectives. The current state-of-the-art microthruster in the US is the Busek Colloid Micro-Newton Thruster (CMNT) originally developed under the New Millennium Program for the Space Technology 7 (ST7) and ESA's LISA Pathfinder (LPF) technology demonstration mission. The ST7 CMNT design includes a bellows propellant storage tank that is sized to provide up to 90 days of maximum thrust (30 µN). The new propellant tank is based on a blow-down, metal-diaphragm spherical tank design with enough capacity for a 5-year GWO mission. The new feed system will also include the third generation of Busek’s Microvalve, currently being developed under a NASA Phase II SBIR. The Microvalve is responsible for the picoliter per second control of the propellant from the tank to the thruster head, demanding parts with micron-level tolerances, critical alignments, and challenging acceptance test protocols. This microthruster system could also be considered for replacement of reaction wheels for slewing and fine pointing of other astronomical observatories, including Exo-Planet Observatory concepts. The goal of the PCOS SAT effort is to raise the new system to TRL 5 with performance and environmental testing within the next two years.

  16. Collaboration Between Astronomers at UT Austin and K-12 Teachers: Connecting the Experience of Observing and Research with the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finkelstein, Keely D.; Sneden, Christopher; Hemenway, Mary Kay; Preston, Sandra; EXES Teachers Associate Program

    2015-01-01

    McDonald Observatory has a long history of providing teacher professional development (PD), and recently we have developed a new workshop model for more advanced participants. By choosing a select group of middle and high school teachers from those previously involved in our past PD programs, we have created a joint workshop / observing run program for them. After traveling to the observatory, the teachers participate in an actual observing run with a research astronomer. The teachers are trained first-hand how to take observations, operate the telescope, set up the instrument, and monitor observing conditions. The teachers are fully put in the role of observer. They are also given background information before and during the workshop related to the science and data they are helping to collect. The teachers work in teams to both perform the nightly observations with an astronomer, but to also perform new interactive classroom activities with education staff, and use other telescopes on the mountain. This is a unique experience for teachers since it allows them to take the resources and experiences directly back to their classrooms and students. They can directly relate to their students what skills for specific careers in STEM fields are needed. Evaluation from these workshops shows that there is: increased content knowledge among participants, greater impact that will be passed on to their students, and an authentic research experience that can't be replicated in other PD settings. In addition, not only is this program beneficial to the teachers, but this group is benefit to the education program of McDonald Observatory. Building on an existing PD program (with a 16 year history) we have the opportunity to test out new products and new education endeavors with this devoted group of well-trained teachers before bringing them to wider teacher and student audiences. This program is currently supported by the NSF grant AST-1211585 (PI Sneden).

  17. SpUpNIC (Spectrograph Upgrade: Newly Improved Cassegrain) on the South African Astronomical Observatory's 74-inch telescope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crause, Lisa A.; Carter, Dave; Daniels, Alroy; Evans, Geoff; Fourie, Piet; Gilbank, David; Hendricks, Malcolm; Koorts, Willie; Lategan, Deon; Loubser, Egan; Mouries, Sharon; O'Connor, James E.; O'Donoghue, Darragh E.; Potter, Stephen; Sass, Craig; Sickafoose, Amanda A.; Stoffels, John; Swanevelder, Pieter; Titus, Keegan; van Gend, Carel; Visser, Martin; Worters, Hannah L.

    2016-08-01

    SpUpNIC (Spectrograph Upgrade: Newly Improved Cassegrain) is the extensively upgraded Cassegrain Spectrograph on the South African Astronomical Observatory's 74-inch (1.9-m) telescope. The inverse-Cassegrain collimator mirrors and woefully inefficient Maksutov-Cassegrain camera optics have been replaced, along with the CCD and SDSU controller. All moving mechanisms are now governed by a programmable logic controller, allowing remote configuration of the instrument via an intuitive new graphical user interface. The new collimator produces a larger beam to match the optically faster Folded-Schmidt camera design and nine surface-relief diffraction gratings offer various wavelength ranges and resolutions across the optical domain. The new camera optics (a fused silica Schmidt plate, a slotted fold flat and a spherically figured primary mirror, both Zerodur, and a fused silica field-flattener lens forming the cryostat window) reduce the camera's central obscuration to increase the instrument throughput. The physically larger and more sensitive CCD extends the available wavelength range; weak arc lines are now detectable down to 325 nm and the red end extends beyond one micron. A rear-of-slit viewing camera has streamlined the observing process by enabling accurate target placement on the slit and facilitating telescope focus optimisation. An interactive quick-look data reduction tool further enhances the user-friendliness of SpUpNI

  18. Look to the Stars - The APUS Observatory: An Innovative Robotic Telescope for Online Astronomical Education and Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albin, Edward

    2018-01-01

    We report on the American Public University System’s new robotic telescope, located in Charles Town, WV -- an innovative observatory deployed in an online institution of higher education. The instrument is operated by the Department of Space Studies and is situated atop the university’s new Information Technology building. At the heart of the observatory is a Planewave CDK24 telescope, equipped with a SBIG STX-16803 CCD camera. The telescope is a key technological component in the Department's new undergraduate / graduate astronomy concentration. Since the university is a dedicated online educational institution, the acquisition of a fully remote controlled telescope ties closely into the program's philosophy of quality online instruction. Our robotic observatory is intimately integrated into our astronomy curriculum, with the telescope being utilized for original astronomical education and research purposes. For instance, not only is imagery used in the classroom and for laboratory instruction, graduate students in our MS degree program have an opportunity to collect original telescopic data for research / thesis projects. Examples of ongoing investigations with the telescope include observations of exoplanet transits and variable star photometry. When not in use for specific observing projects, the telescope is scripted to conduct autonomous supernova searches by patrolling dozens of galaxies throughout the night. Our goal is to have the instrument scheduled for continuous observing of the heavens throughout the year on all clear evenings.

  19. Performing the Super Instrument

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kallionpaa, Maria

    2016-01-01

    can empower performers by producing super instrument works that allow the concert instrument to become an ensemble controlled by a single player. The existing instrumental skills of the performer can be multiplied and the qualities of regular acoustic instruments extended or modified. Such a situation......The genre of contemporary classical music has seen significant innovation and research related to new super, hyper, and hybrid instruments, which opens up a vast palette of expressive potential. An increasing number of composers, performers, instrument designers, engineers, and computer programmers...... have become interested in different ways of “supersizing” acoustic instruments in order to open up previously-unheard instrumental sounds. Super instruments vary a great deal but each has a transformative effect on the identity and performance practice of the performing musician. Furthermore, composers...

  20. Advanced methods and algorithm for high precision astronomical imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ngole-Mboula, Fred-Maurice

    2016-01-01

    One of the biggest challenges of modern cosmology is to gain a more precise knowledge of the dark energy and the dark matter nature. Fortunately, the dark matter can be traced directly through its gravitational effect on galaxies shapes. The European Spatial Agency Euclid mission will precisely provide data for such a purpose. A critical step is analyzing these data will be to accurately model the instrument Point Spread Function (PSF), which the focus of this thesis.We developed non parametric methods to reliably estimate the PSFs across an instrument field-of-view, based on unresolved stars images and accounting for noise, under sampling and PSFs spatial variability. At the core of these contributions, modern mathematical tools and concepts such as sparsity. An important extension of this work will be to account for the PSFs wavelength dependency. (author) [fr

  1. The Physicist and Astronomer Christoper Scheiner - Biography Letters, Works

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daxecker, Franz

    The Jesuit priest Christopher Scheiner was one of the most influential astronomers of the first half of the 17th century. He was a creative and down-to-earth natural scientist who worked in the fields of astronomy, physics, optics and ophthalmology, while following his vocations as university lecturer, church builder and pastor. In scientific matters he was Galilei's opponent. Their dispute centred on the priority of discovery in regard to the sunspots. Scheiner was not the first to discover the sunspots, but he gave the most detailed account thereofin his main work "Rosa Ursina sive Sol". He was, however, ceaseless in his defense of the geocentric system. In 1891, Anton v.Braunmühl published a biography of Father Scheiner. Ever since then, new documents have come to light, justifying the publication of a new biography. Among the documents now available is Scheiner's hitherto unknown dissertation. Notes taken during his lectures in Ingolstadt provide valuable information on astronomy using the telescope, an invention of his lifetime. His exchange of letters with personalities like Archduke Leopold V of Austria-Tyrol, with scientists like Magini, Galilei, Gassendi, Kepler and confriars Rader, Guldin, Alber, Minutuli, Cysat und Kircher is a source of precious insights. Letters to Scheiner from the Father Generals of his order display evidence of his superiors' zero tolerance for the helincentric system. They also disclose Scheiner's wish to become a missionary in China, the financial difficulties he faced while trying to find a publisher for his "Rosa Ursina sive Sol" and his personal shortcomings. A Scheiner obituary from 1650 was found in Cracow in 2001. It contains information on the troublesome last years of his life and has finally allowed us to determine the year of his birth. Scheiner's personality has been praised as well as criticized by many authors - sometimes depending on their ideological backgrounds. This holds true especially regarding the argument

  2. Astronomía Gamma desde El Leoncito

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rovero, A. C.; Colombo, E.; Sahade, J.; Weekes, T. C.

    La astronomía gamma, en el extremo de energías detectadas hasta el presente, se encuentra en desarrollo en muchas partes del mundo y proporciona resultados sorprendentes a medida que la tecnología avanza en el desarrollo de nuevos detectores. La técnica Cherenkov Atmosférica es la utilizada para la detección, mediante telescopios en tierra, del efecto secundario causado por la radiación gamma de muy altas energías (E ≈ TeV). Por medio de telescopios o arreglos de detectores y utilizando la técnica mencionada, se han podido detectar algunas fuentes puntuales de mucha importancia astrofísica como la Nebulosa del Cangrejo y la galaxia de núcleo activo Markarian 421. El sistema instalado en San Juan, en cooperación con el grupo de Radiación Gamma del Observatorio Whipple, está constituído por tres colectores de 1.5m que registran pulsos de luz generados por las cascadas de partículas producidas por rayos cósmicos de todo tipo al entrar en la atmósfera terrestre. El sistema opera por barrido en ascención recta de la fuente observada que, para esta etapa del experimento, es el Centro Galáctico. Esta fuente extensa es conocida como emisor gamma de energías inferiores al TeV y ha sido observada anteriormente en este rango de energía desde el hemisferio norte pero con elevaciones bajas, situación no óptima para este tipo de técnica. Se presentan los primeros resultados del análisis de los datos obtenidos observando la región del Centro Galáctico, luego de dos años de observaciones, así como una descripción de la técnica Cherenkov Atmosférica y del equipo utilizado en la experiencia.

  3. Stray light field dependence for large astronomical space telescopes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lightsey, Paul A.; Bowers, Charles W.

    2017-09-01

    Future large astronomical telescopes in space will have architectures that expose the optics to large angular extents of the sky. Options for reducing stray light coming from the sky range from enclosing the telescope in a tubular baffle to having an open telescope structure with a large sunshield to eliminate solar illumination. These two options are considered for an on-axis telescope design to explore stray light considerations. A tubular baffle design will limit the sky exposure to the solid angle of the cone in front of the telescope set by the aspect ratio of the baffle length to Primary Mirror (PM) diameter. Illumination from this portion of the sky will be limited to the PM and structures internal to the tubular baffle. Alternatively, an open structure design will allow a large portion of the sky to directly illuminate the PM and Secondary Mirror (SM) as well as illuminating sunshield and other structure surfaces which will reflect or scatter light onto the PM and SM. Portions of this illumination of the PM and SM will be scattered into the optical train as stray light. A Radiance Transfer Function (RTF) is calculated for the open architecture that determines the ratio of the stray light background radiance in the image contributed by a patch of sky having unit radiance. The full 4π steradian of sky is divided into a grid of patches, with the location of each patch defined in the telescope coordinate system. By rotating the celestial sky radiance maps into the telescope coordinate frame for a given pointing direction of the telescope, the RTF may be applied to the sky brightness and the results integrated to get the total stray light from the sky for that pointing direction. The RTF data generated for the open architecture may analyzed as a function of the expanding cone angle about the pointing direction. In this manner, the open architecture data may be used to directly compare to a tubular baffle design parameterized by allowed cone angle based on the

  4. How Do Astronomers Share Data? Reliability and Persistence of Datasets Linked in AAS Publications and a Qualitative Study of Data Practices among US Astronomers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pepe, Alberto; Goodman, Alyssa; Muench, August; Crosas, Merce; Erdmann, Christopher

    2014-08-01

    We analyze data sharing practices of astronomers over the past fifteen years. An analysis of URL links embedded in papers published by the American Astronomical Society reveals that the total number of links included in the literature rose dramatically from 1997 until 2005, when it leveled off at around 1500 per year. The analysis also shows that the availability of linked material decays with time: in 2011, 44% of links published a decade earlier, in 2001, were broken. A rough analysis of link types reveals that links to data hosted on astronomers' personal websites become unreachable much faster than links to datasets on curated institutional sites. To gauge astronomers' current data sharing practices and preferences further, we performed in-depth interviews with 12 scientists and online surveys with 173 scientists, all at a large astrophysical research institute in the United States: the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. Both the in-depth interviews and the online survey indicate that, in principle, there is no philosophical objection to data-sharing among astronomers at this institution. Key reasons that more data are not presently shared more efficiently in astronomy include: the difficulty of sharing large data sets; over reliance on non-robust, non-reproducible mechanisms for sharing data (e.g. emailing it); unfamiliarity with options that make data-sharing easier (faster) and/or more robust; and, lastly, a sense that other researchers would not want the data to be shared. We conclude with a short discussion of a new effort to implement an easy-to-use, robust, system for data sharing in astronomy, at theastrodata.org, and we analyze the uptake of that system to-date.

  5. How do astronomers share data? Reliability and persistence of datasets linked in AAS publications and a qualitative study of data practices among US astronomers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pepe, Alberto; Goodman, Alyssa; Muench, August; Crosas, Merce; Erdmann, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    We analyze data sharing practices of astronomers over the past fifteen years. An analysis of URL links embedded in papers published by the American Astronomical Society reveals that the total number of links included in the literature rose dramatically from 1997 until 2005, when it leveled off at around 1500 per year. The analysis also shows that the availability of linked material decays with time: in 2011, 44% of links published a decade earlier, in 2001, were broken. A rough analysis of link types reveals that links to data hosted on astronomers' personal websites become unreachable much faster than links to datasets on curated institutional sites. To gauge astronomers' current data sharing practices and preferences further, we performed in-depth interviews with 12 scientists and online surveys with 173 scientists, all at a large astrophysical research institute in the United States: the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. Both the in-depth interviews and the online survey indicate that, in principle, there is no philosophical objection to data-sharing among astronomers at this institution. Key reasons that more data are not presently shared more efficiently in astronomy include: the difficulty of sharing large data sets; over reliance on non-robust, non-reproducible mechanisms for sharing data (e.g. emailing it); unfamiliarity with options that make data-sharing easier (faster) and/or more robust; and, lastly, a sense that other researchers would not want the data to be shared. We conclude with a short discussion of a new effort to implement an easy-to-use, robust, system for data sharing in astronomy, at theastrodata.org, and we analyze the uptake of that system to-date.

  6. How do astronomers share data? Reliability and persistence of datasets linked in AAS publications and a qualitative study of data practices among US astronomers.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Pepe

    Full Text Available We analyze data sharing practices of astronomers over the past fifteen years. An analysis of URL links embedded in papers published by the American Astronomical Society reveals that the total number of links included in the literature rose dramatically from 1997 until 2005, when it leveled off at around 1500 per year. The analysis also shows that the availability of linked material decays with time: in 2011, 44% of links published a decade earlier, in 2001, were broken. A rough analysis of link types reveals that links to data hosted on astronomers' personal websites become unreachable much faster than links to datasets on curated institutional sites. To gauge astronomers' current data sharing practices and preferences further, we performed in-depth interviews with 12 scientists and online surveys with 173 scientists, all at a large astrophysical research institute in the United States: the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. Both the in-depth interviews and the online survey indicate that, in principle, there is no philosophical objection to data-sharing among astronomers at this institution. Key reasons that more data are not presently shared more efficiently in astronomy include: the difficulty of sharing large data sets; over reliance on non-robust, non-reproducible mechanisms for sharing data (e.g. emailing it; unfamiliarity with options that make data-sharing easier (faster and/or more robust; and, lastly, a sense that other researchers would not want the data to be shared. We conclude with a short discussion of a new effort to implement an easy-to-use, robust, system for data sharing in astronomy, at theastrodata.org, and we analyze the uptake of that system to-date.

  7. "Word of Discovery": A Planetary Example from Volume I of the Astronomical Journal

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hockey, T.

    1998-09-01

    In 1850, William Lassell (1799-1880) discovered a series of bright white spots, in the south temperate latitudes of Jupiter, unlike any that that been seen before. Lassell's note on these STZ features is a useful example of how astronomical discoveries of the day were communicated among astronomers. Word of Lassell's Spots spread quickly by nineteenth-century standards. This was due, in part, to the recent appearance of journals devoted exclusively to astronomy. The transition from letters as a means of conveying scientific information to journals is reflected in the propagation of Lassell's announcement: a report of Lassell's description of the white spots to the Royal Astronomical Society appeared in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society along with a woodblock print of one of his drawings. This report reappeared shortly thereafter in German translation. It was part of a letter to the editor of the Astronomische Nachrichten, Heinrich Schumacher (1780-1850), from an English correspondent of his, the Reverend Richard Sheepshanks (1974-1855). (Sheepshanks was himself editor of the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.) It then made its way across the Atlantic as a letter from Schumacher to Benjamin Gould (1824-1896), who published it in the first volume of his upstart Astronomical Journal. There it appears in English, again, as Schumacher quoting Sheepshanks quoting Lassell! The observations by Lassell and William Dawes (1799-1868) of this phenomenon also were the first major planetary discovery made using a silvered-glass reflecting telescope. Lassell's Spots have remained in the "astronomical news" of the last 150 years: Most recently, they appeared worldwide in images showing the Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 impact sites.

  8. Climate and carbon-cycle response to astronomical forcing over the last 35 Ma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Vleeschouwer, D.; Palike, H.; Vahlenkamp, M.; Crucifix, M.

    2017-12-01

    On a million-year time scale, the characteristics of insolation forcing caused by cyclical variations in the astronomical parameters of the Earth remain stable. Nevertheless, Earth's climate responded very differently to this forcing during different parts of the Cenozoic. The recently-published ∂18Obenthic megasplice (De Vleeschouwer et al., 2017) allowed for a clear visualization of these changes in global climate response to astronomical forcing. However, many open questions remain regarding how carbon-cycle dynamics influence Earth's climate sensitivity to astronomical climate forcing. To provide insight into the interaction between the carbon cycle and astronomical insolation forcing, we built a benthic carbon isotope (∂13Cbenthic) megasplice for the last 35 Ma, employing the same technique used to build the ∂18Obenthic megasplice. The ∂13Cbenthic megasplice exhibits a strong imprint of the 405 and 100-kyr eccentricity cycles throughout the last 35 Ma. This is intriguing, as the oxygen isotope megasplice looses its eccentricity imprint after the mid-Miocene climatic transition (MMCT; see Fig. 1 in De Vleeschouwer et al., 2017). In other words, the carbon cycle responded completely differently to astronomical forcing, compared to global climate during the late Miocene. We visualize this difference in response by the application of a Gaussian process, which renders the dependence of one variable (here ∂18Obenthic or ∂13Cbenthic) in a multidimensional space (here precession, obliquity and eccentricity). Together, the ∂13Cbenthic and ∂18Obenthic megasplices thus provide a unique tool for paleoclimatology, allowing for the quantification and visualization of the changing paleoclimate and carbon-cycle response to astronomical forcing throughout geologic time. References De Vleeschouwer, D., Vahlenkamp, M., Crucifix, M., Pälike, H., 2017. Alternating Southern and Northern Hemisphere climate response to astronomical forcing during the past 35 m

  9. Instrument Modeling and Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horner, Andrew B.; Beauchamp, James W.

    During the 1970s and 1980s, before synthesizers based on direct sampling of musical sounds became popular, replicating musical instruments using frequency modulation (FM) or wavetable synthesis was one of the “holy grails” of music synthesis. Synthesizers such as the Yamaha DX7 allowed users great flexibility in mixing and matching sounds, but were notoriously difficult to coerce into producing sounds like those of a given instrument. Instrument design wizards practiced the mysteries of FM instrument design.

  10. Nuclear reactor instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duncombe, E.; McGonigal, G.

    1975-01-01

    A liquid metal cooled nuclear reactor is described which has an equal number of fuel sub-assemblies and sensing instruments. Each instrument senses temperature and rate of coolant flow of a coolant derived from a group of three sub-assemblies so that an abnormal value for one sub-assembly will be indicated on three instruments thereby providing for redundancy of up to two of the three instruments. The abnormal value may be a precurser to unstable boiling of coolant

  11. Aeroacoustics of Musical Instruments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fabre, B.; Gilbert, J.; Hirschberg, Abraham; Pelorson, X.

    2012-01-01

    We are interested in the quality of sound produced by musical instruments and their playability. In wind instruments, a hydrodynamic source of sound is coupled to an acoustic resonator. Linear acoustics can predict the pitch of an instrument. This can significantly reduce the trial-and-error process

  12. Preparing astronomical observations and observing with OHP facilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patris J.

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available In addition to the general introduction to observational astronomy given in a past paper (J. Phys. IV France, ERCA 07 (2006 pp 373-390 some tools are given to the observer. These include the general knowledge of what is going to be observed and of the instruments used. A guideline is given to prepare an observing program and to follow it as efficiently as possible. Finally, some examples are given of observations to be made by ERCA participants at OHP observatory.

  13. Planet Formation in Action? - Astronomers may have found the first object clearing its path in the natal disc surrounding a young star

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-02-01

    Using ESO's Very Large Telescope an international team of astronomers has been able to study the short-lived disc of material around a young star that is in the early stages of making a planetary system. For the first time a smaller companion could be detected that may be the cause of the large gap found in the disc. Future observations will determine whether this companion is a planet or a brown dwarf. Planets form from the discs of material around young stars, but the transition from dust disc to planetary system is rapid and few objects are caught during this phase [1]. One such object is T Chamaeleontis (T Cha), a faint star in the small southern constellation of Chamaeleon that is comparable to the Sun, but very near the beginning of its life [2]. T Cha lies about 350 light-years from the Earth and is only about seven million years old. Up to now no forming planets have been found in these transitional discs, although planets in more mature discs have been seen before (eso0842, heic0821). "Earlier studies had shown that T Cha was an excellent target for studying how planetary systems form," notes Johan Olofsson (Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, Heidelberg, Germany), one of the lead authors of two papers in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics that describe the new work. "But this star is quite distant and the full power of the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) was needed to resolve very fine details and see what is going on in the dust disc." The astronomers first observed T Cha using the AMBER instrument and the VLT Interferometer (VLTI) [3]. They found that some of the disc material formed a narrow dusty ring only about 20 million kilometres from the star. Beyond this inner disc, they found a region devoid of dust with the outer part of the disc stretching out into regions beyond about 1.1 billion kilometres from the star. Nuria Huélamo (Centro de Astrobiología, ESAC, Spain), the lead author of the second paper takes up the story: "For us the

  14. Activity status and future plans for the Optical Laboratory of the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buisset, Christophe; Poshyachinda, Saran; Soonthornthum, Boonrucksar; Prasit, Apirat; Alagao, Mary Angelie; Choochalerm, Piyamas; Wanajaroen, Weerapot; Lepine, Thierry; Rabbia, Yves; Aukkaravittayapun, Suparerk; Leckngam, Apichat; Thummasorn, Griangsak; Ngernsujja, Surin; Inpan, Anuphong; Kaewsamoet, Pimon; Lhospice, Esther; Meemon, Panomsak; Artsang, Pornapa; Suwansukho, Kajpanya; Sirichote, Wichit; Paenoi, Jitsupa

    2018-03-01

    The National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (NARIT) has developed since June 2014 an optical laboratory that comprises all the activities and facilities related to the research and development of new instruments in the following areas: telescope design, high dynamic and high resolution imaging systems and spectrographs. The facilities include ZEMAX and Solidwork software for design and simulation activities as well as an optical room with all the equipment required to develop optical setup with cutting-edge performance. The current projects include: i) the development of a focal reducer for the 2.3 m Thai National Telescope (TNT), ii) the development of the Evanescent Wave Coronagraph dedicated to the high contrast observations of star close environment and iii) the development of low resolution spectrographs for the Thai National Telescope and for the 0.7 m telescopes of NARIT regional observatories. In each project, our activities start from the instrument optical and mechanical design to the simulation of the performance, the development of the prototype and finally to the final system integration, alignment and tests. Most of the mechanical parts are manufactured by using the facilities of NARIT precision mechanical workshop that includes a 3-axis Computer Numerical Control (CNC) to machine the mechanical structures and a Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM) to verify the dimensions. In this paper, we give an overview of the optical laboratory activities and of the associated facilities. We also describe the objective of the current projects, present the specifications and the design of the instruments and establish the status of development and we present our future plans.

  15. Astronomical Theory of Early Human Migration (Milutin Milankovic Medal Lecture)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timmermann, Axel; Friedrich, Tobias

    2017-04-01

    Our climate system varies on a wide range of timescales, from seasons to several millions of years. A large part of this variability is internally generated as a result of instabilities of the coupled atmosphere-ocean-ice-carbon cycle system. Other modes of variability, such as glacial cycles, are caused by astronomical forcings with periods of 20, 40, 100 thousand years. These so-called Milankovitch Cycles are associated with earth's axis wobble, axis obliquity and shifts in the eccentricity of earth's orbit around the sun, respectively. When these cycles conspire, they can cause the climate system to plunge into an ice-age. This happened last time 110,000 years ago, when Northern Hemisphere summer radiation decreased substantially and ice-sheets started to form as a result. Around 100,000 years ago northern Hemisphere summer moved again closer to the sun and Homo sapiens started to leave Africa across vegetated corridors in Northeastern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. This first migration wave must have been relatively weak, but it left unequivocal traces in the fossil and archaeological record. Why Homo sapiens embarked on its grand journey across our planet during glacial climate conditions has been subject of an intense debate in various scientific communities. Moreover, the archaeological records of an early exodus around 100 thousand years ago seem to be at odds with paleo-genetic evidences, that place the first dispersal out of Africa around 70-60 thousand years ago. To elucidate what role climate and environmental conditions played in the dispersal of Anatomically Modern Humans out of Africa, we have developed and applied one of the first integrated climate/human migration computer models. The model simulates ice-ages, abrupt climate change, the "peopling" of our planet and captures the arrival time of Homo sapiens in the Levant, Arabian Peninsula, Southern China and Australia in close agreement with paleo climate reconstructions, fossil and

  16. Status of safeguards instrumentation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Higinbotham, W.A.

    The International Atomic Energy Agency is performing safeguards at some nuclear power reactors, 50 bulk processing facilities, and 170 research facilities. Its verification activities require the use of instruments to measure nuclear materials and of surveillance instruments to maintain continuity of knowledge of the locations of nuclear materials. Instruments that are in use and under development to measure weight, volume, concentration, and isotopic composition of nuclear materials, and the major surveillance instruments, are described in connection with their uses at representative nuclear facilities. The current status of safeguards instrumentation and the needs for future development are discussed

  17. Early modern mathematical instruments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Jim

    2011-12-01

    In considering the appropriate use of the terms "science" and "scientific instrument," tracing the history of "mathematical instruments" in the early modern period is offered as an illuminating alternative to the historian's natural instinct to follow the guiding lights of originality and innovation, even if the trail transgresses contemporary boundaries. The mathematical instrument was a well-defined category, shared across the academic, artisanal, and commercial aspects of instrumentation, and its narrative from the sixteenth to the eighteenth century was largely independent from other classes of device, in a period when a "scientific" instrument was unheard of.

  18. The Hunt for Pristine Cretaceous Astronomical Rhythms at Demerara Rise (Cenomanian-Coniacian)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, C.; Meyers, S. R.

    2014-12-01

    Rhythmic Upper Cretaceous strata from Demerara Rise (ODP leg 207) preserve a strong astronomical signature, and this attribute has facilitated the development of continuous astrochronologies to refine the geologic time scale and calibrate Late Cretaceous biogeochemical events. While the mere identification of astronomical rhythms is a crucial first step in many deep-time paleoceanographic investigations, accurate evaluation of often subtle amplitude and frequency modulations are required to: (1) robustly constrain the linkage between climate and sedimentation, and (2) evaluate the plausibility of different theoretical astrodynamical models. The availability of a wide range of geophysical, lithologic and geochemical data from multiple sites drilled at Demerara Rise - when coupled with recent innovations in the statistical analysis of cyclostratigraphic data - provides an opportunity to hunt for the most pristine record of Cretaceous astronomical rhythms at a tropical Atlantic location. To do so, a statistical metric is developed to evaluate the "internal" consistency of hypothesized astronomical rhythms observed in each data set, particularly with regard to the expected astronomical amplitude modulations. In this presentation, we focus on how the new analysis yields refinements to the existing astrochronologies, provides constraints on the linkages between climate and sedimentation (including the deposition of organic carbon-rich sediments at Demerara Rise), and allows a quantitative evaluation of the continuity of deposition across sites at multiple temporal scales.

  19. "She is an astronomer" in Spain; the International Year of Astronomy 2009 and beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Márquez, I.

    2011-11-01

    The work of the Spanish node for the IYA2009 Cornerstoneproject, "She is an Astronomer" is presented. Our team developedseveral projects with the common goal of promoting gender equality andwomen participation in professional and amateur astronomy, andsupporting the training of young women researchers andtechnologists. The main ones were: 1)Calendar "Women astronomerswho made history". We highlighted exceptional women, fromdifferent epochs and countries, whose contributions to theadvancement of science deserve to transcend anonymity and occupy aplace in history.2) "Women in the stars" was a series of 8 TV programsdevoted to the contribution of Spanish women astronomers, made incollaboration with the UNED.3) "Women in Spanish Astronomy: analysis of a peculiar situation: A universe to discover", was the first sociological study of this type, including quantitative and qualitative (individual and group interviews) analyses. 4) The exhibit "She Astronomer", was aimed at teaching astronomy from a new perspective: the relevant contributions by women astronomers from different times and places.The main aims of the "Commission for Women and Astronomy",recently created within the Spanish Astronomical Society (SEA), are alsodescribed.

  20. Polishers around the globe: an overview on the market of large astronomical mirrors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Döhring, Thorsten

    2014-07-01

    Astronomical mirrors are key elements in modern optical telescopes, their dimensions are usually large and their specifications are demanding. Only a limited number of skilled companies respectively institutions around the world are able to master the challenge to polish an individual astronomical mirror, especially in dimensions above one meter. This paper presents an overview on the corresponding market including a listing of polishers around the globe. Therefore valuable information is provided to the astronomical community: Polishers may use the information as a global competitor database, astronomers and project managers may get more transparency on potential suppliers, and suppliers of polishing equipment may learn about unknown potential customers in other parts of the world. An evaluation of the historical market demand on large monolithic astronomical mirrors is presented. It concluded that this is still a niche market with a typical mean rate of 1-2 mirrors per year. Polishing of such mirrors is an enabling technology with impact on the development of technical know-how, public relation, visibility and reputation of the supplier. Within a corresponding technical discussion different polishing technologies are described. In addition it is demonstrated that strategic aspects and political considerations are influencing the selection of the optical finisher.