Sample records for astronomy

  1. Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Seymour, Percy


    With a blend of exciting discoveries and important scientific theory,this innovative and readable introduction to astronomy is ideal for anyone who wants to understand what we know about the universe,and how we know it. Each chapter starts with details of a method of jow astronomers over time have observed the world,and then uses this as a springboard to discuss what they discovered,and why this was important for understanding the cosmos. The last chapter,on dark matter,also focuses on the many things we don''t yet know - reminding us that astronomy,like this book,is a fast-paced and fascinati

  2. Early Astronomy (United States)

    Thurston, Hugh

    The earliest investigations that can be called scientific are concerned with the sky: they are the beginnings of astronomy. Many early civilizations produced astronomical texts, and several cultures that left no written records left monuments and artifacts-ranging from rock paintings to Stonehenge-that show a clear interest in astronomy. Civilizations in China, Mesopotamia, India and Greece had highly developed astronomies, and the astronomy of the Mayas was by no means negligible. Greek astronomy, as developed by the medieval Arab philosophers, evolved into the astronomy of Copernicus. This displaced the earth from the central stationary position that almost all earlier astronomies had assumed. Soon thereafter, in the first decades of the seventeenth century, Kepler found the true shape of the planetary orbits and Galileo introduced the telescope for astronomical observations.

  3. Sustainable Astronomy (United States)

    Blaha, C.; Goetz, J.; Johnson, T.


    Through our International Year of Astronomy outreach effort, we established a sustainable astronomy program and curriculum in the Northfield, Minnesota community. Carleton College offers monthly open houses at Goodsell Observatory and donated its recently "retire" observing equipment to local schools. While public evenings continue to be popular, the donated equipment was underutilized due to a lack of trained student observing assistants. With sponsorship from NASA's IYA Student Ambassador program, the sustainable astronomy project began in 2009 to generate greater interest in astronomy and train middle school and high school students as observing assistants. Carleton physics majors developed curricular materials and instituted regular outreach programs for grades 6-12. The Northfield High School Astronomy Club was created, and Carleton undergraduates taught high school students how to use telescopes and do CCD imaging. During the summer of 2009, Carleton students began the Young Astronomers Summer Experience (YASE) program for middle school students and offered a two-week, astronomy-rich observing and imaging experience at Goodsell Observatory. In concert with NASA's Summer of Innovation initiative, the YASE program was offered again in 2010 and engaged a new group of local middle school students in hands-on scientific experiments and observing opportunities. Members of the high school astronomy club now volunteer as observing assistants in the community and graduates of the YASE programs are eager to continue observing as members of a public service astronomy club when they enter the Northfield High School. These projects are training future scientists and will sustain the public's interest in astronomy long after the end of IYA 2009.

  4. Radio astronomy (United States)

    Kellermann, Kenneth I.; Heeschen, David; Backer, Donald C.; Cohen, Marshall H.; Davis, Michael; Depater, Imke; Deyoung, David; Dulk, George A.; Fisher, J. R.; Goss, W. Miller


    The following subject areas are covered: (1) scientific opportunities (millimeter and sub-millimeter wavelength astronomy; meter to hectometer astronomy; the Sun, stars, pulsars, interstellar masers, and extrasolar planets; the planets, asteroids, and comets; radio galaxies, quasars, and cosmology; and challenges for radio astronomy in the 1990's); (2) recommendations for new facilities (the millimeter arrays, medium scale instruments, and small-scale projects); (3) continuing activities and maintenance, upgrading of telescopes and instrumentation; (4) long range programs and technology development; and (5) social, political, and organizational considerations.

  5. Greek astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Heath, Sir Thomas L


    Astronomy as a science began with the Ionian philosophers, with whom Greek philosophy and mathematics also began. While the Egyptians and Babylonians had accomplished much of astronomical worth, it remained for the unrivalled speculative genius of the Greeks, in particular, their mathematical genius, to lay the foundations of the true science of astronomy. In this classic study, a noted scholar discusses in lucid detail the specific advances made by the Greeks, many of whose ideas anticipated the discoveries of modern astronomy.Pythagoras, born at Samos about 572 B.C., was probably the first

  6. Neutrino astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In recent years, there has been considerable discussion on the field called neutrino astronomy which represents exciting prospect in that it deals with the radiations which are distinct from electromagnetic spectra. Because of the unique, enormously long interaction mean free path of neutrinos, this field can in principle give extremely valuable complementary information about the universe, in particular about the conditions in the core of the sun and the energy balance and extent of the galaxy. Remarkable difference is observed when outlining of the development of neutrino astronomy is attempted in a manner similar to that for radio astronomy. The development on solar neutrinos, calculation of solar neutrino flux, solar neutrino search experiments, efforts to resolve the discrepancy between theory and experiment concerning the neutrinos from the sun, chemistry consideration, nuclear physics problems, astrophysical calculation, neutrino physics and other physical accomplishments are reviewed in the report. (Iwase, T.)

  7. Astronomy Allies (United States)

    Flewelling, Heather; Alatalo, Katherine A.


    Imagine you are a grad student, at your first conference, and a prominent senior scientist shows interest in your work, and he makes things get way too personal? What would you do? Would you report it? Or would you decide, after a few other instances of harassment, that maybe you shouldn't pursue astronomy? Harassment is under-reported, the policies can be difficult to understand or hard to find, and it can be very intimidating as a young scientist to report it to the proper individuals. The Astronomy Allies Program is designed to help you with these sorts of problems. We are a group of volunteers that will help by doing the following: provide safe walks home during the conference, someone to talk to confidentially, as an intervener, as a resource to report harassment. The Allies are a diverse group of scientists committed to acting as mentors, advocates, and liaisons. The Winter 2015 AAS meeting was the first meeting that had Astronomy Allies, and Astronomy Allies provided a website for information, as well as a twitter, email, and phone number for anyone who needs our help or would like more information. We posted about the Astronomy Allies on the Women In Astronomy blog, and this program resonates with many people: either they want to help, or they have experienced harassment in the past and don't want to see it in the future. Harassment may not happen to most conference participants, but it's wrong, it's against the AAS anti-harassment policy ( ), it can be very damaging, and if it happens to even one person, that is unacceptable. We intend to improve the culture at conferences to make it so that harassers feel they can't get away with their unprofessional behavior.

  8. Early Astronomy (United States)

    Thurston, Hugh

    The earliest investigations that we can relate to what is now science are observations of the sky: Astronomy. The earliest written records of every civilization we know of - from China, Egypt, the Tigris-Euphrates and Indus valleys, Central America, the Andes, and so forth - all contain at least some astronomical texts. There are in addition monuments and artifacts that show a clear interest in astronomy, such as Stonehenge and rock paintings, from cultures that left no written records. The interest in celestial phenomena contributed to the development of Babylonian arithmetic and Greek geometry.

  9. Astronomy essentials

    CERN Document Server

    Brass, Charles O


    REA's Essentials provide quick and easy access to critical information in a variety of different fields, ranging from the most basic to the most advanced. As its name implies, these concise, comprehensive study guides summarize the essentials of the field covered. Essentials are helpful when preparing for exams, doing homework and will remain a lasting reference source for students, teachers, and professionals. Astronomy includes the historical perspective of astronomy, sky basics and the celestial coordinate systems, a model and the origin of the solar system, the sun, the planets, Kepler'

  10. Radio astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This report highlights radio astronomy research of the 40th IAU commission in the years 1982-1984. Radio imaging of different objects are treated in separate sections: solar system, galaxy, supernovae, extragalactic objects. The paper begins with a section on radio instrumentation

  11. Extragalactic astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This book condenses the author's yearly semester lectures on 'Extra galactic Astronomy' held almost without interruption over two decades at Cordoba University for students of Astronomy. After a first chapter on Morphology and Classification of galaxies, the second gives most of the basic information about normal galaxies as individuals. Active galaxies are described in chapter III whilst chapter IV deals with the mutual relationship between galaxies and their environment. The Scale of distance is considered in chapter V. Distance indicators are introduced and several conflicting viewpoints of different schools are presented. Chapter VI deals with Cosmology, just to give the necessary elements for chapter VII where the relation between gravitational instability and galaxy formation is discussed. Chapter VIII is an appendix containing additional notes. (Auth.)

  12. Grassroots Astronomy (United States)

    Marvel, Kevin B.

    Congress has a large impact on the amount and quality of astronomical research that takes place in the United States. By funding NASA and NSF, as well as other agencies such as the Department of Education and the Department of Defense, the Federal Government enables U.S. astronomers to perform cutting edge research. However, Congress makes decisions based on input from citizens. It the citizens are silent on an issue, Congress does not know it exists. Last summer the U.S.amatuer community rallied in support of professional research, resulting in a healthy budget for both NASA and NSF astronomy research. I will present a summary of how the funding process works and how and why amateurs can and should help ensure continued research funding for U.S. astronomy.

  13. Infrared astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This volume contains lectures describing the important achievements in infrared astronomy. The topics included are galactic infrared sources and their role in star formation, the nature of the interstellar medium and galactic structure, the interpretation of infrared, optical and radio observations of extra-galactic sources and their role in the origin and structure of the universe, instrumental techniques and a review of future space observations. (C.F.)

  14. Chaco astronomies (United States)

    Martín López, Alejandro


    This presentation discusses the result of 18 years of ethnographic and ethnohistorical studies on Chaco astronomies. The main features of the systems of astronomical knowledge of the Chaco Aboriginal groups will be discussed. In particular we will discuss the relevance of the Milky Way, the role of the visibility of the Pleiades, the ways in which the celestial space is represented, the constitution of astronomical orientations in geographic space, etc. We also address a key feature of their vision of the cosmos: the universe is seen by these groups as a socio-cosmos, where humans and non-humans are related. These are therefore actually socio-cosmologies. We will link this to the theories of Chaco Aboriginal groups about power and political relations.We will discuss how the study of Aboriginal astronomies must be performed along with the studies about astronomies of Creole people and European migrants, as well as anthropological studies about the science teaching in the formal education system and by the mass media. In this form we will discuss the relevance of a very complex system of interethnic relations for the conformation of these astronomical representations and practices.We will also discuss the general methodological implications of this case for the ethnoastronomy studies. In particular we will talk about the advantages of a study of regional scope and about the key importance of put in contact the ethnoastronomy with contemporary issues in social sciences.We also analyze the importance of ethnoastronomy studies in relation to studies of sociology of science, especially astronomy. We also study the potential impact on improving formal and informal science curricula and in shaping effective policies to protect the tangible and intangible astronomical heritage in a context of respect for the rights of Aboriginal groups.

  15. Infrared Astronomy (United States)

    Mampaso, A.; Prieto, M.; Sánchez, F.


    What do we understand of the birth and death of stars? What is the nature of the tiny dust grains that permeate our Galaxy and other galaxies? And how likely is the existence of brown dwarfs, extrasolar planets or other sub-stellar mass objects? These are just a few of the questions that can now be addressed in a new era of infrared observations. IR astronomy has been revolutionised over the past few years by the widespread availability of large, very sensitive IR arrays and the success of IR satellites (IRAS in particular). Several IR space missions due for launch over the next few years promise an exciting future too. For these reasons, the IV Canary Islands Winter School of Astrophysics was dedicated to this burgeoning field. Its primary goal was to introduce graduate students and researchers from other areas to the important new observations and physical ideas that are emerging in this wide-ranging field of research. Lectures from nine leading researchers, renowned for their teaching abilities, are gathered in this volume. These nine chapters provide an excellent introduction as well as a thorough and up-to-date review of developments - essential reading for graduate students entering IR astronomy, and professionals from other areas who realise the importance that IR astronomy may have on their research.

  16. Learning Astronomy by Doing Astronomy (United States)

    Percy, J. R.


    In the modern science curriculum, students should learn science knowledge or "facts"; they should develop science skills, strategies, and habits of mind; they should understand the applications of science to technology, society, and the environment; and they should cultivate appropriate attitudes toward science. While science knowledge may be taught through traditional lecture-and-textbook methods, theories of learning (and extensive experience) show that other aspects of the curriculum are best taught by doing science -- not just hands-on activities, but "minds-on" engagement. That means more than the usual "cookbook" activities in which students use a predetermined procedure to achieve a predetermined result. The activities should be "authentic"; they should mirror the actual scientific process. In this presentation, I will describe several ways to include science processes within astronomy courses at the middle school, high school, and introductory university level. Among other things, I will discuss: topics that reflect cultural diversity and "the nature of science"; strategies for developing science process skills through projects and other practical work; activities based on those developed and carried out by amateur astronomers; topics and activities suitable for technical-level courses (we refer to them as "applied" in my province); projects for astronomy clubs and science fairs; and topics that expose students to astronomy research within lecture courses.

  17. Radio astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Alder, Berni


    Methods in Computational Physics, Volume 14: Radio Astronomy is devoted to the role of the digital computer both as a control device and as a calculator in addressing problems related to galactic radio noise. This volume contains four chapters and begins with a technical description of the hardware and the special data-handling problems of using radioheliography, with an emphasis on a selection of observational results obtained with the Culgoora radioheliograph and their significance to solar physics and to astrophysics in general. The subsequent chapter examines interstellar dispersion, i

  18. Elementary astronomy (United States)

    Fierro, J.


    In developing nations such as Mexico, basic science education has scarcely improved. There are multiple reasons for this problem; they include poor teacher training and curricula that are not challenging for students. I shall suggest ways in which astronomy can be used to improve basic education, it is so attractive that it can be employed to teach how to read and write, learn a second language, mathematics, physics, as well as geography. If third world nations do not teach science in an adequate way, they will be in serious problems when they will try to achieve a better standard of living for their population. I shall also address informal education, it is by this means that most adults learn and keep up to date with subjects that are not their specialty. If we provide good outreach programs in developing nations we can aid adult training; astronomy is ideal since it is particularly multidisciplinary. In particular radio and television programs are useful for popularization since they reach such wide audiences.

  19. - Digitizing Astronomy Resources (United States)

    Hardegree-Ullman, Kevin; Impey, C. D.; Austin, C.; Patikkal, A.; Paul, M.; Ganesan, N.


    Teach Astronomy—a new, free online resource—can be used as a teaching tool in non-science major introductory college level astronomy courses, and as a reference guide for casual learners and hobbyists. Digital content available on Teach Astronomy includes: a comprehensive introductory astronomy textbook by Chris Impey, Wikipedia astronomy articles, images from Astronomy Picture of the Day archives and (new) AstroPix database, two to three minute topical video clips by Chris Impey, podcasts from 365 Days of Astronomy archives, and an RSS feed of astronomy news from Science Daily. Teach Astronomy features an original technology called the Wikimap to cluster, display, and navigate site search results. Development of Teach Astronomy was motivated by steep increases in textbook prices, the rapid adoption of digital resources by students and the public, and the modern capabilities of digital technology. This past spring semester Teach Astronomy was used as content supplement to lectures in a massive, open, online course (MOOC) taught by Chris Impey. Usage of Teach Astronomy has been steadily growing since its initial release in August of 2012. The site has users in all corners of the country and is being used as a primary teaching tool in at least four states.

  20. Binocular astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Tonkin, Stephen


    Binoculars have, for many, long been regarded as an “entry level” observational tool, and relatively few have used them as a serious observing instrument. This is changing! Many people appreciate the relative comfort of two-eyed observing, but those who use binoculars come to realize that they offer more than comfort. The view of the stars is more aesthetically pleasing and therefore binocular observers tend to observe more frequently and for longer periods. Binocular Astronomy, 2nd Edition, extends its coverage of small and medium binoculars to large and giant (i.e., up to 300mm aperture) binoculars and also binoviewers, which brings the work into the realm of serious observing instruments. Additionally, it goes far deeper into the varying optical characteristics of binoculars, giving newcomers and advanced astronomers the information needed to make informed choices on purchasing a pair. It also covers relevant aspects of the physiology of binocular (as in “both eyes”) observation. The first edition ...

  1. Teaching and Learning Astronomy (United States)

    Pasachoff, Jay; Percy, John


    Preface; Part I. Astronomy in the Curriculum Around the World: Preface; 1. Why astronomy is useful and should be included in the school curriculum John R. Percy; 2. Astronomy and mathematics education Rosa M. Ros; 3. Astronomy in the curriculum around the world; 4. Engaging gifted science students through astronomy Robert Hollow; 5. Poster highlights: astronomy in the curriculum around the world; Part II. Astronomy Education Research: Preface; 6. Astronomy education research down under John M. Broadfoot and Ian S. Ginns; 7. A contemporary review of K-16 astronomy education research Janelle M. Bailey and Timothy F. Slater; 8. Implementing astronomy education research Leonarda Fucili; 9. The Astronomy Education Review: report on a new journal Sidney C. Wolff and Andrew Fraknoi; 10. Poster highlights: astronomy education research; Part III. Educating Students: Preface; 11. Textbooks for K-12 astronomy Jay M. Pasachoff; 12. Distance/internet astronomy education David H. McKinnon; 13. Educating students with robotic telescopes - open discussion; 14. Poster highlights - educating students; Part IV. Educating teachers: Preface; 15. Pre-service astronomy education of teachers Mary Kay Hemenway; 16. In-service education of teachers Michèle Gerbaldi; 17. Poster highlights: educating teachers; Part V. Astronomy and Pseudoscience: Preface; 18. Astronomy, pseudoscience and rational thinking Jayant V. Narlikar; 19. Astronomical pseudosciences in North America John R. Percy and Jay M. Pasachoff; Part VI. Astronomy and Culture: Preface; 20. Teaching astronomy in other cultures: archeoastronomy Julieta Fierro; 21. Poster highlights: astronomy and culture; Part VII. Astronomy in Developing Countries: Preface; 22. Astronomy Curriculum for developing countries Case Rijsdijk; 23. Science education resources for the developing countries James C. White II; Part VIII. Public Outreach in Astronomy: Preface; 24. What makes informal education programs successful? Nahide Craig and Isabel

  2. Innovation in Astronomy Education (United States)

    Pasachoff, Jay M.; Ros, Rosa M.; Pasachoff, Naomi


    Preface; Part I. General Strategies for Effective Teaching: Introduction; 1. Main objectives of SpS2; 2. Learning astronomy by doing astronomy; 3. Hands-on Universe-Europe; 4. Life on Earth in the atmosphere of the Sun; 5. A model of teaching astronomy to pre-service teachers; 6. How to teach, learn about, and enjoy astronomy; 7. Clickers: a new teaching tool of exceptional promise; 8. Educational opportunities in pro-am collaboration; 9. Teaching history of astronomy to second-year engineering students; 10. Teaching the evolution of stellar and Milky Way concepts through the ages; 11. Educational efforts of the International Astronomical Union; 12. Astronomy in culture; 13. Light pollution: a tool for astronomy education; 14. Astronomy by distance learning; 15. Edible astronomy demonstrations; 16. Amateur astronomers as public outreach partners; 17. Does the Sun rotate around Earth or Earth rotate around the Sun?; 18. Using sounds and sonifications for astronomy outreach; 19. Teaching astronomy and the crisis in science education; 20. Astronomy for all as part of a general education; Poster abstracts; Part II. Connecting Astronomy with the Public: Introduction; 21. A status report from the Division XII working group; 22. Outreach using media; 23. Astronomy podcasting; 24. IAU's communication strategy, hands-on science communication, and the communication of the planet definition discussion; 25. Getting a word in edgeways: the survival of discourse in audiovisual astronomy; 26. Critical evaluation of the new Hall of Astronomy; 27. Revitalizing astronomy teaching through research on student understanding; Poster abstracts; Part III. Effective Use of Instruction and Information Technology: Introduction; 28. ESO's astronomy education program; 29. U.S. student astronomy research and remote observing projects; 30. Global network of autonomous observatories dedicated to student research; 31. Remote telescopes in education: report of an Australian study; 32. Visualizing

  3. Astronomy in the City for Astronomy Education (United States)

    Ros, Rosa Maria; García, Beatriz


    Astronomy is part of our culture. Astronomy cannot be isolated in a classroom, it has to be integrated in the normal life of teachers and students. “Astronomy in the city” is an important part of NASE (Network for Astronomy School Education). In each NASE course we introduce a “working group session” chaired by a local expert in cultural astronomy. The chair introduces several examples of astronomy in their city and after that, the participants have the opportunity to discuss and mention several similar examples. After this session all participants visit one or two sites proposed and introduced by the chair.After more than 5 years using this method we visited and discovered several examples of astronomy in the city:• Astronomy in ancient typical cloths• Archeological temples oriented according the Sun rise or set.• Petroglyphs with astronomical meaning.• Astronomy in monuments.• Sundials.• Oriented Colonial churches• Astronomy in SouvenirsIn any case, teachers and students discover that Astronomy is part of their everyday life. They can take into account the Sun's path when they park their car or when they take a bus "what is the best part in order to be seat in the shadow during the journey?" The result is motivation to go with “open eyes” when they are in the street and they try to get more and more information about their surroundings.The most significant characteristic of NASE is that the ”Local NASE Working Group” (LWG) in each country continues with astronomy activities using our materials and new materials created by them. These LWG are integrated by 6 to 8 teachers and professors that participated actively in NASE courses. They maintains alive the program and increases the number of students which can learn through our didactical proposal. There are more than 25 LWG that teach and organize activities on astronomy (education and/or communication) in about 20 countries.In summary, one of the main activities is to introduce local

  4. Astronomy and Politics (United States)

    Steele, John M.

    The relationship between astronomy and politics is a complex but important part of understanding the practice of astronomy throughout history. This chapter explores some of the ways that astronomy, astrology, and politics have interacted, placing particular focus on the way that astronomy and astrology have been used for political purposes by both people in power and people who wish to influence a ruler's policy. Also discussed are the effects that politics has had on the development of astronomy and, in particular, upon the recording and preservation of astronomical knowledge.

  5. African Cultural Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Holbrook, Jarita C; Medupe, R. Thebe; Current Archaeoastronomy and Ethnoastronomy research in Africa


    Astronomy is the science of studying the sky using telescopes and light collectors such as photographic plates or CCD detectors. However, people have always studied the sky and continue to study the sky without the aid of instruments this is the realm of cultural astronomy. This is the first scholarly collection of articles focused on the cultural astronomy of Africans. It weaves together astronomy, anthropology, and Africa. The volume includes African myths and legends about the sky, alignments to celestial bodies found at archaeological sites and at places of worship, rock art with celestial imagery, and scientific thinking revealed in local astronomy traditions including ethnomathematics and the creation of calendars. Authors include astronomers Kim Malville, Johnson Urama, and Thebe Medupe; archaeologist Felix Chami, and geographer Michael Bonine, and many new authors. As an emerging subfield of cultural astronomy, African cultural astronomy researchers are focused on training students specifically for do...

  6. Armenian Cultural Astronomy (United States)

    Farmanyan, S. V.; Mickaelian, A. M.


    Cultural Astronomy is the reflection of sky events in various fields of nations' culture. In foreign literature this field is also called "Astronomy in Culture" or "Astronomy and Culture". Cultural astronomy is the set of interdisciplinary fields studying the astronomical systems of current or ancient societies and cultures. It is manifested in Religion, Mythology, Folklore, Poetry, Art, Linguistics and other fields. In recent years, considerable attention has been paid to this sphere, particularly international organizations were established, conferences are held and journals are published. Armenia is also rich in cultural astronomy. The present paper focuses on Armenian archaeoastronomy and cultural astronomy, including many creations related to astronomical knowledge; calendars, rock art, mythology, etc. On the other hand, this subject is rather poorly developed in Armenia; there are only individual studies on various related issues (especially many studies related to Anania Shirakatsi) but not coordinated actions to manage this important field of investigation.

  7. Astronomy in Argentina

    CERN Document Server

    Muriel, Hernán


    This article analyses the current state of Astronomy in Argentina and describes its origins. We briefly describe the institutions where astronomical research takes place, the observational facilities available, the training of staff and professionals, and the role of the institutions in scientific promotion. We also discuss the outreach of Astronomy towards the general public, as well as amateur activities. The article ends with an analysis of the future prospects of astronomy in Argentina.

  8. Statistics in astronomy


    Feigelson, Eric D.


    Perhaps more than other physical sciences, astronomy is frequently statistical in nature. The objects under study are inaccessible to direct manipulation in the laboratory, so the astronomer is restricted to observing a few external characteristics and inferring underlying properties and physics. Astronomy played a profound role in the historical development of statistics from the ancient Greeks through the 19th century. But the fields drifted apart in the 20th century as astronomy turned tow...

  9. Space and astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kirkland, Kyle


    Some daring explorers like to study distant frontiers by venturing out into them, but others prefer to study them by bringing them, or representative samples, a little closer to the lab. Both options are pursued in the fields of space and astronomy. Space exploration and astronomy are intricately linked and are examined in-depth in this guide. Dedicated to the scientists who explore the frontiers of space and astronomy-and the results of their unfamiliar findings-each chapter in Space and Astronomy explores one of the frontiers of this science. The development of technology, such as rocket pro

  10. Astronomy in Indian Schools (United States)

    Bhatia, V. B.

    Tradition of astronomy in India goes back to ancient times. Many festivals and rituals are associated with astronomical phenomena. Indian children start learning rudiments of astronomy from primary classes. But primary teachers are not equipped to handle this subject so not much learning actually takes place. The first serious interface with astronomy occurs when children reach class X when they are 15 years old. Till last year astronomy was there in class XII also but it has now been dropped. This is a serious setback for the study of astronomy. In class X astronomy forms part of general science. Since children at this stage are not proficient in physics and mathematics the subject remains descriptive though there are useful activities for children to do. However the teachers are not equipped to handle this subject and there is no help in the form of visual material. So the subject remains neglected. The Indian astronomical community can help by training teachers and providing visual material. It must also urge authorities to reintroduce astronomy in class XII if astronomy is to flourish in India. Moreover India needs to network with developing countries share experiences with them and evolve a strategy that promotes astronomy.

  11. Extragalactic infrared astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The paper concerns the field of Extragalactic Infrared Astronomy, discussed at the Fourth RAL Workshop on Astronomy and Astrophysics. Fifteen papers were presented on infrared emission from extragalactic objects. Both ground-(and aircraft-) based and IRAS infrared data were reviewed. The topics covered star formation in galaxies, active galactic nuclei and cosmology. (U.K.)

  12. Indian Astronomy: History of (United States)

    Mercier, R.; Murdin, P.


    From the time of A macronryabhat under dota (ca AD 500) there appeared in India a series of Sanskrit treatises on astronomy. Written always in verse, and normally accompanied by prose commentaries, these served to create an Indian tradition of mathematical astronomy which continued into the 18th century. There are as well texts from earlier centuries, grouped under the name Jyotishaveda macronn d...

  13. Handbook of Practical Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Roth, Günter D


    With amateurs, students, and teachers of astronomy in high schools and colleges particularly in mind, the Handbook of Practical Astronomy is an essential source to demonstrate trends and variety of astronomical observations. The book presents the substance of celestial bodies for the amateur observer: the planets, the stars, and the galaxies. The sun is the local link to the other stars, the nexus of cosmic evolution. The solar system is made up by the sun and all the celestial bodies orbit it. This system is of special interest for the observing amateur. The Handbook of Practial Astronomy spans astronomy, education and computing. Like many other fields of science, astronomy has become digitized and data rich in recent years. Besides the references at the end of each chapter, there are the notes in the margins with astronomical news and observing highlights on the web.

  14. History of Oriental Astronomy (United States)

    Ansari, S. M. Razaullah


    This volume deals specifically with recent original research in the history of Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Islamic, and Indian astronomy. It strikes a balance between landmarks of history of Ancient and Medieval Astronomy in the Orient on one hand, and on the other the transmission of the European Astronomy into the countries of the Orient. Most contributions are based on research by the experts in this field. The book also indicates the status of astronomy research in non-European cultural areas of the world. The book is especially of interest to historians of astronomy and science, and students of cultural heritage. Link:

  15. Joseph Henry and Astronomy (United States)

    Rothenberg, Marc


    Joseph Henry (1797-1878) is best known for his work in electromagnetism and as the first secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. But he was also a pioneer solar physicist, an early advocate of US participation in astrophysics, and a facilitator of international cooperation in astronomy. This paper will briefly trace his role in the development of the US astronomical community from the time he taught astronomy at Princeton in the 1830s through his death, focusing on failed efforts to persuade US astronomers and patrons of astronomy that the best path for US astronomy should be astrophysics. He thought that the US could make a more significant contribution to astronomy science by striking out on a less travelled path rather than competing with the established European observatories.

  16. Peer Instruction for Astronomy (United States)

    Green, Paul

    Peer Instruction for Astronomy is an instructor's guide to an exciting and easily-implemented enhancement for lecture classes in introductory astronomy. Application of this powerful and efficient teaching technique requires that the instructor have on hand a large number of thought-provoking, conceptual short answer questions aimed at a variety of levels. While significant numbers of such questions have been published for use in Physics, Peer Instruction for Astronomy provides the first such compilation for Astronomy, and includes hints on use of the technique and applications of the method. KEY TOPICS: Covers peer instruction, incentives, a large database of conceptual questions for use in class, and a list of readings and resources. MARKET: Ideal for introductory astronomy instructors at the undergraduate or advanced high school level.

  17. Teaching Astronomy with Technology (United States)

    Austin, Carmen; Impey, Chris David; Wenger, Matthew


    Students today are expected to have access to computers and the Internet. Students young and old, in school and out of school, are interested in learning about astronomy, and have computers to use for this. Teach Astronomy is a website with a comprehensive digital astronomy textbook freely available to students and educators. In addition to the textbook, there are astronomy Wikipedia articles, image archives from Astronomy Picture of the Day and AstroPix, and video lectures covering all topics of astronomy. Teach Astronomy has a unique search tool called the wikimap that can be used to search through all of the resources on the site. Astronomy: State of the Art (ASOTA) is a massive, open, online course (MOOC). Over 18,000 students have enrolled over the past year and half. This MOOC has been presented in various forms. First, only to students on the web, with content released weekly on host site Udemy. Then to university students who met formally in the classroom for educational activities, but were also expected to watch lectures online on their own time. Presently, it is available online for students to go at their own pace. In the future it will be available in an extended format on a new host site, Coursera. ASOTA instructors use social media to interact with students. Students ask questions via the course host site, Udemy. Live question and answer sessions are conducted using Google Hangouts on Air, and interesting and relevant astronomy news, or supplementary educational content is shared via the ASOTA Facebook page. Teaching on the Internet may seem impersonal and impractical, but by learning to use all of these tools, instructors have the ability to interact with students, and keep them engaged.

  18. Astronomy and culture

    CERN Document Server

    Hetherington, Edith


    While astronomy is a burgeoning science, with tremendous increases in knowledge every year, it also has a tremendous past, one that has altered humanity's understanding of our place in the universe. The impact of astronomy on culture - whether through myths and stories, or through challenges to the intellectual status quo - is incalculable. This volume in the Greenwood Guides to the Universe series examines how human cultures, in all regions and time periods, have tried to make sense of the wonders of the universe. Astronomy and Culture shows students how people throughout time have struggled

  19. Mathematical Astronomy in India (United States)

    Plofker, Kim

    Astronomy in South Asia's Sanskrit tradition, apparently originating in simple calendric computations regulating the timing of ancient ritual practices, expanded over the course of two or three millennia to include detailed spherical models, an endless variety of astrological systems, and academic mathematics in general. Assimilating various technical models, methods, and genres from the astronomy of neighboring cultures, Indian astronomers created new forms that were in turn borrowed by their foreign counterparts. Always recognizably related to the main themes of Eurasian geocentric mathematical astronomy, Indian astral science nonetheless maintained its culturally distinct character until Keplerian heliocentrism and Newtonian mechanics replaced it in colonial South Asia's academic mainstream.

  20. Astronomy in Ukraine

    CERN Document Server

    Pavlenko, Ya V; Vavilova, I B; Pavlenko, Ya.V.


    The current and prospective status of astronomical research in Ukraine is discussed. A brief history of astronomical research in Ukraine is presented and the system organizing scientific activity is described, including astronomy education, institutions and staff, awarding higher degrees/titles, government involvement, budgetary investments and international cooperation. Individuals contributing significantly to the field of astronomy and their accomplishments are mentioned. Major astronomical facilities, their capabilities, and their instrumentation are described. In terms of the number of institutions and personnel engaged in astronomy, and of past accomplishments, Ukraine ranks among major nations of Europe. Current difficulties associated with political, economic and technological changes are addressed and goals for future research activities presented.

  1. Discovering Astronomy Through Poetry (United States)

    Mannone, John C.


    The literature is replete with astronomical references. And much of that literature is poetry. Using this fact, not only can the teacher infuse a new appreciation of astronomy, but also, the student has the opportunity to rediscover history through astronomy. Poetry can be an effective icebreaker in the introduction of new topics in physics and astronomy, as well as a point of conclusion to a lecture. This presentation will give examples of these things from the ancient literature (sacred Hebraic texts), classical literature (Homer's Iliad and Odyssey), traditional poetry (Longfellow, Tennyson and Poe) and modern literature (Frost, Kooser, and others, including the contemporary work of this author).

  2. Astronomy, Astrology, and Medicine (United States)

    Greenbaum, Dorian Gieseler

    Astronomy and astrology were combined with medicine for thousands of years. Beginning in Mesopotamia in the second millennium BCE and continuing into the eighteenth century, medical practitioners used astronomy/astrology as an important part of diagnosis and prescription. Throughout this time frame, scientists cited the similarities between medicine and astrology, in addition to combining the two in practice. Hippocrates and Galen based medical theories on the relationship between heavenly bodies and human bodies. In an enduring cultural phenomenon, parts of the body as well as diseases were linked to zodiac signs and planets. In Renaissance universities, astronomy and astrology were studied by students of medicine. History records a long tradition of astrologer-physicians. This chapter covers the topic of astronomy, astrology, and medicine from the Old Babylonian period to the Enlightenment.

  3. Cultural Astronomy in Japan (United States)

    Renshaw, Steven L.

    While Japan is known more for its contributions to modern astronomy than its archaeoastronomical sites, there is still much about the culture's heritage that is of interest in the study of cultural astronomy. This case study provides an overview of historical considerations necessary to understand the place of astronomy in Japanese society as well as methodological considerations that highlight traditional approaches that have at times been a barrier to interdisciplinary research. Some specific areas of study in the cultural astronomy of Japan are discussed including examples of contemporary research based on interdisciplinary approaches. Japan provides a fascinating background for scholars who are willing to go beyond their curiosity for sites of alignment and approach the culture with a desire to place astronomical iconography in social context.

  4. Astronomy in Second Life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gauthier, A.


    Full Text Available Second Life (SL is a multi-user virtual environment that is not limited to adult social entertainment. SL is also a 3D playground for innovative instructors and education/outreach professionals in the sciences. Astronomy and space science have a presence in SL, but it could be so much more. This paper describes some of the current astronomy themed spaces in SL and briefly discusses future innovations.

  5. Bad Astronomy Goes Hollywood (United States)

    Plait, P.


    It can be argued that astronomy is the oldest of all the sciences, so you'd think that after all this time people would have a pretty good understanding of it. In reality, however, misconceptions about astronomy abound, and even basic concepts are misunderstood. There are many sources of these cosmic misconceptions, including incorrect textbooks, parents and/or teachers who don't understand astronomy and therefore spread misinformation, urban legends, and so on. Perhaps the most pervasive source of bad astronomy is Hollywood. Science fiction movies are enormously popular, but are commonly written and directed by people who don't have even a passing familiarity with astronomy. The smash hit "Armageddon" (the number one box office movie of 1998), for example, used vast quantities of incorrect astronomy in the plot. It reinforced such popular misconceptions as huge asteroids impacting the Earth with little warning, small meteorites being hot when they impact, air existing in space, and that a simple bomb can blow up an asteroid the size of a small moon (even when the bomb is buried only 800 feet deep!). However, movie scenes can be used as a hook that engages the student, helping them learn and remember the correct science. In this talk, I will light-heartedly discuss specific examples of common misinformation, using movie clips, diagrams, and a splash of common sense to show just where Hollywood gets it wrong, and what you can do to help students and the public get it right.

  6. Conceptual frameworks in astronomy (United States)

    Pundak, David


    How to evaluate students' astronomy understanding is still an open question. Even though some methods and tools to help students have already been developed, the sources of students' difficulties and misunderstanding in astronomy is still unclear. This paper presents an investigation of the development of conceptual systems in astronomy by 50 engineering students, as a result of learning a general course on astronomy. A special tool called Conceptual Frameworks in Astronomy (CFA) that was initially used in 1989, was adapted to gather data for the present research. In its new version, the tool included 23 questions, and five to six optional answers were given for each question. Each of the answers was characterized by one of the four conceptual astronomical frameworks: pre-scientific, geocentric, heliocentric and sidereal or scientific. The paper describes the development of the tool and discusses its validity and reliability. Using the CFA we were able to identify the conceptual frameworks of the students at the beginning of the course and at its end. CFA enabled us to evaluate the paradigmatic change of students following the course and also the extent of the general improvement in astronomical knowledge. It was found that the measure of the students’ improvement (gain index) was g = 0.37. Approximately 45% of the students in the course improved their understanding of conceptual frameworks in astronomy and 26% deepened their understanding of the heliocentric or sidereal conceptual frameworks.

  7. Rescuing Middle School Astronomy (United States)

    Mayo, L. A.; Janney, D.


    There is a crisis in education at the middle school level (Spellings, 2006). Recent studies point to large disparities in middle school performance in schools with high minority populations. The largest disparities exist in areas of math and science. Astronomy has a universal appeal for K-12 students but is rarely taught at the middle school level. When it is taught at all it is usually taught in isolation with few references in other classes such as other sciences (e.g. physics, biology, and chemistry), math, history, geography, music, art, or English. The problem is greatest in our most challenged school districts. With scores in reading and math below national averages in these schools and with most state achievement tests ignoring subjects like astronomy, there is little room in the school day to teach about the world outside our atmosphere. Add to this the exceedingly minimal training and education in astronomy that most middle school teachers have and it is a rare school that includes any astronomy teaching at all. In this presentation, we show how to develop and offer an astronomy education training program for middle school teachers encompassing a wide range of educational disciplines that are frequently taught at the middle school level. The prototype for this program was developed and launched in two of the most challenged and diverse school systems in the country; D.C. Public Schools, and Montgomery County (MD) Public Schools.

  8. Astronomy in Colombia (United States)

    Cepeda-Peña, W. E.


    Astronomy in Colombia has been done since the beginning of the nineteen century when in 1803 was built one of the oldest or maybe the older astronomical Observatory of America. This is a very beautiful, historical and ancient building. A small dome with a small telescope is also inside the university campus . The Observatory leads since then the development of astronomy in Colombia as a professional science. At the present time a Master Program and a Specialization Program are successfully carried out with a good number of smart young students. The Observatory has a staff of eleven professors all with a master degree in sciences; two of them are PhD and in a couple of years five staff members will be PhD in Physics. With some international collaboration they will shoulder in few years a doctoral astronomical program. There are several research lines mainly in the fields of Astrometry, Galactic and Extragalactic Astronomy, Cosmology, Astrostatistic and Astrobiology. Three research groups have got recognition from the governmental institution that supports the research in sciences COLCIENCIAS. Several papers have been published in national and international journals. Besides the professional line in astronomy, the Observatory sponsors several non professional Colombian astronomical groups that work enthusiastically in the field of astronomy.

  9. Astronomy in Culture (United States)

    Stavinschi, M.


    Which is more appropriate? “Astronomy in culture,” or “Astronomy and culture,” or “Culture without astronomy?” These are only few variants, each with its own sense. I guess the last question is the most pertinent. Does culture really exist without astronomy? The existence and evolution of the human civilization answer NO! But what “culture” means? When we are thinking of a culture (the Hellenistic one, for instance), we mean a set of customs, artistic, religious, intellectual manifestations that differentiate one group or society from another. On the other hand, we often use the notion of culture in a different sense: shared beliefs, ways of regarding and doing, which orient more or less consciously the behavior of an individual or a group. An example would be the laic culture. Moreover, the set of knowledge acquired in one or several domains also constitutes a culture, for instance the scientific culture of an individual or a group. Finally, the set of cultures is nothing else but the civilization. Now, if we come back in time into the history of civilization, we find a permanent component, which was never missing and often played a decisive part in its evolution: the Astronomy.

  10. Advanced Amateur Astronomy (United States)

    North, Gerald

    This book is for amateur astronomers and telescope users who want to move beyond elementary stargazing to more challenging projects. Written by an accomplished amateur astronomer, this indispensable guide to more advanced work is packed with information and lucid explanations. The first section of the book sets out the fundamental principles of practical astronomy, with chapters on telescope optics, the atmosphere, telescope hardware, astrophotography, and electronic imaging. This knowledge is then applied to the full range of celestial bodies accessible by telescope: the solar system, stars and galaxies. For those users who want to move to even greater challenges, chapters on photometry, spectroscopy and radio astronomy bring observational astronomy to a level where data of real scientific value can be acquired.

  11. Astronomy education in Thailand (United States)

    Hutawarakorn, Busaba; Soonthornthum, B.; Kirdkao, T.

    Thailand is one of the developing countries which pursues the goal to advance economy, technology as well as science. Education in Astronomy is considered as a supporting factor, since it is one of the basic sciences which can teach the young generation to understand and conserve their mother nature and at the same time helps to develop analytical thinking. The poster reports the present developments in astronomical education in Thailand which includes (1) current astronomy education in school and university; (2) educational activities outside school; (3) development of programs for teaching astronomy in school (including teacher training); (4) the access of educational resources via internet. Proposals for future development and collaborations will be presented and discussed.

  12. Python in Astronomy 2016 (United States)

    Jenness, Tim; Robitaille, Thomas; Tollerud, Erik; Mumford, Stuart; Cruz, Kelle


    The second Python in Astronomy conference will be held from 21-25 March 2016 at the University of Washington eScience Institute in Seattle, WA, USA. Similarly to the 2015 meeting (which was held at the Lorentz Center), we are aiming to bring together researchers, Python developers, users, and educators. The conference will include presentations, tutorials, unconference sessions, and coding sprints. In addition to sharing information about state-of-the art Python Astronomy packages, the workshop will focus on improving interoperability between astronomical Python packages, providing training for new open-source contributors, and developing educational materials for Python in Astronomy. The meeting is therefore not only aimed at current developers, but also users and educators who are interested in being involved in these efforts.

  13. Astronomy Librarians - Quo Vadis?

    CERN Document Server

    Lagerstrom, Jill


    "You don't look like a librarian" is a phrase we often hear in the astronomy department or observatory library. Astronomy librarians are a breed apart, and are taking on new and non-traditional roles as information technology evolves. This talk will explore the future of librarians and librarianship through the lens of the recent talks given at the sixth "Libraries and Information Services in Astronomy" conference held in Pune, India in February 2010. We will explore the librarian's universe, illustrating how librarians use new technologies to perform such tasks as bibliometrics, how we are re-fashioning our library spaces in an increasingly digital world and how we are confronting the brave new world of open access, to name but a few topics.

  14. Radio astronomy with microspacecraft (United States)

    Collins, D.


    A dynamic constellation of microspacecraft in lunar orbit can carry out valuable radio astronomy investigations in the frequency range of 30kHz--30MHz, a range that is difficult to explore from Earth. In contrast to the radio astronomy ivestigations that have flown on individual spacecraft, the four microspacecraft together with a carrier spacecraft, which transported them to lunar orbit, form an interferometer with far superior angular resolution. Use of microspacecraft allows the entire constellation to be launched with a Taurus-class vehicle. Also distinguishing this approach is that the Moon is used as needed to shield the constellation from RF interference from the Earth and Sun.

  15. Gamma-ray Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Hinton, Jim


    The relevance of gamma-ray astronomy to the search for the origin of the galactic and, to a lesser extent, the ultra-high-energy cosmic rays has long been recognised. The current renaissance in the TeV gamma-ray field has resulted in a wealth of new data on galactic and extragalactic particle accelerators, and almost all the new results in this field were presented at the recent International Cosmic Ray Conference (ICRC). Here I summarise the 175 papers submitted on the topic of gamma-ray astronomy to the 30th ICRC in Merida, Mexico in July 2007.

  16. Astronomy in Iraq (United States)

    Alsabti, A. W.


    The history of modern Iraqi astronomy is reviewed. During the early 1970's Iraqi astronomy witnessed significant growth through the introduction of the subject at university level and extensively within the school curriculum. In addition, astronomy was popularised in the media, a large planetarium was built in Baghdad, plus a smaller one in Basra. Late 1970 witnessed the construction of the Iraqi National Observatory at Mount Korek in Iraqi Kurdistan. The core facilities of the Observatory included 3.5-meter and 1.25-meter optical telescopes, and a 30-meter radio telescope for millimetre wavelength astronomy. The Iraqi Astronomical Society was founded and Iraq joined the IAU in 1976. During the regime of Saddam Hussain in the 1980's, the Observatory was attacked by Iranian artillery during the Iraq-Iran war, and then again during the second Gulf war by the US air force. Years of sanctions during the 1990's left Iraq cut off from the rest of the international scientific community. Subscriptions to astronomical journals were halted and travel to conferences abroad was virtually non-existent. Most senior astronomers left the country for one reason or another. Support from expatriate Iraqi astronomers existed (and still exists) however, this is not sufficient. Recent changes in Iraq, and the fall of Saddam's regime, has meant that scientific communication with the outside world has resumed to a limited degree. The Ministry of Higher Education in Baghdad, Baghdad University and the Iraqi National Academy of Science, have all played active roles in re-establishing Iraqi astronomy and re-building the damaged Observatory at Mount Korek. More importantly the University of Sallahudin in Erbil, capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, has taken particular interest in astronomy and the Observatory. Organized visits to the universities, and also to the Observatory, have given us a first-hand assessment of the scale of the damage to the Observatory, as well as the needs of astronomy teaching

  17. Lessons from Mayan Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Loeb, Abraham


    The Mayan culture collected exquisite astronomical data for over a millennium. However, it failed to come up with the breakthrough ideas of modern astronomy because the data was analyzed within a mythological culture of astrology that rested upon false but mathematically sophisticated theories about the Universe. Have we learned the necessary lessons to prevent our current scientific culture from resembling Mayan Astronomy? Clearly, data collection by itself is not a guarantee for good science as commonly assumed by funding agencies. A vibrant scientific culture should cultivate multiple approaches to analyzing existing data and to collecting new data.

  18. Teaching Astronomy in UK Schools (United States)

    Roche, Paul; Roberts, Sarah; Newsam, Andy; Barclay, Charles


    This article attempts to summarise the good, bad and (occasionally) ugly aspects of teaching astronomy in UK schools. It covers the most common problems reported by teachers when asked about covering the astronomy/space topics in school. Particular focus is given to the GCSE Astronomy qualification offered by Edexcel (which is currently the…

  19. School-Based Extracurricular Astronomy (United States)

    Stanger, Jeffrey J.


    The International Year of Astronomy in 2009 focused considerable public attention on Astronomy and generated valuable resources for educators. These activities are an effective vehicle for promoting Science to students and to the wider school community. The most engaging practical astronomy activities are best delivered with sustained support from…

  20. Quickly Creating Interactive Astronomy Illustrations (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.


    An innate advantage for astronomy teachers is having numerous breathtaking images of the cosmos available to capture students' curiosity, imagination, and wonder. Internet-based astronomy image libraries are numerous and easy to navigate. The Astronomy Picture of the Day, the Hubble Space Telescope image archive, and the NASA Planetary…

  1. Gravity-wave astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The theoretical basis for gravity-wave astronomy is described, along with the energy and momentum of gravitational fields. Other topics discussed include:- burst and periodic sources of gravitational waves, the cosmological stochastic background, and the detection of gravitational waves. (U.K.)

  2. Extragalactic observational astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The lectures on extragalactic observational astronomy includes the redshift controversy, normal galaxies, determination of the Hubble constant using diameters of HII regions, determination of the deceleration parameter, the luminosity--volume test as evidence for the cosmological interpretation of quasars, problems involving clusters and groups of galaxies. (U.S.)

  3. Resources for Teaching Astronomy. (United States)

    Grafton, Teresa; Suggett, Martin


    Resources that are available for teachers presenting astronomy in the National Curriculum are listed. Included are societies and organizations, resource centers and places to visit, planetaria, telescopes and binoculars, planispheres, star charts, night sky diaries, equipment, audiovisual materials, computer software, books, and magazines. (KR)

  4. Teaching Astronomy Using Tracker (United States)

    Belloni, Mario; Christian, Wolfgang; Brown, Douglas


    A recent paper in this journal presented a set of innovative uses of video analysis for introductory physics using Tracker. In addition, numerous other papers have described how video analysis can be a meaningful part of introductory courses. Yet despite this, there are few resources for using video analysis in introductory astronomy classes. In…

  5. The New Astronomy (United States)

    Henbest, Nigel; Marten, Michael


    There's more to the Universe than meets the eye. In a marvelous review of multi-wavelength astronomy, The New Astronomy compares traditional optical images to infrared, ultraviolet, radio, and X-ray astronomical observations of a staggering variety of cosmic objects. With over 300 photographs and images obtained by telescopes and detectors operating at different wavelengths, the authors present startlingly different views of the solar system, stars, galaxies and, in this new edition, Halley's Comet and Supernova 1987A. Specially processed by astronomers worldwide, these images reveal in spectacular detail otherwise invisible events such as starbirth, stardeath, and distant quasar eruptions. Emphasizing the physical processes that produce astronomical radiation, they explain how the observations have expanded our existing knowledge and provided new discoveries. They also describe the new techniques in nontechnical language. By giving equal weight to observations at all wavelengths, this book corrects the bias toward optical astronomy and objectively presents all views of the Universe. It will appeal to everyone interested in the mysteries of astronomy. Nigel Henbest and Michael Marten previously collaborated (along with Heather Couper) on The Guide to the Galaxy (CUP, 1994).

  6. Astronomy on the Walls (United States)

    Santascoy, J.


    Many of us are interested in increasing youth and minority involvement in the sciences. Using art that integrates images of space exploration with ethnic astronomical mythology may increase participation in astronomy in general, while also forming a bridge to underrepresented communities. This paper describes a freely available presentation of Carlos Callejo's Discover the Secrets of the Universe Through the Library for outreach.

  7. Tools of radio astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Wilson, Thomas L; Hüttemeister, Susanne


    This 6th edition of “Tools of Radio Astronomy”, the most used introductory text in radio astronomy, has been revised to reflect the current state of this important branch of astronomy. This includes the use of satellites, low radio frequencies, the millimeter/sub-mm universe, the Cosmic Microwave Background and the increased importance of mm/sub-mm dust emission. Several derivations and presentations of technical aspects of radio astronomy and receivers, such as receiver noise, the Hertz dipole and  beam forming have been updated, expanded, re-worked or complemented by alternative derivations. These reflect advances in technology. The wider bandwidths of the Jansky-VLA and long wave arrays such as LOFAR and mm/sub-mm arrays such as ALMA required an expansion of the discussion of interferometers and aperture synthesis. Developments in data reduction algorithms have been included. As a result of the large amount of data collected in the past 20 years, the discussion of solar system radio astronomy, dust em...

  8. Outlook for ultraviolet astronomy (United States)

    Boehm-Vitense, E.


    A brief overview of galactic and extragalactic research is given with emphasis on the problems of temperature determination, chemical abundance determination, and the question about the energy sources for the high temperature regions. Stellar astronomy, stellar winds, and the interstellar medium are among the topics covered.

  9. Colonial American Astronomy (United States)

    Yeomans, Donald K.


    While a foundation of German scientific methods enabled the rapid growth of North American Astronomy in the nineteenth century, during the seventeenth and most of the eighteenth centuries, the colonial men of science looked only to the English mother country for scientific patronage and guidance. An essay on fundamental astronomy appeared in one of the annual colonial almanacs as early as 1656, telescopic observations were made about 1660 and the first original colonial astronomical work was published by Thomas Danforth on the comet of 1664. By 1671 the Copernican ideas were so espoused at Harvard College that a physics class refused to read a Ptolemaic textbook when it was assigned to them by a senior instructor. At least in the Cambridge-Boston area, contemporary colonialist had access to the most recent scientific publications from the mother country. Observations of the great comet of 1680 by the Almanac maker, John Foster, reached Isaac Newton and were used and gratefully acknowledged in his Principia. During the seventeenth century the colonial interest in astronomy was more intense than it was for other sciences but colonists still occupied a position in the scientific backwater when compared with contemporary European scientists. Nevertheless, the science of astronomy was successfully transplanted from England to North America in the seventeenth century.

  10. Strategies for Teaching Astronomy (United States)

    Bennett, J.


    No matter whether you are teaching school children, undergraduates, or colleagues, a few key strategies are always useful. I will present and give examples for the following five key strategies for teaching astronomy. 1. Provide a Contextual Framework: It is much easier to learn new facts or concepts if they can be ``binned" into some kind of pre-existing mental framework. Unless your listeners are already familiar with the basic ideas of modern astronomy (such as the hierarchy of structure in the universe, the scale of the universe, and the origin of the universe), you must provide this before going into the details of how we've developed this modern picture through history. 2. Create Conditions for Conceptual Change: Many people hold misconceptions about astronomical ideas. Therefore we cannot teach them the correct ideas unless we first help them unlearn their prior misconceptions. 3. Make the Material Relevant: It's human nature to be more interested in subjects that seem relevant to our lives. Therefore we must always show students the many connections between astronomy and their personal concerns, such as emphasizing how we are ``star stuff" (in the words of Carl Sagan), how studying other planets helps us understand our own, and so on. 4. Limit Use of Jargon: The number of new terms in many introductory astronomy books is larger than the number of words taught in many first courses in foreign language. This means the books are essentially teaching astronomy in a foreign language, which is a clear recipe for failure. We must find ways to replace jargon with plain language. 5. Challenge Your Students: Don't dumb your teaching down; by and large, students will rise to meet your expectations, as long as you follow the other strategies and practice good teaching.

  11. Astronomy Olympiad: An Initiative To Promote Astronomy Education In Nepal (United States)

    Bhattarai, Suresh


    This paper presents National Astronomy Olympiad Program as a new initiative towards the development of astronomy education in Nepal by Nepal Astronomical Society (NASO).Innovoative components of the olympiad programs designed by NASO to engage both scince and non-science backgound people will be discussed in detail. It will discuss the first National Astronomy Olympiad 2014 and Second National Astronomy Olympiad 2015 in details. It will also present crowd funding, its effectiveness to outreach as well as collecting funds from around the world will be presented in brief. Proposed module of astronomy olympiad to promote astronnomy in the countries without formal astronomy education in high school like Nepal,will be presented in dedail. Possible strategry to strengthen such programs in developing nations and role of IAU to promote such educational program will be explored in detail.

  12. Practical Semantic Astronomy (United States)

    Graham, Matthew; Gray, N.; Burke, D.


    Many activities in the era of data-intensive astronomy are predicated upon some transference of domain knowledge and expertise from human to machine. The semantic infrastructure required to support this is no longer a pipe dream of computer science but a set of practical engineering challenges, more concerned with deployment and performance details than AI abstractions. The application of such ideas promises to help in such areas as contextual data access, exploiting distributed annotation and heterogeneous sources, and intelligent data dissemination and discovery. In this talk, we will review the status and use of semantic technologies in astronomy, particularly to address current problems in astroinformatics, with such projects as SKUA and AstroCollation.

  13. X-ray astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This book contains the lectures, and the most important seminars held at the NATO meeting on X-Ray astronomy in Erice, July 1979. The meeting was an opportune forum to discuss the results of the first 8-months of operation of the X-ray satellite, HEAO-2 (Einstein Observatory) which was launched at the end of 1978. Besides surveying these results, the meeting covered extragalactic astronomy, including the relevant observations obtained in other portions of the electromagnetic spectrum (ultra-violet, optical, infrared and radio). The discussion on galactic X-ray sources essentially covered classical binaries, globular clusters and bursters and its significance to extragalactic sources and to high energy astrophysics was borne in mind. (orig.)

  14. Astronomy and astrology (United States)

    Zarka, Philippe


    Astrology meets a large success in our societies, from the private to the political sphere as well as in the media, in spite of the demonstrated inaccuracy of its psychological as well as operational predictions. We analyse here the relations between astrology and astronomy, as well as the criticisms opposed by the latter to the former. We show that most of these criticisms are weak. Much stronger ones emerge from the analysis of the astrological practice compared to the scientific method, leading us to conclude to the non-scientificity of astrology. Then we return to the success of astrology, and from its analysis we propose a renewed (and prophylactic) rôle for astronomy in society.

  15. Next-generation Astronomy


    Norris, Ray P


    Fundamental changes are taking place in the way we do astronomy. In twenty years time, it is likely that most astronomers will never go near a cutting-edge telescope, which will be much more efficiently operated in service mode. They will rarely analyse data, since all the leading-edge telescopes will have pipeline processors. And rather than competing to observe a particularly interesting object, astronomers will more commonly group together in large consortia to observe massive chunks of th...

  16. Syllabus Computer in Astronomy (United States)

    Hojaev, Alisher S.


    One of the most important and actual subjects and training courses in the curricula for undergraduate level students at the National university of Uzbekistan is ‘Computer Methods in Astronomy’. It covers two semesters and includes both lecture and practice classes. Based on the long term experience we prepared the tutorial for students which contain the description of modern computer applications in astronomy.The main directions of computer application in field of astronomy briefly as follows:1) Automating the process of observation, data acquisition and processing2) Create and store databases (the results of observations, experiments and theoretical calculations) their generalization, classification and cataloging, working with large databases3) The decisions of the theoretical problems (physical modeling, mathematical modeling of astronomical objects and phenomena, derivation of model parameters to obtain a solution of the corresponding equations, numerical simulations), appropriate software creation4) The utilization in the educational process (e-text books, presentations, virtual labs, remote education, testing), amateur astronomy and popularization of the science5) The use as a means of communication and data transfer, research result presenting and dissemination (web-journals), the creation of a virtual information system (local and global computer networks).During the classes the special attention is drawn on the practical training and individual work of students including the independent one.

  17. Teaching Astronomy Online (United States)

    Maddison, Sarah T.; Mazzolini, Margaret M.

    Swinburne Astronomy Online (SAO) is a fully online graduate astronomy program with students and instructors located in over 30 countries around the globe. SAO uses a hybrid online form of delivery with image and animation-rich course content provided on CD-ROMs and the Internet used for communication research and assessment purposes. Now in its nineth semester and continuing to grow SAO can be considered a 'success story' in new teaching methods and used as an example for online education programs. One of the key distinguishing features of online education as compared to other forms of distance education is the opportunity for instructors and students to interact via online asynchronous discussion forums. Asynchronous discussion forums are used to a varying degree in different online academic programs and in widely different ways. In this paper we will give a historical overview of SAO and how it operates what astronomy we teach online and why specifically focusing on the use of asynchronous discussion forums - which are a central feature of the SAO program - as a learning and teaching tool

  18. Astronomy in the streets (United States)

    Kebe, Fatoumata


    The Ephemerides Association was founded last year by a PhD student in Astronomy. The association is devoted to the promotion and advancement of knowledge of the universe through research and education.The main activities of the association are scientific meetings, the planning and realization of scientific projects, the support of the scientific activities of its members, and the dissemination of related information among members and other interested persons.The association targets the disadvantaged zones of the Paris suburbs.The main issue was how to bring astronomy in those places. In the suburbs, since most of the youth are poor, most leisure activities like cinema are out of your reach. Thus, mostly of them will play football or basketball outside.We decided to go to meet young people who find themselves together in the evening. We prepare the telescope as well as the fasicules to start the observation of the planets. The discussion finally lead to their career plans and aspirations. Astronomy has become a tool to address societal issues. We present our results after one year of activity.

  19. Indigenous Astronomies and Progress in Modern Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Ruggles, Clive


    From an anthropological point of view, the whole concept of a "path of progress" in astronomical discovery is anathema, since it implicitly downgrades other cultural perspectives, such as the many "indigenous cosmologies" that still exist in the modern world. By doing so, one risks provoking those who hold them and-as is most obvious in places such as Hawaii where the two "world-views" come into direct contact-reating avoidable resistance to that very progress. The problem is complicated by the existence of "fringe" and "new-age" views that are increasingly confused with, and even passed off as, indigenous perceptions. In a modern world where widespread public perceptions include many that are unscientific in the broadest sense of the term, I shall argue that there are actually a range of positive benefits for progress in scientific astronomy to be derived from the mutual awareness and comprehension of "genuine" cultural world-views whose goals-in common with those of modern science-are to make sense of the c...

  20. Astronomy Education for Physics Students

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    J. H. Fan; J. S. Zhang; J. Y. Zhang; Y. Liu; H. G. Wang


    Astronomy is a very interesting subject for undergraduate students studying physics. In this paper, we report astronomy education for undergraduate students in the Physics Department of Guangzhou University, and how we are teaching astronomy to the students. Astrophysics has been rapidly developing since 1994, when the center for astrophysics was founded. Now, astrophysics has become a key subject in Guangdong Province, and the Astronomy Science and Technology Research Laboratory one of the key laboratories of the Department of Education of the Guangdong Province. Many undergraduate students, working under the tutorship of faculty members completed their thesis at the Center for Astrophysics in Guangzhou.

  1. Transmission of Babylonian Astronomy to Other Cultures (United States)

    Jones, Alexander

    Babylonian astronomy and astrology were extensively transmitted to other civilizations in the second and first millennia BC. Greek astronomy in particular was largely shaped by knowledge of Babylonian observations and mathematical astronomy.

  2. Astronomy across cultures the history of non-Western astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Xiaochun, Sun


    Astronomy Across Cultures: A History of Non-Western Astronomy consists of essays dealing with the astronomical knowledge and beliefs of cultures outside the United States and Europe. In addition to articles surveying Islamic, Chinese, Native American, Aboriginal Australian, Polynesian, Egyptian and Tibetan astronomy, among others, the book includes essays on Sky Tales and Why We Tell Them and Astronomy and Prehistory, and Astronomy and Astrology. The essays address the connections between science and culture and relate astronomical practices to the cultures which produced them. Each essay is well illustrated and contains an extensive bibliography. Because the geographic range is global, the book fills a gap in both the history of science and in cultural studies. It should find a place on the bookshelves of advanced undergraduate students, graduate students, and scholars, as well as in libraries serving those groups.

  3. Dyslexia and Astronomy (United States)

    Schneps, Matthew H.; Greenhill, L. J.; Rose, L. T.


    Dyslexia is a hereditary neurological disability that impairs reading. It is believed that anywhere from 5% to 20% of all people in the US may have dyslexia to a greater or lesser degree. Though dyslexia is common, it is a "silent disability" in the sense that it is not easy to tell which individuals suffer from dyslexia and which do not. There is a substantial body of evidence to suggest that people with dyslexia tend to do well in science. For example, Baruj Benacerraf, a Nobel laureate in medicine, is among those whose impairments have been documented and studied. Given that dyslexia was not diagnosed in schools prior to the late 1970's, many established science researchers may have dyslexia and be unaware of their impairment. Therefore, it would not be surprising to find that substantial numbers of scientists working in the fields of astronomy and astrophysics have dyslexia, and yet be unaware of the effects this disability has had on their research. A recently proposed theory by the authors suggests that there may be specific neurological reasons why those with dyslexia may be predisposed to science, and predicts that dyslexia may be associated with enhanced abilities for certain types of visual processing, with special implications for image processing. Our study, funded by the NSF, investigates this hypothesis in the context of astronomy and astrophysics. We expect this work will uncover and document challenges faced by scientists with dyslexia, but perhaps more importantly, lead to an understanding of the strengths these scientists bring to research. The program will serve as a clearing-house of information for scientists and students with dyslexia, and begin to provide mentoring for young people with dyslexia interested in astronomy. Scientists who have reason to believe they may have dyslexia are encouraged to contact the authors.

  4. Panoramic Radio Astronomy


    Heald, G.; P. Serra


    In this contribution we give a brief overview of the Panoramic Radio Astronomy (PRA) conference held on 2-5 June 2009 in Groningen, the Netherlands. The conference was motivated by the on-going development of a large number of new radio telescopes and instruments which, within a few years, will bring a major improvement over current facilities. Interferometers such as the EVLA, ASKAP, ATA, MeerKAT, and APERTIF will provide a combination of larger field of view and increased simultaneous bandw...

  5. Astronomy in the classroom (United States)

    Moiteiro, Bárbara; Rodrigues, Berta


    The motivation of young students to science is much higher when the theoretical teaching is accompanied by practice and these are engaged in activities that involve real problems of their society and requiring a scientific basis for its discussion. Several activities such as collaboration on current scientific experiments, direct contact with scientists, participation in science competitions, visits to Science Museums, artistic and craft activities, the use of simulators and virtual laboratories, increase the degree of student satisfaction and motivate them in their learning processes. This poster shows some of Astronomy activities with students of schools Agrupamento de Escolas José Belchior Viegas within the Physics and Chemistry classes.

  6. Islamic Mathematical Astronomy (United States)

    Montelle, Clemency

    A short survey on Islamic mathematical astronomy practiced during the period running from the eight century until the fifteenth is presented. Various pertinent themes, such as the translation of foreign scientific works and their impact on the tradition; the introduction, assimilation, and critique of the Ptolemaic model; and the role of observations, will be covered. In addition, the zīj, the dominant format for astronomical works, will be briefly explained as well as the legacy of the Islamic tradition of astral sciences to other cultures.

  7. Astrology as Cultural Astronomy (United States)

    Campion, Nicholas

    The practice of astrology can be traced in most if not all human societies, in most time periods. Astrology has prehistoric origins and flourishes in the modern world, where it may be understood as a form of ethnoastronomy - astronomy practiced by the people. The Western tradition, which originated in Mesopotamia and was developed in the Greek world, has been most studied by academics. However, India is also home to a tradition which has survived in a continuous lineage for 2,000 years. Complex systems of astrology also developed in China and Mesoamerica, while all other human societies appear to seek social and religious meaning in the stars.

  8. Science and Mathematics in Astronomy (United States)

    Woolack, Edward


    A brief historical introduction to the development of observational astronomy will be presented. The close historical relationship between the successful application of mathematical concepts and advances in astronomy will be presented. A variety of simple physical demonstrations, hands-on group activities, and puzzles will be used to understand how the properties of light can be used to understand the contents of our universe.

  9. Astronomy. Internet site (United States)

    Maksimenko, Anatoly Vasilievich

    The Internet site covers a wide area of actual astronomical topics, including 1) Astronomical News 2) Didactics of Astronomy 3) Space Research (Cosmonautics) 4) That's interesting 5) A Handbook of an astronomer 6) The Solar system 7) A Photogalery 8) Works of Schoolars 9) History of Astronomy The most important of them is the section concerning Space Research (Cosmonautics). This section covers a wide range of topics, beginning with very complete Illustrated History of Soviet Space research , the building of Soviet Rockets, a complete list of Cosmonauts with biographies, a list of all the flies. The author of the site concerns much ineterest to recent and extraordinary astronomiucal phenomena, such as Hazardous asteroids, Comets, Solar and Moon Eclipses, Meteorites, as well as to correct from the scientifical point of view interpretation of the extraordinary astronomical phenomena. The section concerning the Solar system is richly illustrated and give detailed explanations to Solar System evolution and actual state, explains many phenomena in the Solar system. THe Internet site is designed for schoolars as well as to amateur and professional astronomers.

  10. Women in Italian astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Matteucci, Francesca


    This document gives some quantitative facts about the role of women in Italian astronomy. More than 26% of Italian IAU members are women: this is the largest fraction among the world leading countries in astronomy. Most of this high fraction is due to their presence in INAF, where women make up 32% of the research staff (289 out of 908) and 40% of the technical/administrative staff (173 out of 433); the percentage is slightly lower among permanent research staff (180 out of 599, about 30%). The presence of women is lower in the Universities (27 out of 161, about 17%, among staff). In spite of these (mildly) positive facts, we notice that similarly to other countries (e.g. USA and Germany) career prospects for Italian astronomers are clearly worse for women than for men. Within INAF, the fraction of women is about 35-40% among non-permanent position, 36% for Investigators, 17% for Associato/Primo Ricercatore, and only 13% among Ordinario/Dirigente di Ricerca. The situation is even worse at University (only 6% ...

  11. Astronomy in Antarctica

    CERN Document Server

    Burton, Michael G


    Antarctica provides a unique environment for astronomy. The cold, dry and stable air found above the high plateau, as well as the pure ice below, offers new opportunities across the photon & particle spectrum. The summits of the plateau provide the best seeing conditions, the darkest skies and the most transparent atmosphere of any earth-based observing site. Astronomical activities are now underway at four plateau sites: the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, Concordia Station at Dome C, Kunlun Station at Dome A and Fuji Station at Dome F, in addition to long duration ballooning from the coastal station of McMurdo. Astronomy conducted includes optical, IR, THz & sub-mm, measurements of the CMBR, solar, as well as high energy astrophysics involving measurement of cosmic rays, gamma rays and neutrinos. Antarctica is also the richest source of meteorites on our planet. An extensive range of site testing measurements have been made over the high plateau. We summarise the facets of Antarctica that are dri...

  12. Astronomy in Syria (United States)

    Al-Mousli, A. T.


    Syria has been involved in the field of astronomy since 1997, when Prof. F.R. QUERCI, France, visited Syria and made a presentation on the International NORT project; (NORT: the Network of Oriental Robotic Telescope), which was a selected project of the sixth United Nations/ European Space Agency Workshop on Basic Space Science (document no. A/AC.105/657 dated 13/12/1996). NORT aims to establish a robotic telescope network on high mountain peaks around the Tropic of Cancer, from Morocco in the west to the desert of China in the east. The purposes for establishing this network are technical and educational. The General Organization of Remote Sensing (GORS) has carried out a pilot study using remote sensing techniques and has selected four sites in order to determine the best location for the astronomical observatory the within NORT programme. Following this project, GORS decided to establish an office for astronomical studies, one of the earliest works of GORS in astronomy was an initiative to establish a planetarium within the GORS campus, to accommodate approximately 120 observers. A contest to choose the best planetarium design, for the Arab World, took place at GORS.

  13. Active Astronomy Roadshow Haiti (United States)

    Laycock, Silas; Oram, Kathleen; Alabre, Dayana; Douyon, Ralph; UMass Lowell Haiti Development Studies Center


    College-age Haitian students working with advisors and volunteers from UMass Lowell in 2015 developed and tested an activity-based K-8 curriculum in astronomy, space, and earth science. Our partner school is located in Les Cayes, Haiti a city where only 65% of children attend school, and only half of those will complete 6th grade. Astronomy provides an accessible and non-intimidating entry into science, and activity-based learning contrasts with the predominant traditional teaching techniques in use in Haiti, to reach and inspire a different cohort of learners. Teachers are predominantly women in Haiti, so part of the effort involves connecting them with scientists, engineers and teacher peers in the US. As a developing nation, it is vital for Haitian (as for all) children to grow up viewing women as leaders in science. Meanwhile in the US, few are aware of the reality of getting an education in a 3rd world nation (i.e. most of the world), so we also joined with teachers in Massachusetts to give US school children a peek at what daily life is like for their peers living in our vibrant but impoverished neighbor. Our Haitian partners are committed to helping their sister-schools with curriculum and educator workshops, so that the overall quality of education can rise, and not be limited to the very few schools with access to resources. We will describe the activites, motivation, and and the lessons learned from our first year of the project.

  14. Panoramic Radio Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Heald, G


    In this contribution we give a brief overview of the Panoramic Radio Astronomy (PRA) conference held on 2-5 June 2009 in Groningen, the Netherlands. The conference was motivated by the on-going development of a large number of new radio telescopes and instruments which, within a few years, will bring a major improvement over current facilities. Interferometers such as the EVLA, ASKAP, ATA, MeerKAT, and APERTIF will provide a combination of larger field of view and increased simultaneous bandwidth, while maintaining good collecting area and angular resolution. They will achieve a survey speed 10-50 times larger at 1-2 GHz than the current possibilities, allowing for the first time optical-like all-sky extra-galactic surveys at these frequencies. Significant progress will be made in many fields of radio astronomy. In this conference we focused on research into the evolution of galaxies over the past few Gyr. In particular, wide-field observations at 1-2 GHz will provide an unprecedented panoramic view of the ga...

  15. Challenges in Astronomy Education (United States)

    De Greve, Jean-Pierre


    Astronomy is an attractive subject for education. It deals with fascination of the unknown and the unreachable, yet is uses tools, concepts and insights from various fundamental sciences such as mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology. Because of this it can be well used for introducing sciences to young people and to raise their interest in further studies in that direction. It is also an interesting subject for teaching as its different aspects (observation techniques, theory, data sampling and analysis, modelling,?) offer various didactical approaches towards different levels of pupils, students and different backgrounds. And it gives great opportunities to teach and demonstrate the essence of scientific research, through tutorials and projects. In this paper we discuss some of the challenges education in general, and astronomy in particular, faces in the coming decades, given the major geophysical and technological changes that can be deducted from our present knowledge. This defines a general, but very important background in terms of educational needs at various levels, and in geographical distribution of future efforts of the astronomical community. Special emphasis will be given to creative approaches to teaching, to strategies that are successful (such as the use of tutorials with element from computer games), and to initiatives complementary to the regular educational system. The programs developed by the IAU will be briefly highlighted.

  16. Astronomy books in Spanish (United States)

    Fierro, Julieta

    Great cultures have created language. They have discovered its strength among other reasons for education. For a long time the Bible was one of the few books available in western culture, its influence is beyond any doubt. Many developing nations have no science books in their mother tongue. They might carry a few translations but these do not convey the local culture so it is harder for students to grasp the concepts and to build on what they know. Books, even if they are extremely simple, should be written in local languages because that will facilitate the conveying of knowledge and the creation of scientific culture. In the books examples that pertain to every day local life must be given, in particular examples that have to do with women. Women play a central role in developing nations by child bearing; if they become literate they will influence enormously the quality of their children's education, in particular their science comprehension. In Mexico a collection that includes astronomy books has recently been edited by the National Council for Culture and Arts. The books are small and light, which encourages middle-school students to carry them around and read them while traveling in public transportation, such as the subway. Every other page is a new subject, that carries illustrations, abstracts and conclusions. The astronomy books are on search for extraterrestrial life, the stars and the universe. These books are distributed nation-wide and are inexpensive. They have been written by Mexican astronomers.

  17. Classics in radio astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Sullivan, Woodruff Turner


    Radio techniques were the nrst to lead astronomy away from the quiescent and limited Universe revealed by traditional observations at optical wave­ lengths. In the earliest days of radio astronomy, a handful of radio physicists and engineers made one startling discovery after another as they opened up the radio sky. With this collection of classic papers and the extensive intro­ ductory material, the reader can experience these exciting discoveries, as well as understand the developing techniques and follow the motivations which prompted the various lines of inquiry. For instance he or she will follow in detail the several attempts to detect radio waves from the sun at the turn of the century; the unravelling by Jansky of a "steady hiss type static"; the incredible story of Reber who built a 9 meter dish in his backyard in 1937 and then mapped the Milky Way; the vital discoveries by Hey and colleagues of radio bursts from the Sun and of a discrete source in the constellation of Cygnus; the development of re...

  18. Making Astronomy Accessible (United States)

    Grice, Noreen A.


    A new semester begins, and your students enter the classroom for the first time. You notice a student sitting in a wheelchair or walking with assistance from a cane. Maybe you see a student with a guide dog or carrying a Braille computer. Another student gestures "hello” but then continues hand motions, and you realize the person is actually signing. You wonder why another student is using an electronic device to speak. Think this can't happen in your class? According to the U.S. Census, one out of every five Americans has a disability. And some disabilities, such as autism, dyslexia and arthritis, are considered "invisible” disabilities. This means you have a high probability that one of your students will have a disability. As an astronomy instructor, you have the opportunity to reach a wide variety of learners by using creative teaching strategies. I will share some suggestions on how to make astronomy and your part of the universe more accessible for everyone.

  19. The Astronomy Genealogy Project (United States)

    Tenn, Joseph S.


    The Astronomy Genealogy Project, to be known as AstroGen, will list as many as possible of the world's astronomers with their academic parents (aka thesis advisors) and enable the reader to trace both academic ancestors and descendants. It will be very similar to the highly successful Mathematics Genealogy Project (MGP), available at The MGP, which has been in operation since 1996, now contains the names of about 170,000 "mathematicians." These include many physicists and astronomers, as well as practitioners of related sciences. Mitchel Keller, the director of the MGP, has generously shared the software used in that project, and the American Astronomical Society (AAS) will host AstroGen, a project of the Historical Astronomy Division, on its website. We expect to start seeking entries soon, depending on the availability of computational assistance from the AAS IT department. We are seeking volunteers to help run the project. If you are interested, please contact me at

  20. Astronomy Olympiads in Russia and Their Position in Astronomy Education (United States)

    Eskin, B.; Tarakanov, P.; Kostina, M.


    Astronomy olympiads started to be organised in Russia more than 60 years ago (then it was still USSR). In 1994, on the basis of several regional astronomy olympiads, appeared the All-Russian Astronomy Olympiad (Vserossijskaya astronomicheskaya olimpiada) or ARAO. It has been organised under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and pupils attending higher forms have taken part in it. The main objective of ARAO is to find and support talented pupils. Leading universities of the country (Russia) have also organised their own astronomy olympiads. In this way there are Astronomy Olympiads of Saint Petersburg, Moscow and Kazan. Among them the largest is that of Saint Petersburg. The main characteristic of these olympiads is that they have also included pupils of younger forms and have prepared their own tasks. The main objective of these olympiads is to find and support future students of astronomy classes at those universities. All astronomy Olympiads have played an important role in preparing future astronomers. This work is supported by Leading Scientific Schools Grant No. NSH-3290.2010.2.

  1. Indian Astronomy: the missing link in Eurocentric history of Astronomy (United States)

    Haque, Shirin; Sharma, Deva


    A comprehensive history of Astronomy should show in reasonable chronological order, the contributions from wherever they arise in the world, once they are reliably documented. However, the authors note that consistently, the extremely rich contributions from Ancient Indian scholars like Aryabatha and Bhramagupta are omitted in Eurocentric education and syllabi. It is speculated whether religious underpinnings could have been responsible for its suppression in the past. An appeal is made to represent the history of Astronomy in Eurocentric versions, to be inclusive of Indian Astronomy as accurately and completely as possible in science education.

  2. College Astronomy Teaching Excellence Workshops (United States)

    Slater, T. F.; Bennett, M.; Greene, W. M.; Pompea, S.; Prather, E. E.


    As part of the education and public outreach efforts of the NASA JPL Navigator, SIRTF Mission and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, astronomy educators affiliated with the Conceptual Astronomy and Physics Education Research (CAPER) Team at the University of Arizona are conducting a series of two- and three-day teaching excellence workshops for college faculty. These workshops are being held in conjunction with professional society meetings, such as the American Astronomical Society and the American Association of Physics Teachers, and through the infrastructure of the National Science Foundation's Summer Chautauqua Workshop program. This three-day, interactive teaching excellence workshop focuses on dilemmas astronomy teachers face and develop practical solutions for the troubling issues in curriculum, instruction, and assessment. After reviewing the latest research about how students learn, participants define and set measurable student learning goals and objectives for students in their astronomy courses and construct effective course syllabi reflecting the ASTRO 101 goals publicized by the AAS. To improve instruction, participants learn how to create productive learning environments by using interactive lectures, peer instruction, engaging demonstrations, collaborative groups, tutorials, computer-based laboratories, and observational projects. Participants also learn how to write more effective multiple-choice tests and implement authentic assessment strategies including portfolio assessment, performance tasks, and concept maps. Texts provided at the workshop are: (i) Learner-Centered Astronomy Teaching, Slater and Adams, Prentice Hall, 2002; (ii) Great Ideas for Teaching Astronomy, Pompea, Brooks Cole, 2000; and (iii) Lecture-Tutorials for Introductory Astronomy, Adams, Prather, & Slater, Prentice Hall, 2002.

  3. Astronomy for beginners

    CERN Document Server

    Becan, Jeff


    Astronomy For Beginners is a friendly and accessible guide to our universe, our galaxy, our solar system and the planet we call home. Each year as we cruise through space on this tiny blue-green wonder, a number of amazing and remarkable events occur. For example, like clockwork, we'll run head-on into asteroid and cometary debris that spreads shooting stars across our skies. On occasion, we'll get to watch the disk of the Moon passing the Sun, casting its shadow on the face of the Earth, and sometimes we'll get to watch our own shadow as it glides across the face of the Moon. The Sun's path w

  4. Astronomy a visual guide

    CERN Document Server

    Garlick, Mark A


    Space has fascinated man and challenged scientists for centuries and astronomy is the oldest and one of the most dynamic of the sciences. Here is a book that will stimulate your curiosity and feed your imagination. Detailed and fascinating text is clearly and richly illustrated with fabulous, vibrant photographs and diagrams. This is a comprehensive guide to understanding and observing the night sky, from distant stars and galaxies to our neighbouring planets; from comets to shooting stars; from eclipses to black holes. With details of the latest space probes, a series of monthly sky maps to provide guidance for the amateur observer and the latest photos from space, this book brings the beauty and wonder of our universe into your living room and will have you reaching for the telescope!

  5. Astronomy and political theory (United States)

    Campion, Nicholas


    This paper will argue that astronomical models have long been applied to political theory, from the use of the Sun as a symbol of the emperor in Rome to the application of Copernican theory to the needs of absolute monarchy. We will begin with consideration of astral divination (the use of astronomy to ascertain divine intentions) in the ancient Near East. Particular attention will be paid to the use of Newton's discovery that the universe operates according to a single set of laws in order to support concepts of political quality and eighteenth century Natural Rights theory. We will conclude with consideration of arguments that the discovery of the expanding, multi-galaxy universe, stimulated political uncertainty in the 1930s, and that photographs of the Earth from Apollo spacecraft encouraged concepts of the `global village'.

  6. Gravitational wave astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    CERN. Geneva


    In the past year, the LIGO-Virgo Collaboration announced the first secure detection of gravitational waves. This discovery heralds the beginning of gravitational wave astronomy: the use of gravitational waves as a tool for studying the dense and dynamical universe. In this talk, I will describe the full spectrum of gravitational waves, from Hubble-scale modes, through waves with periods of years, hours and milliseconds. I will describe the different techniques one uses to measure the waves in these bands, current and planned facilities for implementing these techniques, and the broad range of sources which produce the radiation. I will discuss what we might expect to learn as more events and sources are measured, and as this field matures into a standard part of the astronomical milieu.

  7. Compressed Sensing in Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Bobin, J; Ottensamer, R


    Recent advances in signal processing have focused on the use of sparse representations in various applications. A new field of interest based on sparsity has recently emerged: compressed sensing. This theory is a new sampling framework that provides an alternative to the well-known Shannon sampling theory. In this paper we investigate how compressed sensing (CS) can provide new insights into astronomical data compression and more generally how it paves the way for new conceptions in astronomical remote sensing. We first give a brief overview of the compressed sensing theory which provides very simple coding process with low computational cost, thus favoring its use for real-time applications often found on board space mission. We introduce a practical and effective recovery algorithm for decoding compressed data. In astronomy, physical prior information is often crucial for devising effective signal processing methods. We particularly point out that a CS-based compression scheme is flexible enough to account ...

  8. Astronomy Enrollments and Degrees: Results from the 2012 Survey of Astronomy Enrollments and Degrees. Focus On (United States)

    Mulvey, Patrick; Nicholson, Starr


    Interest in astronomy degrees in the U.S. remains strong, with astronomy enrollments at or near all-time highs for the 2012-13 academic year. The total number of students taking an introductory astronomy course at a degree-granting physics or astronomy department is approaching 200,000. Enrollments in introductory astronomy courses have been…

  9. Interdisciplinary Astronomy Activities (United States)

    Nerantzis, Nikolaos; Mitrouda, Aikaterini; Reizopoulou, Ioanna; Sidiropoulou, Eirini; Hatzidimitriou, Antonios


    On November 9th, 2015, three didactical hours were dedicated to Interdisciplinary Astronomy Activities ( Our students and their teachers formed three groups and in rotation, were engaged with the following activities: (a) viewing unique images of the Cosmos in the mobile planetarium STARLAB (, (b) watching the following videos: Journey to the end of the universe (, Rosetta update (, The Solar System (, Ambition the film ( in the school's library. Students and teachers were informed about our solar system, the Rosetta mission, the universe, etc. and (c) tactile activities such as Meet our home and Meet our neighbors (, and the creation of planets' 3D models (Geology-Geography A' Class Student's book, pg.15). With the activities above we had the pleasure to join the Cosmic Light Edu Kit / International Year of Light 2015 program. After our Interdisciplinary Astronomy Activities, we did a "small" research: our students had to fill an evaluation about their educational gains and the results can be found here Moreover, we discussed about Big Ideas of Science ( and through the "big" impact of the Rosetta mission & the infinity of our universe, we print posters with relevant topics and place them to the classrooms. We thank Rosa Doran (Nuclio - President of the Executive Council) for her continuous assistance and support on innovative science teaching proposals. She is an inspiration.

  10. Alaska Athabascan stellar astronomy (United States)

    Cannon, Christopher M.

    Stellar astronomy is a fundamental component of Alaska Athabascan cultures that facilitates time-reckoning, navigation, weather forecasting, and cosmology. Evidence from the linguistic record suggests that a group of stars corresponding to the Big Dipper is the only widely attested constellation across the Northern Athabascan languages. However, instruction from expert Athabascan consultants shows that the correlation of these names with the Big Dipper is only partial. In Alaska Gwich'in, Ahtna, and Upper Tanana languages the Big Dipper is identified as one part of a much larger circumpolar humanoid constellation that spans more than 133 degrees across the sky. The Big Dipper is identified as a tail, while the other remaining asterisms within the humanoid constellation are named using other body part terms. The concept of a whole-sky humanoid constellation provides a single unifying system for mapping the night sky, and the reliance on body-part metaphors renders the system highly mnemonic. By recognizing one part of the constellation the stargazer is immediately able to identify the remaining parts based on an existing mental map of the human body. The circumpolar position of a whole-sky constellation yields a highly functional system that facilitates both navigation and time-reckoning in the subarctic. Northern Athabascan astronomy is not only much richer than previously described; it also provides evidence for a completely novel and previously undocumented way of conceptualizing the sky---one that is unique to the subarctic and uniquely adapted to northern cultures. The concept of a large humanoid constellation may be widespread across the entire subarctic and have great antiquity. In addition, the use of cognate body part terms describing asterisms within humanoid constellations is similarly found in Navajo, suggesting a common ancestor from which Northern and Southern Athabascan stellar naming strategies derived.

  11. Applied Historical Astronomy (United States)

    Stephenson, F. Richard


    F. Richard Stephenson has spent most of his research career -- spanning more than 45 years -- studying various aspects of Applied Historical Astronomy. The aim of this interdisciplinary subject is the application of historical astronomical records to the investigation of problems in modern astronomy and geophysics. Stephenson has almost exclusively concentrated on pre-telescopic records, especially those preserved from ancient and medieval times -- the earliest reliable observations dating from around 700 BC. The records which have mainly interested him are of eclipses (both solar and lunar), supernovae, sunspots and aurorae, and Halley's Comet. The main sources of early astronomical data are fourfold: records from ancient and medieval East Asia (China, together with Korea and Japan); ancient Babylon; ancient and medieval Europe; and the medieval Arab world. A feature of Stephenson's research is the direct consultation of early astronomical texts in their original language -- either working unaided or with the help of colleagues. He has also developed a variety of techniques to help interpret the various observations. Most pre-telescopic observations are very crude by present-day standards. In addition, early motives for skywatching were more often astrological rather than scientific. Despite these drawbacks, ancient and medieval astronomical records have two remarkable advantages over modern data. Firstly, they can enable the investigation of long-term trends (e.g. in the terrestrial rate of rotation), which in the relatively short period covered by telescopic observations are obscured by short-term fluctuations. Secondly, over the lengthy time-scale which they cover, significant numbers of very rare events (such as Galactic supernovae) were reported, which have few -- if any-- counterparts in the telescopic record. In his various researches, Stephenson has mainly focused his attention on two specific topics. These are: (i) long-term changes in the Earth's rate of

  12. Astronomy at the frontiers of science

    CERN Document Server


    Astronomy is by nature an interdisciplinary activity: it involves mathematics, physics, chemistry and biology. Astronomers use (and often develop) the latest technology, the fastest computers and the most refined software.  In this book twenty-two leading scientists from nine countries talk about how astronomy interacts with these other sciences. They describe modern instruments used in astronomy and the relations between astronomy and technology, industry, politics and philosophy. They also discuss what it means to be an astronomer, the history of astronomy, and the place of astronomy in society today.   The book contains twenty chapters grouped in four parts: ASTRONOMY AND PHYSICS discusses the place of astronomy among various branches of (mostly high-energy) physics. ASTRONOMY IN SOCIETY describes not only the historical context of astronomy, but issues facing astronomers today, including funding, planning, worldwide collaboration and links with industry. THE TOOLS OF OBSERVATION AND THE PROFESSION OF AS...

  13. Essays on medieval computational astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Bergón, José Chabás


    In Essays on Medieval Computational Astronomy the authors provide examples of original and intelligent approaches and solutions given by medieval astronomers to the problems of their discipline, mostly presented in the form of astronomical tables.

  14. Women in Astronomy Workshop Report

    CERN Document Server

    Brough, Sarah; Brooks, Kate; Hopkins, Andrew; Maddison, Sarah


    Here we report on the Women in Astronomy Workshop (, which was held on 13 May 2011 in Sydney, Australia. The workshop was organised by the Astronomical Society of Australia's Chapter on Women in Astronomy, to discuss some of the issues that face women in astronomy and make recommendations to help support the success of women in Australian astronomy but came to broader conclusions that have value for the whole astronomical community. The workshop consisted of four sessions, with presentations by invited speakers on demographics, leadership, varied career paths, and how institutions & individuals can help. The workshop ended with a discussion panel that summarised the day's debate and presented a list of recommendations for the Australian astronomical community (both individuals and institutions) that are provided in this report.

  15. The Music and the Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Caballero, J A; Caballero, I


    What do Brian May (the Queen's lead guitarist), William Herschel and the Jupiter Symphony have in common? And a white dwarf, a piano and Lagartija Nick? At first glance, there is no connection between them, nor between the Music and the Astronomy. However, there are many revealing examples of musical Astronomy and astronomical Music. This four-page proceeding describes the sonorous poster that we showed during the VIII Scientific Meeting of the Spanish Astronomical Society.

  16. News clippings for introductory astronomy (United States)

    Bobrowsky, Matthew


    Most students entering our introductory astronomy course for nonscience majors arrive not merely lacking scientific facts-they also have misconceptions about the nature of science, and many have a handicapping ``science anxiety'' (in addition to math anxiety). So I have added a ``current science'' requirement to our introductory course. Each student must compile a file of five astronomy news articles taken from readily available sources.

  17. Astronomy at the Market (United States)

    Roten, Robert; Constantin, A.; Christensen, E.; Dick, E.; Lapolla, J.; Nutter, A.; Corcoran, J.; DiDomenico, N.; Eskridge, B.; Saikin, A.


    We present here an energetic grass-roots outreach program run entirely by undergraduate physics and astronomy majors at James Madison University. Our "Team Awestronomy" takes Astronomy out to the Market, literally. Once a month, for eight months during the academic year, the group sets up a “scientific corner” at the Harrisonburg Farmers Market, offering people the chance to meet with astrophysicists (in the making) and discuss science. Our group members wear t-shirts with simple messages like “Ask me about the Sun,” “...about Black Holes and Mega-Masers” or “...about Big Bang” that initiate the dialog. We help our audience with observations of solar activity through our department’s Coronado telescope equipped with a safe H-alpha filter, sunspotters, and the incredibly simple yet durable and accurate handheld (Project Star) spectrometers, and invite them to the free Saturday Planetarium shows and the star parties hosted by our department on the JMU campus. The team is also prepared with a suite of fun activities aimed particularly at K-5 kids, e.g., building (and eating, after investigating out-gassing properties of) ”dirty comets,” making craters (in pans with flour or sand) and testing how different types of impactors (pebbles, ping-pong balls or even crumpled aluminum foil) affect crater formation, and demonstrations of shock wave created in supernova explosions. The main goals of this outreach program are: 1) to illustrate to people of all ages that science is a fun, creative, and exciting process; 2) to empower people to be curious and to ask questions; 3) to demonstrate that science is a viable career path chosen by many diverse individuals; and 4) to nurture a sense of wonder and awe for the Universe. While this outreach program is aimed at a very general audience, of an extremely wide range, we expect to produce a significant impact on K-12 students in general and in particular on the home-schooled kids. There is a relatively high

  18. Large Databases in Astronomy (United States)

    Szalay, Alexander S.; Gray, Jim; Kunszt, Peter; Thakar, Anirudha; Slutz, Don

    The next-generation astronomy digital archives will cover most of the sky at fine resolution in many wavelengths, from X-rays through ultraviolet, optical, and infrared. The archives will be stored at diverse geographical locations. The intensive use of advanced data archives will enable astronomers to explore their data interactively. Data access will be aided by multidimensional spatial and attribute indices. The data will be partitioned in many ways. Small tag indices consisting of the most popular attributes will accelerate frequent searches. Splitting the data among multiple servers will allow parallel, scalable I/O and parallel data analysis. Hashing techniques will allow efficient clustering, and pair-wise comparison algorithms that should parallelize nicely. Randomly sampled subsets will allow debugging otherwise large queries at the desktop. Central servers will operate a data pump to support sweep searches touching most of the data. The anticipated queries will require special operators related to angular distances and complex similarity tests of object properties, like shapes, colors, velocity vectors, or temporal behaviors. These issues pose interesting data management challenges.

  19. Astronomy and Atmospheric Optics (United States)

    Cowley, Les; Gaina, Alex


    The authors discusse the insuccess of the observation of the Total Eclipse of the Moon from 10 december 2011 in Romania and relate them with meteoconditions. Only a very short part of the last penumbral phase was observed, while the inital part and the totality was not observed due to very dense clouds. The change in color and brightness during this phase was signaled. Meanwhile, there is an area of science where clouds are of great use and interest. This area is Atmospheric optics, while the science which study clouds is meteorology. Clouds in combination with Solar and Moon light could give rise to a variety of strange, rare and unobvious phenomena in the atmosphere (sky), sometimes confused with Unidentified Flying Objects (UFO). The importance of meteorology for astronomy and atmospheric optics is underlined and an invitation to astronomers to use unfavourable days for athmospheric observations was sent. The web address of the site by Les Cowley, designed for atmospheric optics phenomena is contained in the text of the entry.

  20. The Concise Knowledge Astronomy (United States)

    Clerke, Agnes Mary; Fowler, Alfred; Ellard Gore, John


    Preface; Section I. History Agnes M. Clerke: 1. From Hipparchus to Laplace; 2. A century of progress; Section II. Geometrical Astronomy and Astronomical Instruments A. Fowler: 1. The Earth and its rotation; 2. The Earth's revolution round the Sun; 3. How the positions of the heavenly bodies are defined; 4. The Earth's orbit; 5. Mean solar time; 6. The movements of the Moon; 7. Movements of planets, satellites, and comets; 8. Eclipses and occultations; 9. How to find our situation on the Earth; 10. The exact size and shape of the earth; 11. The distances and dimensions of the heavenly bodies; 12. The masses of celestial bodies; 13. Gravitational effects of Sun and moon upon the Earth; 14. Instrumental measurement of angles and time; 15. Telescopes; 16. Instruments of precision; 17. Astrophysical instruments; Section III. The Solar System Agnes M. Clerke: 1. The solar system as a whole; 2. The Sun; 3. The Sun's surroundings; 4. The interior planets; 5. The Earth and Moon; 6. The planet Mars; 7. The asteroids; 8. The planet Jupiter; 9. The Saturnian system; 10. Uranus and Neptune; 11. Famous comets; 12. Nature and origin of comets; 13. Meteorites and shooting stars; Section IV. The Sidereal Heavens J.E. Gore: 1. The stars and constellations; 2. Double, multiple, and coloured stars; 3. The distances and motions of the stars; 4. Binary stars; 5. Variable and temporary stars; 6. Clusters and nebulae; 7. The construction of the heavens; Index.

  1. Grab 'n' go astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    English, Neil


      Like everyone else, most amateur astronomers live busy lives. After a long day, the last thing you want as an observer is to have to lug out a large telescope and spend an hour getting it ready before it can be used. Maybe you are going somewhere sure to have dark skies, but you don’t necessarily want astronomy to dominate the trip. Or you are not quite committed to owning a large telescope, but curious enough to see what a smaller, portable setup can accomplish. These are times when a small “grab ’n’ go” telescope, or even a pair of binoculars, is the ideal in­strument. And this book can guide you in choosing and best utilizing that equipment.   What makes a telescope fall into the “grab ’n’ go” category? That’s easy – speed of setting up, ease of use, and above all, portability. This ambitious text is dedicated to those who love to or – because of their limited time – must observe the sky at a moment’s notice. Whether observing from the comfort of a backyard or while on busi...

  2. Edible Astronomy Demonstrations (United States)

    Lubowich, Donald A.


    Astronomy demonstrations with edible ingredients are an effective way to increase student interest and knowledge of astronomical concepts. This approach has been successful with all age groups from elementary school through college students - and the students remember these demonstrations after they are presented. In this poster I describe edible demonstrations I have created to simulate the expansion of the universe (using big-bang chocolate chip cookies); differentiation during the formation of the Earth and planets (using chocolate or chocolate milk with marshmallows, cereal, candy pieces or nuts); and radioactivity/radioactive dating (using popcorn). Other possible demonstrations include: plate tectonics (crackers with peanut butter and jelly); convection (miso soup or hot chocolate); mud flows on Mars (melted chocolate poured over angel food cake); formation of the Galactic disk (pizza); formation of spiral arms (coffee with cream); the curvature of Space (Pringles); constellations patterns with chocolate chips and chocolate chip cookies; planet shaped cookies; star shaped cookies with different colored frostings; coffee or chocolate milk measurement of solar radiation; Oreo cookie lunar phases. Sometimes the students eat the results of the astronomical demonstrations. These demonstrations are an effective teaching tool and can be adapted for cultural, culinary, and ethnic differences among the students.

  3. Astronomy Research Seminar (United States)

    Johson, Jolyon; Genet, Russell; Armstrong, James; Boyce, Grady; Boyce, Pat; Brewer, Mark; Buchheim, Robert; Carro, Joseph; Estrada, Reed; Estrada, Chris; Freed, Rachel; Gillette, Sean; Harshaw, Richard; Hollis, Thomas; Kenney, John; McGaughey, Seven; McNab, Christine; Mohanan, Kakkala; Sepulveda, Babs; Wallace, Dan; Wallen, Vera


    Traditional science lectures and labs are often enhanced through project- and team-based learning. Some students go beyond these classroom studies by conducting research, often under the guidance of university professors. A one-semester astronomy research seminar was initiated in 2006 in collaboration with the community of professional and amateur double star astronomers. The result was dozens of jointly-authored papers published in the Journal of Double Star Observations and the Annual Proceedings of the Society of Astronomical Sciences. This seminar, and its affiliated community, launched a series of conferences and books, providing students with additional forums to share their double star research. The original seminar, and its derivatives, enhanced educational careers through college admissions and scholarships. To expand the seminar's reach, it was restructured from a few teams at one school, to many teams, each from a different school. A volunteer from each school became an assistant instructor. Most of them were seminar veterans, experienced astronomers, or science teachers. The assistant instructors, in turn, recruited enthusiastic students for their teams. To avoid student and instructor overload, the seminar focused on its three deliverables: a formal proposal, published paper, and public PowerPoint presentation. Future seminars may offer other astronomical research options such as exoplanet transit or eclipsing binary photometry.

  4. Prehistoric Astronomy in China (United States)

    Chiu, B. C.


    We do not have definite proof, but the situation is very interesting, so here is a summary of what we have from calculations and literature research. The ancient Classics of China were written in an archaic, terse language. But the philologist, Bernhard Karlgren, was able to argue that the constellations, (Niao, Huo, Hsu, Mao) were what the oldest stories referred to when the Sage Yao gave directions for agriculture by use of astronomy. Huo and Mao are now well-identified as the asterisms, Antares and the Pleiades. And using tables of precession, which we now have, we find that the text gives a date thousands of years earlier than previously thought. Together with results from studies in prehistory in the last two decades, we can form a plausible picture of how the Pleiades, and then Antares were observed, telling of the beginning of warming, and then the beginning of harvest. We have had at least two obstacles to overcome: one, we had to show the stories were written earlier than one thousand years ago because the Chinese knew of precession then and could have made up the story. Secondly, that the `culmination' written about by Joseph Needham probably referred to a much later time.

  5. Astronomy in India a historical perspective

    CERN Document Server


    India has a strong and ancient tradition of astronomy, which seamlessly merges with the current activities in Astronomy and Astrophysics in the country. While the younger generation of astronomers and students are reasonably familiar with the current facilities and the astronomical research, they might not have an equally good knowledge of the rich history of Indian astronomy. This particular volume, brought out as a part of the Platinum Jubilee Celebrations of Indian National Science Academy, concentrates on selected aspects of historical development of Indian astronomy in the form of six invited chapters. Two of the chapters – by Balachandra Rao and M.S. Sriram – cover ancient astronomy and the development of calculus in the ancient Kerela text Yuktibhasa. The other four chapters by B.V. Sreekantan, Siraj Hasan, Govind Swarup and Jayant Narlikar deal with the contemporary history of Indian astronomy covering space astronomy, optical astronomy, radio astronomy and developments in relativistic astrophysic...

  6. - A Digital Library for Astronomy 101 (United States)

    Gagne, M.; Monahan, P.; Deustua, S.; Mason, B.


    The AAS is sponsoring the development of a digital collection of online resources for teaching introductory astronomy: Astronomy Center is part of the ComPADRE project with the AIP and its member organizations (see Deustua et al. at this meeting). The goal of Astronomy Center is to build a portal that will be a broad collection of high-quality digital resources, a useful and inviting interface to search and browse the collection, and an online meeting place for faculty at a variety of institutions to gather and share information. The collection will be launched in early 2005 and will initially contain a few hundred resources, selected primarily by Astronomy Center staff. The collection will grow through user and author submissions. Meanwhile, resources will be peer-reviewed and featured on the site as the collection grows. We will present the site, the user interface, some resources in the collection, the peer review process, and how members of the community can get involved with Astronomy Center. This work was made possible by a NSF National Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Digital Library (NSDL) grant to the AAPT, AIP, and AAS.

  7. Introducing Astronomy into Mozambican Society

    CERN Document Server

    Ribeiro, V A R M; Besteiro, A M A R; Geraldes, H; Maphossa, A M; Nhanonbe, F A; Uaissine, A J R


    Mozambique has been proposed as a host for one of the future Square Kilometre Array stations in Southern Africa. However, Mozambique does not possess a university astronomy department and only recently has there been interest in developing one. South Africa has been funding students at the MSc and PhD level, as well as researchers. Additionally, Mozambicans with Physics degrees have been funded at the MSc level. With the advent of the International Year of Astronomy, there has been a very strong drive, from these students, to establish a successful astronomy department in Mozambique. The launch of the commemorations during the 2008 World Space Week was very successful and Mozambique is to be used to motivate similar African countries who lack funds but are still trying to take part in the International Year of Astronomy. There hare been limited resources and funding, however there is a strong will to carry this momentum into 2009 and, with this, influence the Government to introduce Astronomy into its nationa...

  8. Astronomy education through interactive materials (United States)

    Voelzke, Marcos Rincon; Antunes de Macêdo, Josué


    This study presents results of a survey conducted at the Federal Institution of Education, Science and Technology in the North of Minas Gerais (IFNMG), and aimed to investigate the potentialities of the use of interactive materials in the teaching of astronomy. An advanced training course with involved learning activities about basic concepts of astronomy was offered to thirty-two Licenciate students in Physics, Mathematics and Biological Sciences, using the mixed methodology, combined with the three pedagogical moments. Among other aspects, the viability of the use of resources was noticed, involving digital technologies and interactive materials on teaching of astronomy, which may contribute to the broadening of methodological options for future teachers and meet their training needs.

  9. Scientific literacy: astronomy at school (United States)

    Gangui, A.; Iglesias, M.; Quinteros, C.

    Models constructed by scientists to explain the world often incorporate their actual individual conceptions about different physical phenomena. Likewise, prospective teachers reach general science courses with preconstructed and consistent models of the universe surrounding them. In this project we present a series of basic questionings that make us reflect on the present situation of the teaching-learning relationship in astronomy within the framework of formal education for elementary school teachers. Our project main aims are: 1) to contribute to finding out the real learning situation of preservice elementary teachers, and 2) from these studies, to try and develop didactic tools that can contribute to improve their formal education in topics of astronomy. In spite of being of chief importance within the science teaching topics, mainly due to its interdisciplinarity and cultural relevance, researches in didactics of astronomy are not well represented in our research institutes. FULL TEXT IN SPANISH

  10. International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics (United States)

    Soonthornthum, B.; Kunjaya, C.


    The International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics, an annual astronomy and astrophysics competition for high school students, is described. Examples of problems and solutions from the competition are also given. (Contains 3 figures.)

  11. Astronomy and Shakespeare's Hamlet. (United States)

    Usher, P. D.


    Payne-Gaposchkin and others have suggested that Hamlet shows evidence of the Bard's awareness of the astronomical revolutions of the sixteenth century. I summarize major arguments and note that the play's themes recur in modern astronomy teaching and research: (1) The play amounts to a redefinition of universal order and humankind's position in it. (2) There is interplay between appearance and reality. Such a contrast is commonplace wherever superficial celestial appearances obscure underlying physical realities, the nature of which emerge as the tale unfolds. (3) The outermost sphere of the Ptolemaic and Copernican models seems to encase humanity, who are liberated by the reality of Digges' model and the implications advanced by Bruno. Similarly the oppressiveness of the castle interior is relieved by the observing platform which enables the heavens to be viewed in their true light. (4) Hamlet could be bounded in a nut-shell and count himself a king of infinite space, were it not that he has bad dreams. These concern the subversiveness of the new doctrine, for Hamlet refers to the infinite universe only hypothetically and in the presence of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, who are named for relatives of the Danish astronomer Brahe. (5) Hamlet, and Brahe and Bruno, have connections to the university at Wittenberg, as does the Copernican champion Rheticus. (6) Ways are needed to reveal both the truths of nature, and the true nature of Danish royalty. Those unaccustomed to science think that there is madness in Hamlet's method. In particular, `doubt' is advanced as a methodological principle of inquiry. (7) The impression of normalcy and propriety in the upper reaches of society is like the false impression of an encapsulating universe. In Hamlet this duality is dramatized tragically, whereas in King John (cf. BAAS 27, 1325, 1995) it is not; for by 1601 when the writing of Hamlet was probably completed, Shakespeare would have known of the martyrdom of Bruno the previous

  12. Astronomy 3.0 Style

    CERN Document Server

    Accomazzi, Alberto


    Over the next decade we will witness the development of a new infrastructure in support of data-intensive scientific research, which includes Astronomy. This new networked environment will offer both challenges and opportunities to our community and has the potential to transform the way data are described, curated and preserved. Based on the lessons learned during the development and management of the ADS, a case is made for adopting the emerging technologies and practices of the Semantic Web to support the way Astronomy research will be conducted. Examples of how small, incremental steps can, in the aggregate, make a significant difference in the provision and repurposing of astronomical data are provided.

  13. Statistical Challenges in Modern Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Feigelson, E D


    Despite centuries of close association, statistics and astronomy are surprisingly distant today. Most observational astronomical research relies on an inadequate toolbox of methodological tools. Yet the needs are substantial: astronomy encounters sophisticated problems involving sampling theory, survival analysis, multivariate classification and analysis, time series analysis, wavelet analysis, spatial point processes, nonlinear regression, bootstrap resampling and model selection. We review the recent resurgence of astrostatistical research, and outline new challenges raised by the emerging Virtual Observatory. Our essay ends with a list of research challenges and infrastructure for astrostatistics in the coming decade.

  14. Advances in astronomy and astrophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Advances in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Volume 2 brings together numerous research works on different aspects of astronomy and astrophysics. This volume is composed of six chapters and begins with a summary of observational record on twilight extensions of the Venus cusps. The next chapter deals with the common and related properties of binary stars, with emphasis on the evaluation of their cataclysmic variables. Cataclysmic variables refer to an object in one of three classes: dwarf nova, nova, or supernova. These topics are followed by discussions on the eclipse phenomena and the eclipses i

  15. Astronomy, space science and geopolitics (United States)

    Courvoisier, Thierry J.-L.


    Astronomy has played a major part in the development of civilisations, not only through conceptual developments, but most importantly through the very practical gains obtained through the observation of Sun, Moon planets and stars. Space sciences, including astronomy, have also played a major rôle in the development of modern societies, as an engine for most subsequent space technology developments. Present trends tend to decrease the rôle of science in space development. This trend should be reversed to give modern ``societies'' their independence in space-related matters that permeate the lives of all inhabitants of the Earth.

  16. Astronomy, Space Science and Geopolitics

    CERN Document Server

    Courvoisier, Thierry J -L


    Astronomy has played a major part in the development of civilisations, not only through conceptual developments, but most importantly through the very practical gains obtained through the observation of Sun, Moon planets and stars. Space sciences, including astronomy, have also played a major role in the development of modern societies, as engine for most subsequent space technology developments. Present trends tend to decrease the role of science in space development. This trend should be reversed to give modern "societies" their independence in space related matters that permeate the lives of all inhabitants of the Earth.

  17. Advances in astronomy and astrophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Advances in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Volume 1 brings together numerous research works on different aspects of astronomy and astrophysics. This book is divided into five chapters and begins with an observational summary of the shock-wave theory of novae. The subsequent chapter provides the properties and problems of T tauri stars and related objects. These topics are followed by discussions on the structure and origin of meteorites and cosmic dust, as well as the models for evaluation of mass distribution in oblate stellar systems. The final chapter describes the methods of polarization mea

  18. Advances in astronomy and astrophysics

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Advances in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Volume 4 brings together numerous research works on different aspects of astronomy and astrophysics. This volume is composed of five chapters, and starts with a description of objective prism and its application in space observations. The next chapter deals with the possibilities of deriving reliable models of the figure, density distribution, and gravity field of the Moon based on data obtained through Earth-bound telescopes. These topics are followed by a discussion on the ideal partially relativistic, partially degenerate gas in an exact manner. A ch

  19. Practical astronomy with your calculator

    CERN Document Server

    Duffett-Smith, Peter


    Practical Astronomy with your Calculator, first published in 1979, has enjoyed immense success. The author's clear and easy to follow routines enable you to solve a variety of practical and recreational problems in astronomy using a scientific calculator. Mathematical complexity is kept firmly in the background, leaving just the elements necessary for swiftly making calculations. The major topics are: time, coordinate systems, the Sun, the planetary system, binary stars, the Moon, and eclipses. In the third edition there are entirely new sections on generalised coordinate transformations, nutr

  20. Astronomy for teachers in Mexico (United States)

    Fierro, J.


    Mexico has added five more years of compulsory education to its national education system. In the past it only included six year of elementary (grammar) school. Now three years of pre school (kinder garden) and three years of middle school are being implemented. At present an optional course on astronomy if offered in high school (pre college). During my presentation I shall discuss problems concerning education in Mexico; mainly the lack of continuity in different levels of education, the lack of teacher training in science in general and the few topics of astronomy that are addressed. I shall mention for teacher training and public education, which includes books, lectures and videos.

  1. Computers in Astronomy: Astronomy on an Apple Macintosh. (United States)

    Mosley, John E.


    Presents a review of computer programs written for the Apple Macintosh computer that teach astronomy. Reviews general programs, along with some which deal more specifically with sky travel, star charting, the solar system, Halley's Comet, and stargazing. Includes the name and address of each producer. (TW)

  2. Indian Astronomy: The Missing Link in Eurocentric History of Astronomy (United States)

    Haque, Shirin; Sharma, Deva


    A comprehensive history of Astronomy should show in reasonable chronological order, the contributions from wherever they arise in the world, once they are reliably documented. However, the authors note that consistently, the extremely rich contributions from Ancient Indian scholars like Aryabatha and Bhramagupta are omitted in Eurocentric…

  3. Astronomy Education Project for Guangdong High Schools

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    F. P. Pi; K. Y. Guan; J. Wang; H. G. Wang; Y. Liu; J. H. Fan


    Guangdong province is an active area in China for astronomy education and popularization. The current status and problems of astronomy education in high schools are reviewed. To tackle these problems, an astronomy education project for high school teachers and students was initiated by Guangzhou University in 2013. The purpose and key points of the projects are introduced in this paper.

  4. Blazing the Trail for Astronomy Education Research (United States)

    Bailey, Janelle M.; Lombardi, Doug


    Education research has long considered student learning of topics in astronomy and the space sciences, but astronomy education research as a sub-field of discipline-based education research is relatively new. Driven by a growing interest among higher education astronomy educators in improving the general education, introductory science survey…

  5. The Challenges of Astronomy in Nigeria (United States)

    Urama, J. O.

    Some Universities and Research Centres in Nigeria have, over the years, been extensively involved in both research and education in Astronomy and Space Sciences. However, they appear to be trading in an unwanted commodity as modern astronomy appears to continue to lack any serious public appreciation. This paper examines the challenges and problems confronting the development of Astronomy in the country.

  6. Exchange of astronomy teaching experiences (United States)

    Ros, Rosa M.

    The Working Group of the European Association for Astronomy Education responsible for Teacher Training organises an annual Summer School for teachers under expert guidance. For a week the teachers participating can exchange experiences, increase their knowledge and discuss different ideas and perspectives. In general, the instructors are professional astronomers, professors and teachers from different countries. The papers presented offer very practical activities, paying special attention to didactic aspects, and take the form of general lectures to all 40 participants and workshops to reduced groups of 20 participants. There are also day and night observations, without expensive equipment or complicated procedures, that are easy to set up and based on topics that it is possible to use in the classroom. The Summer Schools promote a scientific astronomical education at all levels of astronomy teaching, reinforce the link between professional astronomers and teachers with experience of teaching astronomy, allow debates among the participants on their pedagogical activities already carried out in their own classroom and help them to organise activities outside it. Astronomy teachers need special training, access to specific research, to new educational materials and methods and the opportunity to exchange experiences. All these things are provided by the Summer School.

  7. Astronomy Education Challenges in Egypt (United States)

    El Fady Beshara Morcos, Abd


    One of the major challenges in Egypt is the quality of education. Egypt has made significant progress towards achieving the Education for All and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Many associations and committees as education reform program and education support programs did high efforts in supporting scientific thinking through the scientific clubs. The current state of astronomical education in Egypt has been developed. Astronomy became a part in both science and geography courses of primary, preparatory and secondary stages. Nowadays the Egyptian National Committee for Astronomy, put on its shoulders the responsibility of revising of astronomy parts in the education courses, beside preparation of some training programs for teachers of different stages of educations, in collaboration with ministry of education. General lectures program has been prepared and started in public places , schools and universities. Many TV and Radio programs aiming to spread astronomical culture were presented. In the university stage new astronomy departments are established and astrophysics courses are imbedded in physics courses even in some private universities.

  8. Astronomy and Astrophysics in India (United States)

    Narlikar, J.; Murdin, P.


    The growth in astronomy and astrophysics (A&A) in India has been mostly since the country achieved independence in 1947. The present work is carried out in a few select research institutes and in some university departments. The Astronomical Society of India has around 300 working A&A scientists as members, with another 50-60 graduate students....

  9. Service Learning in Introductory Astronomy (United States)

    Orleski, Michael


    Service learning is a method of instruction where the students in a course use the course's content in a service project. The service is included as a portion of the students' course grades. During the fall semester 2010, service learning was incorporated into the Introduction to Astronomy course at Misericordia University. The class had…

  10. Visual lunar and planetary astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Abel, Paul G


    With the advent of CCDs and webcams, the focus of amateur astronomy has to some extent shifted from science to art. The object of many amateur astronomers is now to produce “stunning images” that, although beautiful, are not intended to have scientific merit. Paul Abel has been addressing this issue by promoting visual astronomy wherever possible – at talks to astronomical societies, in articles for popular science magazines, and on BBC TV’s The Sky at Night.   Visual Lunar and Planetary Astronomy is a comprehensive modern treatment of visual lunar and planetary astronomy, showing that even in the age of space telescopes and interplanetary probes it is still possible to contribute scientifically with no more than a moderately priced commercially made astronomical telescope.   It is believed that imaging and photography is somehow more objective and more accurate than the eye, and this has led to a peculiar “crisis of faith” in the human visual system and its amazing processing power. But by anal...

  11. Neutrino astronomy: Present and future

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Thomas McCauley


    I briefly review the present and future status of the burgeoning field of neutrino astronomy. I outline the astrophysics and particle physics goals, design, and performance of the various current and proposed neutrino telescopes. Also described are present results and future expectations.

  12. Schiaparelli and the dawn of astronomy (United States)

    Antonello, E.

    Schiaparelli is remembered by astronomers and scholars interested in ancient astronomy in particular for his fundamental contributions to the understanding of ancient Greek astronomy and for his pioneer work on babylonian astronomy. In the present paper we will highlight some of his studies and ideas about: a) the origins and the primitive astronomy in the context of the european archaeology and anthropology researches, b) the problems in the analysis of a cuneiform tablet, and c) the interpretation of the astronomical content of a verse in the Old Testament, with an interesting implication for the present day researches in cultural astronomy and archaeoastronomy.

  13. Training in Astronomy for Physics Students

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    J. H. Fan


    In this paper, we describe what we have done with regard to astronomy training for physics students. More and more students are interested in astronomy, they spend their summer holidays and spare time in observations and studying the observation data. Some students are familiar with using the telescope for observations, dealing with absorption line features achieved from the observations. Astronomy was selected as the key subject in Guangzhou city and Guangdong province, the laboratory for astronomy science and technology was selected as the key laboratory of Guangzhou city and that for the education department of Guangdong Province. We also provide a master degree programme for astronomy.

  14. Highlights of Astronomy, Vol. 16 (United States)

    Montmerle, Thierry


    Part I. Invited Discourses: 1. The Herschel view of star formation; 2. Past, present and future of Chinese astronomy; 3. The zoo of galaxies; 4. Supernovae, the accelerating cosmos, and dark energy; Part II. Joint Discussion: 5. Very massive stars in the local universe; 6. 3-D views of the cycling Sun in stellar context; 7. Ultraviolet emission in early-type galaxies; 8. From meteors and meteorites to their parent bodies: current status and future developments; 9. The connection between radio properties and high-energy emission in AGNs; 10. Space-time reference systems for future research; Part III. Special Sessions: 11. Origin and complexity of massive star clusters; 12. Cosmic evolution of groups and clusters of galaxies; 13. Galaxy evolution through secular processes; 14. New era for studying interstellar and intergalactic magnetic fields; 15. The IR view of massive stars: the main sequence and beyond; 16. Science with large solar telescopes; 17. The impact hazard: current activities and future plans; 18. Calibration of star-formation rate measurements across the electromagnetic spectrum; 19. Future large scale facilities; 20. Dynamics of the star-planet relations strategic plan and the Global Office of Astronomy for Development; 21. Strategic plan and the Global Office of Astronomy for Development; 22. Modern views of the interstellar medium; 23. High-precision tests of stellar physics from high-precision photometry; 24. Communicating astronomy with the public for scientists; 25. Data intensive astronomy; 26. Unexplained spectral phenomena in the interstellar medium; 27. Light pollution: protecting astronomical sites and increasing global awareness through education.

  15. years of astronomy in Odessa (United States)

    Karetnikov, V. G.

    Astronomy in the city of Odessa, a sea-port, existed from the time immemorial. First it was used nautical practice and in train navigators for applied purposes. The part it played was highly appreciated in Odessa. An Astronomical Observatory already existed in Richelieu Lyceum founded in 1817. One of the rooms of the Lyceums department of physics and mathematics accomodated the Observatory equipped with 24 astronomical and topographic instruments. The observatory was used for educational urposes only and had no applied or scientific significance then. Subsequently, these instruments constituted the base for astronomical study at the astronomy and geodesy Chair of the Novorossiysk University inaugurated in 1865 on the basis of Richelieu Lyceum.

  16. Academic Training: Gravitational Waves Astronomy

    CERN Multimedia


    2006-2007 ACADEMIC TRAINING PROGRAMME LECTURE SERIES 16, 17, 18 October from 11:00 to 12:00 - Main Auditorium, bldg. 500 Gravitational Waves Astronomy M. LANDRY, LIGO Hanford Observatory, Richland, USA Gravitational wave astronomy is expected to become an observational field within the next decade. First direct detection of gravitational waves is possible with existing terrestrial-based detectors, and highly probable with proposed upgrades. In this three-part lecture series, we give an overview of the field, including material on gravitional wave sources, detection methods, some details of interferometric detectors, data analysis methods, and current results from observational data-taking runs of the LIGO and GEO projects. ENSEIGNEMENT ACADEMIQUE ACADEMIC TRAINING Françoise Benz 73127 If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please tell to your supervisor and apply electronically from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at: http://www...

  17. Planetary radio astronomy from Voyager (United States)

    Alexander, J. K.


    The technique of radio astronomy makes it possible for a remote observer to detect the presence of magnetic fields and plasmas in planetary environments. Prior to the flights of the Voyager spacecraft, radio astronomical studies of Jupiter from earth and from earth orbit had correctly predicted the strength and orientation of Jupiter's magnetic field and trapped radiation belts. The Voyager Planetary Radio Astronomy investigations have now provided measurements of the complete spectrum of low frequency radio emissions from both planets. Each Voyager instrument consists of a pair of orthogonal, 10-m, electric monopole antennas which are connected to a step-tuned, superheterodyne receiver operating over the frequency range from 1.2 kHz to 40.5 MHz. The Voyager trajectory provided observations from above both the sunlit and nightside hemispheres of Jupiter. Saturn's nonthermal radio emission has been observed at frequencies as low as 3 kHz and as high as 1.2 MHz.

  18. Multiwavelength astronomy and big data (United States)

    Mickaelian, A. M.


    Two major characteristics of modern astronomy are multiwavelength (MW) studies (fromγ-ray to radio) and big data (data acquisition, storage and analysis). Present astronomical databases and archives contain billions of objects observed at various wavelengths, both galactic and extragalactic, and the vast amount of data on them allows new studies and discoveries. Astronomers deal with big numbers. Surveys are the main source for discovery of astronomical objects and accumulation of observational data for further analysis, interpretation, and achieving scientific results. We review the main characteristics of astronomical surveys, compare photographic and digital eras of astronomical studies (including the development of wide-field observations), describe the present state of MW surveys, and discuss the Big Data in astronomy and related topics of Virtual Observatories and Computational Astrophysics. The review includes many numbers and data that can be compared to have a possibly overall understanding on the Universe, cosmic numbers and their relationship to modern computational facilities.

  19. Random time series in Astronomy


    Vaughan, Simon


    Progress in astronomy comes from interpreting the signals encoded in the light received from distant objects: the distribution of light over the sky (images), over photon wavelength (spectrum), over polarization angle, and over time (usually called light curves by astronomers). In the time domain we see transient events such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts, and other powerful explosions; we see periodic phenomena such as the orbits of planets around nearby stars, radio pulsars, and pulsations...

  20. LGBT Workplace Climate in Astronomy (United States)

    Gaudi, B. S.; Danner, R.; Dixon, W. V.; Henderson, C. B.; Kay, L. E.


    The AAS Working Group on LGBTIQ Equality (WGLE) held a town hall meeting at the 220th AAS meeting in Anchorage to explore the workplace climate for LGBTIQ individuals working in Astronomy and related fields. Topics of discussion included anti-discrimination practices, general workplace climate, and pay and benefit policies. Four employment sectors were represented: industry, the federal government, private colleges, and public universities. We will summarize and expand on the town hall discussions and findings of the panel members.

  1. Radio Astronomy in LSST Era

    CERN Document Server

    Lazio, T Joseph W; Barger, A J; Brandt, W N; Chatterjee, S; Clarke, T E; Condon, J J; Dickman, Robert L; Hunyh, M T; Jarvis, Matt J; Juric, Mario; Kassim, N E; Myers, S T; Nissanke, Samaya; Osten, Rachel; Zauderer, B A


    A community meeting on the topic of "Radio Astronomy in the LSST Era" was hosted by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Charlottesville, VA (2013 May 6--8). The focus of the workshop was on time domain radio astronomy and sky surveys. For the time domain, the extent to which radio and visible wavelength observations are required to understand several classes of transients was stressed, but there are also classes of radio transients for which no visible wavelength counterpart is yet known, providing an opportunity for discovery. From the LSST perspective, the LSST is expected to generate as many as 1 million alerts nightly, which will require even more selective specification and identification of the classes and characteristics of transients that can warrant follow up, at radio or any wavelength. The LSST will also conduct a deep survey of the sky, producing a catalog expected to contain over 38 billion objects in it. Deep radio wavelength sky surveys will also be conducted on a comparable time scale,...

  2. Life standard, science and astronomy (United States)

    Georgiev, Tsvetan B.

    The bibliometrc data published by Sanches & Benn (2004) are analized. The proportionality in log-log coordinates between the population and annual gross domestic product (GDP) with coefficient equal to unit is used for selection of "developed" countries and for further reveal of dependances through them. The proportionality coefficients between the GDP and the citation of all-science or only of the 1000 astronomy top-articles in 1991-98 occur 0.75 and 0.93, respectivelly. The fact that coefficients are less then 1 gives evidence that when the wealth of the community grows up the citation (i.e. the quality) of the articles increases with a less speed. Correlations between the "cost" of 1% citation as part of the GDP or as a part of the GDP per person for all-science and for the 1000 astronomy top-articles only are found. They show that the scientific papers are relatively more "cheap" for the big scientific communities (USA, EU), but in the same time the most cited astronomical articles are relatively more "expensive", up to 2 times. Generally, the astronomy seems to be more interesting, but also more expensive than the science on average.

  3. Innovative Technology for Teaching Introductory Astronomy (United States)

    Guidry, Mike

    The application of state-of-the-art technology (primarily Java and Flash MX Actionscript on the client side and Java PHP PERL XML and SQL databasing on the server side) to the teaching of introductory astronomy will be discussed. A completely online syllabus in introductory astronomy built around more than 350 interactive animations called ""Online Journey through Astronomy"" and a new set of 20 online virtual laboratories in astronomy that we are currently developing will be used as illustration. In addition to demonstration of the technology our experience using these technologies to teach introductory astronomy to thousands of students in settings ranging from traditional classrooms to full distance learning will be summarized. Recent experiments using Java and vector graphics programming of handheld devices (Personal Digital Assistants and cell phones) with wireless wide-area connectivity for applications in astronomy education will also be described.

  4. Division B Commission 40: Radio Astronomy (United States)

    Chapman, Jessica M.; Giovaninni, Gabriele; Taylor, Russell; Carilli, Christopher; Hills, Richard; Hirabayashi, Hisashi; Jonas, Justin L.; Lazio, Joseph; Morganti, Rafaella; Nan, Rendong; Rubio, Monica; Shastri, Prjaval; Kellermann, Ken; Ekers, Ronald; Ohishi, Masatoshi


    IAU Commission 40 for Radio Astronomy (hereafter C40) brought together scientists and engineers who carry out observational and theoretical research in radio astronomy and who develop and operate the ground and space-based radio astronomy facilities and instrumentation. As of June 2015, the Commission had approximately 1,100 members from 49 countries, corresponding to nearly 10 per cent of the total IAU membership.

  5. Julia and Python in Astronomy: Better Together (United States)

    Barbary, Kyle


    Astronomers love Python because it is open source, easy to learn, and has a tremendous ecosystem for scientific computing. The Julia programming language has many of those same characteristics. In this talk, I'll discuss the use of Julia in astronomy and the growing ecosystem of astronomy packages, particularly those managed by the JuliaAstro organization ( Most importantly, I will highlight some areas ripe for collaboration between Python and Julia developers in astronomy.

  6. Distributed visual information management in astronomy


    Murtagh, Fionn; Starck, J. L.; Louys, M


    Among the many interesting computational problems that observational astronomy poses, broad aspects of visual information management are crucial. In this regard, observational astronomy "collaboratories" provide important testbeds for other fields serving less well?defined communities-telemedicine, Earth observation, and graphic art and design come to mind. The authors review issues related to large-image visualization in astronomy and a recently developed toolset for this purpose. Resolution...

  7. The Relationship between Preservice Science Teachers' Attitude toward Astronomy and Their Understanding of Basic Astronomy Concepts (United States)

    Bektasli, Behzat


    Turkish preservice science teachers have been taking a two-credit astronomy class during the last semester of their undergraduate program since 2010. The current study aims to investigate the relationship between preservice science teachers' astronomy misconceptions and their attitudes toward astronomy. Preservice science teachers were given an…

  8. Improving Astronomy Achievement and Attitude through Astronomy Summer Project: A Design, Implementation and Assessment (United States)

    Türk, Cumhur; Kalkan, Hüseyin; Iskeleli', Nazan Ocak; Kiroglu, Kasim


    The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of an astronomy summer project implemented in different learning activities on elementary school students, pre-service elementary teachers and in-service teachers' astronomy achievement and their attitudes to astronomy field. This study is the result of a five-day, three-stage, science school,…

  9. A New Online Astronomy Resource for Education and Outreach (United States)

    Impey, C. D.; Hardegree-Ullman, K. K.; Patikkal, A.; Srinathan, A.; Austin, C. L.; Ganesan, N. K.; Guvenen, B. C.


    A new web site called "Teach Astronomy" ( has been created to serve astronomy instructors and their students, amateur astronomers, and members of the public interested in astronomy. The

  10. Music and Astronomy Under the Stars 2009 (United States)

    Lubowich, D.


    Bring telescopes to where the people are! Music and Astronomy Under the Stars is a three-year NASA-funded astronomy outreach program at community parks during and after music concerts and outdoor family events—such as a Halloween Stars-Spooky Garden Walk. While there have been many astronomy outreach activities and telescope observations at city sidewalks and parks, this program targets a completely different audience: music lovers who are attending summer concerts held in community parks. These music lovers who may never have visited a science museum, planetarium, or star party are exposed to telescope observations and astronomy information with no additional travel costs. Music and Astronomy Under the Stars increased awareness, engagement, and interest in astronomy at classical, pop, rock, and ethnic music concerts. This program includes solar observing before the concerts, telescope observations including a live image projection system, an astronomical video presentation, and astronomy banners/posters. Approximately 500-16,000 people attended each event and 25% to 50% of the people at each event participated in the astronomy program. This program also reached underrepresented and underserved groups (women, minorities, older adults). The target audience (Nassau and Suffolk Counties, New York) is 2,900,000 people, which is larger than combined population of Atlanta, Boston, Denver, Minneapolis, and San Francisco. Although eleven events were planned in 2009, two were canceled due to rain and our largest event, the NY Philharmonic in the Park (attended by 67,000 people in 2008), was cancelled for financial reasons. Our largest event in 2009 was the Tanglewood Music Festival, Lenox MA, attended by 16,000 people where over 5000 people participated in astronomy activities. The Amateur Observers' Society of New York assisted with the NY concerts and the Springfield STARS astronomy club assisted at Tanglewood. In 2009 over 15,000 people participated in astronomy

  11. The Helios radio astronomy experiment (United States)

    Kayser, S.; Stone, R.


    Radio bursts traveling between the Sun and the Earth were tracked by radio astronomy experiments on Helios 1 and 2. A relatively short dipole antenna with a well-defined toroidal reception pattern was flown. The antenna spins in the ecliptic at 60.3 rpm and 2 frequencies are measured in each revolution. The signal analysis determines the strength of the signal, the direction of the source in the ecliptic, and the degree of modulation, and estimates source size. The experiments provide three-dimensional direction finding in space. They extend the radio frequency window beyond what is observable on Earth, and offer a long triangulation baseline.

  12. High energy cosmic ray astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    A brief introduction to High Energy Cosmic Ray Astronomy is presented. This field covers a 17 decade energy range (2.104-1020) eV. Recent discoveries done with gamma-ray detectors on-board satellites and ground-based Cherenkov devices are pushing for a fast development of new and innovative techniques, specially in the low energy region which includes the overlapping of satellite and ground-based measurements in the yet unexplored energy range 20 keV-250 GeV. Detection of unexpected extremely high energy events have triggered the interest of the international scientific community. (orig.)

  13. The submillimeter wave astronomy satellite (United States)

    Melnick, Gary J.; Dalgarno, A.; Erickson, N. R.; Fazio, G. G.; Goldsmith, P. F.; Harwit, Martin; Hollenbach, D. J.; Koch, D. G.; Neufeld, David A.; Schieder, R.


    The Submillimeter Wave Astronomy Satellite (SWAS) selected for flight as part of the Small Explorer Program is described. SWAS consists of a 55 by 71 cm near optical quality off axis primary mirror, two heteorodyne radiometers with Schottky barrier diode mixers, and a single broadband (1.4 GHz) Acousto Optical Spectrometer (AOS). SWAS primary objective is to conduct a high spectral resolution survey of galactic molecular clouds in low lying transitions of water, molecular oxygen, atomic carbon and isotopic carbon monoxide. These species are crucial in gaining a better understanding of the chemistry and cooling of dense molecular clouds.

  14. Highlights of Astronomy, Vol. 15 (United States)

    Corbett, Ian


    Preface; Part I. Gruber Cosmology Prize Lecture; Part II. Invited Discourses; Part III. Joint Discussions: 1. Dark matter in early-type galaxies Léon V. E. Koopmans and Tommaso Treu; 2. Diffuse light in galaxy clusters Magda Arnaboldi and Ortwin Gerhard; 3. Neutron stars - timing in extreme environments Tomaso Belloni, Mariano Méndez and Chengmin Zhang; 4. Progress in understanding the physics of Ap and related stars Margarida Cunha; 5. Modelling the Milky Way in the age of Gaia Annie C. Robin; 6. Time and astronomy Pascale Defraigne; 7. Astrophysical outflows and associated accretion phenomena Elisabete M. de Gouveia Dal Pino and Alex C. Raga; 8. Hot interstellar matter in elliptical galaxies Dong-Woo Kim and Silvia Pellegrini; 9. Are the fundamental constants varying with time? Paolo Molaro and Elisabeth Vangioni; 10. 3D views on cool stellar atmospheres - theory meets observation K. N. Nagendra, P. Bonifacio and H. G. Ludwig; 11. New advances in helio- and astero-seismology; 12. The first galaxies - theoretical predictions and observational clues; 13. Eta Carinae in the context of the most massive stars Theodore R. Gull and Augusto Damineli; 14. The ISM of galaxies in the far-infrared and sub-millimetre; 15. Magnetic fields in diffuse media Elisabete M. de Gouveia Dal Pino and Alex Lazarian; 16. IHY global campaign - whole heliosphere interval; Part IV. Special Sessions: SpS 1. IR and sub-mm spectroscopy - a new tool for studying stellar evolution Glenn Wahlgren, Hans Käufl and Florian Kerber; SpS 2. The international year of astronomy Pedro Russo, Catherine Cesarsky and Lars Lindberg Christensen; SpS 3. Astronomy in Antarctica in 2009 Michael G. Burton; SpS 4. Astronomy education between past and future J. P. De Greve; SpS 5. Accelerating the rate of astronomical discovery Ray P. Norris; SpS 6. Planetary systems as potential sites for life Régis Courtin, Alan Boss and Michel Mayor; SpS 7. Young stars, brown dwarfs, and protoplanetary disks Jane Gregorio

  15. The handy astronomy answer book

    CERN Document Server

    Liu, PhD, Charles


    From planetary movements and the exploration of our solar system to black holes and dark matter, this comprehensive reference simplifies all aspects of astronomy with an approachable question-and-answer format. With chapters broken into various astronomical studies—including the universe, galaxies, planets, and space exploration—this fully updated resource is an ideal companion for students, teachers, and amateur astronomers, answering more than 1,00 questions, such as Is the universe infinite? What would happen to you if you fell onto a black hole? What are the basic concepts of Einstein''s s

  16. Observing Conditions for Submillimeter Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Radford, Simon J E


    Consistently superb observing conditions are crucial for achieving the scientific objectives of a telescope. Submillimeter astronomy is possible only at a few exceptionally dry sites, notably Mauna Kea, the Antarctic plateau, and the Chajnantor region in the high Andes east of San Pedro de Atacama in northern Chile. Long term measurements of 225 GHz and 350 \\mu m atmospheric transparency demonstrate all three locations enjoy significant periods of excellent observing conditions. Conditions on the Chajnantor plateau and at the South Pole are better more often than on Mauna Kea. Conditions are better during winter and at night. Near the summit of Cerro Chajnantor, conditions are better than on the Chajnantor plateau.

  17. Multimessenger Astronomy and Astrophysics Synergies

    CERN Document Server

    van Putten, Maurice H P M


    A budget neutral strategy is proposed for NSF to lead the implementation of multimessenger astronomy and astrophysics, as outlined in the Astro2010 Decadal Survey. The emerging capabilities for simultaneous measurements of physical and astronomical data through the different windows of electromagnetic, hadronic and gravitational radiation processes call for a vigorous pursuit of new synergies. The proposed approach is aimed at the formation of new collaborations and multimessenger data-analysis, to transcend the scientific inquiries made within a single window of observations. In view of budgetary constraints, we propose to include the multimessenger dimension in the ranking of proposals submitted under existing NSF programs.

  18. Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Hamidouche, M; Marcum, P; Krabbe, A


    We present one of the new generations of observatories, the Stratospheric Observatory For Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA). This is an airborne observatory consisting of a 2.7-m telescope mounted on a modified Boeing B747-SP airplane. Flying at an up to 45,000 ft (14 km) altitude, SOFIA will observe above more than 99 percent of the Earth's atmospheric water vapor allowing observations in the normally obscured far-infrared. We outline the observatory capabilities and goals. The first-generation science instruments flying on board SOFIA and their main astronomical goals are also presented.

  19. Teach Astronomy: An Online Textbook for Introductory Astronomy Courses and Resources for Informal Learners (United States)

    Hardegree-Ullman, Kevin; Impey, C. D.; Patikkal, A.


    This year we implemented Teach Astronomy ( as a free online resource to be used as a teaching tool for non-science major astronomy courses and for a general audience interested in the subject. The comprehensive content includes: an introductory astronomy text book by Chris Impey, astronomy articles on Wikipedia, images from the Astronomy Picture of the Day, two to three minute topical video clips by Chris Impey, podcasts from 365 Days of Astronomy, and astronomy news from Science Daily. Teach Astronomy utilizes a novel technology to cluster, display, and navigate search results, called a Wikimap. Steep increases in textbook prices and the unique capabilities of emerging web technology motivated the development of this free online resource. Recent additions to Teach Astronomy include: images and diagrams for the textbook articles, mobile device implementation, and suggested homework assignments for instructors that utilize recent discoveries in astronomy. We present an overview of how Teach Astronomy has been implemented for use in the classroom and informal settings, and suggestions for utilizing the rich content and features of the web site.

  20. Weltall im Wandel. Die neue Astronomie. (United States)

    Elsässer, H.

    Contents: Alte und neue Astronomie. Die Sterne des Milchstraßensystems. Sternentstehung und interstellare Materie. Unser Sonnensystem und seine Geschichte. Interplanetarer Staub. Vom Sterben der Sterne. Arbeitsmittel der optischen Astronomie. Ein neues Zentrum astronomischer Forschung. Galaxien. Ursprung und Entwicklung des Weltalls.

  1. Selected topics on data analysis in astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The contents of this book are: General Lectures Given at the Erice II Workshop on Data Analysis in Astronomy: Fundamentals in Data Analysis in Astronomy; Computational Techniques; Evolution of Architectures for Data Processing; Hardware for Graphics and Image Display; and Data Analysis Systems

  2. Bringing critical thinking into introductory astronomy (United States)


    Critical thinking is often a desired outcome in an introductory astronomy course, but it is often poorly defined. The model developed by Linda Elder and Richard Paul provides an internally consistent framework for both defining and implementing critical thinking. This article provides suggestions for using it in a typical introductory astronomy course.

  3. The cost of publishing in Danish astronomy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dorch, Bertil F.

    I investigate the cost of publishing in Danish astronomy on a fine scale, including all direct publication costs: The figures show how the annual number of publications with authors from Denmark in astronomy journals increased by a factor approximately four during 15 years (Elsevier’s Scopus...

  4. Astronomy all the time for everybody (United States)

    Grigore, Valentin


    General contextCommunicating astronomy with the public must be done all year and with all community members using all the available methods to promote the all aspects of astronomy: education, science, research, new technologies, dark-sky protection, astrophotography, mythology, astropoetry, astro arts and music.An annual calendarTwo aspect must be taken in consideration when create a calendar of activity:- astronomical events (eclipses, meteor showers, comets, etc.)- international and local astronomical events: Global Astronomy Months, Astronomy Day, Globe at Night, ISAN, public activitiesCommunicating astronomy with the whole communityA description of the experience of the author organizing over 500 events in 30 years of activity including all the community members: general public, students, teachers, artists, authorities, people with disabilities, minor and adult prisoners, etc.An experience of seven years as TV producer of the astronomy TV show “Ùs and the Sky” is presented.Promotion of the activityThe relation with the mass-media is an important aspect communicating astronomy with the public.Mass-media between rating and correct information of the public.The role of the cooperation with the community in astronomy projectsA successful model: EURONEAR project

  5. Astronomy and Astrophysics for the 1980s. (United States)

    Field, George B.


    Following a discussion of scientific opportunities for astronomy (galaxies and the universe, stars, and planets/life/intelligence), four programs recommended by the National Academy of Sciences' Astronomy Survey Committee are described, indicating areas that must be strengthened before undertaking the programs. Ongoing projects are also…

  6. Preservice Science Teachers' Beliefs about Astronomy Concepts (United States)

    Ozkan, Gulbin; Akcay, Hakan


    The purpose of this study was to investigate preservice science teachers' conceptual understanding of astronomy concepts. Qualitative research methods were used. The sample consists of 118 preservice science teachers (40 freshmen, 31 sophomores, and 47 juniors). The data were collected with Astronomy Conceptual Questionnaire (ACQ) that includes 13…

  7. Resources for Teaching Astronomy in UK Schools (United States)

    Roche, Paul; Newsam, Andy; Roberts, Sarah; Mason, Tom; Baruch, John


    This article looks at a selection of resources currently available for use in the teaching of astronomy in UK schools. It is by no means an exhaustive list but it highlights a variety of free resources that can be used in the classroom to help engage students of all ages with astronomy and space science. It also lists several facilities with a…

  8. Encouraging Student Participation in Large Astronomy Courses (United States)

    Willoughby, Shannon D.


    Introductory astronomy is one of the most widely taught classes in the country and the majority of the students who take these classes are non-science majors. Because this demographic of students makes up the majority of astronomy enrollments, it is especially important as instructors that we do our best to make sure these students don't finish…

  9. Some Daytime Activities in Solar Astronomy (United States)

    Burin, Michael J.


    This century's transits of Venus (2004, 2012) captured significant public attention, reminding us that the wonders of astronomy need not be confined to the night. And while nighttime telescope viewing gatherings (a.k.a. "star parties") are perennially popular, astronomy classes are typically held in the daytime. The logistics of…

  10. Space Astronomy in China: 2006-2008

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GAN Weiqun


    In 2006 to 2008,the main activities in Chinese space astronomy focus on:(1)undertaking some missions set by CNSA,like HXMT,SMESE,wso/vv,SST,KUAFU,and so on;(2)drawing up a long-term plan of Chinese space astronomy.This paper summarizes in brief all these activities.

  11. Social Astronomy: Cooperating with Local Community Networks (United States)

    Bará, S.


    When the IYA2009 Canada Committee, chaired by Jim Hesser, first came together, it established a vision: "to offer an engaging astronomy experience to every person in Canada, and to cultivate partnerships that sustain public interest in astronomy". We called the engaging astronomy experience a "Galileo Moment". We knew that a Galileo Moment could be a first look through a telescope at the Moon, Jupiter or Saturn. But we especially wanted to connect with new audiences, not just the same people who always came to astronomy events. So we knew that a Galileo Moment could equally well be the intellectual or emotional effect of an astronomy-inspired piece of art or music. So far in 2009, over 10 000 Canadians have experienced a Galileo Moment of the latter kind, thanks to the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra's The Galileo Project.

  12. Moments of astronomy education in Bucharest (United States)

    Rusu, Mircea V.; Stavinschi, Magda


    Selection from past astronomy education, activities, textbooks and curricula will be presented. Didactic aspects and comparison with physics education will be exemplified. The astronomy/science education along the time in Romania was roughly divided in four directions: very broad information texts for everybody, popular science, school textbooks, science fictions and astronomy/science literature, and exemplified using original texts. All categories were intended to extend literacy in science, but in different ways. The trends for different periods were outlined. The teaching of astronomy and astrophysics in high school and universities, with special attention to the Faculty of Physic from University of Bucharest are presented. Suggestions for future improvement of both related fields, physics and astronomy, will be one of the outcomes of our communication.

  13. Academic Training: Gravitational Waves Astronomy

    CERN Multimedia


    2006-2007 ACADEMIC TRAINING PROGRAMME LECTURE SERIES 16, 17, 18 October from 11:00 to 12:00 - Main Auditorium, bldg. 500 Gravitational Waves Astronomy M. LANDRY, LIGO Hanford Observatory, Richland, USA Gravitational wave astronomy is expected to become an observational field within the next decade. First direct detection of gravitational waves is possible with existing terrestrial-based detectors, and highly probable with proposed upgrades. In this three-part lecture series, we give an overview of the field, including material on gravitional wave sources, detection methods, some details of interferometric detectors, data analysis methods, and current results from observational data-taking runs of the LIGO and GEO projects.ENSEIGNEMENT ACADEMIQUE ACADEMIC TRAINING Françoise Benz 73127 If you wish to participate in one of the following courses, please tell to your supervisor and apply electronically from the course description pages that can be found on the Web at:

  14. Observing Projects in Introductory Astronomy (United States)

    Taylor, M. Suzanne


    Introductory astronomy classes without laboratory components face a unique challenge of how to expose students to the process of science in the framework of a lecture course. As a solution to this problem small group observing projects are incorporated into a 40 student introductory astronomy class composed primarily of non-science majors. Students may choose from 8 observing projects such as graphing the motion of the moon or a planet, measuring daily and seasonal motions of stars, and determining the rotation rate of the Sun from sunspots. Each group completes two projects, requiring the students to spend several hours outside of class making astronomical observations. Clear instructions and a check-list style observing log help students with minimal observing experience to take accurate data without direct instructor assistance. Students report their findings in a lab report-style paper, as well as in a formal oral or poster presentation. The projects serve a double purpose of allowing students to directly experience concepts covered in class as well as providing students with experience collecting, analyzing, and presenting astronomical data.

  15. Design course in space astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The aim of this course is to provide direct experience of collaboration with other European astronomy/space science students and to gain an insight into the establishment of ESA space science programmes. The first half of the course takes place in Southampton. The Southampton students work as a team to track a past ESA space science mission from initial conception through to final realization and operations. This is achieved through the study of the high quality documentation available in the form of ESA reports. Each student has well defined responsibilities within the team. The second half of the course takes place in Tenerife, at the University of La Laguna. Again the students are expected to complete a team study of a space science mission. This time, however, there are important differences: the study teams are now international, approximately half Southampton and half University of La Laguna students; and this time they are expected to design a completely new space astronomy mission with clearly specified scientific objectives and operational constraints

  16. Teach Astronomy: An Online Resource for Introductory Astronomy Courses and Informal Learners (United States)

    Austin, Carmen; Impey, C. D.; Hardegree-Ullman, K.; Patikkal, A.; Ganesan, N.


    Teach Astronomy ( is a new, free online resource—a teaching tool for non-science major astronomy courses and a reference guide for lifelong learners interested in the subject. Digital content available includes: a comprehensive introductory astronomy textbook by Chris Impey, Wikipedia astronomy articles, images from Astronomy Picture of the Day archives and AstroPix database, two to three minute topical video clips by Chris Impey, podcasts from 365 Days of Astronomy archives, and an RSS feed of astronomy news from Science Daily. Teach Astronomy features an original technology called the Wikimap to cluster, display, and navigate site search results. Motivation behind the development of Teach Astronomy includes steep increases in textbook prices, the rapid adoption by students and the public of digital resources, and the modern capabilities of digital technology. Recent additions to Teach Astronomy include: AstroPix images—from some of the most advanced observatories and complete with metadata, mobile device functionality, links to WikiSky where users can see the location of astronomical objects in the sky, and end of chapter textbook review questions. Next in line for development are assignments for classroom use. We present suggestions for utilizing the rich content and features of the web site.

  17. Philippine Astronomy Convention 2009 Abstract: Program Offerings in Astronomy in the Philippines (United States)

    Torres, J. R. F.


    The formal academic programs in Astronomy of the Rizal Technological University are the first such programs in the Philippines. The Master of Science in Astronomy program is envisioned to provide the student with a wide range of knowledge in many areas of Astronomy, leaning towards the descriptive aspects of knowledge. The student will choose the field or research most suitable to his or her interests. Three of these researches done while enrolled in the program, and even researches completed before the student actually enrolled in the program, may be considered as his or her thesis. The program suits professionals in all persuasions who wish to study Astronomy either for professional advancement or plainly for the love of the science or for intellectual satisfaction. Non-science majors can enroll. In 2008, the RTU Graduate School decided to ladderize the MS program and the Graduate Diploma in Astronomy was designed. This program is suited for science educators, astronomy lecturers and entrepreneurs, members of astronomical societies, and plain astronomy enthusiasts who like to gain in-depth knowledge in the most important aspects of astronomy. A bachelor's degree in any field is required. The program can be finished in two semesters and one summer. If the student opts to continue in the MS in Astronomy program, all the courses he or she has earned in the Diploma will be credited. The Bachelor of Science in Astronomy Technology is an intensive baccalaureate degree program designed to prepare students to become future research scientists and technologists in the field of Astronomy. The BS in Astronomy Technology is a cross-fertilized program, integrating interrelated sciences, such as engineering, geology, remote sensing, physics, atmospheric and environmental science, biology and biochemistry, and even philosophy and entrepreneurship into the study. Thus, the B.S. in Astronomy Technology program gives the student excellent job opportunities in many fields.

  18. Music and Astronomy Under the Stars (United States)

    Lubowich, D.


    Bring telescope to where the people are! Music and Astronomy Under the Stars is a public astronomy outreach program at community parks during and after free summer music concerts and outdoor movie nights. This project also includes daytime activities because there are some afternoon concerts and daylight children's concerts, and observations using remotely operated telescopes in cloudy weather. While there have been many astronomy outreach activities and telescope observations at city sidewalks and parks, this program targets a completely different audience---music lovers who are attending free summer concerts held in community parks. The music lovers who may never have visited a science museum, planetarium, or star party will be exposed to telescope observations and astronomy information with no additional travel costs. This program will permit the entire community to participate in telescope observations and view astronomical video information to enhance the public appreciation of astronomy. This program will also reach underrepresented and underserved groups (women, minorities, older adults). The population base for the initial target audience (Nassau and Suffolk Counties, New York) is 2,500,000. My partners are the Amateur Observers' Society of New York (AOS) and the Towns of Oyster Bay, Hempstead, North Hempstead, and Huntington. Music and Astronomy Under the Stars is program that should continue beyond the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009) and can be expanded into a national program.

  19. Interactive Materials In The Teaching Of Astronomy (United States)

    Macêdo, J. A.; Voelzke, M. R.


    This study presents results of a survey conducted at the Federal Institution of Education, Science and Technology in the North of Minas Gerais (IFNMG), and aimed to investigate the potentialities of the use of interactive materials in the teaching of astronomy. An advanced training course with involved learning activities about basic concepts of astronomy was offered to thirty-two Licenciate students in Physics, Mathematics and Biological Science. The following steps were to be taken: i) analysis of the pedagogical projects (PPC) of the licenciates at the IFNMG, research locus of its Campus Januária; ii) analysis of students' preconceptions about astronomy and digital technologies, identified by the application of an initial questionnaire; iii) preparation of the course taking into account the students' previous knowledge; iv) application of the education proposal developed under part-time presence modality, using various interactive tools; v) application and analysis of the final questionnaire. The test was conducted with the qualitative and quantitative methodology, combined with a content analysis. The results indicated that in the IFNMG only the licenciate-course in physics includes astronomy content diluted in various subjects of the curriculum; the rates of students prior knowledge in relation to astronomy was low; an evidence of meaningful learning of the concepts related to astronomy, and of viability of resource use involving digital technologies in the Teaching of astronomy, which may contribute to the broadening of methodological options of future teachers and meet their training needs.

  20. Random time series in astronomy. (United States)

    Vaughan, Simon


    Progress in astronomy comes from interpreting the signals encoded in the light received from distant objects: the distribution of light over the sky (images), over photon wavelength (spectrum), over polarization angle and over time (usually called light curves by astronomers). In the time domain, we see transient events such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts and other powerful explosions; we see periodic phenomena such as the orbits of planets around nearby stars, radio pulsars and pulsations of stars in nearby galaxies; and we see persistent aperiodic variations ('noise') from powerful systems such as accreting black holes. I review just a few of the recent and future challenges in the burgeoning area of time domain astrophysics, with particular attention to persistently variable sources, the recovery of reliable noise power spectra from sparsely sampled time series, higher order properties of accreting black holes, and time delays and correlations in multi-variate time series. PMID:23277606

  1. Gravitational waves and multimessenger astronomy (United States)

    Ricci, Fulvio


    It is widely expected that in the coming quinquennium the first gravitational wave signal will be directly detected. The ground-based advanced LIGO and Virgo detectors are being upgraded to a sensitivity level such that we expect to be measure a significant binary merger rate. Gravitational waves events are likely to be accompanied by electromagnetic counterparts and neutrino emission carrying complementary information to those associated to the gravitational signals. If it becomes possible to measure all these forms of radiation in concert, we will end up an impressive increase in the comprehension of the whole phenomenon. In the following we summarize the scientific outcome of the interferometric detectors in the past configuration. Then we focus on some of the potentialities of the advanced detectors once used in the new context of the multimessenger astronomy.

  2. Random time series in Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Vaughan, Simon


    Progress in astronomy comes from interpreting the signals encoded in the light received from distant objects: the distribution of light over the sky (images), over photon wavelength (spectrum), over polarization angle, and over time (usually called light curves by astronomers). In the time domain we see transient events such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts, and other powerful explosions; we see periodic phenomena such as the orbits of planets around nearby stars, radio pulsars, and pulsations of stars in nearby galaxies; and persistent aperiodic variations (`noise') from powerful systems like accreting black holes. I review just a few of the recent and future challenges in the burgeoning area of Time Domain Astrophysics, with particular attention to persistently variable sources, the recovery of reliable noise power spectra from sparsely sampled time series, higher-order properties of accreting black holes, and time delays and correlations in multivariate time series.

  3. Astronomy on the High Seas (United States)

    Hughes, S.; Rihani, N.


    This article describes the development and launching of a stargazing activity on two cruise ships, Pacific Dawn and Pacific Sun, which sail from Australian ports. The session included a presentation entitled "Voyage to the Stars" that gave passengers an overview of the life cycle of stars from star-birth nebulae to white dwarfs and black holes. In the presentation it was noted that ancient mariners used the celestial sphere to navigate. The presentation was followed by on-deck observing sessions in which objects shown in the presentation were viewed with the naked eye, binoculars and a small telescope. The activity seemed to be well received and resulted in numerous questions to the presenter of the activity. Many people said that the activity had kindled or rekindled their interest in astronomy.

  4. Astronomy below the Survey Threshold

    CERN Document Server

    Zwart, Jonathan T L; Karim, Alexander; Jackson, Carole; Norris, Ray; Condon, Jim; Afonso, Jose; Heywood, Ian; Jarvis, Matt; Navarrete, Felipe; Prandoni, Isabella; Rigby, Emma; Rottgering, Huub; Santos, Mario; Sargent, Mark; Seymour, Nick; Taylor, Russ; Vernstrom, Tessa


    Astronomy at or below the 'survey threshold' has expanded significantly since the publication of the original 'Science with the Square Kilometer Array' in 1999 and its update in 2004. The techniques in this regime may be broadly (but far from exclusively) defined as 'confusion' or 'P(D)' analyses (analyses of one-point statistics), and 'stacking', accounting for the flux-density distribution of noise-limited images co-added at the positions of objects detected/isolated in a different waveband. Here we discuss the relevant issues, present some examples of recent analyses, and consider some of the consequences for the design and use of surveys with the SKA and its pathfinders.

  5. Random time series in astronomy. (United States)

    Vaughan, Simon


    Progress in astronomy comes from interpreting the signals encoded in the light received from distant objects: the distribution of light over the sky (images), over photon wavelength (spectrum), over polarization angle and over time (usually called light curves by astronomers). In the time domain, we see transient events such as supernovae, gamma-ray bursts and other powerful explosions; we see periodic phenomena such as the orbits of planets around nearby stars, radio pulsars and pulsations of stars in nearby galaxies; and we see persistent aperiodic variations ('noise') from powerful systems such as accreting black holes. I review just a few of the recent and future challenges in the burgeoning area of time domain astrophysics, with particular attention to persistently variable sources, the recovery of reliable noise power spectra from sparsely sampled time series, higher order properties of accreting black holes, and time delays and correlations in multi-variate time series.

  6. Astronomy in the Digital Universe (United States)

    Haisch, Bernard M.; Lindblom, J.; Terzian, Y.


    The Digital Universe is an Internet project whose mission is to provide free, accurate, unbiased information covering all aspects of human knowledge, and to inspire humans to learn, make use of, and expand this knowledge. It is planned to be a decades long effort, inspired by the Encyclopedia Galactica concept popularized by Carl Sagan, and is being developed by the non-profit Digital Universe Foundation. A worldwide network of experts is responsible for selecting content featured within the Digital Universe. The first publicly available content is the Encyclopedia of Earth, a Boston University project headed by Prof. Cutler Cleveland, which will be part of the Earth Portal. The second major content area will be an analogous Encyclopedia of the Cosmos to be part of the Cosmos Portal. It is anticipated that this will evolve into a major resource for astronomy education. Authors and topic editors are now being recruited for the Encyclopedia of the Cosmos.

  7. Open Access Publishing in Astronomy (United States)

    Grothkopf, U.; Meakins, S.


    Open Access (OA) in scholarly literature means the "immediate, free availability on the public internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search or link to the full text of these articles". The Open Access movement has been made possible thanks to the wide-spread availability of internet access and has received increasing interest since the 1990s, mostly due to the fast rising journal subscription prices. This presentation will review the current situation of Open Access in astronomy. It will answer the question why it makes sense to publish in an OA journal and will provide criteria to judge the quality of OA journals and publishers, along with suggestions how to identify so-called predatory publishers.

  8. Astronomy and international science diplomacy (United States)

    Madsen, Claus


    Since WW2, science has played an important, if sometimes overlooked, role in international relations and international diplomacy. The founding of CERN in 1954 and the more recent establishment of SESAME as a major research infrastructure in the Middle East are examples of this. The IAU has played its own role in the field of science diplomacy ranging from quietly fostering interaction between the antagonists of the Cold War period to the world-uniting initiative of the International Year of Astronomy. Beyond the IAU, yet still with clear links to it, we have seen ESO as an example as well as the more recent one of SKA as a vehicle for development and for strengthening international relations.

  9. Academic Training: Astronomy from Space

    CERN Multimedia

    Françoise Benz


    2004-2005 ACADEMIC TRAINING PROGRAMME LECTURE SERIES 14, 15, 16, 18 March from 11.00 to 12.00 hrs - Main Auditorium, bldg. 500 Astronomy from Space by T. Courvoisier / Observatoire de Genève In the very wide field of High Energy astrophysics we will select a number of topics that range from the source of radiative energy in the deep potential well around Schwarzschild and Kerr black holes and the basics of accretion disks around compact objects to the description and (where possible) the understanding of binary systems including a compact object (neutron star or black hole), of Active Galactic Nuclei and of gamma ray bursts. The approach that is chosen aims at giving an understanding of the most important phenomenologies encountered in high energy astrophysics rather than a detailed knowledge of one specific topic. ENSEIGNEMENT ACADEMIQUE ACADEMIC TRAINING Françoise Benz 73127

  10. Astronomy for teachers: A South African Perspective (United States)

    de Witt, Aletha; West, Marion; Leeuw, Lerothodi; Gouws, Eldrie


    South Africa has nominated Astronomy as a “flagship science” and aims to be an international Astronomy hub through projects such as the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) and the South African Large Telescope (SALT). These projects open up career opportunities in maths, science and engineering and therefore offers a very real door for learners to enter into careers in science and technology through Astronomy. However, the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Survey (TIMSS), the Global Competitiveness Report (GCR) and Annual National Assessment (ANA) have highlighted that South Africa’s Science and Mathematics education is in a critical condition and that South African learners score amongst the worst in the world in both these subjects. In South Africa Astronomy is generally regarded as the worst taught and most avoided Natural Science knowledge strand, and most teachers that specialised in Natural Sciences, never covered Astronomy in their training.In order to address these issues a collaborative project between the University of South Africa (UNISA) and the Hartebeesthoek Radio Astronomy Observatory (HartRAO) was initiated, which aims to assist teachers to gain more knowledge and skills so that they can teach Astronomy with confidence. By collaborating we aim to ensure that the level of astronomy development will be raised in both South Africa and the rest of Africa.With the focus on Teaching and Learning, the research was conducted within a quantitative paradigm and 600 structured questionnaires were administered to Natural Science teachers in Public primary schools in Gauteng, South Africa. This paper reports the findings of this research and makes recommendations on how to assist teachers to teach Astronomy with confidence.

  11. A Brief History of Publishing Papers on Astronomy Education Research (United States)

    Fraknoi, Andrew


    While some research had been done on K-12 and planetarium astronomy teaching from the 1930's to the 1980's, the growth of research on college physics education offered astronomy education researchers a model for examining techniques for teaching introductory college astronomy survey "Astronomy 101" courses as well. This early research…

  12. Women's and Men's Career Choices in Astronomy and Astrophysics (United States)

    Ivie, Rachel; White, Susan; Chu, Raymond Y.


    The Longitudinal Study of Astronomy Graduate Students (LSAGS) arose from the 2003 Women in Astronomy Conference, where it was noted that a majority of young members of the American Astronomical Society were women. The astronomy community wishes to make every effort to retain young women in astronomy, so they commissioned a longitudinal study to be…

  13. Astronomy Education: a Challenge for Contemporary Education (United States)

    Metaxa, M.


    Tales around the World give visibility to local, national and international fundamental connection that always existed between people and the night sky that means Astronomy. In this paper we discuss and analyze further the role of Astronomy Education for achieving an integrated concept of education, one that enables individuals to adapt to a rapidly changing social, economic and cultural environment, and to continue to learn throughout life. It is no longer enough to learn how to read, write and count. We also discuss and present initiatives undertaken in the context of various national, and international educational projects in Greece as best practices on how Astronomy Education can actually reinforce the Contemporary Education.

  14. Python Ephemeris Module for Radio Astronomy (United States)

    Kuiper, T. B.


    An extension of the Python pyephem module was developed for Deep Space Network (DSN) radio astronomy. The class DSS( ) provides the geodetic coordinates of the DSN stations as well as other properties such as antenna diameter. The class Quasar( ) provides positional data for the sources in the National Radio Astronomy Observatory Very Large Array (NRAO VLA) Calibrator Handbook and flux estimates based the University of Michigan Radio Astronomy Observatory (UMRAO) Database or the VLA Calibrator Handbook. Flux calibration data are also available for the bright planets. Class Pulsar( ) provides the data from the Australia Telescope National Facility (ATNF) Pulsar Catalogue in Python format.

  15. Astronomy in the Service of Islam (United States)

    King, David A.

    In their assessment of Islamic astronomy, historians have usually been concerned only with that part of the Muslim scientific heritage that was transmitted to the West in the Middle Ages. Yet most Islamic works on astronomy were not transmitted to the West, and they are known today mainly due to the work of orientalists in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. This is the case of Muslim writings on three aspects of mathematical science that were closely linked with religious observance. This is an overview of those "Islamic aspects of Islamic astronomy".

  16. Advances in astronomy and astrophysics 9

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Advances in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Volume 9 covers reviews on the advances in astronomy and astrophysics. The book presents reviews on the Roche model and its applications to close binary systems. The text then describes the part played by lunar eclipses in the evolution of astronomy; the classical theory of lunar eclipses; deviations from geometrical theory; and the methods of photometric observations of eclipses. The problems of other phenomena related in one way or another to lunar eclipses are also considered. The book further tackles the infrared observation on the eclipsed moon, as

  17. The Importance of Computation in Astronomy Education

    CERN Document Server

    Zingale, M; Fisher, R; O'Shea, B W


    Computational skills are required across all astronomy disciplines. Many students enter degree programs without sufficient skills to solve computational problems in their core classes or contribute immediately to research. We recommend advocacy for computational literacy, familiarity with fundamental software carpentry skills, and mastery of basic numerical methods by the completion of an undergraduate degree in Astronomy. We recommend the AAS Education Task Force advocate for a significant increase in computational literacy. We encourage the AAS to modestly fund efforts aimed at providing Open Education Resources (OER) that will significantly impact computational literacy in astronomy education.

  18. Reflections on the astronomy of Glasgow

    CERN Document Server

    Clarke, David


    How Astronomy contributed to the educational enlightenment of Glasgow, to its society and to its commerce. The words 'Astronomy' and 'Glasgow' seem an incongruous juxtaposition, and yet the two are closely linked over 500 years of history. This is a tale of enlightenment and scientific progress at both institutional and public levels. Combined with the ambitions of civic commerce, it is a story populated with noteworthy personalities and intense rivalries.It is remarkable to realise that the first Astronomy teaching in the Glasgow 'Colledge' presented an Earth-centred Universe, prior to the Co

  19. Astronomy at the Cultural Crossroads - Micronesia (United States)

    Eastlick, Pamela


    On the Pacific islands of Micronesia, people often feel part neither of the global village nor of their traditional culture. Many believe science is incompatible with their way of life. But astronomy educators are trying to prove otherwise.

  20. Astronomy Outreach In Parana state/Brazil (United States)

    Emilio, Marcelo


    Paraná is a state at South of Brazil with a population of 11 million people. There are two planetarium and two fixed observatories devoted to Astronomy outreach. The great majority of population have no access to information and knowledge of astronomy discoveries. Another problem is the teaching formation of astronomy studies. In this work we relate an initiative that started at the International Year of Astronomy in 2009 that involved Universities and amateur groups that is still in place. After several grants from the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development and Araucária Foundation we were able to reach more than 100.000 people with a mobile planetarium and night astronomic observations. We also providde one-week classes to more than 1.000 teachers in several cities of the state.

  1. Extragalactic Astronomy and Cosmology An Introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Schneider, Peter


    Starting with the description of our home galaxy the Milky Way, this cogently written textbook introduces the reader to the astronomy of galaxies, their structure, active galactic nuclei, evolution and large scale distribution. Then, from the extensive and thorough introduction to modern observational and theoretical cosmology, the text turns to the formation of structures and astronomical objects in the early universe. In particular, Peter Schneider’s Extragalactic Astronomy and Cosmology has the goal of imparting the fundamental knowledge of this fascinating subfield of astronomy, while leading readers to the forefront of astronomical research. But it seeks to accomplish this not only with extensive textual information and insights. In addition, the author’s evident admiration for the workings of the universe that shines through the lines and the many supporting color illustrations will deeply inspire the reader. While this book has grown out of introductory university courses on astronomy and astrophys...

  2. Extragalactic astronomy and cosmology an introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Schneider, Peter


    Accounting for the astonishing developments in the field of Extragalactic Astronomy and Cosmology, this second edition has been updated and substantially expanded. Starting with the description of our home galaxy, the Milky Way, this cogently written textbook introduces the reader to the astronomy of galaxies, their structure, active galactic nuclei, evolution and large scale distribution in the Universe. After an extensive and thorough introduction to modern observational and theoretical cosmology, the focus turns to the formation of structures and astronomical objects in the early Universe. The basics of classical astronomy and stellar astrophysics needed for extragalactic astronomy are provided in the appendix. The new edition incorporates some of the most spectacular results from new observatories like the Galaxy Evolution Explorer, Herschel, ALMA, WMAP and Planck, as well as new instruments and multi-wavelength campaigns which have expanded our understanding of the Universe and the objects populating it....


    CERN Document Server



    This book is the seventh volume under the title Organizations and Strategies in Astronomy (OSA). The OSA series covers a large range of fields and themes: in practice, one could say that all aspects of astronomy-related life and environment are considered in the spirit of sharing specific expertise and lessons learned. The chapters of this book are dealing with socio-dynamical aspects of the astronomy (and related space sciences) community: characteristics of organizations, strategies for development, operational techniques, observing practicalities, journal and magazine profiles, public outreach, publication studies, relationships with the media, research communication, series of conferences, evaluation and selection procedures, research indicators, national specificities, contemporary history, and so on. The experts contributing to this volume have done their best to write in a way understandable to readers not necessarily hyperspecialized in astronomy while providing specific detailed information and somet...

  4. Organizations and Strategies in Astronomy Volume 6

    CERN Document Server

    Heck, André


    This book is the sixth volume under the title Organizations and Strategies in Astronomy (OSA). The OSA series is intended to cover a large range of fields and themes. In practice, one could say that all aspects of astronomy-related life and environment are considered in the spirit of sharing specific expertise and lessons learned. The chapters of this book are dealing with socio-dynamical aspects of the astronomy (and related space sciences) community: characteristics of organizations, strategies for development, legal issues, operational techniques, observing practicalities, educational policies, journal and magazine profiles, public outreach, publication studies, relationships with the media, research communication, evaluation and selection procedures, research indicators, national specificities, contemporary history, and so on. The experts contributing to this volume have done their best to write in a way understandable to readers not necessarily hyperspecialized in astronomy while providing specific detai...

  5. Making Space for Specialized Astronomy Resources (United States)

    MacMillan, D.


    With the growth of both free and subscription-based resources, articles on astronomy have never been easier to find. Locating the best and most current materials for any given search, however, now requires multiple tools and strategies dependent on the query. An analysis of the tools currently available shows that while astronomy is well-served by Google Scholar, Scopus and Inspec, its literature is best accessed through specialized resources such as ADS (Astrophysics Data System). While no surprise to astronomers, this has major implications for those of us who teach information literacy skills to astronomy students and work in academic settings where astronomy is just one of many subjects for which our non-specialist colleagues at the reference desk provide assistance. This paper will examine some of the implications of this analysis for library instruction, reference assistance and training, and library webpage development.

  6. The Ninth-Century Renaissance in Astronomy. (United States)

    Farrell, Charlotte


    Discusses the events in the ninth century that moved astronomy away from the pursuit of mystical hermetic sciences and astrology back toward observation and measurement. Describes the achievements of astronomers and the instruments and calculations used during that period. (JRH)

  7. Material Culture of Greek and Roman Astronomy (United States)

    Evans, James

    In the Greek and Roman worlds, astronomy had a rich material culture. Many objects had practical applications to timekeeping or liberal education or astrological prediction, but many others were meant to express philosophical, religious, or political values.

  8. Ideas for Citizen Science in Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Marshall, Philip J; Fletcher, Leigh N


    We review the relatively new, internet-enabled, and rapidly-evolving field of citizen science, focusing on research projects in stellar, extragalactic and solar system astronomy that have benefited from the participation of members of the public, often in large numbers. We find these volunteers making contributions to astronomy in a variety of ways: making and analyzing new observations, visually classifying features in images and light curves, exploring models constrained by astronomical datasets, and initiating new scientific enquiries. The most productive citizen astronomy projects involve close collaboration between the professionals and amateurs involved, and occupy scientific niches not easily filled by great observatories or machine learning methods: citizen astronomers are most strongly motivated by being of service to science. In the coming years we expect participation and productivity in citizen astronomy to increase, as survey datasets get larger and citizen science platforms become more efficient...

  9. Cross-disciplinary research in astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Feigelson, Eric D


    In the distant past, astronomy was often intertwined with religion into a unified cosmos. As science became a distinct cultural enterprise, astronomy has witnessed a variety of rich interactions with other fields. Mathematical statistics was stimulated in the 19th century by astronomical problems, and today astrostatistics is a small but growing cross-disciplinary field advancing methodology to address challenges in astronomical data analysis. Throughout the 20th century, astronomy became closely allied with physics such that astronomy and astrophysics are now profoundly intertwined. Physical chemistry played a major role in the identification of molecules in the Milky Way Galaxy, and astrochemistry is now an active subfield giving insights into cosmic molecular processes. The importance of cross-disciplinary interactions with engineering (for instrumentation), Earth sciences (for planetary studies), computer science (for astroinformatics) and life sciences (for astrobiology) is also growing. Cross-disciplina...

  10. The Past and Future of American Astronomy (United States)

    Sagan, Carl


    Traces the history of astronomy by analyzing the scientific literature of various time periods, reviewing prize-winning research, and noting the input from physics. Speculates on some accomplishments that may occur in the next 75 years. (GS)

  11. Characteristics of Astronomy-Related Organizations

    CERN Document Server

    Heck, A


    Geographical distributions, ages and sizes of astronomy-related organizations have been investigated from comprehensive and up-to-date samples extracted from the master files for StarGuides/StarWorlds. Results for professional institutions, associations, planetariums, and public observatories are commented, as well as specific distributions for astronomy-related publishers and commercial-software producers. The highly uneven general pattern displayed by geographical distributions is still very much the same as it was at the beginning of the XXth century, even if the densities are higher -- another illustration of the well-known socio-economic effect of self-reinforcement. Other geographical peculiarities (local concentrations, national cultures and policies, electronic astronomy, .) are discussed in the paper, as well as the uneasy separation between amateur and professional astronomers in associations. Some events had a clear impact on the rate of foundation of astronomy-related organizations, such as World ...

  12. Dictionary of geophysics, astrophysics, and astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Matzner, Richard A


    The Dictionary of Geophysics, Astrophysics, and Astronomy provides a lexicon of terminology covering fields such as astronomy, astrophysics, cosmology, relativity, geophysics, meteorology, Newtonian physics, and oceanography. Authors and editors often assume - incorrectly - that readers are familiar with all the terms in professional literature. With over 4,000 definitions and 50 contributing authors, this unique comprehensive dictionary helps scientists to use terminology correctly and to understand papers, articles, and books in which physics-related terms appear.

  13. National Radio Astronomy International Exchange Program (NINE) (United States)

    Wingate, Lory Mitchell


    NINE aims to create synergistic partnerships between NRAO and its US-Based NINE partner institutions and universities, with astronomy-related institutions in other countries. We seek to create a vibrant exchange of students that are interested in learning about activities associated with the radio astronomy field, and to create enduring partnerships that will help train a global, collaborative Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) knowledgeable workforce.

  14. Some Daytime Activities in Solar Astronomy (United States)

    Burin, Michael J.


    This century's transits of Venus (2004, 2012) captured significant public attention, reminding us that the wonders of astronomy need not be confined to the night. And while nighttime telescope viewing gatherings (a.k.a. "star parties") are perennially popular, astronomy classes are typically held in the daytime. The logistics of coordinating students outside of class can often be problematic, leading to dark-sky activities that are relegated to extra credit for only those who can attend.

  15. NAM: The 2004 RAS National Astronomy Meeting (United States)

    Jones, Barrie; Norton, Andrew


    This year's RAS National Astronomy Meeting was held at the Open University's Milton Keynes campus from 29 March to 2 April. The event was organized by members of the OU Physics & Astronomy Department and Planetary & Space Science Research Institute. Around 450 people attended the meeting, at which more than 220 talks were presented, along with around 90 posters. Co-chairs of RAS NAM04, Barrie Jones and Andrew Norton, summarize.

  16. Neutrinos in particle physics, astronomy, and cosmology

    CERN Document Server

    Xing, Zhi-Zhong


    ""Neutrinos in Particle Physics, Astronomy and Cosmology"" provides a comprehensive and up-to-date introduction to neutrino physics, neutrino astronomy and neutrino cosmology. The intrinsic properties and fundamental interactions of neutrinos are described, as is the phenomenology of lepton flavor mixing, seesaw mechanisms and neutrino oscillations. The cosmic neutrino background, stellar neutrinos, supernova neutrinos and ultrahigh-energy cosmic neutrinos, together with the cosmological matter-antimatter asymmetry and other roles of massive neutrinos in cosmology, are discussed in detail. Thi

  17. Amateur Astronomy in Armenia: Current Situation (United States)

    Buniatyan, Rouben; Melikyan, Gagik


    This report describes the current situation about the amateur astronomy in Armenia and briefly outlines the activities of "Goodricke John" amateur astronomers NGO in 2013 and 2014. Particular attention is paid to the project supported by Ministry of Education for organization of open classes on astronomy and practical stargazing exercises in schools. Similarly, the report highlights the projects developed with and funded by the RA Ministry of Defense, which enabled organization of stargazing exercises in several military units in Armenia in August 2014.

  18. Astronomy and the Media: a love story?

    CERN Document Server

    Boffin, Henri M J


    With the availability of nice images and amazing, dramatic stories, the fundamental questions it addresses, and the attraction is exerces on many, it is often assumed that astronomy is an obvious topic for the media. Looking more carefully, however, one realises that the truth is perhaps not as glamorous as one would hope, and that, although well present in the media, astronomy's coverage is rather tiny, and often, limited to the specialised pages or magazines.

  19. Julia and Python in Astronomy: Better Together


    Barbary, Kyle


    Astronomers love Python because it is open source, easy to learn, and has a tremendous ecosystem for scientific computing. The Julia programming language has many of those same characteristics. In this talk, I discuss Julia, its use in astronomy and the growing ecosystem of astronomy packages, particularly those managed by the JuliaAstro organization (

  20. Future Professional Communication in Astronomy II (United States)

    Accomazzi, Alberto

    The present volume gathers together the talks presented at the second colloquium on the Future Professional Communication in Astronomy (FPCAII), held at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (Cambridge, MA) on 13-14 April 2010. This meeting provided a forum for editors, publishers, scientists, librarians and officers of learned societies to discuss the future of the field. The program included talks from leading researchers and practitioners and drew a crowd of approximately 50 attendees from 10 countries. These proceedings contain contributions from invited and contributed talks from leaders in the field, touching on a number of topics. Among them: The role of disciplinary repositories such as ADS and arXiv in astronomy and the physical sciences; Current status and future of Open Access Publishing models and their impact on astronomy and astrophysics publishing; Emerging trends in scientific article publishing: semantic annotations, multimedia content, links to data products hosted by astrophysics archives; Novel approaches to the evaluation of facilities and projects based on bibliometric indicators; Impact of Government mandates, Privacy laws, and Intellectual Property Rights on the evolving digital publishing environment in astronomy; Communicating astronomy to the public: the experience of the International Year of Astronomy 2009.

  1. Astronomy Outreach for Large and Unique Audiences (United States)

    Lubowich, D.; Sparks, R. T.; Pompea, S. M.; Kendall, J. S.; Dugan, C.


    In this session, we discuss different approaches to reaching large audiences. In addition to star parties and astronomy events, the audiences for some of the events include music concerts or festivals, sick children and their families, minority communities, American Indian reservations, and tourist sites such as the National Mall. The goal is to bring science directly to the public—to people who attend astronomy events and to people who do not come to star parties, science museums, or science festivals. These programs allow the entire community to participate in astronomy activities to enhance the public appreciation of science. These programs attract large enthusiastic crowds often with young children participating in these family learning experiences. The public will become more informed, educated, and inspired about astronomy and will also be provided with information that will allow them to continue to learn after this outreach activity. Large and unique audiences often have common problems, and their solutions and the lessons learned will be presented. Interaction with the participants in this session will provide important community feedback used to improve astronomy outreach for large and unique audiences. New ways to expand astronomy outreach to new large audiences will be discussed.

  2. Astronomy 2020: A Pragmatic Approach (United States)

    Graham, M. J.


    In the cinema history of astronomy, we are currently at the stage of the Lumiere brothers with contemporary surveys providing short monochromatic time sequences of the sky. By the end of the next decade, however, panchromatic blockbusters will be commonplace and science will be predominantly driven by the objects that change in successive ``frames''. Web-scale computing resources will be required just to process the torrents of data events but the key to understanding them will be contextualisation --- linking together disparate (sets of) events and relating them to archival and supplementary data in a machine-comprehensible way. Much of the data mining and analysis of such data portfolios will be performed by proxy scientists --- intelligent agent avatars that represent an individual's particular research interests in high-dimension parameter spaces. Although this view might sound like science fiction, in this paper, I will review the technologies that will make it achievable. In particular, I will cover new approaches to web services that will be required to support these massive event streams, social networking techniques that will facilitate science and semantic technologies that will underpin everything.

  3. New Technology Lunar Astronomy Mission (United States)

    Chen, P. C.; Oliversen, R. J.; Barry, R. K.; Romeo, R.; Pitts, R.; Ma, K. B.


    A scientifically productive Moon-based observatory can be established in the near term (3-5 years) by robotic spacecraft. Such a project is affordable even taking into account NASA's currently very tight budget. In fact the estimated cost of a lunar telescope is sufficiently low that it can be financed by private industry, foundations, or wealthy individuals. The key factor is imaginative use of new technologies and new materials. Since the Apollo era, many new areas of space technology have been developed in the US by NASA, the military, academic and industry sectors, ESA, Japan, and others. These include ultralite optics, radiation tolerant detectors, precision telescope drives incorporating high temperature superconductors, smart materials, active optics, dust and thermal control structures, subminiature spectrometers, tiny radio transmitters and receivers, small rockets, innovative fuel saving trajectories, and small precision landers. The combination of these elements makes possible a lunar observatory capable of front line astrophysical research in UV-Vis-IR imaging, spectrometry, and optical interferometry, at a per unit cost comparable to that of Small Explorer (SMEX) class missions. We describe work in progress at NASA GSFC and elsewhere, applications to other space projects, and spinoff benefits to ground-based astronomy, industry, and education.

  4. Astronomy Fun with Mobile Devices (United States)

    Pilachowski, Catherine A.; Morris, Frank


    Those mobile devices your students bring to class can do more that tweet and text. Engage your students with these web-based astronomy learning tools that allow students to manipulate astronomical data to learn important concepts. The tools are HTML5, CSS3, Javascript-based applications that provide access to the content on iPad and Android tablets. With "Three Color" students can combine monochrome astronomical images taken through different color filters or in different wavelength regions into a single color image. "Star Clusters" allows students to compare images of clusters with a pre-defined template of colors and sizes to compare clusters of different ages. An adaptation of Travis Rector's "NovaSearch" allows students to examine images of the central regions of the Andromeda Galaxy to find novae and to measure the time over which the nova fades away. New additions to our suite of applications allow students to estimate the surface temperatures of exoplanets and the probability of life elsewhere in the Universe. Further information and access to these web-based tools are available at

  5. Astronomy Learning Activities for Tablets (United States)

    Pilachowski, Catherine A.; Morris, Frank


    Four web-based tools allow students to manipulate astronomical data to learn concepts in astronomy. The tools are HTML5, CSS3, Javascript-based applications that provide access to the content on iPad and Android tablets. The first tool “Three Color” allows students to combine monochrome astronomical images taken through different color filters or in different wavelength regions into a single color image. The second tool “Star Clusters” allows students to compare images of stars in clusters with a pre-defined template of colors and sizes in order to produce color-magnitude diagrams to determine cluster ages. The third tool adapts Travis Rector’s “NovaSearch” to allow students to examine images of the central regions of the Andromeda Galaxy to find novae. After students find a nova, they are able to measure the time over which the nova fades away. A fourth tool, Proper Pair, allows students to interact with Hipparcos data to evaluate close double stars are physical binaries or chance superpositions. Further information and access to these web-based tools are available at

  6. Using Games to Teach Astronomy (United States)

    Francis, Paul J.

    We all know that astronomical research is a chaotic sociable deeply human enterprise full of baffling mysteries enigmatic clues and breathtakingly unexpected conclusions. Abundant evidence suggests that our students see astronomy very differently. They see it as a lonely activity: a collection of facts (and very pretty pictures) brought down from the mountain by antisocial ""experts"" for them to memorise. Can we change this false perception? I've been experimenting with using role-playing games in the classroom. I've tried these games out on a wide range of high-school and university students. Students play the roles of competing teams of astronomers battling to solve some perplexing astrophysical enigma. Do these games work? Sometimes! When they work well the really change student perceptions of science in a way that almost no other teaching technique can match. But there have been a fair number of embarrassing fiascos along the way... I will share my experiences and hard earned tips for avoiding disasters

  7. Launching Astronomy: Standards and STEM Integration (LASSI) (United States)

    French, Debbie; Burrows, Andrea C.; Myers, Adam D.


    While astronomy is prevalent in the Next Generation Science Standards, it is often relegated to the '4th nine-weeks' in middle and high school curricula. I.e., it is taught at the end of the year, if time permits. However, astronomy ties in many core ideas from chemistry, earth science, physics, and even biology (with astrobiology being an up-and-coming specialization) and mathematics. Recent missions to Mars have captured students' attention and have added excitement to the fields of engineering and technology. Using astronomy as a vehicle to teach science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) connects these disciplines in an engaging way. The workshop entitled, 'Launching Astronomy: Standards and STEM Integration,' (LASSI) is a year-long professional development (PD) opportunity for teachers in grades K-12 to use astronomy as a vehicle to teach STEM and implement science standards through astronomy. Eight teachers participated in a two-week summer workshop and six follow-up sessions are scheduled during the 2014-2015 school year. Additional teachers plan to participate in the upcoming follow-up sessions. We evaluate the effectiveness of the LASSI PD to identify and confront teachers' misconceptions in astronomy, and discuss whether teachers identified topics for which astronomy can be used as a vehicle for standards-based STEM curricula. Teachers from around Wyoming were invited to participate. Participating teachers were surveyed on the quality of the workshop, their astronomy content knowledge before and after listening to talks given by experts in the field, conducting standards-based inquiry activities, developing their own lessons, and their level of engagement throughout the workshop. Two-thirds of teachers planned to incorporate LASSI activities into their classrooms in this school year. Teachers' misconceptions and requests for astronomy-based curriculum were identified in the summer session. These will be addressed during the follow-up session

  8. Grade 9 Astronomy Study: Interests of Boys and Girls Studying Astronomy at Fletcher's Meadow Secondary School (United States)

    Krstovic, Mirjan; Brown, Laura; Chacko, Merin; Trinh, Brenda


    In this report, we discuss the interests of Grade 9 boys and girls studying astronomy at Fletcher's Meadow Secondary School in Brampton, Ontario. A total of 152 Grade 9 academic students were asked to rate their interest levels in various astronomy topics on a scale of 0-3, where 0 represented no interest and 3 represented a high level of…

  9. The Effect of Media on Preservice Science Teachers' Attitudes toward Astronomy and Achievement in Astronomy Class (United States)

    Bektasli, Behzat


    Studies show that it is hard to change students' attitudes toward science. This study specifically explored if media affect preservice science teachers' attitudes toward astronomy and their astronomy achievement. The sample for the pilot study consisted of 196 preservice science and mathematics teachers for attitude assessment and 230 preservice…

  10. A Pilot Astronomy Outreach Project in Bangladesh (United States)

    Bhattacharya, Dipen; Mridha, Shahjahan; Afroz, Maqsuda


    In its strategic planning for the "Astronomy for Development Project," the International Astronomical Union (IAU) has ecognized, among other important missions, the role of astronomy in understanding the far-reaching possibilities for promoting global tolerance and citizenship. Furthermore, astronomy is deemed inspirational for careers in science and technology. The "Pilot Astronomy Outreach Project in Bangladesh"--the first of its kind in the country--aspires to fulfill these missions. As Bangladesh lacks resources to promote astronomy education in universities and schools, the role of disseminating astronomy education to the greater community falls on citizen science organizations. One such group, Anushandhitshu Chokro (AChokro) Science Organization, has been carrying out a successful public outreach program since 1975. Among its documented public events, AChokro organized a total solar eclipse campaign in Bangladesh in 2009, at which 15,000 people were assembled in a single open venue for the eclipse observation. The organization has actively pursued astronomy outreach to dispel public misconceptions about astronomical phenomena and to promote science. AChokro is currently working to build an observatory and Science Outreach Center around a recently-acquired 14-inch Scmidt-Cassegrain telescope and a soon-to-be-acquired new 16-inch reflector, all funded by private donations. The telescopes will be fitted with photometers, spectrometers, and digital and CCD cameras to pursue observations that would include sun spot and solar magnetic fields, planetary surfaces, asteroid search, variable stars and supernovae. The Center will be integrated with schools, colleges, and community groups for regular observation and small-scale research. Special educational and observing sessions for adults will also be organized. Updates on the development of the Center, which is expected to be functioning by the end of 2015, will be shared and feedback invited on the fostering of

  11. 2005 College Astronomy Teaching Excellence Workshops (United States)

    Prather, E. E.; Slater, T. F.; Greene, W. M.; Thaller, M.; Brissenden, G.; UA Steward Observatory CAPER Team; NASA JPL Navigator EPO CenterAstrononomy Education Team; NASA Spitzer EPO Team


    As part of the education and public outreach efforts of the NASA JPL Navigator and Spitzer EPO Programs along with the American Astronomical Society and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, astronomy educators affiliated with the Conceptual Astronomy and Physics Education Research (CAPER) Team at the University of Arizona are conducting a series of two- and three-day teaching excellence workshops for college faculty. These regional workshops are being held at community colleges around the country and in conjunction with professional society meetings, such as the American Astronomical Society and the American Association of Physics Teachers, and through the infrastructure of the National Science Foundation's Summer Chautauqua Workshop program. These interactive teaching excellence workshops focus on dilemmas astronomy teachers face and develop practical solutions for the troubling issues in curriculum, instruction, and assessment. After reviewing the latest research about how students learn, participants define and set measurable student learning goals and objectives for students in their astronomy courses and construct effective course syllabi reflecting the ASTRO 101 goals publicized by the AAS. To improve instruction, participants learn how to create productive learning environments by using interactive lectures, peer instruction, engaging demonstrations, collaborative groups, tutorials, computer-based laboratories, and observational projects. Participants also learn how to write more effective multiple-choice tests and implement authentic assessment strategies including portfolio assessment, performance tasks, and concept maps. Texts used at the workshop include: (i) Learner-Centered Astronomy Teaching, Slater and Adams, Prentice Hall, 2002; (ii) Great Ideas for Teaching Astronomy, Pompea, Brooks Cole, 2000; Insights into the Universe, Slater and Zeilik, and (iv) Lecture-Tutorials for Introductory Astronomy, Adams, Prather, & Slater, Prentice Hall, 2005.

  12. Archaeo- and Cultural Astronomy in Armenia (United States)

    Farmanyan, Sona V.; Mickaelian, Areg M.


    We present a general overview on Armenian Archaeoastronomy and Astronomy in Culture to mention and summarize some activities and related organizations involved. Armenia is rather rich in archaeoastronomy and culture, including calendars, rock art, mythology, etc. Archaeoastronomical issues in Armenia include: Zodiac Constellations (believed to be introduced for the first time in the Armenian Highland); Ancient Observatories; Armenian Rock Art; Ancient Armenian Calendar and other (medieval) calendars; Astronomical Terms and Names; Records of Astronomical Events by ancient Armenians; Anania Shirakatsi’s (612-685) Astronomical Heritage; Medieval Sky Maps and Astronomical Devices. During the recent years, we have organized a number of meetings, where archaeoastronomy was involved: Joint European and National Astronomy Meeting (JENAM-2007), Special Session #6: “Archaeoastronomy” (2007), ArAS VIII Annual Meeting “Astronomy and Society”, Session “Archaeoastronomy” (2009), Archaeoastronomical meeting “Astronomical Heritage in the National Culture” dedicated to Anania Shirakatsi’s 1400th anniversary (2012), Meeting “Relation of Astronomy to other Sciences, Culture and Society” (RASCS), Sessions“Archaeoastronomy” and “Astronomy in Culture” (2014). Along with Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO), there are several other institutions related to Archaeoastronomy and Astronomy in Culture: Institute of History, Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, Institute of Literature, Institute of Language, Matenadaran (Institute of Ancient Manuscripts). We have introduced a section “Archaeoastronomy and Astronomy in Culture” in the newsletter of Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS). This is to strengthen ArAS activities and to widen our knowledge in this area, to encourage and establish collaborations with other scientists related to these subjects; historians, archaeologists, ethnographers, philologists, linguists, artists and other

  13. Documenting the Vocabulary of Astronomy Communication (United States)

    Miller, Scott; Parrish, M.; Gay, P. L.


    Learning astronomy can be a life-long process, with the seeds of knowledge planted in K-12 classes blossoming in elective college courses to create adults who actively acquire astronomy content. One of the goals of many astronomy 101 courses is to prepare students to be intelligent consumers of mainstream astronomy content, including magazine articles, popular books, and online news. To meet this goal, astronomy educators need to understand what content is being presented in the media and what level vocabulary is being used. The most simplistic way to address this problem is to examine the topics covered and vocabulary used in mainstream astronomy blogs and news feeds. In this study we looked at a selection of prominent blogs and news feeds and we present a statistical study of the frequency different scientific terms are used and topics are addressed. To make this study possible, software to read in RSS feeds was created. This software had to meet the following design specifications: runs in a reasonable amount of time, removes all XML and HTML code from text, sees words with different capitalizations as the same word, ignores end of sentence or phrase punctuation without ignoring hyphens, and has an editable list of "common English words.” This code will be available after the conference at Results of this study find that many of the primary topics of Astronomy 101 classes, such as the HR Diagram, are rarely mentioned in blogs and online news, while often de-emphasized topics, such as extra solar planets, cosmology, and high energy astrophysics, show up regularly.

  14. Voyager planetary radio astronomy studies (United States)

    Staelin, David H.; Eikenberry, Stephen S.


    Analysis of nonthermal radio emission data obtained by the Planetary Radio Astronomy (PRA) spectrometers on the Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft was performed. This PRA data provided unique insights into the radio emission characteristics of the outer planets because of PRA's unique spectral response below the terrestrial ionospheric plasma frequency and its unprecedented proximity to the source. Of those results which were documented or published, this final report surveys only the highlights and cites references for more complete discussions. Unpublished results for Uranus, Neptune, and theoretical Ionian current distributions are presented at greater length. The most important conclusion to be drawn from these observations is that banded spectral emission is common to the radio emission below 1-2 MHz observed from all four Jovian planets. In every case multiple spectral features evolve on time scales of seconds to minutes. To the extent these features drift in frequency, they appear never to cross one another. The Neptunian spectral features appear to drift little or not at all, their evolution consisting principally of waxing and waning. Since other evidence strongly suggests that most or all of this radio emission is occurring near the local magnetospheric electron cyclotron frequency, this implies that this emission preferentially occurs at certain continually changing planetary radii. It remains unknown why certain radii might be favored, unless radial electric field components or other means serve to differentiate radially the magnetospheric plasma density, particle energy vectors, or particle coherence. Calculation of the spatial distribution and intensity of the Io-generated magnetospheric currents are also presented; these currents may be limited principally by wave impedance and local field strengths.

  15. [Mathematics - astronomy - astrology special library]. (United States)

    Gluch, Sibylle


    About 1560 Elector August of Saxony created an unusual library--one distinguished within its period by both its specialization and location. Situated within the Kunstkammer this library was mostly dedicated to the mathematical sciences and related disciplines. It contained works by the most important authors on mathematics, astronomy, and astrology from the classical, medieval, and early modern periods. This essay traces the formation and composition of August's library, and examines its function: What kind of relationship existed between the library and the Kunstkammer? In what way did the library mirror the interests of the Elector, and to what extend does it permit inferences regarding the Elector's knowledge of mathematics? From the analysis August emerges not as a specialist with a deep understanding of mathematics, but as a particular aficionado of mathematical applications. As a practitioner and general follower of the mathematical arts he took part in a far-reaching intellectual network the center of which lay in the University of Wittenberg. Here, Melanchthon had effectively strengthened the importance of the mathematical disciplines within the university curriculum. He regarded mathematics as the foremost science, arguing that before all other disciplines its method enabled man to recognize the harmonic order of the world, and to discern divine providence. Thus, mathematics offered consoling stability and support in an often seemingly chaotic world torn by religious controversies. This kind of esteem for the mathematical sciences did not presuppose expert knowledge. Hence, the fact that August does not appear to have read the mathematical books he collected does not come as a contradiction. On the contrary, for August it sufficed to recognize the potential of the mathematical sciences, which he brought into life through the creation of a specialized library that developed a rhetoric of its own. The collection of his Kunstkammer library spoke of a

  16. Speciality optical fibres for astronomy (United States)

    Ellis, S. C.; Bland-Hawthorn, J.


    Astrophotonics is a rapidly developing area of research which applies photonic technology to astronomical instrumentation. Such technology has the capability of significantly improving the sensitivity, calibration and stability of astronomical instruments, or indeed providing novel capabilities which are not possible using classical optics. We review the development and application of speciality fibres for astronomy, including multi-mode to single-mode converters, notch filters and frequency combs.In particular we focus on our development of instruments designed to filter atmospheric emission lines to enable much deeper spectroscopic observations in the near-infrared. These instruments employ two novel photonic technologies. First, we have developed complex aperiodic fibre Bragg gratings which filter over 100 irregularly spaced wavelengths in a single device, covering a bandwidth of over 200 nm. However, astronomical instruments require highly multi-mode fibres to enable sufficient coupling into the fibre, since atmospheric turbulence heavily distorts the wavefront. But photonic technologies such as fibre Bragg gratings, require single mode fibres. This problem is solved by the photonic lantern, which enables efficient coupling from a multi-mode fibre to an array of single-mode fibres and vice versa. We present the results of laboratory tests of these technologies and of on-sky experiments made using the first instruments to deploy these technologies on a telescope. These tests show that the fibre Bragg gratings suppress the night sky background by a factor of 9. Current instruments are limited by thermal and detector emission. Planned instruments should improve the background suppression even further, by optimising the design of the spectrograph for the properties of the photonic components. Finally we review ongoing research in astrophotonics, including multi-moded multicore fibre Bragg gratings, which enable multiple gratings to be written into the same device

  17. The Canadian Astronomy Data Centre (United States)

    Ball, Nicholas M.; Schade, D.; Astronomy Data Centre, Canadian


    The Canadian Astronomy Data Centre (CADC) is the world's largest astronomical data center, holding over 0.5 Petabytes of information, and serving nearly 3000 astronomers worldwide. Its current data collections include BLAST, CFHT, CGPS, FUSE, Gemini, HST, JCMT, MACHO, MOST, and numerous other archives and services. It provides extensive data archiving, curation, and processing expertise, via projects such as MegaPipe, and enables substantial day-to-day collaboration between resident astronomers and computer specialists. It is a stable, powerful, persistent, and properly supported environment for the storage and processing of large volumes of data, a condition that is now absolutely vital for their science potential to be exploited by the community. Through initiatives such as the Common Archive Observation Model (CAOM), the Canadian Virtual Observatory (CVO), and the Canadian Advanced Network for Astronomical Research (CANFAR), the CADC is at the global forefront of advancing astronomical research through improved data services. The CAOM aims to provide homogeneous data access, and hence viable interoperability between a potentially unlimited number of different data collections, at many wavelengths. It is active in the definition of numerous emerging standards within the International Virtual Observatory, and several datasets are already available. The CANFAR project is an initiative to make cloud computing for storage and data-intensive processing available to the community. It does this via a Virtual Machine environment that is equivalent to managing a local desktop. Several groups are already processing science data. CADC is also at the forefront of advanced astronomical data analysis, driven by the science requirements of astronomers both locally and further afield. The emergence of 'Astroinformatics' promises to provide not only utility items like object classifications, but to directly enable new science by accessing previously undiscovered or intractable

  18. [Mathematics - astronomy - astrology special library]. (United States)

    Gluch, Sibylle


    About 1560 Elector August of Saxony created an unusual library--one distinguished within its period by both its specialization and location. Situated within the Kunstkammer this library was mostly dedicated to the mathematical sciences and related disciplines. It contained works by the most important authors on mathematics, astronomy, and astrology from the classical, medieval, and early modern periods. This essay traces the formation and composition of August's library, and examines its function: What kind of relationship existed between the library and the Kunstkammer? In what way did the library mirror the interests of the Elector, and to what extend does it permit inferences regarding the Elector's knowledge of mathematics? From the analysis August emerges not as a specialist with a deep understanding of mathematics, but as a particular aficionado of mathematical applications. As a practitioner and general follower of the mathematical arts he took part in a far-reaching intellectual network the center of which lay in the University of Wittenberg. Here, Melanchthon had effectively strengthened the importance of the mathematical disciplines within the university curriculum. He regarded mathematics as the foremost science, arguing that before all other disciplines its method enabled man to recognize the harmonic order of the world, and to discern divine providence. Thus, mathematics offered consoling stability and support in an often seemingly chaotic world torn by religious controversies. This kind of esteem for the mathematical sciences did not presuppose expert knowledge. Hence, the fact that August does not appear to have read the mathematical books he collected does not come as a contradiction. On the contrary, for August it sufficed to recognize the potential of the mathematical sciences, which he brought into life through the creation of a specialized library that developed a rhetoric of its own. The collection of his Kunstkammer library spoke of a

  19. Outreach Testing of Ancient Astronomy (United States)

    Sanmartin, J. R. S.; Blanco, M. B. M.


    This work is an outreach approach to an ubiquitous recent problem in secondary-school education: how to face back the decreasing interest in natural sciences shown by students under 'pressure' of convenient resources in digital devices/applications. The approach rests on two features. First, empowering of teen-age students to understand regular natural events around, as very few educated people they meet could do. Secondly, an understanding that rests on personal capability to test and verify experimental results from the oldest science, astronomy, with simple instruments as used from antiquity down to the Renaissance (a capability restricted to just solar and lunar motions). Because lengths in astronomy and daily life are so disparate, astronomy basically involved observing and registering values of angles (along with times), measurements being of two types, of angles on the ground and of angles in space, from the ground. First, the gnomon, a simple vertical stick introduced in Babylonia and Egypt, and then in Greece, is used to understand solar motion. The gnomon shadow turns around during any given day, varying in length and thus angle between solar ray and vertical as it turns, going through a minimum (noon time, at a meridian direction) while sweeping some angular range from sunrise to sunset. Further, the shadow minimum length varies through the year, with times when shortest and sun closest to vertical, at summer solstice, and times when longest, at winter solstice six months later. The extreme directions at sunset and sunrise correspond to the solstices, swept angular range greatest at summer, over 180 degrees, and the opposite at winter, with less daytime hours; in between, spring and fall equinoxes occur, marked by collinear shadow directions at sunrise and sunset. The gnomon allows students to determine, in addition to latitude (about 40.4° North at Madrid, say), the inclination of earth equator to plane of its orbit around the sun (ecliptic), this

  20. Outreach Testing of Ancient Astronomy (United States)

    Sanmartin, J. R. S.; Blanco, M. B. M.


    This work is an outreach approach to an ubiquitous recent problem in secondary-school education: how to face back the decreasing interest in natural sciences shown by students under 'pressure' of convenient resources in digital devices/applications. The approach rests on two features. First, empowering of teen-age students to understand regular natural events around, as very few educated people they meet could do. Secondly, an understanding that rests on personal capability to test and verify experimental results from the oldest science, astronomy, with simple instruments as used from antiquity down to the Renaissance (a capability restricted to just solar and lunar motions). Because lengths in astronomy and daily life are so disparate, astronomy basically involved observing and registering values of angles (along with times), measurements being of two types, of angles on the ground and of angles in space, from the ground. First, the gnomon, a simple vertical stick introduced in Babylonia and Egypt, and then in Greece, is used to understand solar motion. The gnomon shadow turns around during any given day, varying in length and thus angle between solar ray and vertical as it turns, going through a minimum (noon time, at a meridian direction) while sweeping some angular range from sunrise to sunset. Further, the shadow minimum length varies through the year, with times when shortest and sun closest to vertical, at summer solstice, and times when longest, at winter solstice six months later. The extreme directions at sunset and sunrise correspond to the solstices, swept angular range greatest at summer, over 180 degrees, and the opposite at winter, with less daytime hours; in between, spring and fall equinoxes occur, marked by collinear shadow directions at sunrise and sunset. The gnomon allows students to determine, in addition to latitude (about 40.4° North at Madrid, say), the inclination of earth equator to plane of its orbit around the sun (ecliptic), this

  1. Bibliographic Resources for the Historian of Astronomy (United States)

    Corbin, B. G.


    Many large library collections now have online bibliographic catalogs on the web. These provide many hidden resources for the historian of astronomy. Special searching techniques will allow the historian to scan bibliographic records of hundreds of entries relating to biographies of astronomers, collected works of astronomers, ancient and medieval astronomy and many other historical subjects. Abstract databases such as the Astrophysics Data System and ARIBIB are also adding much historical bibliographic information. ARIBIB will eventually contain scanned images of the Astronomischer Jahresbericht containing bibliographic entries for all literature of astronomy from 1899 to 1968 and Astronomy and Astrophysics Abstracts from 1969 to present. Commercial services such as UnCover and FirstSearch provide a means of reaching bibliographic entries for journal and book literature in the history of astronomy which were not easily located in the past. A broad overview of these collections and services will be given, and searching techniques for finding ``hidden" bibliographic data will be presented. Web page addresses will be given for all sources covered.

  2. Introducing the Virtual Astronomy Multimedia Project (United States)

    Wyatt, Ryan; Christensen, L. L.; Gauthier, A.; Hurt, R.


    The goal of the Virtual Astronomy Multimedia Project (VAMP) is to promote and vastly multiply the use of astronomy multimedia resources—from images and illustrations to animations, movies, and podcasts—and enable innovative future exploitation of a wide variety of outreach media by systematically linking resource archives worldwide. High-quality astronomical images, accompanied by rich caption and background information, abound on the web and yet prove notoriously difficult to locate efficiently using existing search tools. The Virtual Astronomy Multimedia Project offers a solution via the Astronomy Visualization Metadata (AVM) standard. Due to roll out in time for IYA2009, VAMP manages the design, implementation, and dissemination of the AVM standard for the education and public outreach astronomical imagery that observatories publish. VAMP will support implementations in World Wide Telescope, Google Sky, Portal to the Universe, and 365 Days of Astronomy, as well as Uniview and DigitalSky software designed specifically for planetariums. The VAMP workshop will introduce the AVM standard and describe its features, highlighting sample image tagging processes using diverse tools—the critical first step in getting media into VAMP. Participants with laptops will have an opportunity to experiment first hand, and workshop organizers will update a web page with system requirements and software options in advance of the conference (see for links to resources). The workshop will also engage participants in a discussion and review of the innovative AVM image hierarchy taxonomy, which will soon be extended to other types of media.

  3. Identification and Support of Outstanding Astronomy Students (United States)

    Stoev, A. D.; Bozhurova, E. S.


    The aims, organizational plan and syllabus of a specialized Astronomy School with a subject of training students for participation in the International Astronomy Olympiad, are presented. Thematic frame includes basic educational activities during the preparation and self-preparation of the students and their participation in astronomical Olympiads. A model of identification and selection of outstanding students for astronomical Olympiads has been developed. Examples of didactic systems of problems for development of mathematical, physical and astronomical skills are shown. The programme ends with individual training for solving problems on astronomy and astrophysics. Possibilities, which the characteristic, non-standard astronomical problems give for stimulating the creative and original thinking, are specified. Basic psychological condition for development of the students' creative potential - transformation of the cognitive content in emotional one - is demonstrated. The programme of identification and support of outstanding students on astronomy is realized in collaboration with The Ministry of Education and Science, Public Astronomical Observatories and Planetaria, Institute of Astronomy - Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, and The Union of Astronomers in Bulgaria.

  4. Can Astronomy Be Taught Without History? (United States)

    Zeilik, Michael; Hall, Shannon


    Many introductory astronomy courses for the non-science major take a somewhat historical approach, especially at the start of the course. At the University of New Mexico, we are developing an innovative course in a large (about 300 students) lecture format. The main thrust has been to restructure the traditional "descriptive" astronomy course into one that focuses on the process of science by identifying and linking essential concepts. The goal: to teach explicitly the structural knowledge of astronomy, which is clear to experts but opaque to novices. To focus on the process of science, we have decided to minimize a historical treatment of the material. But this strategy results in a cognitive twist. We know that students bring into class their personal world views, largely unexamined, about how nature works. Some of these alternative conceptions mimic pre-Newtonian notions and in a loose sense recapitulate the history of astronomy. Is taking a historical approach a good heuristic device for teaching introductory astronomy? Or does it reinforce alternative concepts and so confuse students? This work is supported in part by NSF grant DUE-9253983

  5. Music and Astronomy: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives (United States)

    Whitehouse, Matthew


    The link between music and astronomy has deep historical roots. William Herschel, who is considered to be the father of modern astronomy, began his career as a musician. He was a composer, organist at a church in Bath, UK, and a major contributor to the musical life of that community. Like Herschel, I too am an organist and composer, and much of my creative work focuses on connections between music and astronomy. This presentation will explore briefly aspects of William Herschel's musical career, and will then focus on contemporary music inspired by astronomical phenomena. Emphasis will be placed on the use of music as a creative teaching tool in informal education environments. The University of Arizona's Astronomy Camp, hosted at both Mt. Lemmon and Kitt Peak National Observatory, will be used as an example and case study. Examples from my creative activity as an organ performer and composer will be important features of this presentation. This presentation builds on the session exploring the life and work of the Herschels at the January 2011 AAS Historical Astronomy Division meeting in Seattle, WA.

  6. The Golden Years of Radio Astronomy (United States)

    Kellermann, Kenneth I.


    The 1960s were the Golden Years of Radio Astronomy. During this decade a new generation of young scientists discovered quasars, pulsars, the cosmic microwave background, cosmic masers, giant molecular clouds, radio source variability, superluminal motion, radio recombination lines, the rotation of Mercury and Venus, the Venus Greenhouse effect, Jupiter's radiation belts, and opened up the high redshift Universe. On the technical side, the 1960s saw the completion of the NRAO 140-ft and 300-ft radio telescopes, the Haystack, Arecibo and Parkes antennas, the Owens Valley Interferometer, the first practical demonstrations of aperture synthesis, VLBI, and CLEAN, the Cambridge 1-mile radio telescope, the most precise tests of GR light bending, and the introduction of the 4th test of GR. Following sessions at the recent IAU 29th General Assembly on the "Golden Years of Radio Astronomy," we will discuss the circumstances surrounding these transformational discoveries which changed the course of modern astronomy.

  7. Contributions of astronomy to fundamental physics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The highlights of the valuable contributions astronomy has made towards the understanding of the basic laws of physics are given. The physics-astronomy relationship is a two-way interaction-a fact very often not appreciated by physicists in general, who believe that physics contributes to understanding of astronomy but not vice versa. The understanding of cosmic phenomena requires the knowledge of the laws of physics; the laws that have been conceptualized through numerous laboratory experiments here on the Earth. At the same time, it should remembered that the cosmos provides a setting for the operation of these laws that is so grand that it can never be achieved in the terrestrial laboratory. (author). 9 figs

  8. Astronomy in Georgia - Present Status and Perspectives (United States)

    Todua, M.


    Astronomy in Georgia is generally represented in Abastumani Astrophysical Observatory found in 1932. It is one of the leading scientific institutes in the country. Main fields of research are solar system bodies (including near-Earth asteroids), various aspects of solar physics, stellar astronomy (including binary stars and open clusters), extragalactic objects (AGNs), theoretical astrophysics, cosmology, atmospheric and solar-terrestrial physics. Several telescopes are operational today, as well as the instruments for atmospheric studies. In 2007 the Observatory was integrated with Ilia State University, merging scientific research and education which facilitated the growth of a new generation of researchers. There are groups of astronomers and astrophysicists in other Georgian universities and institutions as well. Georgian scientists collaborate with research centers and universities worldwide. Research groups participate in various international scientific projects. The interest in astronomy in Georgia has been growing, which increases future perspectives of its development in the country.

  9. L'astronomie et son histoire

    CERN Document Server

    Roy, Jean-René


    Le livre de Jean-René Roy nous présente une vaste synthèse des connaissances présentes en astronomie. Le grand mérite du livre est de dérouler son sujet en parallèle avec une histoire de l'astronomie. Le côté historique est ici beaucoup plus qu'un luxe. Il redonne leurs dimensions vraies aux réponses qu'apporte l'astronomie. Pour bien sentir la nature d'une étape franchie, il faut aussi avoir vécu la situation telle qu'elle se présentait avant. Et les fiches personnelles incluses dans le livre ont l'intérêt de nous rapprocher encore plus du "" feu de l'action "". Écrit dans un style direct et

  10. Forty Years of Radio Astronomy at Hartebeesthoek (United States)

    Gaylard, M. J.; Nicolson, G. D.


    In 1961 an 85-foot (26-metre) diameter radio antenna was erected at Hartebeesthoek near Johannesburg, as NASA's Deep Space Instrumentation Facility 51. A young South African engineer employed there soon initiated a radio astronomy research programme to use free time between tracking spacecraft. On the closure of the facility by NASA in 1974, it was re-constituted as a radio astronomy observatory operated by the CSIR. In this paper, we highlight various strands of the forty year history of radio astronomy at Hartebeesthoek. We also cover some of the perhaps surprising spinoffs that it has generated, both scientifically and practically. Some of these hark back to measurements taken by the Abbé de la Caille at the Cape in the 1750's, and to the reasons for establishing a Royal Observatory there in the 1820's.

  11. Astropy: Community Python Software for Astronomy (United States)

    Greenfield, Perry; Tollerud, E. J.; Robitaille, T.; Developers, Astropy


    The Astropy Project is a community effort to develop an open source Python package of common data structures and routines for use by other, more specialized astronomy software in Python in order to foster software interoperability in the astronomical community. The project encompasses Astropy's ”core” and ”affiliated" packages that adopt Astropy’s coding, testing and documentation standards. By doing so we aim to improve interoperability with other Python packages in astronomy, and help a broader community implement more Pythonic solutions to astronomy computing problems while minimizing duplication of effort. The project provides a template for other projects that use Astropy to reuse much of Astropy’s development framework without reinventing the wheel. Here we present an overview of the key features of the core package (existing and upcoming), current and planned affiliated packages, and how we manage a large open source project with a diverse community of contributors.

  12. Innovative Technologies for Optical and Infrared Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Cunningham, C R; Molster, F; Kendrew, S; Kenworthy, M A; Snik, F


    Advances in astronomy are often enabled by adoption of new technology. In some instances this is where the technology has been invented specifically for astronomy, but more usually it is adopted from another scientific or industrial area of application. The adoption of new technology typically occurs via one of two processes. The more usual is incremental progress by a series of small improvements, but occasionally this process is disruptive, where a new technology completely replaces an older one. One of the activities of the OPTICON Key Technology Network over the past few years has been a technology forecasting exercise. Here we report on a recent event which focused on the more radical, potentially disruptive technologies for ground-based, optical and infrared astronomy.

  13. Astronomy Exercises for the Artist: van Gogh the Observer (United States)

    Lawlor, Timothy M.


    We present a set of exercises designed to be used in a survey astronomy course, an introductory astronomy laboratory course, or in secondary education. The exercises use the great works of Vincent van Gogh but could

  14. Astronomy from the chair - the application of the Internet in promoting of Astronomy (United States)

    Tomic, Zoran


    Internet and modern communication technologies are an indispensable part of modern life. The use of the Internet makes it possible to enhance the education and expand opportunities for acquiring new knowledge. One example is Astronomy, where today thanks to the Internet, we can control telescopes that are distant from us and listen to lectures from Universities in other countries. "Astronomy from the chair" is the name for a concept where amateur astronomers can deal with astronomy from their homes using the Internet. The concept can be divided into four sections depending on the content being offered: Robotic Observatory, Virtual Observatory, Online astronomy broadcasting and Online courses. Robotic observatory is defined as an astronomical instrument and detection system that enables efficient observation without the need of a person's physical intervention. Virtual Observatory is defined as a collection of databases and software tools that use the Internet as a platform for scientific research. Online astronomy broadcasting is part of concept "Astronomy from the chair" which gives users the opportunity to get directly involved in astronomical observation organized by an amateur astronomer from somewhere in the world. Online courses are groups of sites and organizations that provide the opportunity to amateur astronomers to attend lectures, save and watch video materials from lectures, do homework, communicate with other seminar participants and in that way become familiar with the various areas of Astronomy. This paper discusses a new concept that describes how the Internet can be applied in modern education. In this paper will be described projects that allows a large number of astronomy lovers to do their own research without the need to own a large and expensive set of astronomical equipment (Virtual Telescope from Italy, Observatory "Night Hawk" from Serbia and project "Astronomy from an armchair" at Faculty of Sciences and Mathematics in Nis), to help

  15. News Note: Administration of astronomy in South Africa (United States)


    The National Research Foundation announced on 31 July that Prof Nithaya Chetty has been appointed as Deputy Chief Executive of the National Research Foundation for Astronomy with effect from 1 October 2014. As such, he will be responsible for coordinating the national strategy for astronomy. This will include supervision of the astronomy national facilities and the SKA-SA Project, developing synergies between the various astronomy departments, the astronomical facilities and the community at large, promoting public awareness and liaising with international partners,

  16. The History and Practice of Ancient Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Evans, James


    The History and Practice of Ancient Astronomy combines new scholarship with hands-on science to bring readers into direct contact with the work of ancient astronomers. While tracing ideas from ancient Babylon to sixteenth-century Europe, the book places its greatest emphasis on the Greek period, when astronomers developed the geometric and philosophical ideas that have determined the subsequent character of Western astronomy. The author approaches this history through the concrete details of ancient astronomical practice. Carefully organized and generously illustrated, the book can teach reade

  17. Neutrinos in particle physics, astronomy and cosmology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    ''Neutrinos in Particle Physics, Astronomy and Cosmology'' provides a comprehensive and up-to-date introduction to neutrino physics, neutrino astronomy and neutrino cosmology. The intrinsic properties and fundamental interactions of neutrinos are described, as is the phenomenology of lepton flavor mixing, seesaw mechanisms and neutrino oscillations. The cosmic neutrino background, stellar neutrinos, supernova neutrinos and ultrahigh-energy cosmic neutrinos, together with the cosmological matter-antimatter asymmetry and other roles of massive neutrinos in cosmology, are discussed in detail. This book is intended for researchers and graduate students in the fields of particle physics, particle astrophysics and cosmology. (orig.)

  18. The Importance of Demographic Data in Astronomy (United States)

    Elmegreen, Debra M.


    The most effective astronomical workforce will be one that comprises a diverse and inclusive community. The “New Worlds, New Horizons in Astronomy and Astrophysics” Decadal Survey, with input from its Infrastructure Study Group on Demographics, provided an overview of recent demographic trends. Demographics in astronomy have undergone significant changes over the past two generations in several, but not all, categories. Maintaining records of demographics regarding age, gender, and minority status, as well as trends by discipline and career choices, is vital in planning for the future training and employment of astronomers.

  19. Astronomy at the Universidad de Sonora (United States)

    Sänchez-Ibarra, A.

    Astronomy has been a long tradition in Mexico since the Mayas culture. However, most of the development of this science has been concentrated in the center-south region of this country. The creation of the Astronomy Area at the Universidad de Sonora, permitted since 1990 a different perspective for the development of this science, not only related with the scientific work, but also with the participation in education and public outreach, as also develop facilities, as a fundamental part of the future for this science. I present here a description of the work made and the projects in development for the near future.

  20. An Introduction to Distance Measurement in Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    de Grijs, Richard


    Distance determination is an essential technique in astronomy, and is briefly covered in most textbooks on astrophysics and cosmology. It is rarely covered as a coherent topic in its own right. When it is discussed the approach is frequently very dry, splitting the teaching into, for example, stars, galaxies and cosmologies, and as a consequence, books lack depth and are rarely comprehensive. Adopting a unique and engaging approach to the subject An Introduction to distance Measurement in Astronomy will take the reader on a journey from the solar neighbourhood to the edge of the Universe, dis

  1. Advances in astronomy and astrophysics 7

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Advances in Astronomy and Astrophysics, Volume 7 covers reviews about the advances in astronomy and astrophysics. The book presents reviews on the scattering of electrons by diatomic molecules and on Babcock's theory of the 22-year solar cycle and the latitude drift of the sunspot zone. The text then describes reviews on the structures of the terrestrial planets (Earth, Venus, Mars, Mercury) and on type III solar radio bursts. The compact and dispersed cosmic matter is also considered with regard to the search for new cosmic objects and phenomena and on the nature of the ref shift from compact

  2. Space Astronomy in China During 2004 - 2006

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    GAN Weiqun


    For the past two years, some real progress has been made in Chinese Space Astronomy, though we have not launched any missions exclusively belonging to the scope of Astronomy. In order to program the next five years' national plan (2006-2010), the Chinese Space Agency organized a series of authorized evaluations for the future missions. Among more than ten astronomical mission proposals, several were selected to give the green light to continue for their Phase A studies. We try to briefly outline these proposals.

  3. III Astronomy School: the world of stars (United States)

    Valdivielso, L.


    The Astronomy School is an activity organized by the Centro de Estudios de Física del Cosmos de Aragón. It is celebrated every year at the end of the summer or the beginning of autumn with the purpose of bringing Astronomy and Astrophysics to the population from an educational and a training point of view. Its III Edition, held in October 2013, has been financed by the Spanish Astronomical Society and was focused on stellar physics. This contribution describes the School and the results.

  4. Division X, XII / Commission 40, 41 / Working Group Radio Astronomy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kellermann, Kenneth; Orchiston, Wayne; Davies, Rod; Gurvits, Leonid; Ishiguro, Masato; Lequeux, James; Swarup, Govind; Wall, Jasper; Wielebinski, Richard; van Woerden, Hugo


    The IAU Working Group on Historical Radio Astronomy (WGHRA) was formed at the 2003 General Assembly of the IAU as a Joint Working Group of Commissions 40 (Radio Astronomy) and 41 (History of Astronomy), in order to: a) assemble a master list of surviving historically-significant radio telescopes and

  5. 47 CFR 2.107 - Radio astronomy station notification. (United States)


    ... 47 Telecommunication 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Radio astronomy station notification. 2.107....107 Radio astronomy station notification. (a) Pursuant to No. 1492 of Article 13 and Section F of Appendix 3 to the international Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1982), operators of radio astronomy...

  6. No Child Left Behind and High School Astronomy (United States)

    Krumenaker, Larry


    Astronomy was a required subject in the first American secondary level schools, the academies of the 18th century. When these were supplanted a century later by public high schools, astronomy still was often required, subsumed into courses of Natural Philosophy. Reasons given at that time to support astronomy as a part of general education include…

  7. Covering the Standards: Astronomy Teachers' Preparation and Beliefs (United States)

    Plummer, Julia D.; Zahm, Valerie M.


    An online survey of science teachers and interviews with curriculum directors were used to investigate the coverage of astronomy in middle and high schools in the greater Philadelphia region. Our analysis looked beyond astronomy elective courses to uncover all sources of astronomy education in secondary schools. We focused on coverage of state…

  8. NASE Training Courses in Astronomy for Teachers throughout the World (United States)

    Ros, Rosa M.


    Network for Astronomy School Education, NASE, is a project that is organizing courses for teachers throughout the entire world. The main objective of the project is to prepare secondary and primary school teachers in astronomy. Students love to know more about astronomy and teachers have the opportunity to observe the sky that every school has…

  9. Using role-playing exercises to teach astronomy (United States)

    Francis, Paul J.


    I'd like to share a rather cavalier, but enormously enjoyable technique I've been using to teach introductory astronomy classes for nonscience majors. Rather than preparing a conventional lecture on some area of astronomy, I divide my class into groups that compete among themselves to be the first to understand a given aspect of astronomy, using clues that I supply.

  10. Astronomy and Astrophysics: Currcnt Status, and Strategies for China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    YAN Jun


    This article elucidates the background and significance of astronomy, overviews the important progress over the past decade, and points out the main scientific problems for world astronomy. Based on a comparison between China's astronmical facilities, existing and in planing, and the major international facilities, the author proposes some strategies for promoting China's astronomy.

  11. Grote Reber, Radio Astronomy Pioneer, Dies (United States)


    Grote Reber, one of the earliest pioneers of radio astronomy, died in Tasmania on December 20, just two days shy of his 91st birthday. Reber was the first person to build a radio telescope dedicated to astronomy, opening up a whole new "window" on the Universe that eventually produced such landmark discoveries as quasars, pulsars and the remnant "afterglow" of the Big Bang. His self- financed experiments laid the foundation for today's advanced radio-astronomy facilities. Grote Reber Grote Reber NRAO/AUI photo "Radio astronomy has changed profoundly our understanding of the Universe and has earned the Nobel Prize for several major contributions. All radio astronomers who have followed him owe Grote Reber a deep debt for his pioneering work," said Dr. Fred Lo, director of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). "Reber was the first to systematically study the sky by observing something other than visible light. This gave astronomy a whole new view of the Universe. The continuing importance of new ways of looking at the Universe is emphasized by this year's Nobel Prizes in physics, which recognized scientists who pioneered X-ray and neutrino observations," Lo added. Reber was a radio engineer and avid amateur "ham" radio operator in Wheaton, Illinois, in the 1930s when he read about Karl Jansky's 1932 discovery of natural radio emissions coming from outer space. As an amateur operator, Reber had won awards and communicated with other amateurs around the world, and later wrote that he had concluded "there were no more worlds to conquer" in radio. Learning of Jansky's discovery gave Reber a whole new challenge that he attacked with vigor. Analyzing the problem as an engineer, Reber concluded that what he needed was a parabolic-dish antenna, something quite uncommon in the 1930s. In 1937, using his own funds, he constructed a 31.4-foot-diameter dish antenna in his back yard. The strange contraption attracted curious attention from his neighbors and became

  12. International Year of Astronomy (IYA): A Boost to Astronomy Education in Atlanta, GA (United States)

    Sarrazine, Angela R.; Albin, E.


    We report on the International Year of Astronomy (IYA) activities at Fernbank Science Center in Atlanta, GA (USA). The global focus of IYA was to celebrate astronomy and its cultural / scientific contributions, which correlate with the 400th anniversary of Galileo's first look at the heavens with a small telescope. Our planetarium and observatory utilized this opportunity to increase astronomy awareness and education locally. A plethora of special events were organized including two planetarium productions about Galileo and the telescope, special displays in the exhibit hall, two astronaut lectures, a children's workshop with Galileoscopes, and even a Galileo impersonator. Such IYA-related programs increased our overall annual attendance while at the same time served to re-introduce our local audience to astronomy in a creative way.

  13. The Correlation between Pre-Service Science Teachers' Astronomy Achievement, Attitudes towards Astronomy and Spatial Thinking Skills (United States)

    Türk, Cumhur


    The purpose of this study was to examine the changes in pre-service Science teachers' astronomy achievement, attitudes towards astronomy and skills for spatial thinking in terms of their years of study. Another purpose of the study was to find out whether there was correlation between pre-service teachers' astronomy achievement, attitudes towards…

  14. Astronomy Teacher Training: Towards Year 2009 (United States)

    Doddoli, Consuelo


    The Direccion General de Divulgacion de la Ciencia is part of Mexico's National University; its purpose is science outreach. Most of its activities are dedicated to school level audiences; nevertheless due to the speed of science development, courses are given for teachers. The astronomy curricula includes: new results in astronomy research, general astrophysics and tools to teach astronomy. The courses offer twelve two hour long sessions. An astronomy researcher delivers a lecture and teachers are trained to use hands on activity. Beginning last in 2007 it has focused on Galileo. It addressed the way he was modern scientist, he observed and made experiments and wrote his results in common language. Year 2009 is a perfect incentive to carry out activities with teachers and keep them busy organizing telescope construction and observations during and after Galileo's commemoration. A book was written specially for them on the experiments Galileo made. In this book they can find interesting hand-on activities with materials that are readily available. (Los experimentos de Galileo, Silvia Torres y Consuelo Doddoli, Correo del Maestro, 2008, in press.) The magazine Correo del Maestro holds many articles written by the author on astronomical activities aimed to teachers.

  15. Astronomy at the University of Guadalajara (United States)

    Chávez, M.; Ramos-Larios, G.


    We present a brief history of the Institute of Astronomy and Meteorology of the University of Guadalajara (UdeG). We describe its current status and projects for the long term. Most of the historical remarks are based on the document (in Spanish) available at the institute's website (

  16. The Radio JOVE Project - Shoestring Radio Astronomy (United States)

    Thieman, J.; Flagg, R.; Greenman, W.; Higgins, C.; Reyes, F.; Sky, J.


    Radio JOVE is an education and outreach project intended to give students and other interested individuals hands-on experience in learning radio astronomy. They can do this through building a radio telescope from a relatively inexpensive kit that includes the parts for a receiver and an antenna as well as software for a computer chart recorder emulator (Radio Skypipe) and other reference materials

  17. A Teaching Lab in Radio Astronomy (United States)

    Smith, Kirk R.; Cudaback, David D.


    Describes a study in which participants in a summer institute for secondary science teachers performed a series of experiments with a radio telescope. Concludes that a radio astronomy teaching facility would encourage students to use their own initiative and strategy in working with the scientific concepts involved. (MLH)

  18. Analysis of the Astronomy Diagnostic Test (United States)

    Brogt, Erik; Sabers, Darrell; Prather, Edward E.; Deming, Grace L.; Hufnagel, Beth; Slater, Timothy F.


    Seventy undergraduate class sections were examined from the database of Astronomy Diagnostic Test (ADT) results of Deming and Hufnagel to determine if course format correlated with ADT normalized gain scores. Normalized gains were calculated for four different classroom scenarios: lecture, lecture with discussion, lecture with lab, and lecture…

  19. Students Across Texas Celebrate Astronomy Day (United States)

    Preston, S.; Wetzel, M.; Hemenway, M. K.


    Over the past three years, McDonald Observatory has offered special Astronomy Day videoconference programs to students across Texas—the second largest state in the U.S. (Only Alaska is larger). Videoconferencing allows many students and teachers access to our Observatory, which is remotely located 180 miles (290 kilometers) from any major city. McDonald Observatory partners with Connect2Texas to advertise the Astronomy Day event. Connect2Texas provides the electronic bridge between schools and the Observatory. They also provide an online evaluation for teachers to complete. In 2009 the Astronomy Day videoconference celebrated the International Year of Astronomy and the historic observations made by Galileo Galilei. During the videoconference, the classes explore the Moon or Venus by making real-time telescopic observations. Students also receive an introduction to the Observatory, an opportunity to perform an activity relating to Galileo's observations, and an interview with an astronomer. A website provides teachers pre-and post-video conference materials, instructions, and a certificate of completion that can be customized for each student. The website also lists content alignment with state science education standards.

  20. Astronomy 101 in Washington State High Schools (United States)

    Lutz, Julie H.; Garner, S.; Stetter, T.; McKeever, J.; Santo Pietro, V.


    The University of Washington in the High School (UWHS) program enables high schools to offer the 5 quarter credits Astronomy 101 (Astr 101) course for college credits. The credits are transferable to most colleges and universities. The course provides an alternative to advance placement courses and programs such as Washington's Running Start whereby high school students take courses at community colleges. Astr 101 focuses on stars, galaxies and the universe, as well as background topics such as gravitation, electromagnetic radiation and telescopes. The course satisfies the UW "natural world” and "quantitative/symbolic reasoning” distribution requirements. Students must pay a fee to enroll, but the credits cost less than half what they would cost for the course if taken on one of the UW campuses. The course can be offered as either one semester or full-year at the high school. Teachers who offer Astr 101 must be approved in advance by the UW Astronomy Department, and their syllabi and course materials approved also. Teachers receive orientation, professional development opportunities, classroom visits and support (special web site, answering questions, making arrangements for campus visits, planetarium visits) from astronomy department course coordinator. The UWHS Astr 101 program has produced positive outcomes for the astronomy department, the participating teachers and the students who complete the course. In this poster we will discuss our 5 years of experience with offering Astr 101, including benefits to the students, teachers, high schools, university and department, student outcomes, course assessments and resources for offering the course.

  1. Astronomy Education and Teacher Training in Turkey (United States)

    Kirbiyik, Halil

    In this talk, education in astronomy and space sciences in schools in Turkey as well as activities to create awareness in these subjects will be discussed. A search done among youngsters(ages from 15 to 24) for measuring the scientific literacy showed that most attractive subjects to the Turkish younsters are “internet” and “astronomy”. This result led authorities to take necessary measures to fill the gap especially in teaching material such as books. Another attempt along this is to increase astronomy subjects in the school curricula. Besides TUBITAK National Observatory, universities and Turkish Astronomical Society are giving every efort to create public awareness of space activities and space sciences. As for the teacher training in astronomy and space sciences, much has been done but no success has come yet. Astronomy subjects, in schools, are generally taught not by astronomers but some other substitutes from other branches, such as physics and mathematics. Thus the Ministry of Education prefers training teachers in service. Nevertheless it must be stated that astronomers are pushing forward to formally have the right to train astronomers to become teachers to be hired by the Ministry of Education in schools.

  2. Invite an Alien to Astronomy Night (United States)

    Governor, Donna; Richwine, Pebble


    Dozens of inflatable aliens recently "descended" upon the authors' middle school to kick-off their first school-wide Astronomy night. With an estimated attendance of over 500, their eighth-grade students hosted over a dozen activity-rich sessions designed to entertain and educate students and their families about the wonders of the solar system…

  3. 3D Virtual Reality for Teaching Astronomy (United States)

    Speck, Angela; Ruzhitskaya, L.; Laffey, J.; Ding, N.


    We are developing 3D virtual learning environments (VLEs) as learning materials for an undergraduate astronomy course, in which will utilize advances both in technologies available and in our understanding of the social nature of learning. These learning materials will be used to test whether such VLEs can indeed augment science learning so that it is more engaging, active, visual and effective. Our project focuses on the challenges and requirements of introductory college astronomy classes. Here we present our virtual world of the Jupiter system and how we plan to implement it to allow students to learn course material - physical laws and concepts in astronomy - while engaging them into exploration of the Jupiter's system, encouraging their imagination, curiosity, and motivation. The VLE can allow students to work individually or collaboratively. The 3D world also provides an opportunity for research in astronomy education to investigate impact of social interaction, gaming features, and use of manipulatives offered by a learning tool on students’ motivation and learning outcomes. Use of this VLE is also a valuable source for exploration of how the learners’ spatial awareness can be enhanced by working in 3D environment. We will present the Jupiter-system environment along with a preliminary study of the efficacy and usability of our Jupiter 3D VLE.

  4. Neutrino masses and ordering via multimessenger astronomy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Langaeble, Kasper; Meroni, Aurora; Sannino, Francesco


    We define the theoretical framework and deduce the conditions under which multi-messenger astronomy can provide useful information about neutrino masses and their ordering. The framework uses time differences between the arrival of neutrinos and the other light messenger, i.e. the graviton, emitted...

  5. What's New in Astronomy for 2012? (United States)

    Wilkinson, John


    There's always something new happening in the field of Astronomy. This includes the immediate environment surrounding Earth, the Solar system and the universe. This article looks at some of the recent research astronomers have been undertaking this year. Each article has reference to a web site so teachers can find out more information or ask…

  6. Virtual Learning Environment for Astronomy Education (United States)

    Hoban, S.; Kumar, S.


    We have developed a virtual learning environment for astronomy education, which we call VTIE (for Virtual Telescopes in Education). While astronomy often inspires "oohs" and "ahhs" with glorious imagery, the VTIE architecture emphasizes the scientific process, eliciting questions about the nature of celestial objects and the physical processes which give rise to the pretty pictures. VTIE aims to bring observational astronomy directly to learners in both formal and informal settings by providing tools for both educators and students. For educators, VTIE provides the capability to design astronomy experiments, an online review tool to comment upon students proposals and papers, and classroom management tools (e.g. messaging service and ability to create a reading list). For students, VTIE provides an interface for developing an observing proposal (details of which are designed by the educators), access to online data services, an online observing log, and a Paper Writing Tool to complete the process by reporting their results. Details of the system and practical examples will be provided.

  7. Tactile Astronomy - a Portuguese case study (United States)

    Canas, L.; Alves, F.; Correia, A.


    Although astronomy plays an important role in the most various outreach initiatives, as well as school science curricula, due to its strong visual component in knowledge acquisition, astronomy subjects are not entirely well addressed and accessed by visually impaired students and/or general public. This stresses the need of more tactile material production, still very scarce in an educational context whether formal or informal. This is a case study activity developed based on different schematic tactile images of several objects present in our solar system. These images in relief, highlight, through touch, several relevant features present in the different astronomical objects studied. The scientific knowledge is apprehended through the use of a tactile key, complemented with additional information. Through proper hands-on activities implementation and careful analysis of the outcome, the adapted images associated with an explanatory key prove to be a valuable resource in tactile astronomy domain. Here we describe the process of implementing such initiative near visually impaired students. The struggles and challenges perceived by all involved and the enrichment experience of engaging astronomy with visually impaired audiences, broadening horizons in an overall experience accessible to all.

  8. Publication Trends in Astronomy: The Lone Author

    CERN Document Server

    Henneken, Edwin A


    In this short communication I highlight how the number of collaborators on papers in the main astronomy journals has evolved over time. We see a trend of moving away from single-author papers. This communication is based on data in the holdings of the SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS). The ADS is funded by NASA Grant NNX09AB39G.

  9. The Astronomy Genealogy Project: A Progress Report (United States)

    Tenn, Joseph S.


    Although it is not yet visible, much progress has been made on the Astronomy Genealogy Project (AstroGen) since it was accepted as a project of the Historical Astronomy Division (HAD) three years ago. AstroGen will list the world's astronomers with information about their highest degrees and advisors. (In academic genealogy, your thesis advisor is your parent.) A small group (the AstroGen Team) has compiled a database of approximately 12,000 individuals who have earned doctorates with theses (dissertations) on topics in astronomy, astrophysics, cosmology, or planetary science. These include nearly all those submitted in Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, and New Zealand, and most of those in the United States (all through 2014 for most universities and all through 1990 for all). We are compiling more information than is maintained by the Mathematics Genealogy Project (MGP). In addition to name, degree, university, year of degree, and thesis advisor(s), all provided by MGP as well, we are including years of birth and death when available, mentors in addition to advisors, and links to the thesis when it is online and to the person's web page or obituary, when we can find it. We are still struggling with some questions, such as the boundaries of inclusion and whether or not to include subfields of astronomy. We believe that AstroGen will be a valuable resource for historians of science as well as a source of entertainment for those who like to look up their academic family trees. A dedicated researcher following links from AstroGen will be able to learn quite a lot about the careers of astronomy graduates of a particular university, country, or era. We are still seeking volunteers to enter the graduates of one or more universities.

  10. Astronomy Courses which Emphasize Communication Skills (United States)

    Dinerstein, H. L.


    The ability to communicate effectively, both in oral and written form, is crucial for success in almost any career path. Furthermore, being able to effectively communicate information requires a high level of conceptual mastery of the material. For these reasons, I have incorporated practice in communication into courses at a variety of levels, ranging from non-science-major undergraduate courses to graduate courses. I briefly describe the content of these courses, particularly the communication-related component. The first, Ast 309N, ``Astronomy Bizarre: Stars and Stellar Evolution," is an elective which follows one semester of general introductory astronomy for non-majors. Instead of homework problems, the students complete a sequence of writing assignments of graduated complexity, beginning with simple tasks such as writing abstracts and critiques of assigned readings, and moving on to writing term papers which require literature research and a short science fiction story incorporating accurate depictions of relativistic effects. In Ast 175/275, a ``Journal Club" course for upper-division astronomy majors, students read articles in the professional literature and give short oral presentations to the rest of the class. To build up their understanding of a topic, we work through the ``paper trail" of key papers on topics with exciting recent developments, such as extrasolar planets, gravitational lenses, or gamma-ray bursts. Finally, in a seminar course for first-semester astronomy graduate students (Ast 185C) that broadly addresses professional development issues, I include a practice AAS oral session, with the students giving 5-minute presentations on a journal paper of their choice. This seminar course also examines career paths and employment trends, the peer review process for papers and proposals, professional norms and ethics, and other topics. Syllabi for these and other courses I teach regularly can be found from my home page (

  11. Multiwavelength Astronomy Modules for High School Students (United States)

    Thomas, Christie; Brazas, J.; Lane, S.; York, D. G.


    The University of Chicago Multiwavelength Astronomy modules are web-based lessons covering the history, science, tools, and impact of astronomy across the wavebands, from gamma ray to infrared. Each waveband includes four lessons addressing one aspect of its development. The lessons are narrated by a historical docent or practicing scientist who contributed to a scientific discovery or instrument design significant to astronomical progress. The process of building each lesson began with an interview conducted with the scientist, or the consultation of a memoir or oral history transcript for historical docents. The source was then excerpted to develop a lesson and supplemented by archival material from the University of Chicago Library and other archives; NASA media; and participant contributed photographs, light curves, and spectra. Practicing educators also participated in the lesson development and evaluation. In July 2013, the University of Chicago sponsored 9 teachers and 15 students to participate in a STEM education program designed to engage participants as co-learners as they used the Multiwavelength Astronomy lessons in conjunction with talks given by the participating scientists. Teachers also practiced implementation of the resources with students and designed authentic research activities that make use of NASA mission data, which were undertaken as mini-research projects by student teams during the course of the program. This poster will introduce the Multiwavelength Astronomy web modules; highlight educator experiences in their use with high school audiences; and analyze the module development process, framing the benefits to and contributions of each of the stakeholders including practicing astronomers in research and space centers, high school science educators, high school students, University libraries and archives, and the NASA Science Mission Directorate. The development of these resources, and the summer professional development workshops were

  12. Strategic Plan for Astronomy in the Netherlands 2011-2020

    CERN Document Server

    Groot, P J; Stark, R


    Strategic Plan for Astronomy in the Netherlands 2011 - 2020, written by the Netherlands Committee for Astronomy (NCA), on behalf of the excellence research school in astronomy NOVA, (combining the university astronomy institutes of the universities of Amsterdam, Groningen, Leiden and Nijmegen), the NWO division of Physical Sciences, the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy ASTRON and the Netherlands Institute for Space Research SRON. The Strategic plan outlines the scientific priorities for Dutch astronomy in the next decade; the instrumentation effort required to address these priorities, and the connection between astronomical instrumentation and technology development and fundamental technological R&D; the financial contours needed to realise the priorities; and the role of Dutch astronomy in education and outreach. The Strategic Plan also includes a retrospective on the achievements since the last Strategic Plan (2000) and a forward look beyond 2020.

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

    CERN Document Server

    Gaither, CC


    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...

  14. Preservice elementary teachers learning of astronomy (United States)

    Fidler, Chuck Gary

    The dissertation presents a new approach for the study of preservice elementary teacher astronomy education. The approach suggests that learning astronomical concepts are facilitated by greater sophistication in scale perception and spatial-aptitude. This dissertation is underscored by the national call for elementary science education reform efforts and suggests certain strategies shown more effective for the development of accurate astronomical comprehension. The present research study describes how preservice elementary teachers conceptualize and communicate ideas about Space. Instead of assuming a universal mental conception of cosmic orientations and relationships, the dissertation claims that the perception of Space related dimensions vary among preservice elementary teachers. Furthermore, the dissertation suggests individual perceptions of the scale sizes and orientations of celestial systems have direct influences on mental models used to organize and communicate astronomical information. The development of inaccurate mental models of the scaled dimensions of Space may perpetuate the teacher-student cycle of misconception and naive-theory generation among children in elementary education settings. The ability to conceptualize the vast cosmos is facilitated by the minds ability to think about vast scales and orientations of celestial objects. The Earth-based perspective of astronomy education compels the learner to think about astronomical principles within imaginary frames of reference and across unfamiliar scaled dimensions. Therefore, mental astronomical model building is underscored by the perception of scale and cosmic spatiality. This study suggests these cognitive skill sets are interconnected and facilitate the learning of accurate astronomy principles; as well as play an important role when designing an astronomy education program for preservice elementary teachers. This research study is comprised of three separate standalone articles designed and

  15. Music Inspired by Astronomy: A Selected Listing for the International Year of Astronomy (United States)

    Fraknoi, A.


    Part of the aim of the International Year of Astronomy is to show the connections between astronomy and other areas of human culture. Such connections are easily found in music, where astronomical ideas have found a wide range of expression. This is not a comprehensive listing, but a sampling of some of the pieces that are available on CD's, and that may be of particular interest to educators and astronomy enthusiasts. To qualify for the list, a piece (or the composer's vision for it) has to include some real science and not just an astronomical term in the title or in a few lyrics. For example, we do not list The Planets, by Gustav Holst, since it treats the astrological view of the planets. And we regret that Philip Glass' opera Galileo is not available on CD and therefore cannot be listed. Nor do we include the thousands of popular songs that use the moon or the stars for an easy rhyme or a quick romantic image. And, while many jazz pieces have astronomy in the title, it is often hard to know just how the piece and the astronomy go together; so we've sadly omitted jazz too. For those with old-fashioned ears, like the author, we note that no warranty is made that all these pieces are easy to listen to, but each takes some key idea from astronomy and makes music out of it. A more comprehensive discussion can be found in my article in Astronomy Education Review:

  16. Community Based Astronomy: Bringing families and communities together (United States)

    Mayo, L. A.


    Astronomy in K-12 formal education is still largely underrepresented as a science. Yet, it is arguably one of the most engaging and entertaining of the physical sciences. Many school systems have been slow to adopt curriculum frameworks that include astronomy. Even when astronomy is required either as a distinct subject or hidden within the catagory of "Earth science", many teachers spend little time on it in their classrooms since they have no formal training in this subject. A community based, informal astronomy education model that encorporates resources from government agencies, industry, local colleges, science centers and planetariums, families, civic groups, schools, and amateur astronomy clubs can provide a solution and be highly effective in creating sustained learning environments in this discipline as well as fostering an atmosphere of general acceptance and promotion of astronomy by whole communities. In addition, the opportunity exists to reinforce the teaching of astronomy in schools through the involvement of these groups in an informal education setting. This paper will discuss a Community Based Astronomy program that has been implemented in Montgomery County, Maryland. The tie-in to formal education through both schools and systemic reform initiatives will be presented. In addition, detailed guidelines for running astronomy clubs in conjunction with family astronomy nights will be provided.

  17. Gravitational Waves and Time Domain Astronomy (United States)

    Centrella, Joan; Nissanke, Samaya; Williams, Roy


    The gravitational wave window onto the universe will open in roughly five years, when Advanced LIGO and Virgo achieve the first detections of high frequency gravitational waves, most likely coming from compact binary mergers. Electromagnetic follow-up of these triggers, using radio, optical, and high energy telescopes, promises exciting opportunities in multi-messenger time domain astronomy. In the decade, space-based observations of low frequency gravitational waves from massive black hole mergers, and their electromagnetic counterparts, will open up further vistas for discovery. This two-part workshop featured brief presentations and stimulating discussions on the challenges and opportunities presented by gravitational wave astronomy. Highlights from the workshop, with the emphasis on strategies for electromagnetic follow-up, are presented in this report.

  18. TeV Gamma Ray Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Cui, Wei


    The field of ground-based gamma ray astronomy has enjoyed rapid growth in recent years. As an increasing number of sources are detected at TeV energies, the field has matured and become a viable branch of modern astronomy. Lying at the uppermost end of the electromagnetic rainbow, TeV photons are always preciously few in number but carry essential information about the particle acceleration and radiative processes involved in extreme astronomical settings. Together with observations at longer wavelengths, TeV gamma-ray observations have drastically improved our view of the universe. In this review, we briefly describe recent progress in the field. We will conclude by providing a personal perspective on the future of the field, in particular, on the significant roles that China could play to advance this young but exciting field.

  19. Astronomy Outreach Adventures in Rural Guatemala (United States)

    Strubbe, L.


    Astronomy can be an inspirational gateway to learning science and analytical reasoning, and to careers in STEM fields-particularly important in developing countries where educational opportunities can be scarce. Following this idea and my interest in learning about other cultures, I decided to spend 6 weeks in late 2011 (between Ph.D. and postdoc) doing astronomy public outreach in Guatemala. I volunteered through a Spanish language school embedded in a poor rural community (typical earning ~ $3/day), working mostly with children. My teaching goals were primarily attitudinal: to encourage people to observe and ask questions about the world around them, and to show them that phenomena have explanations that we can understand.

  20. Dawn of astronomy and global climate change (United States)

    Nakamura, Tsuko


    The author proposes that the birth of astronomy in ancient civilizations, which took place nearly simultaneously (4000 - 5000 years ago) around the Nile, Tigris and Euphrates, Indus, and the Yellow River, was caused by the global climate change (cooling and drying) that started about 5000 years ago after the hypsithermal (high-temperature) period. It is also pointed out that a few names of Twenty-Four Qi's appearing in old Chinese calendars are remnants of the calm climate in the hypsithermal period. It is discussed that numerous meteorological records seen in divination inscriptions on bones and tortoise-shells excavated at the capital of the ancient Yin (Shang) dynasty suggest occurrence of the climatic cooling and drying at that time and this change triggered spawning the early Chinese astronomy.

  1. Astropy: Building Blocks for Astronomy Software (United States)

    Bray, E. M.


    The Astropy Project is a community effort to develop an open source Python package of common data structures and routines for use by other, more specialized astronomy software in order to foster interoperability. The project encompasses the “core” astropy Python package, “affiliated packages” that strive to implement Astropy's coding standards and interoperability with other affiliated packages, and a broader community aimed at implementing Pythonic solutions to astronomy computing problems while minimizing duplication of effort. The project also provides a template for other projects that use Astropy to reuse much of Astropy's development framework without reinventing the wheel. Here we present an overview of the key features of the core package (existing and upcoming), current and planned affiliated packages, and how we manage a large open source project with a diverse community of contributors.

  2. Hertzsprung and Russell: The Minards of Astronomy (United States)

    Broek, J. V. D.; Russo, P.


    This article will explore the history of flow maps, the extent of their use and how astronomy has benefited from this illustrative way of communicating ideas. Flow maps are multidimensional infographics that tell a long story in one single image. In 1812 the French civil engineer Charles Joseph Minard created a flow map that is still dubbed "the mother of all flow maps", summarising Napoleon's Russian campaign (Figure 1). Almost 100 years later, in 1910, Ejnar Hertzsprung and Henry Norris Russell created a multidimensional flow map that arguably surpasses Minard's map in ingenuity -- the Hertzprung-Russell diagram. The Hertzprung-Russell diagram represents a major step towards an understanding of stellar evolution, or "the lives of stars", and is still used in astronomy today.

  3. "Women in Astronomy: an Essay Review" (United States)

    Cox, M.


    Interest in the history of women in astronomy has increased dramatically in the last 30 years. This interest has come from the growing number of professional scientists, historians and feminists researching the lives and work of earlier generations, as well as from amateur astronomers. It is reflected in the vast amount of literature on the subject, both in books and journals, and on the internet. This Essay Review will focus on monographs published in the last 10 years (1996-2006), and will be restricted mainly to pre-20th century women. The scope includes researchers, translators, computers and astronomical assistants as well as observers. Where appropriate, it includes books that discuss the role of women scientists, as well as pure astronomy books. Part 2, to be published later, will consider encyclopaedias and large works of reference .

  4. Optimising Impact in Astronomy for Development Projects (United States)

    Grant, Eli


    Positive outcomes in the fields of science education and international development are notoriously difficult to achieve. Among the challenges facing projects that use astronomy to improve education and socio-economic development is how to optimise project design in order to achieve the greatest possible benefits. Over the past century, medical scientists along with statisticians and economists have progressed an increasingly sophisticated and scientific approach to designing, testing and improving social intervention and public health education strategies. This talk offers a brief review of the history and current state of `intervention science'. A similar framework is then proposed for astronomy outreach and education projects, with applied examples given of how existing evidence can be used to inform project design, predict and estimate cost-effectiveness, minimise the risk of unintended negative consequences and increase the likelihood of target outcomes being achieved.

  5. TeV gamma-ray astronomy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wei Cui


    The field of ground-based gamma-ray astronomy has enjoyed rapid growth in recent years. As an increasing number of sources are detected at TeV energies, the field has matured and become a viable branch of modern astronomy. Lying at the uppermost end of the electromagnetic rainbow, TeV photons are always preciously few in number but carry essential information about the particle acceleration and radiative processes involved in extreme astronomical settings. Together with observations at longer wavelengths, TeV gamma-ray observations have drastically improved our view of the universe. In this re-view, we briefly describe recent progress in the field. We will conclude by providing a personal perspective on the future of the field, in particular, on the significant roles that China could play in advancing this young but exciting field.

  6. Astropy: A Community Python Package for Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Robitaille, Thomas P; Greenfield, Perry; Droettboom, Michael; Bray, Erik; Aldcroft, Tom; Davis, Matt; Ginsburg, Adam; Price-Whelan, Adrian M; Kerzendorf, Wolfgang E; Conley, Alexander; Crighton, Neil; Barbary, Kyle; Muna, Demitri; Ferguson, Henry; Grollier, Frédéric; Parikh, Madhura M; Nair, Prasanth H; Günther, Hans M; Deil, Christoph; Woillez, Julien; Conseil, Simon; Kramer, Roban; Turner, James E H; Singer, Leo; Fox, Ryan; Weaver, Benjamin A; Zabalza, Victor; Edwards, Zachary I; Bostroem, K Azalee; Burke, D J; Casey, Andrew R; Crawford, Steven M; Dencheva, Nadia; Ely, Justin; Jenness, Tim; Labrie, Kathleen; Lim, Pey Lian; Pierfederici, Francesco; Pontzen, Andrew; Ptak, Andy; Refsdal, Brian; Servillat, Mathieu; Streicher, Ole


    We present the first public version (v0.2) of the open-source and community-developed Python package, Astropy. This package provides core astronomy-related functionality to the community, including support for domain-specific file formats such as Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) files, Virtual Observatory (VO) tables, and common ASCII table formats, unit and physical quantity conversions, physical constants specific to astronomy, celestial coordinate and time transformations, world coordinate system (WCS) support, generalized containers for representing gridded as well as tabular data, and a framework for cosmological transformations and conversions. Significant functionality is under active development, such as a model fitting framework, VO client and server tools, and aperture and point spread function (PSF) photometry tools. The core development team is actively making additions and enhancements to the current code base, and we encourage anyone interested to participate in the development of future A...

  7. Gravitational wave astronomy: the current status

    CERN Document Server

    Blair, David; Zhao, Chunnong; Wen, Linqing; Chu, Qi; Fang, Qi; Cai, RongGen; Gao, JiangRui; Lin, XueChun; Liu, Dong; Wu, Ling-An; Zhu, ZongHong; Reitze, David H; Arai, Koji; Zhang, Fan; Flaminio, Raffaele; Zhu, Xingjiang; Hobbs, George; Manchester, Richard N; Shannon, Ryan M; Baccigalupi, Carlo; Xu, Peng; Bian, Xing; Cao, Zhoujian; Chang, ZiJing; Dong, Peng; Gong, XueFei; Huang, ShuangLin; Ju, Peng; Luo, ZiRen; Qiang, Li'E; Tang, WenLin; Wan, XiaoYun; Wang, Yue; Xu, ShengNian; Zhang, YunLong; Zhang, HaiPeng; Lau, Yun-Kau; Ni, Wei-Tou


    In the centenary year of Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, this paper reviews the current status of gravitational wave astronomy across a spectrum which stretches from attohertz to kilohertz frequencies. Sect. 1 of this paper reviews the historical development of gravitational wave astronomy from Einstein's first prediction to our current understanding the spectrum. It is shown that detection of signals in the audio frequency spectrum can be expected very soon, and that a north-south pair of next generation detectors would provide large scientific benefits. Sect. 2 reviews the theory of gravitational waves and the principles of detection using laser interferometry. The state of the art Advanced LIGO detectors are then described. These detectors have a high chance of detecting the first events in the near future. Sect. 3 reviews the KAGRA detector currently under development in Japan, which will be the first laser interferometer detector to use cryogenic test masses. Sect. 4 of this paper reviews gravit...

  8. Data Mining and Machine Learning in Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Ball, Nicholas M


    We review the current state of data mining and machine learning in Astronomy. 'Data Mining' can have a somewhat mixed connotation from the point of view of a researcher in this field. On the one hand, it is a powerful approach, holding the potential to fully exploit the exponentially increasing amount of available data, which promises almost limitless scientific advances. On the other, it can be the application of black-box computing algorithms that at best give little physical insight, and at worst provide questionable results. Here, we give an overview of the entire data mining process, from data collection through the interpretation of results. We cover common machine learning algorithms, such as artificial neural networks and support vector machines; applications from a broad range of Astronomy, with an emphasis on those where data mining resulted in improved physical insights, and important current and future directions, including the construction of full probability density functions, parallel algorithm...

  9. The Stagnation of Contemporary Stellar Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Škoda, Petr


    The stellar astronomy has always been considered the fundamental source of knowledge about the basic building blocks of the universe - the stars. It has proved correctness of many physical theories - like e.g. the idea of nuclear fusion in stellar cores, the exchange of mass in interacting binaries or models of stellar evolution towards white dwarfs or neutron stars. Despite its well acknowledged importance it seems to be loosing its interestingness for students, for telescope allocation committees at large observatories, as well as for granting agencies. In the domain of big telescopes it has been gradually overtaken by the extra-galactic research and cosmology, surviving however at smaller observatories and among most advanced amateur astronomers. We try to analyse the main obstacles lowering the efficiency of research in contemporary stellar astronomy. We will shortly tackle several problems induced by paradigmatic changes in handling the extraordinary amount of data provided by current instruments as well...

  10. A Great Moment for Astronomy (United States)


    VLT First Light Successfully Achieved The European Southern Observatory announces that First Light has been achieved with the first VLT 8.2-m Unit Telescope at the Paranal Observatory. Scientifically useful images have been obtained as scheduled, on May 25 - 26, 1998. A first analysis of these images convincingly demonstrates the exceptional potential of the ESO Very Large Telescope. Just one month after the installation and provisional adjustment of the optics, the performance of this giant telescope meets or surpasses the design goals, in particular as concerns the achievable image quality. Exposures lasting up to 10 minutes confirm that the tracking, crucial for following the diurnal rotation of the sky, is very accurate and stable. It appears that the concept developed by ESO for the construction of the VLT, namely an actively controlled, single thin mirror, yields a very superior performance. In fact, the angular resolution achieved even at this early stage is unequalled by any large ground-based telescope . The combination of large area and fine angular resolution will ultimately result in a sensitivity for point sources (e.g. stars), which is superior to any yet achieved by existing telescopes on Earth. The present series of images demonstrate these qualities and include some impressive first views with Europe's new giant telescope. After further optimization of the optical, mechanical and electronic systems, and with increasing operational streamlining, this telescope will be able to deliver unique astronomical data of the highest quality. The commissioning and science verification phases of the complex facility including instruments will last until April 1, 1999, at which time the first visiting astronomers will be received. The full significance of this achievement for astronomy will take time to assess. For Europe, this is a triumph of the collaboration between nations, institutions and industries. For the first time in almost a century, European

  11. Spectrometers and Polyphase Filterbanks in Radio Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Price, Danny C


    This review gives an introduction to spectrometers and discusses their use within radio astronomy. While a variety of technologies are introduced, particular emphasis is given to digital systems. Three different types of digital spectrometers are discussed: autocorrelation spectrometers, Fourier transform spectrometers, and polyphase filterbank spectrometers. Given their growing ubiquity and significant advantages, polyphase filterbanks are detailed at length. The relative advantages and disadvantages of different spectrometer technologies are compared and contrasted, and implementation considerations are presented.

  12. New vistas in planetary radio astronomy (United States)

    Alexander, J. K., Jr.


    Recent progress in planetary radio astronomy is reviewed, where the most significant advances have come from spacecraft observations. The low-frequency radio spectra of the earth, Jupiter, and Saturn are compared, and the striking similarity in shapes is noted. New radio data are examined which provide a way to compare the magnetic field strengths of the planets. More detailed information on the radio structures of Jupiter and Saturn, and possibly on Uranus, is expected from the 1977 Mariner Jupiter-Saturn mission.

  13. Solar system radio astronomy at low frequencies (United States)

    Desch, M. D.


    The planetary radio-astronomy observations obtained with the two Voyager spacecraft since their launch in 1977 are briefly characterized and illustrated with graphs, diagrams, and sample spectra. Topics addressed include the spacecraft designs and trajectories, the wavelength coverage of the radio instruments, the Io-controlled LF emission of Jupiter, the solar-wind effect on the Saturn kilometric radiation, the Saturn electrostatic discharges, and the use of the clocklike feature of the Uranus emission to measure the planet's rotation period.

  14. Einführung in die Astronomie. (United States)

    Winnenburg, W.

    Contents: 1. Forschungbereich Astronomie. 2. Astronomische Beobachtungstechnik. 3. Bewegungen am Sternenhimmel. 4. Dynamik im Planetensystem. 5. Aufbau des Planetensystems. 6. Die Sonne. 7. Meßbare Eigenschaften der Sterne. 8. Aufbau von Sternen. 9. Veränderliche Sterne und Sonderfälle. 10. Der interstellare Raum. 11. Ko-Evolution von Sternen und Materie. 12. Astronomische Entfernungsbestimmung. 13. Milchstraßensystem. 14. Extragalaktische Systeme. 15. Das Weltall. 16. Grenzfragen.

  15. Lenses for Seeing Astronomy in Hawaii (United States)

    Veincent, Lehua M.


    It is well know that there has been a history of societal and cultural conflict surrounding the development of Western astronomy science in Hawai'i. To the outside observer, it may seem that the conflict is a residual effect from the manner in which the observatories were built, or that Native Hawaiians simply do not want outsiders encroaching on sacred mountains. While there may be some in the Islands who strongly argue against the observatories for these reasons, there are also individuals that support the idea of such needed research in this progressive time of technology. More importantly, these explanations are overly simplistic. What cultural experts, practitioners and liaisons now recognize is that much of the unexpected difficulties encountered in developing the Hawaiian workforce, science, technologies and sympathies to support the observatories, lie in a failure to understand the Native Hawaiian ontology related to themselves and their place in the world. One very simple way to characterize a Native Hawaiian worldview is that astronomy is not an isolated subject of study; rather, astronomy serves as a deeply interconnected human interface between the ocean, the land, language, genealogy, and a sense of place. In this paper Ke Kumu Lehua Veincent will describe the Hawaiian worldview, and shed light on the problem areas where this worldview, and the strictly academic view of astronomy come into conflict. Cultural intelligence and ancestral knowledge is also brought forth that suggests a much needed pathway in which these two viewpoints can engage and coexist with pono,or with balance without compromising what was, what is, and what is yet to come striving for continuous improvement, in science and for the people of Hawai'i.

  16. Applications of Integrated Photonic Spectrographs in astronomy.


    Harris, R. J.; Allington-Smith, J. R.


    One of the problems of producing instruments for extremely large telescopes (ELTs) is that their size (and hence cost) scales rapidly with telescope aperture. To try to break this relation alternative new technologies have been proposed, such as the use of the Integrated Photonic Spectrograph (IPS). Due to their diffraction-limited nature, the IPS is claimed to defeat the harsh scaling law applying to conventional instruments. In contrast to photonic applications, devices for astronomy are no...

  17. Astronomy Education: Becoming a Hybrid Researcher

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Brogt


    Full Text Available This article describes the experiences of a former astronomer who is making the transition to astronomy education research as an international graduate student in the United States. The article describes the author’s encounters with education research, its methodologies, and his changing research interests as he progresses through the graduate program. It also describes his experiences with the busy life of a graduate student in American academia and his experiences as an international student.

  18. Big Computing in Astronomy: Perspectives and Challenges (United States)

    Pankratius, Victor


    Hardware progress in recent years has led to astronomical instruments gathering large volumes of data. In radio astronomy for instance, the current generation of antenna arrays produces data at Tbits per second, and forthcoming instruments will expand these rates much further. As instruments are increasingly becoming software-based, astronomers will get more exposed to computer science. This talk therefore outlines key challenges that arise at the intersection of computer science and astronomy and presents perspectives on how both communities can collaborate to overcome these challenges.Major problems are emerging due to increases in data rates that are much larger than in storage and transmission capacity, as well as humans being cognitively overwhelmed when attempting to opportunistically scan through Big Data. As a consequence, the generation of scientific insight will become more dependent on automation and algorithmic instrument control. Intelligent data reduction will have to be considered across the entire acquisition pipeline. In this context, the presentation will outline the enabling role of machine learning and parallel computing.BioVictor Pankratius is a computer scientist who joined MIT Haystack Observatory following his passion for astronomy. He is currently leading efforts to advance astronomy through cutting-edge computer science and parallel computing. Victor is also involved in projects such as ALMA Phasing to enhance the ALMA Observatory with Very-Long Baseline Interferometry capabilities, the Event Horizon Telescope, as well as in the Radio Array of Portable Interferometric Detectors (RAPID) to create an analysis environment using parallel computing in the cloud. He has an extensive track record of research in parallel multicore systems and software engineering, with contributions to auto-tuning, debugging, and empirical experiments studying programmers. Victor has worked with major industry partners such as Intel, Sun Labs, and Oracle. He holds

  19. Astronomy at Torquay Boys' Grammar School (United States)

    Reid, David; Lintott, Chris


    TBGS Observatory is owned and run by Torquay Boys' Grammar School in South Devon. The school itself encompasses a wide curriculum from sports to academic studies, ranging from the arts to humanities and science. Due to a high interest from pupils and staff the school has a special focus upon Astronomy. Resulting from this TBGS owns one of the largest, best equipped school observatories in the UK. It is now a minor centre for research and studies at GCSE and higher levels.

  20. Astronomy in post-apartheid South Africa (United States)

    Whitelock, Patricia Ann


    Astronomy was one of the sciences earmarked for major support by South Africa's first democratically elected government in 1994. This was a very remarkable decision for a country with serious challenges in poverty, health and unemployment, but shows something of the long term vision of the new government. In this paper I give one astronomer's perception of the reasons behind the decision and some of its consequences.

  1. Pioneers in Astronomy and Space Exploration

    CERN Document Server


    The pioneers of astronomy and space exploration have advanced humankind's understanding of the universe. These individuals include earthbound theorists such as Aristotle, Ptolemy, and Galileo, as well as those who put their lives on the line travelling into the great unknown. Readers chronicle the lives of individuals positioned at the vanguard of astronomical discovery, laying the groundwork for space exploration past, present, and yet to come.

  2. Freshman Seminars: Interdisciplinary Engagements in Astronomy (United States)

    Hemenway, M. K.


    The Freshman Seminar program at the University of Texas is designed to allow groups of fifteen students an engaging introduction to the University. The seminars introduce students to the resources of the university and allow them to identify interesting subjects for further research or future careers. An emphasis on oral and written communication by the students provides these first-year students a transition to college-level writing and thinking. Seminar activities include field trips to an art museum, a research library, and the Humanities Research Center rare book collection. This paper will report on two seminars, each fifteen weeks in length. In "The Galileo Scandal" students examine Galileo's struggle with the church (including a mock trial). They perform activities that connect his use of the telescope and observations to astronomical concepts. In "Astronomy and the Humanities" students analyze various forms of human expression that have astronomical connections (art, drama, literature, music, poetry, and science fiction); they perform hands-on activities to reinforce the related astronomy concepts. Evaluation of the seminars indicates student engagement and improvement in communication skills. Many of the activities could be used independently to engage students enrolled in standard introductory astronomy classes.

  3. Introducing the AAS Astronomy Ambassadors Program (United States)

    Gurton, S.; Fienberg, R. T.; Fraknoi, A.; Prather, E. E.


    Newly established by the American Astronomical Society (AAS), the Astronomy Ambassadors program is designed to support early-career AAS members with training in resources and techniques for effective outreach to students and/or the public. A pilot Astronomy Ambassadors workshop will be held at the January 2013 AAS meeting. Workshop participants will learn to communicate effectively with public and school audiences; find outreach opportunities and establish ongoing partnerships with local schools, science centers, museums, parks, and/or community centers; reach audiences with personal stories, hands-on activities, and jargon-free language; identify strategies and techniques to improve their presentation skills; gain access to a menu of outreach resources that work in a variety of settings; and become part of an active community of astronomers who do outreach. Applications are welcome from advanced undergraduates (those doing research and committed to continuing in astronomy), graduate students, and postdocs and new faculty in their first two years after receipt of the PhD. We especially encourage applications from members of groups that are presently underrepresented in science.

  4. The European Association for Astronomy Education (United States)

    Reichen, M.


    The still very young EAAE (officially founded in November 1995) is an association grouping astronomy minded "educators" (teachers, professional and amateur astronomers, etc.) whose main goal is the development of the place and role of astronomy teaching at various educational levels. An executive council of nine persons is in charge of the large-scale cohesion of the association, while two standing committees (financial support, communication network) and seven working groups (astronomical concepts, didactic materials, training of teachers, student projects, planetarium links, research on teaching materials, and public education) form the structure through which each member can contribute to the association's actions. Each one of these groups is "multi-national" (members come from over twenty countries in Europe and elsewhere), and thus the adopted structure favors the emergence of an international network of teachers, one of the EAAE's primary concerns. Different projects have been achieved or are on the way of achievement (such as the AOL "astronomy on line," the set up of a summer school for teachers, simultaneous observations of solar and lunar eclipses by students all over Europe, development and testing of didactic material, etc.) partially showing the great educational potential of the EAAE.

  5. Impacting Society through Astronomy Undergraduate Courses (United States)

    Schleigh, Sharon


    A high percentage of non-science majors enroll in undergraduate, introductory astronomy courses across the country. The perception of the astronomy course as being easier than the ``hard sciences'' and the idea that the course will focus on ``pretty pictures'', influences the interests of the non-science majors. Often the students that enroll in these courses will not take other science courses, resulting in the only opportunity to teach college students about basic scientific concepts that impact their lives. Vast misconceptions about the nature of science, the role of science and scientists in society, and social issues embedded in scientific information, impact the decisions that individuals make about every day events. In turn, these decisions influence the policies that construct our society. This talk will provide an overview of the common misconceptions and discuss how they impact our society as a whole. The research presented provides evidence of the impact that introductory college astronomy courses have on changing these everyday misconceptions and influencing non-science majors' ideas about science in society. The research suggests that introductory courses designed for non-science majors are extremely important in impacting our society, and begs for a stronger understanding and implementation of best practices for teaching and learning in the college classroom environment.

  6. Optics Developments for X-Ray Astronomy (United States)

    Ramsey, Brian


    X-ray optics has revolutionized x-ray astronomy. The degree of background suppression that these afford, have led to a tremendous increase in sensitivity. The current Chandra observatory has the same collecting area (approx. 10(exp 3)sq cm) as the non-imaging UHURU observatory, the first x-ray observatory which launched in 1970, but has 5 orders of magnitude more sensitivity due to its focusing optics. In addition, its 0.5 arcsec angular resolution has revealed a wealth of structure in many cosmic x-ray sources. The Chandra observatory achieved its resolution by using relatively thick pieces of Zerodur glass, which were meticulously figured and polished to form the four-shell nested array. The resulting optical assembly weighed around 1600 kg, and cost approximately $0.5B. The challenge for future x-ray astronomy missions is to greatly increase the collecting area (by one or more orders of magnitude) while maintaining high angular resolution, and all within realistic mass and budget constraints. A review of the current status of US optics for x-ray astronomy will be provided along with the challenges for future developments.

  7. High energy neutrino astronomy and its telescopes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doing astronomy with photons of energies in excess of a GeV has turned out to be extremely challenging. Efforts are underway to develop instruments that may push astronomy to wavelengths smaller than 10-14 cm by mapping the sky using high energy neutrinos instead. Neutrino astronomy, born with the identification of thermonuclear fusion in the sun and the particle processes controlling the fate of a nearby supernova, will reach outside the galaxy and make measurements relevant to cosmology. The field is immersed in technology in the domains of particle physics to which many of its research goals are intellectually connected. To mind come the search for neutrino mass, cold dark matter (supersymmetric particles?) and the monopoles of the Standard Model. While a variety of collaborations are pioneering complementary methods by building telescopes with effective area in excess of 0.01 km2, we show here that the natural scale of a high energy neutrino telescope is 1 km2. With several thousand optical modules and a price tag unlikely to exceed 100 million dollars, the scope of a kilometer-scale instrument is similar to that of experiments presently being commissioned such as the SNO neutrino observatory in Canada and the Superkamiokande experiment in Japan

  8. A Grand Vision for European Astronomy (United States)


    Today, and for the first time, astronomers share their global Science Vision for European Astronomy in the next two decades. This two-year long effort by the ASTRONET network of funding agencies, sponsored by the European Commission and coordinated by INSU-CNRS, underscores Europe's ascension to world leadership in astronomy and its will to maintain that position. It will be followed in just over a year by a prioritised roadmap for the observational facilities needed to implement the Vision. Implementation of these plans will ensure that Europe fully contributes to Mankind's ever deeper understanding of the wonders of our Universe. astronet logo "This is a great opportunity to help create a vibrant long-term future for astronomy and science" says Tim de Zeeuw (Leiden Observatory, The Netherlands) who led this community-wide effort. The ASTRONET Science Vision provides a comprehensive overview of the most important scientific questions that European astronomy should address in the next twenty years. The four key questions are the extremes of the Universe, from the nature of the dark matter and dark energy that comprise over 95% of the Universe to the physics of extreme objects such as black holes, neutron stars, and gamma-ray bursts; the formation of galaxies from the first seeds to our Milky Way; the formation of stars and planets and the origin of life; and the crucial question of how do we (and our Solar System) fit in the global picture. These themes reach well beyond the realm of traditional astronomy into the frontiers of physics and biology. The Vision identifies the major new facilities that will be needed to achieve these goals, but also stresses the need for parallel developments in theory and numerical simulations, high-performance computing resources, efficient astronomical data archiving and the European Virtual Observatory, as well as in laboratory astrophysics. "This report is a key input for the even more challenging task of developing a prioritised

  9. Astronomy and the limits of vision (United States)

    Schaefer, Bradley E.


    Celestial visibility is the study of the limits of observability of objects in the sky, with application to deducing the truth about historical events or to the derivation of astronomical information of modern utility. This study is based on what is seen by ordinary humans, either in their everyday lives or at times of historical events. The results of such studies have more relevance to non-scientists than does any other area of astronomy. Celestial visibility is a young discipline in the sense that the number of interesting applications with simple solutions outnumber the solved problems; it is a broad interdisciplinary field that involves work with astronomy, meteorology, optics, physics, physiology, history, and archeology. Each of these disciplines contribute specialized mathematical formulations which quantify the many processes that affect light as it leaves a source, traverses the atmosphere, and is detected by the human eye. These formulas can then be combined as appropriate to create mathematical models for the visibility of the source under the conditions of interest. These model results can then be applied a wide variety of problems arising in history, astronomy, archeology, meteorological optics, and archeoastronomy. This review also presents a dozen suggestions for observing projects, many of which can be directly taken for individual study, for classroom projects, or for professional research.

  10. Use of astronomy filters in fluorescence microscopy. (United States)

    Piper, Jörg


    Monochrome astronomy filters are well suited for use as excitation or suppression filters in fluorescence microscopy. Because of their particular optical design, such filters can be combined with standard halogen light sources for excitation in many fluorescent probes. In this "low energy excitation," photobleaching (fading) or other irritations of native specimens are avoided. Photomicrographs can be taken from living motile fluorescent specimens also with a flash so that fluorescence images can be created free from indistinctness caused by movement. Special filter cubes or dichroic mirrors are not needed for our method. By use of suitable astronomy filters, fluorescence microscopy can be carried out with standard laboratory microscopes equipped with condensers for bright-field (BF) and dark-field (DF) illumination in transmitted light. In BF excitation, the background brightness can be modulated in tiny steps up to dark or black. Moreover, standard industry microscopes fitted with a vertical illuminator for examinations of opaque probes in DF or BF illumination based on incident light (wafer inspections, for instance) can also be used for excitation in epi-illumination when adequate astronomy filters are inserted as excitatory and suppression filters in the illuminating and imaging light path. In all variants, transmission bands can be modulated by transmission shift.

  11. Visuospatial astronomy education in immersive digital planetariums (United States)

    Yu, K. C.; Sahami, K.


    Even simple concepts in astronomy are notoriously difficult for the general public to understand. Many ideas involve three-dimensional (3D) spatial relationships among astronomical objects. However much of the traditional teaching materials used in astronomy education are two-dimensional (2D) in nature, while studies show that visualising mental rotations and perspective changes can be difficult for many. The simplifications that occur when explaining one phenomenon may lead to new misconceptions in other concepts. Properly constructed 3D simulations can provide students with the multiple perspectives necessary for understanding. As a venue for virtual astronomical environments, the new class of digital video planetariums that are appearing in museums and science centres have the potential to bridge the comprehension gap in astronomy learning. We describe a research project which aims to evaluate the effectiveness of visualisations in both immersive and non-immersive settings, by using freshmen undergraduate students from a four-year college. The retention of students over the course of a semester for this study means that student misconceptions can be tracked and recorded weekly via curriculum tests.

  12. Worldwide site comparison for submillimetre astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Tremblin, P; Minier, V; Durand, G Al; Urban, J


    The most important limitation for ground-based submillimetre (submm) astronomy is the broad-band absorption of the total water vapour in the atmosphere above an observation site, often expressed as the Precipitable Water Vapour (PWV). A long-term statistic on the PWV is thus mandatory to characterize the quality of an existing or potential site for observational submm-astronomy. In this study we present a three-year statistic (2008-2010) of the PWV for ground-based telescope sites all around the world and for stratospheric altitudes relevant for SOFIA (Stratospheric Observatory for Far-infrared astronomy). The submm-transmission is calculated for typical PWVs using an atmospheric model. We present the absolute PWV values for each site sorted by year and time percentage. The PWV corresponding to the first decile (10%) and the quartiles (25%, 50%, 75%) are calculated and transmission curves between 150 {\\mu}m and 3 mm for these values are shown. The Antarctic and South-American sites present very good condition...

  13. Crimson Tide: The Harvard Books on Astronomy (United States)

    Lindner, R. P.


    The Harvard Books on Astronomy, a series of crimson clad, fully illustrated volumes, cornered, for more than a generation, the market of readers interested in astronomy. A large number of astronomers owe their first serious initiation to the literature of astronomy to these books. Their style, presentation, design, and tone marked a clear departure from the inherited traditions in the field. Each summed up a field, awarded points for merit, and staked out paths for future study. No doubt each of the more mature readers of this abstract has his or her favorite volume, and even his or her own favorite edition of a particular volume. How the volumes evolved and what happened to the series with Harlow Shapley's retirement are not only questions in the history of the book but also form a commentary on the standards of scientific writing for the educated public. For this the major evidence comes from the volumes by Shapley himself, Leo Goldberg and Lawrence Aller, and the Boks. This paper discusses the origins of the series, the purpose of the works, the varying successes of the volumes, and the impact they had on the future astronomical community. In part, this is a contribution to the impact of Harlow Shapley upon the wider field and the role of Harvard in the American astronomical community. It is also a meditation upon the ways of recruitment into the field and forming ways of looking at research problems.

  14. Babylonian and Indian Astronomy Early Connections

    CERN Document Server

    Kak, S


    Did the Indian and Babylonian astronomy evolve in isolation, was there mutual influence, or was one dependent on the other? Scholars have debated these questions for more than two centuries, and opinion has swung one way or the other with time. The similarities between the two systems that have been investigated are: the use of 30 divisions of the lunar month; the 360 divisions of the civil year; the length of the year; and the solar zodiac. Some have wondered if the Babylonian planetary tables might have played a role in the theories of the siddhantas. I shall in this essay go over the essentials of the early Indian and Babylonian astronomy and summarize the latest views on the relationship between them. I shall show that the key ideas found in the Babylonian astronomy of 700 BC are already present in the Vedic texts, which even by the most conservative reckoning are centuries older than this period. I shall also show that the solar zodiac (rashis) was used in Vedic India and I shall present a plausible deri...

  15. Unproceedings of the Fourth .Astronomy Conference (.Astronomy 4), Heidelberg, Germany, July 9-11 2012

    CERN Document Server

    Simpson, Robert J; Bauer, Amanda; Berriman, Bruce; Gomez, Edward; Kendrew, Sarah; Kitching, Thomas; Muench, August; Muna, Demitri; Robitaille, Thomas; Schwamb, Megan E; Simmons, Brooke


    The goal of the .Astronomy conference series is to bring together astronomers, educators, developers and others interested in using the Internet as a medium for astronomy. Attendance at the event is limited to approximately 50 participants, and days are split into mornings of scheduled talks, followed by 'unconference' afternoons, where sessions are defined by participants during the course of the event. Participants in unconference sessions are discouraged from formal presentations, with discussion, workshop-style formats or informal practical tutorials encouraged. The conference also designates one day as a 'hack day', in which attendees collaborate in groups on day-long projects for presentation the following morning. These hacks are often a way of concentrating effort, learning new skills, and exploring ideas in a practical fashion. The emphasis on informal, focused interaction makes recording proceedings more difficult than for a normal meeting. While the first .Astronomy conference is preserved formally...

  16. A jump-start for astronomy education in Taiwan (United States)

    Chen, Wen-Ping

    Spurred by the leaping developments of research activities (SMA, TAOS, AMIBA), Taiwan is catching up its education in astronomy in virtually all aspects. The first astronomy research institute was established by the Academia Sinica about 10 years ago, which catalyzed within 2 years the first graduate school of astronomy, as well as an elaborative astronomy museum. Since then the astronomy education at all levels, from colleges to primary schools, has been booming. More than a dozen universities are offering astronomy courses, and two more graduate schools will soon be instituted. Textbooks get written, and books on popular sciences, either translated or composed by local authors, have mushroomed on the market. I will outline these ongoing activities along with plans in the horizon.

  17. Astronomy education and scientific schools in Ukraine (United States)

    Yatskiv, Yaroslav S.; Vavilova, Iryna B.


    We describe briefly the current state of astronomical education in Ukraine, namely the secondary, higher, and post-graduating education systems. A special attention is paid to so called ``scientific schools'', non-formal groups of scientists formed by recognised astronomers, which have played and continue to play an important rôle in development of the astronomy education system. Among the founders of scientific schools were the well-known professors Alexander Ya. Orlov (Odessa University), Nikolai P. Barabashov (Kharkiv University), Sergei K. Vsekhsvyatsky (Kyiv University), Semen Ya. Braude (Kharkiv Polytechnical Institute), and Vladimir P. Tsesevich (Odessa University). We also give a general review on the history of astronomy education during the 16th-18th centuries. In 2000 astronomy was reinstated into the current 12-year secondary education curriculum of Ukraine. At present, some elements of astronomical knowledge are included in the lessons of ``Natural Sciences'' for pupils in the 5th - 10th grades. Astronomy is included as a basic course both in general (non-specialised) schools (17 academic hours in the last 11th or 12th grade) and in lyceums of the natural sciences (34 academic hours in the 12th grade). It is included also as an optional course in the educational program of gymnasiums in humanities. Every year about 75 young persons enter the Ukrainian universities to become astronomers. Results of our monitoring of the efficiency of astronomical higher educational system indicate that about 80% of the entered university students finish their education in 5 years; 50% of those who finished the cursus were working in astronomy. Since 1992 more then 100 astronomers defend Theses of Cand. Sci. (similar to Ph.D) and about 40 astronomers defend Theses of Dr. Sci. (topmost scientific degree, similar to Dr. Hab.). One of our present-day problems is a brain drain of young scientists. About 50% of those who obtained Cand. Sci. degree work outside Ukraine. At

  18. Peer-review Platform for Astronomy Education Activities


    Russo, Pedro; Gomez, Edward; Heenatigala, Thilina; Strubbe, Linda


    Hundreds of thousands of astronomy education activities exist, but their discoverability and quality is highly variable. The web platform for astronomy education activities, astroEDU, presented in this paper tries to solve these issues. Using the familiar peer-review workflow of scientific publications, astroEDU is improving standards of quality, visibility and accessibility, while providing credibility to these astronomy education activities. astroEDU targets activity guides, tutorials and o...

  19. AAS Nova and Astrobites: Making current astronomy research accessible (United States)

    Kohler, Susanna; Astrobites Team


    AAS Nova and Astrobites are two resources available for astronomers, astronomy students, and astronomy enthusiasts to keep up with some of the most recent research published across the field of astronomy. Both supported by the AAS, these two daily astrophysical literature blogs provide accessible summaries of recent publications on the arXiv and in AAS journals. We present the goals, content, and readership of AAS Nova and Astrobites, and discuss how they might be used as tools in the undergraduate classroom.

  20. Shaping Attitudes Toward Science in an Introductory Astronomy Class


    Wittman, D.


    At many universities, astronomy is a popular way for non-science majors to fulfill a general education requirement. Because general-education astronomy may be the only college-level science course taken by these students, it is the last chance to shape the science attitudes of these future journalists, teachers, politicians, and voters. I report on an attempt to measure and induce changes in science attitudes in my general-education astronomy course. I describe construction of the attitude su...

  1. Astronomie spatiale infrarouge, aujourd’hui et demain = Infrared space astronomy, today and tomorrow

    CERN Document Server

    Lequeux, J; David, F


    This book brings together the lectures given at the Les Houches summer school "Infrared space astronomy, today and tomorrow". It gives a wide overview of infrared astronomy, a wavelength domain crucial for studies of the solar system, stars at the beginning and end of their lives, interstellar matter and galaxies at all distances. Recent developments in observational techniques have been tremendous. The first contributions give an introduction to the basic physical processes and methods of detection and data processing. They are followed by a series of lectures dealing with the wide variety of astronomical objects that can be seen in the infrared.

  2. Astro Concepts: Learning Underlying Physics Principles in Conceptual Astronomy (United States)

    Mazzolini, Margaret; Halls, Bronwyn


    Astro Concepts is a project within Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne developing browser-based software modules on Optical Telescopes, Nebulae and Binary Stars. The modules are designed to enhance students' understanding of basic physics concepts, which underlie introductory-level conceptual astronomy courses. When complete, the Astro Concepts modules will be available for use in university courses in introductory astronomy, introductory physics teaching, secondary teaching and online astronomy education. The strategy outlined here is to obtain a reasonable level of understanding of the necessary physics concepts by presenting them embedded in relevant and interesting astronomy contexts, and by the use of an engaging educational approach requiring active learning by the student.

  3. The history of astronomy a very short introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Hoskin, Michael


    The History of Astronomy: A Very Short Introduction traces the history of Western astronomy, from prehistoric times to the origins of astrophysics in the mid-nineteenth century and the technical developments since the Second World War. Astronomy, perhaps the first of the sciences, was already well developed by the time of Christ — the arithmetical astronomy of the Babylonians was merged with the Greek geometrical approach. This legacy was transmitted to the West via Islam and led to the Copernican revolution, which in turn led to Kepler and Newton, who provided the principles on which the exploration of the solar system and the stars continued in the eighteenth- and nineteenth centuries.

  4. Interdisciplinary Approaches to Astronomy: Cosmic Fiction, Drama and Poetry (United States)

    Fraknoi, A.


    I have spent four decades teaching introductory astronomy to university students whose primary subject of study is not astronomy, as well as developing activities to help the public appreciate astronomical ideas and developments. One of the more effective tools that I have found for capturing the interest of non-scientists has been approaching astronomy through its influence on the humanities. In this article I examine some examples of astronomical inspiration in the humanities, looking at plays, poetry and fiction. A second paper, devoted to music inspired by astronomy, will appear in a future issue of the CAPjournal.

  5. Nebulous networks: Virginia Woolf and popular astronomy (United States)

    Henry, Holly Grace

    This study investigates Virginia Woolf's fascination with advances in astronomy and telescopic technologies of the 1920s and 30s. Grounded in the cultural studies of science, and the work of theorists such as Donna Haraway and Bruno Latour, the dissertation reconstructs the complex interconnections between Woolf's fiction and prose writing and an explosive popular interest in astronomy and cosmology. Woolf's aesthetic and political practices were shaped by emerging visualization technologies ranging from astronomical telescopes to the hand-held camera. While her writing provides a focus for this investigation, the dissertation offers close readings of fiction and essays by multiple British authors and science writers in the context of these converging phenomena. As a result of glimpsing tiny worlds through her own telescope, Virginia Woolf formulated a global aesthetic and a global politics. Gazing at the moon and stars reminded her that earth is a planet in space, and that earth's inhabitants must rely on this small, fragile globe for their future survival. The opening chapter establishes the cultural context for the study. In 1923, the American astronomer Edwin Hubble determined that the Andromeda galaxy was located far beyond the limits of the Milky Way, then believed to comprise the entire universe. Hubble's radical reconfiguration of the universe contributed to a pervasive sense, in the modern period, of a decentering and re-scaling of humans in the universe. In the chapters that follow, the dissertation offers readings of Woolf's novels and short fiction in relation to her fascination with astronomy and explores how the wildly popular British cosmologist and science writer, Sir James jeans, had a shaping effect on popular culture and on Woolf's narrative practices and pacifist politics. Despite his oblique connections to what became Bloomsbury, jeans and his popular science texts were to play a considerable role in Woolf's formulation of a global aesthetic.

  6. The Nineteenth-Century Revolution in Astronomy (United States)

    Batten, Alan Henry


    The term "revolution" in scientific contexts usually refers either to the beginnings of modern western science in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, or to the two great revolutions of early twentieth century physics. Comparison of what was known at the beginning of the nineteenth century with what was known at the end, however, shows that century to have been one of transformation in astronomy, and in the other sciences, that amounts to "revolution". Astronomers in 1800 knew neither the nature of the Sun nor the distances of the stars. Developments in instrumentation enabled the first determinations of stellar parallax in the 1830s, and later enabled the solar prominences to be studied outside the brief momemnts of total eclipses. The development of photography and of spectroscopy led to the birth of observational astrophysics, while the greater understanding of the nature of heat and the rise of thermodynamics made possible the first attempts to investigate the theory of stellar structure. Nothing was known in 1800 of extra-galactic objects apart from some tentative identifcations by William Herschel but, by the end of the century, the discovery of the spiral structure of some nebulae had led some to believe that these were the "island universes" about which Kant had speculated. Of course, astrophysics and cosmology would be much further developed in the twentieth century and those of us whose careers spanned the second half of that century look back on it as a "golden age" for astronomy; but the nineteenth century was undoubtedly a time of rapid transformation and can be reasonably described as as one of the periods of revolution in astronomy.

  7. New astronomy with the Odin Satellite (United States)

    Hjalmarson, A.

    On 20 February 2001 the Odin satellite - a new observatory for sub-millimetre wave spectroscopy - was launched from Svobodny in far-eastern Russia. The Odin project is a shared (50/50%) astronomy/aeronomy mission support ed by space agencies and scientists in Canada, Finland, France and Sweden. The satellite has been developed and is operated by the Swedish Space Corporation. The astronomy part of the mission is focussed on observations of line emission from interstellar H2O and O2. Odin houses a high-precision 1.1m diameter offset Gregorian telescope equipped with a very flexible cryogenic submm/mm receiver package. The frequency range 541-581 GHz is covered by three tuneable Schottky mixers and a fourth Schottky mixer covers the band 486-504 GHz.A 119 GHz fix-tuned HEMT preamplifier has been installed to allow very sensitive searches for interstellar O2. All receivers are operated in single-sideband mode. Any combination of four, three, or two receivers (depending upon the available power and mode of operation) can be used in combination with two auto-correlation spectrometers (bandwidth range: 100-800 MHz; resolution range: 0.125 -1 MHz) and an acousto-optical spectrometer, AOS (bandwidth: 1000 MHz; resolution 1 MHz). The Odin antenna beam-widths are about 2' and 9' at 557 and 119 GHz. For comparison, the SWAS (previous talk, by G. Melnick) antenna beam size is 3.3' x 4.5' at 557 GHz. In this talk I will focus on new Odin astronomy results where the higher angular resolution, higher frequency resolution, larger spectrometer bandwidth, higher sensitivity, or tuning capability (compared to SWAS) are important. Information on the Odin project can be found on the Odin web-page of the Swedish National Space Board (

  8. Teaching astronomy with dry erase whiteboards (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.


    In the quest to become a great astronomy teacher, one carefully considers what might be the best textbook, what might be the best homework collection and grading system, which classroom policies promote an active learning environment, and which teaching inclinations and strategies might work best with this year's students. But what about teaching equipment? As you are thinking about next year's teaching hardware needs, a surprisingly effective tool to consider adding to your cabinet that consistently encourages more active learning is a stack of small dry erase whiteboards.

  9. The first radio astronomy from space - RAE (United States)

    Kaiser, M. L.


    The spacecraft design, instrumentation, and performance of the Radio Astronomy Explorer (RAE) satellites (RAE-1 launched to earth orbit in 1968 and RAE-2 launched to lunar orbit in 1972) are reviewed and illustrated with drawings, diagrams, and graphs of typical data. Consideration is given to the three pairs of antennas, the Ryle-Vonberg and burst radiometers, and problems encountered with antenna deployment and observing patterns. Results summarized include observations of type III solar bursts, the spectral distribution of cosmic noise in broad sky regions, Jupiter at low frequencies, and auroral kilometric radiation (AKR) from the earth. The importance of avoiding the AKR bands in designing future space observatories is stressed.

  10. Astronomy and pictorial descriptiveness - images in 19th century popular astronomy. (German Title: Astronomie und Anschaulichkeit - Die Bilder der populären Astronomie des 19. Jahrhunderts) (United States)

    Utzt, Susanne

    Initiated by a debate on regaining a pictorial descriptiveness of the sciences, but also by technical developments, popular astronomy was mediated more and more by visual means in the 19th century. Based on illustrations in popular German and French astronomical treatises, this work investigates in what context certain pictures originated, where and for which purpose they were used in publications, how they interacted with accompanying texts, and to what degree they reflect the collision of two contrary aspects which are typical for popular science: the intention to entertain as well as to instruct. Text in German.

  11. Teaching Fair Use with Astronomy Imagery (United States)

    Wilson, Teresa


    Plagiarism among students is most common because of a misunderstanding of copyright and fair use. Images and text are frequently used without proper credit to the original author, and works are frequently acknowledged improperly. For example, space imagery is often used in posters, presentations, on the web, on Facebook, and even in the classrooms, but often are not properly cited. A lesson plan on fair use is presented, outlining what constitutes fair use and how to properly acknowledge the work done by artists and authors everywhere, with examples drawn from the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD).

  12. Astronomical problems an introductory course in astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Vorontsov-Vel'Yaminov, B A


    Astronomical Problems: An Introductory Course in Astronomy covers astronomical problems, together with a summary of the theory and the formula to be exercised. The book discusses the types of problems solved with the help of the celestial globe and how to solve astronomical problems. The text tackles problems on interpolation, the celestial sphere, systems of celestial coordinates, and culmination. Problems about the rising and setting of a heavenly body, precession, planetary movement, and parallax and aberration are also considered. The book presents problems about refraction, the apparent m

  13. Physics and astronomy of the Moon

    CERN Document Server

    Kopal, Zdenek


    Physics and Astronomy of the Moon focuses on the application of principles of physics in the study of the moon, including perturbations, equations, light scattering, and photometry. The selection first offers information on the motion of the moon in space and libration of the moon. Topics include Hill's equations of motion, non-solar perturbations, improved lunar ephemeris, optical and physical libration of the moon, and adjustment of heliometric observations of the moon's libration. The text then elaborates on the dynamics of the earth-moon system, photometry of the moon, and polarization of

  14. Guaman Poma's Yupana and Inca Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kak, Subhash


    An explanation is provided for the Inca counting board described by Guaman Poma in 1615. Although the board could have been used in more than one way, we show that based on certain reasonable assumptions regarding non-uniform representation of numbers its most likely use was counting in multiples of 6, 24, and 72. The independent numbers represented on its five rows are 92, 31, 29, 79, and 56 that appear to be astronomically connected to sub-periods within the year and planet periods in a manner similar to Mayan astronomy. Based on these and other considerations we propose that the board fulfilled an astronomical counting function.

  15. Music of the heavens Kepler's harmonic astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Stephenson, Bruce


    Valued today for its development of the third law of planetary motion, Harmonice mundi (1619) was intended by Kepler to expand on ancient efforts to discern a Creator's plan for the planetary system--an arrangement thought to be based on harmonic relationships. Challenging critics who characterize Kepler's theories of harmonic astronomy as ""mystical,"" Bruce Stephenson offers the first thorough technical analysis of the music the astronomer thought the heavens made, and the logic that led him to find musical patterns in his data. In so doing, Stephenson illuminates crucial aspects of Kepler'

  16. Communicating Astronomy to School Children Through Art (United States)

    Ortiz-Gil, A.; Collado, M. G.


    Artistic activities permeate our culture and our education, mainly because they speak of our most precious and intimate feelings, hopes, fears and sensations. Art constitutes, therefore, a universal language that can communicate and inspire through time and space, addressed to anybody with any kind of background. The power of inspiration of art is a wonderful way to excite children's imagination while communicating astronomical concepts. We present an example of communicating astronomy through different kinds of art pieces to school children. Also, children artworks are very useful to understand many of their conceptions and misconceptions about astronomical concepts.

  17. Crowdfunding Astronomy Research With Google Sky (United States)

    Metcalfe, Travis S.


    For nearly four years, NASA's Kepler space telescope searched for planets like Earth around more than 150,000 stars similar to the Sun. In 2008 with in-kind support from several technology companies, our non-profit organization established the Pale Blue Dot Project, an adopt-a-star program that supports scientific research on the stars observed by the Kepler mission. To help other astronomy educators conduct successful fundraising efforts, I describe how this innovative crowdfunding program successfully engaged the public over the past seven years to help support an international team in an era of economic austerity.

  18. The Community of Space/Astronomy Bloggers (United States)

    Cain, Fraser


    Modern science requires collaboration and community. Not surprisingly, journalists and bloggers are learning that their success depends on community too. To reach the widest possible audience for your news, you want to build up an organic network of friends and partners who will help multiply the volume of what you have to say. In this talk, I'll present my experience in reaching out to the community of space/astronomy bloggers, though personal correspondence, attending conferences, and helping to organize the Carnival of Space. I'll also talk about the impact it's had on the readership of my blog, Universe Today.

  19. Astronomy in the Service of Christianity (United States)

    McCluskey, Stephen C.

    Medieval European scholars drew on ancient traditions of astronomical knowledge to develop astronomical practices that served the needs of religious institutions by defining the sacred time and sacred space of religious ritual. Techniques employing the luni-solar calendar to determine the date of Easter, observations of the stars and Sun to determine the time of prayer, and orienting churches astronomically to face the symbolically important direction, east, were widely practiced. These varieties of religious astronomy were employed by persons of varying levels of education, working within a variety of contexts.

  20. Asynchronous, web-based course in astronomy (United States)

    Spergel, M.

    The course described here is a general educational, non-prerequisite and non- mathematical college course in astronomy offered on the web. It consists of readings from the text plus other periodical sources both online and offline. The course also requires the student to utilize a virtual planetarium to perform exercises in viewing the sky. The students respond to conceptual, multiple-choice questions. This course gives the student a sense of the night sky through the use of computer simulations and night observation. The students learn to understand and express scientific ideas. In addition, since the course is enhanced in computer usage and writing, students also develop these important skills.

  1. Quantum metrology for gravitational wave astronomy. (United States)

    Schnabel, Roman; Mavalvala, Nergis; McClelland, David E; Lam, Ping K


    Einstein's general theory of relativity predicts that accelerating mass distributions produce gravitational radiation, analogous to electromagnetic radiation from accelerating charges. These gravitational waves (GWs) have not been directly detected to date, but are expected to open a new window to the Universe once the detectors, kilometre-scale laser interferometers measuring the distance between quasi-free-falling mirrors, have achieved adequate sensitivity. Recent advances in quantum metrology may now contribute to provide the required sensitivity boost. The so-called squeezed light is able to quantum entangle the high-power laser fields in the interferometer arms, and could have a key role in the realization of GW astronomy.

  2. Status of High-Energy Neutrino Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kowalski, Marek


    With the recent discovery of high-energy neutrinos of extra-terrestrial origin by the IceCube neutrino observatory, neutrino-astronomy is entering a new era. This review will cover currently operating open water/ice neutrino telescopes, the latest evidence for a flux of extra-terrestrial neutrinos and current efforts in the search for steady and transient neutrino point sources. Generalised constraints on potential astrophysical sources are presented, allowing to focus the hunt for the sources of the observed high-energy neutrinos.

  3. Southern Africa Regional Office of Astronomy for Development: A New Hub for Astronomy for Development (United States)

    Siseho Mutondo, Moola


    A new Astronomy for Development hub needs innovative tools and programs. SAROAD is developing exciting tools integrating Raspberry Pi® technology to bring cost-effective astronomy content to learning centres. SAROAD would also like to report achievements in realising the IAU's strategic plan. In order to manage, evaluate and coordinate regional IAU capacity building programmes, including the recruitment and mobilisation of volunteers, SAROAD has built an intranet that is accessible to regional members upon request. Using this resource, regional members can see and participate in regional activities. This resource also forms the foundation for closer collaboration between SAROAD member countries. SAROAD has commenced with projects in the three Task Force areas of Universities and Research, Children and Schools and Public Outreach. Under the three Task Force areas, a total of seven projects have commenced in Zambia. A further two projects involve the collaboration of Zambia and other regional member countries in order to foster engagement with important regional astronomy facilities (e.g. SKA). SAROAD has identified the IAU’s International Year of Light and a starting point for offering regional support for IAU-endorsed global activities. SAROAD has set up a hub dedicated to regional events and activities about the International Year of Light. SAROAD has a database of regional authorities to enable contact with the region's decision makers and experts. SAROAD will hold an annual event which brings forum for astronomy for development. The creation of the database and the SAROAD Road show is a first step towards this goal. The SAROAD website has helped to advertise upcoming events for astronomy development and education; it is used to provide advice, guidance and information for astronomers in all countries in the Southern Africa. Fundraising is the primary goal for SAROAD in 2015 towards financial self-sufficiency by 2020. We report on the methods that work best

  4. OLFAR - Orbiting low frequency antennas for radio astronomy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bentum, M.J.


    One of the last unexplored frequency ranges in radio astronomy is the frequency band below 30 MHz. New interesting astronomical science drivers for low frequency radio astronomy have emerged, ranging from studies of the astronomical dark ages, the epoch of reionization, exoplanets, to ultra-high ene

  5. Radio Astronomy: A Strong Link between Undergraduate Education and Research. (United States)

    Pratap, Preethi; Salah, Joseph E.


    Describes a successful pilot program to develop and test a program that facilitates the linking of undergraduate research and education through radio astronomy. Based on the pilot experiences, students everywhere should be able to exploit the opportunity to strengthen their education through practical research using radio astronomy. (Author/SAH)

  6. Developing Astronomy Research and Education in the Philippines (United States)

    Sese, R. M. D.; Kouwenhoven, M. B. N. Thijs


    In the past few years, the Philippines has been gradually developing its research and educational capabilities in astronomy and astrophysics. In terms of astronomy development, it is still lagging behind several neighboring Southeast Asian countries such as Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia, while it is advanced with respect to several others. One of the main issues hampering progress is the scarcity of trained professional Filipino astronomers, as well as long-term visions for astronomy development. Here, we will be presenting an overview of astronomy education and research in the country. We will discuss the history and current status of astronomy in the Philippines, including all levels of education, outreach and awareness activities, as well as potential areas for research and collaborations. We also discuss issues that need to be addressed to ensure sustainable astronomy development in the Philippines. Finally, we discuss several ongoing and future programs aimed at promoting astronomy research and education. In essence, the work is a precursor of a possible white paper which we envision to submit to the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) in the near future, with which we aim to further convince the authorities of the importance of astrophysics. With the support of the International Astronomical Union (IAU), this may eventually lead to the creation of a separate astronomy agency in the Philippines.

  7. Astronomy at Ediciones Akal: from public outreach to the university (United States)

    Galadí-Enríquez, D.; de Miguel, E.


    Astronomy, as a professional activity, has to cover three fields: research, education, and communication. The Spanish publisher Ediciones Akal has built during the last years, a book series on astronomy that extends into those three fields and that is finding its place in the Spanish panorama of scientific publications.

  8. SOFIA's Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors: An External Evaluation of Cycle 1 (United States)

    Phillips, Michelle


    The Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) represents a partnership between NASA and the German Aerospace Center (DLR). The observatory itself is a Boeing 747 SP that has been modified to serve as the world's largest airborne research observatory. The SOFIA Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA) program is a component of SOFIA's…

  9. International Year of Astronomy (IYA 2009): Selected Resources (United States)

    Taha, Mandy; Kraus, Joseph R.


    The International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009) is a global celebration of astronomy and its contributions to society and culture initiated by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and UNESCO. Through local, national and international events, the organization wants to help the citizens of the world connect with the universe through the day…

  10. Astronomy for Astronomical Numbers: A Worldwide Massive Open Online Class (United States)

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


    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…

  11. A New Resource for College Distance Education Astronomy Laboratory Exercises (United States)

    Vogt, Nicole P.; Cook, Stephen P.; Muise, Amy Smith


    This article introduces a set of distance education astronomy laboratory exercises for use by college students and instructors and discusses first usage results. This General Astronomy Education Source exercise set contains eight two-week projects designed to guide students through both core content and mathematical applications of general…

  12. Marriage of x-ray and optical astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    An historical discussion of the relation of x-ray and optical astronomy is given including distances within our galaxy, the optical identification of x-ray sources, the binary x-ray stars, neutron stars and black holes, a program in x-ray astronomy, and future missions

  13. Gravitation, Book 3. The University of Illinois Astronomy Program. (United States)

    Atkin, J. Myron; Wyatt, Stanley P., Jr.

    Presented is book three in a series of six books in the University of Illinois Astronomy Program which introduces astronomy to upper elementary and junior high school students. The causes of celestial motion are investigated and the laws that apply to all moving things in the universe are examined in detail. Topics discussed include: the basic…

  14. Popular Astronomy in the World and in Armenia (United States)

    Mickaelian, A. M.


    A review on the popular astronomy and astronomy outreach in the world and in Armenia is given. Various ways and methods of popularization of astronomy are described. The International Year of Astronomy (IYA-2009), amateur astronomy, publication of books and other materials, the database of astronomical books, AstroBook exhibition, science-popular articles, "Astghagitak" online science-popular astronomical journal, calendar of astronomical events, databases of Solar and Lunar eclipses 2001-2050, planetary triple conjunctions 2001-2050, and of periodic comets at ArAS webpage, ArAS School Lectures Program, public lectures, "Universe" club at "Mkhitar Sebastatsi" educational ensemble, the online database of Armenian astronomers, biographies of famous Armenian astronomers, astronomers' anniversaries, scientific journalism of Armenia, and "Mass media news" section at ArAS webpage are described and discussed.

  15. Astronomy on Tap: science engagement in the pub (United States)

    Livermore, Rachael C.; Silverman, Jeffrey Michael


    Astronomy on Tap is a series of free lectures by astronomers in the pub, aimed at disseminating the latest research to the public in an informal setting. Started in New York City in 2013, Astronomy on Tap has now expanded to seven cities across North and South America. Organized by local astronomers, each event features talks by astronomers from local institutions or visitors, or others whose professions or hobbies intersect with astronomy, along with games and opportunities for the public to interact with professional astronomers. The largest Astronomy on Tap events are in Austin, Texas, attracting over 150 people each month, which consists of populations outside of the self-selected groups that might be reached by more formal EPO activities. The organisers of Astronomy on Tap in Austin (AoTATX) will discuss the impact of and feedback from all of the locations, and present information on setting up new satellite locations.

  16. Compendium of Practical Astronomy. Volume 1: Instrumentation and Reduction Techniques. (United States)

    Augensen, H. J.; Heintz, W. D.; Roth, Günter D.

    The Compendium of Practical Astronomy is a revised and enlarged English version of the fourth edition of G. Roth's famous handbook for stargazers. In three volumes 28 carefully edited articles, aimed especially at amateur astronomers and students and teachers of astronomy in high schools and colleges, cover the length and breadth of practical astronomy. Volume 1 contains information on modern instrumentation and reduction techniques, including spherical astronomy, error estimations, telescope mountings, astrophotography, and more. Volume 2 covers the planetary system, with contributions on artificial satellites, comets, the polar aurorae, and the effects of the atmosphere on observational data. Volume 3 is devoted to stellar objects, variable stars and binary stars in particular. An introduction to the astronomical literature and a comprehensive chapter on astronomy education and instructional aids make the Compendium a useful complement to any college library, in addition to its being essential reading for all practical astronomers.

  17. My early days in X-ray astronomy (United States)

    Tanaka, Y.

    I was a cosmic-ray physicist 50 years ago. While working at the Cosmic-Ray Working Group, Leiden, in 1964 we started the observation of the cosmic X-ray background. Since then, I worked in X-ray astronomy at Nagoya University and later at the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS), first with balloons and rockets and later with satellites. Here I will discuss the space science policy of Japan, and the central role of ISAS. I was engaged in four X-ray astronomy missions till my retirement from ISAS in 1994. With brief descriptions of ISAS X-ray astronomy missions, I intend to show how quick the development of X-ray astronomy and the detector techniques has been, and how rich is the physics of X-ray astronomy.

  18. Astronomy, Visual Literacy, and Liberal Arts Education (United States)

    Crider, Anthony


    With the exponentially growing amount of visual content that twenty-first century students will face throughout their lives, teaching them to respond to it with visual and information literacy skills should be a clear priority for liberal arts education. While visual literacy is more commonly covered within humanities curricula, I will argue that because astronomy is inherently a visual science, it is a fertile academic discipline for the teaching and learning of visual literacy. Astronomers, like many scientists, rely on three basic types of visuals to convey information: images, qualitative diagrams, and quantitative plots. In this talk, I will highlight classroom methods that can be used to teach students to "read" and "write" these three separate visuals. Examples of "reading" exercises include questioning the authorship and veracity of images, confronting the distorted scales of many diagrams published in astronomy textbooks, and extracting quantitative information from published plots. Examples of "writing" exercises include capturing astronomical images with smartphones, re-sketching textbook diagrams on whiteboards, and plotting data with Google Motion Charts or iPython notebooks. Students can be further pushed to synthesize these skills with end-of-semester slide presentations that incorporate relevant images, diagrams, and plots rather than relying solely on bulleted lists.

  19. Examples from Astronomy for High School Physics (United States)

    Dieterich, Sergio


    A formal course in physics is increasingly becoming a standard requirement in the high school curriculum. With that dissemination comes the challenge of reaching and motivating a population that is more diverse in their academic abilities and intrinsic motivation. The abstract nature of pure physics is often made more accessible when motivated by examples from everyday life, and providing copious mathematical as well as conceptual examples has become standard practice in high school physics textbooks. Astronomy is a naturally captivating subject and astronomical examples are often successful in capturing the curiosity of high school students as well as the general population. This project seeks to diversify the range of pedagogical materials available to the high school physics instructor by compiling and publishing specific examples where an astronomical concept can be used to motivate the physics curriculum. This collection of examples will consist of both short problems suitable for daily homework assignments as well as longer project style activities. Collaborations are encouraged and inquiries should be directed to sdieterich at carnegiescience dot edu.This work is funded by the NSF Astronomy and Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellowship Program through NSF grant AST-1400680.

  20. Lectures on High-Energy Neutrino Astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kilometer-scale neutrino detectors such as IceCube are discovery instruments covering nuclear and particle physics, cosmology and astronomy. Examples of their multidisciplinary missions include the search for the particle nature of dark matter and for additional small dimensions of space. In the end, their conceptual design is very much anchored to the observational fact that Nature produces protons and photons with energies in excess of 1020 and 1013 eV, respectively. The cosmic ray connection sets the scale of cosmic neutrino fluxes. In this context, we discuss the first results of the completed AMANDA detector and the science reach of its extension, IceCube. Similar experiments are under construction in the Mediterranean. Neutrino astronomy is also expanding in new directions with efforts to detect air showers, acoustic and radio signals initiated by super-EeV neutrinos. The outline of these lectures is as follows: Introduction Cosmic Neutrinos Associated with the Highest Energy Cosmic Rays Why Kilometer-Scale Detectors? Blueprints of Cosmic Accelerators: Gamma Ray Bursts and Active Galaxies High Energy Neutrino Telescopes: Methodologies of Neutrino Detection High Energy Neutrino Telescopes: Status

  1. Astronomy in Brazilian music and poetry (United States)

    de Freitas Mourão, Ronaldo Rogério


    The rôle of astronomy in the Brazilian cultural diversity -though little known world- has been enormous. Thus, the different forms of popular music and erudite, find musical compositions and lyrics inspired by the stars, the eclipses in rare phenomena such as the transit of Venus in front of the sun in 1882, the appearance of Halley's Comet in 1910, in the Big Bang theory. Even in the carnival parades of the blocks at the beginning of the century astronomy was present. More recently, the parade of 1997, the samba school Unidos do Viradouro, under the direction of Joãozinho Trinta, offered a new picture of the first moments of the creation of the universe to join in the white and dark in the components of their school, the idea of matter and anti-matter that reigned in the early moments of the creation of the universe in an explosion of joy. Examples in classical music include Dawn of Carlos Gomes and Carta Celeste by Almeida Prado. Unlike The Planets by Gustav Holst -who between 1914 and 1916 composed a symphonical tribute to the solar system based on astrology- Almeida Prado composed a symphony that is not limited to the world of planets, penetrating the deep cosmos of galaxies. Using various resources of the technique for the piano on the clusters and static movements, violent conflicts between the records of super acute and serious instrument, harpejos cross, etc . . .

  2. Distance Education with a Computerized Astronomy Laboratory (United States)

    Connors, Martin


    Distance Education is the presentation of an educational curriculum through self-study materials supplemented by regular contact with an instructor. As such it is suitable for offering educational opportunities to students in widely dispersed locations typical of Canada. Since 1989 Athabasca University has offered Science 280, Introduction to Astronomy and Astrophysics, as a broad introduction to Astronomy at a pre-calculus level. The course includes a computer-based laboratory (observing simulation) set done in students' homes. The laboratory allows simulation of naked eye astronomical observations, starting with the motions of the sun and moon. The logical jump to motions not apparently centered on Earth (planetary retrograde motion and periods) seems to present difficulty to students. Stellar proper motions are made observable by the use of long observing intervals of up to 30000 years. The distribution of nearby stars in space is studied through use of stellar color and the assumption that all stars are on the Main Sequence. The erroneous results which this engenders are not recognized as such by most students, who happily submit reports with red stars at .02 parsec distance. Star counts enable rough determination of Galactic structure. Widespread availability of PC-compatible computers has enabled distance education to bring astronomical education, including an 'observational' component, to Canadians who otherwise would not have access to it.

  3. Pre-Inca Astronomy in Peru (United States)

    McKim Malville, J.

    Huacas (shrines) and ushnus (ceremonial platforms) are ever-present elements of millennia-old Andean cosmology extending backward to 3100 BCE. Major themes of Pan-Andean cosmology include sacred mountains, the power of water, the solstice sun, as well as shamanic-like movement across the three worlds of the cosmos. Common features of many pre-Inca sites are monumental platforms and sunken circular plazas, and stairways with axes established by bi-lateral symmetries oriented along solstice lines. This style of ritual architecture first appeared in Chupacigarro/Caral, other sites in the Norte Chico area, and Sechin Bajo in the Casma Valley. Ceremonial plazas provided opportunities for public viewing of ritual ceremonies on the tops of platforms, which may have been understood as sacred mountains. Mounds and temples of the Casma Valley, such as Sechin Alto, Sechin Bajo, and Chankillo, developed an explicit astronomy associated with June and December solstices. The ritualistic use of water, which is typically associated with visual astronomy at Inca sites, appeared at Chavin de Huantar and later in Tiwanaku.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Cova


    Full Text Available Teaching science to school children with hearing de ciency and impairment can be a rewarding and valuable experience for both teacher and student, and necessary to society as a whole in order to reduce the discriminative policies in the formal educational system. The one most important obstacle to the teaching of science to students with hearing de ciency and impairments is the lack of vocabulary in sign language to express the precise concepts encountered in scienti c endeavor. In a collaborative project between Centro de Investigaciones de Astronom a \\Francisco J. Duarte" (CIDA, Universidad Pedag gica Experimental Libertador-Instituto Pedag gico de Matur n (UPEL-IPM and Unidad Educativa Especial Bolivariana de Matur n (UEEBM initiated in 2006, we have attempted to ll this gap by developing signs for astronomy and space sciences terminology. During two three-day workshops carried out at CIDA in M rida in July 2006 and UPEL-IPM in Matur n in March 2007 a total of 112 concepts of astronomy and space sciences were coined in sign language using an interactive method which we describe in the text. The immediate goal of the project is to incorporate these terms into Venezuelan Sign Language (LSV.

  5. Sign Language in Astronomy and Space Sciences (United States)

    Cova, J.; Movilio, V.; Gómez, Y.; Gutiérrez, F.; García, R.; Moreno, H.; González, F.; Díaz, J.; Villarroel, C.; Abreu, E.; Aparicio, D.; Cárdenas, J.; Casneiro, L.; Castillo, N.; Contreras, D.; La Verde, N.; Maita, M.; Martínez, A.; Villahermosa, J.; Quintero, A.


    Teaching science to school children with hearing deficiency and impairment can be a rewarding and valuable experience for both teacher and student, and necessary to society as a whole in order to reduce the discriminative policies in the formal educational system. The one most important obstacle to the teaching of science to students with hearing deficiency and impairments is the lack of vocabulary in sign language to express the precise concepts encountered in scientific endeavor. In a collaborative project between Centro de Investigaciones de Astronomía ``Francisco J. Duarte'' (CIDA), Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador-Instituto Pedagógico de Maturín (UPEL-IPM) and Unidad Educativa Especial Bolivariana de Maturín (UEEBM) initiated in 2006, we have attempted to fill this gap by developing signs for astronomy and space sciences terminology. During two three-day workshops carried out at CIDA in Mérida in July 2006 and UPEL-IPM in Maturín in March 2007 a total of 112 concepts of astronomy and space sciences were coined in sign language using an interactive method which we describe in the text. The immediate goal of the project is to incorporate these terms into Venezuelan Sign Language (LSV).

  6. Evaluating Astronomy Literacy of the General Public

    CERN Document Server

    Love, C; Bonora, S


    A scientifically literate society is important for many different reasons, some of which include democratic and scientific topics. This study was performed in order to identify topics in astronomy and science in general that may not be well understood by the general public. Approximately 1,000 adults at a popular science museum in Philadelphia, PA completed True-False survey questions about basic astronomy concepts. The participants were also asked to provide their age, gender, and highest degree obtained. Although 93 +/- 0.8% of the participants correctly answered that scientists can calculate the age of the Earth, only 58 +/- 2% provided the correct response that scientists can calculate the age of the Universe. Some participants (30 +/- 1%) responded that scientists have found life on Mars. Females scored an average total score of 78 +/- 2%, whereas males scored an average 85 +/- 1%. Participants with an age of 56 and over had an average score of 78 +/- 4% compared to participants under the age of 56 that ...

  7. Radio Astronomy Software Defined Receiver Project

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vacaliuc, Bogdan [ORNL; Leech, Marcus [Shirleys Bay Radio Astronomy Consortium; Oxley, Paul [Retired; Flagg, Richard [Retired; Fields, David [ORNL


    The paper describes a Radio Astronomy Software Defined Receiver (RASDR) that is currently under development. RASDR is targeted for use by amateurs and small institutions where cost is a primary consideration. The receiver will operate from HF thru 2.8 GHz. Front-end components such as preamps, block down-converters and pre-select bandpass filters are outside the scope of this development and will be provided by the user. The receiver includes RF amplifiers and attenuators, synthesized LOs, quadrature down converters, dual 8 bit ADCs and a Signal Processor that provides firmware processing of the digital bit stream. RASDR will interface to a user s PC via a USB or higher speed Ethernet LAN connection. The PC will run software that provides processing of the bit stream, a graphical user interface, as well as data analysis and storage. Software should support MAC OS, Windows and Linux platforms and will focus on such radio astronomy applications as total power measurements, pulsar detection, and spectral line studies.

  8. Exploring Metacogntive Visual Literacy Tasks for Teaching Astronomy (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.; Slater, S.; Dwyer, W.


    Undoubtedly, astronomy is a scientific enterprise which often results in colorful and inspirational images of the cosmos that naturally capture our attention. Students encountering astronomy in the college classroom are often bombarded with images, movies, simulations, conceptual cartoons, graphs, and charts intended to convey the substance and technological advancement inherent in astronomy. For students who self-identify themselves as visual learners, this aspect can make the science of astronomy come alive. For students who naturally attend to visual aesthetics, this aspect can make astronomy seem relevant. In other words, the visual nature that accompanies much of the scientific realm of astronomy has the ability to connect a wide range of students to science, not just those few who have great abilities and inclinations toward the mathematical analysis world. Indeed, this is fortunate for teachers of astronomy, who actively try to find ways to connect and build astronomical understanding with a broad range of student interests, motivations, and abilities. In the context of learning science, metacognition describes students’ self-monitoring, -regulation, and -awareness when thinking about learning. As such, metacognition is one of the foundational pillars supporting what we know about how people learn. Yet, the astronomy teaching and learning community knows very little about how to operationalize and support students’ metacognition in the classroom. In response, the Conceptual Astronomy, Physics and Earth sciences Research (CAPER) Team is developing and pilot-testing metacogntive tasks in the context of astronomy that focus on visual literacy of astronomical phenomena. In the initial versions, students are presented with a scientifically inaccurate narrative supposedly describing visual information, including images and graphical information, and asked to assess and correct the narrative, in the form of peer evaluation. To guide student thinking, students

  9. Astronomy Enrollments and Degrees: Results from the 2009 & 2010 Surveys of Physics & Astronomy Enrollments and Degrees. Focus On (United States)

    Nicholson, Starr; Mulvey, Patrick


    The Statistical Research Center of the American Institute of Physics conducts an annual census from October through February of all departments that offer degrees in astronomy (78) in the United States. Astronomy departments consist of stand-alone degree-granting departments (39) and departments that are administered along with a physics program…

  10. NASA Stratospheric Observatory For Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) Airborne Astronomy Ambassador Program Evaluation Results To Date (United States)

    Harman, Pamela K.; Backman, Dana E.; Clark, Coral


    SOFIA is an airborne observatory, capable of making observations that are impossible for even the largest and highest ground-based telescopes, and inspires instrumention development.SOFIA is an 80% - 20% partnership of NASA and the German Aerospace Center (DLR), consisting of a modified Boeing 747SP aircraft carrying a diameter of 2.5 meters (100 inches) reflecting telescope. The SOFIA aircraft is based at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center, Building 703, in Palmdale, California. The Science Program Office and Outreach Office is located at NASA Ames Research center. SOFIA is one of the programs in NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Astrophysics Division.SOFIA will be used to study many different kinds of astronomical objects and phenomena, including star birth and death, formation of new solar systems, identification of complex molecules in space, planets, comets and asteroids in our solar system, nebulae and dust in galaxies, and ecosystems of galaxies.Airborne Astronomy Ambassador Program:The SOFIA Education and Communications program exploits the unique attributes of airborne astronomy to contribute to national goals for the reform of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, and to the elevation of public scientific and technical literacy.SOFIA’s Airborne Astronomy Ambassadors (AAA) effort is a professional development program aspiring to improve teaching, inspire students, and inform the community. To date, 55 educators from 21 states; in three cohorts, Cycles 0, 1 and 2; have completed their astronomy professional development and their SOFIA science flight experience. Cycle 3 cohort of 28 educators will be completing their flight experience this fall. Evaluation has confirmed the program’s positive impact on the teacher participants, on their students, and in their communities. Teachers have incorporated content knowledge and specific components of their experience into their curricula, and have given hundreds of presentations and

  11. Summary: Special Session SpS15: Data Intensive Astronomy (United States)

    Montmerle, Thierry


    A new paradigm in astronomical research has been emerging - ``Data Intensive Astronomy'' that utilizes large amounts of data combined with statistical data analyses. The first research method in astronomy was observations by our eyes. It is well known that the invention of telescope impacted the human view on our Universe (although it was almost limited to the solar system), and lead to Keplerfs law that was later used by Newton to derive his mechanics. Newtonian mechanics then enabled astronomers to provide the theoretical explanation to the motion of the planets. Thus astronomers obtained the second paradigm, theoretical astronomy. Astronomers succeeded to apply various laws of physics to reconcile phenomena in the Universe; e.g., nuclear fusion was found to be the energy source of a star. Theoretical astronomy has been paired with observational astronomy to better understand the background physics in observed phenomena in the Universe. Although theoretical astronomy succeeded to provide good physical explanations qualitatively, it was not easy to have quantitative agreements with observations in the Universe. Since the invention of high-performance computers, however, astronomers succeeded to have the third research method, simulations, to get better agreements with observations. Simulation astronomy developed so rapidly along with the development of computer hardware (CPUs, GPUs, memories, storage systems, networks, and others) and simulation codes.

  12. First radio astronomy from space - RAE

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The spacecraft design, instrumentation, and performance of the Radio Astronomy Explorer (RAE) satellites (RAE-1 launched to earth orbit in 1968 and RAE-2 launched to lunar orbit in 1972) are reviewed and illustrated with drawings, diagrams, and graphs of typical data. Consideration is given to the three pairs of antennas, the Ryle-Vonberg and burst radiometers, and problems encountered with antenna deployment and observing patterns. Results summarized include observations of type III solar bursts, the spectral distribution of cosmic noise in broad sky regions, Jupiter at low frequencies, and auroral kilometric radiation (AKR) from the earth. The importance of avoiding the AKR bands in designing future space observatories is stressed. 11 references

  13. The future of gamma-ray astronomy (United States)

    Knödlseder, Jürgen


    The field of gamma-ray astronomy has experienced impressive progress over the last decade. Thanks to the advent of a new generation of imaging air Cherenkov telescopes (H.E.S.S., MAGIC, VERITAS) and thanks to the launch of the Fermi-LAT satellite, several thousand gamma-ray sources are known today, revealing an unexpected ubiquity of particle acceleration processes in the Universe. Major scientific challenges are still ahead, such as the identification of the nature of Dark Matter, the discovery and understanding of the sources of cosmic rays, or the comprehension of the particle acceleration processes that are at work in the various objects. This paper presents some of the instruments and mission concepts that will address these challenges over the next decades. xml:lang="fr"

  14. The future of gamma-ray astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Knödlseder, Jürgen


    The field of gamma-ray astronomy has experienced impressive progress over the last decade. Thanks to the advent of a new generation of imaging air Cherenkov telescopes (H.E.S.S., MAGIC, VERITAS) and thanks to the launch of the Fermi-LAT satellite, several thousand gamma-ray sources are known today, revealing an unexpected ubiquity of particle acceleration processes in the Universe. Major scientific challenges are still ahead, such as the identification of the nature of Dark Matter, the discovery and understanding of the sources of cosmic rays, or the comprehension of the particle acceleration processes that are at work in the various objects. This paper presents some of the instruments and mission concepts that will address these challenges over the next decades.

  15. The solar system in modern astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This invited conference lecture opens with a discussion of the importance of studies of the solar system in their contribution to the more general areas of astronomy and astrophysics. Most of the paper is devoted to a review of present knowledge of the Moon and its early history. The author discusses at some length the paleontological evidence, from the analysis of lunar rocks and from magnetometer recordings made during flights of lunar orbiting satellites, for the existence of an ancient dipole magnetic field generated by a core-dynamo process, similar to that of the Earth. Mapping of the intensities and directions of the paleomagnetic fields is also discussed, leading to estimates of the age and decay-rate of the ancient field. (U.K.)

  16. Editor's note: Reviews in Modern Astronomy 27 (United States)

    Berlepsch, Regina v.


    In order to make the scientific events of the meetings of the Astronomische Gese llschaft (AG) more international and bring them to the attention of the worldwide astronomical community, it was decided to devote the Reviews in Modern Astronomy} to the outcomes of the large annual fall meetings of the AG. In particular, it emphasized the Karl Schwarzschild Lectures, the Ludwig Biermann Award Lectures, the invited reviews, and the highlight contributions on recent progress and achievements from leading scientists. The most prestigious of them, the Karl Schwarzschild Lectures, constitutes a special series of reviews by outstanding scientists who have been awarded the Karl Schwarzschild Medal during the fall meeting of the AG. At the same time, excellent young astronomers are honored by the Ludwig Biermann Award. In 2010 the ``Doctoral Thesis Award'' was established to honor the most outstanding Doctoral Thesis of the past year.

  17. A palace for astronomy in Buenos Aires

    CERN Document Server

    Gangui, Alejandro


    In no other epoch of Western history like in the Middle Ages, cosmology was so key an element of culture and, one way or another, the motion of the heavens ended up impregnating the literature of that time. Among the most noteworthy poets we find Dante Alighieri, who became famous for his Commedia, a monumental poem written roughly between 1307 and his death in 1321, and which the critics from XVIth century onwards dubbed Divina. In this and other works, Dante pictures the cosmic image for the world, summing up the current trends of Neoplatonic and Islamic traditions. The Barolo Palace in the city of Buenos Aires is a singular combination of both astronomy and the worldview displayed in Dante's poetic masterpiece. Some links of the Palace's main architectural structure with the three realms of the Comedy have been studied in the past. In this note we consider its unique astronomical flavor, an issue which has not been sufficiently emphasized yet.

  18. Gravitational Wave Astronomy: Needle in a Haystack

    CERN Document Server

    Cornish, Neil J


    A world-wide array of highly sensitive interferometers stands poised to usher in a new era in astronomy with the first direct detection of gravitational waves. The data from these instruments will provide a unique perspective on extreme astrophysical phenomena such as neutron stars and black holes, and will allow us to test Einstein's theory of gravity in the strong field, dynamical regime. To fully realize these goals we need to solve some challenging problems in signal processing and inference, such as finding rare and weak signals that are buried in non-stationary and non-Gaussian instrument noise, dealing with high-dimensional model spaces, and locating what are often extremely tight concentrations of posterior mass within the prior volume. Gravitational wave detection using space based detectors and Pulsar Timing Arrays bring with them the additional challenge of having to isolate individual signals that overlap one another in both time and frequency. Promising solutions to these problems will be discuss...

  19. Citizen Science: Contributions to Astronomy Research

    CERN Document Server

    Christian, Carol; Smith, Arfon; Fortson, Lucy; Bamford, Steven


    The contributions of everyday individuals to significant research has grown dramatically beyond the early days of classical birdwatching and endeavors of amateurs of the 19th century. Now people who are casually interested in science can participate directly in research covering diverse scientific fields. Regarding astronomy, volunteers, either as individuals or as networks of people, are involved in a variety of types of studies. Citizen Science is intuitive, engaging, yet necessarily robust in its adoption of sci-entific principles and methods. Herein, we discuss Citizen Science, focusing on fully participatory projects such as Zooniverse (by several of the au-thors CL, AS, LF, SB), with mention of other programs. In particular, we make the case that citizen science (CS) can be an important aspect of the scientific data analysis pipelines provided to scientists by observatories.

  20. Citations and impact of Dutch astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kamphuis, P


    The aim of this study is to make a bibliometric comparison of the performance of research astronomers in the Netherlands Research School for Astronomy (NOVA) with astronomers elsewhere by using the NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS). We use various indices for bibliometric performance for a sample of NOVA astronomers to compare to samples of astronomers worldwide, and from the United States. We give much weight to normalising bibliometric measures by number of authors, and number of years since first publication. In particular we calculate the `Hirsh-index' normalized to number of authors and for first-author papers. Secondly, we consider the results of the 'Nederlands Observatorium van Wetenschap en Technologie' (NOWT; Netherlands Observatory of Science and Technology), which regularly publishes a report 'Science and Technology Indicators'. We reproduce those results using publication lists from institutions in the Netherlands, again using ADS, and examine and discuss the conclusions and indications in thes...

  1. Inspiration Today: Music, Astronomy, and Popular Culture (United States)

    Fraknoi, A.


    We explore a variety of examples of music inspired by serious astronomy (as opposed to simply an astronomical title or quick allusion to spooning in June to the light of the Moon). The examples are drawn from my recently published catalog of 133 such pieces, including both classical and popular genres of music. We discuss operas based on the life and work of astronomers, six songs based on a reasonable understanding of the properties of black holes, constellation pieces written by composers from around the world who are or were active amateur astronomers, the song that compares walking on the Moon to being in love, the little-known rock song that became a reference in the Astrophysical Journal, pieces that base the patterns of the music on the rhythms of astronomical phenomena, and a number of others.

  2. Astropixie: Astronomy Engagement Through Blogging and Twitter (United States)

    Bauer, A. E.


    I discuss the astronomy outreach and public engagement potential of blogging, based on experience writing and maintaining my astropixie blog since 2006 and maintaining a twitter account as @astropixie since 2008. These methods of social media allow for direct engagement with a public audience, increase public science literacy, provide understandable information beyond what can be presented in the media, diversify the image of scientists, publicize and provide feedback on current research, develop a community among readers, and inspire students. I also briefly discuss some professional benefits of using the social media resource of twitter. The goal of this paper is to give an idea of what blogs and twitter can provide as outreach tools, and to provide basic information about using these media.

  3. SIDECAR ASIC firmware for astronomy applications (United States)

    Chen, Jing; Loose, Markus; Ricardo, Raphael; Beletic, James; Farris, Mark; Xu, Min; Wong, Andre; Cabelli, Craig


    The SIDECAR ASIC is a fully integrated system-on-a-chip focal plane array controller that offers low power and low noise, small size and low weight. It has been widely used to operate different image sensors for ground-based and flightbased astronomy applications. A key mechanism to operating analog detectors is the SIDECAR ASIC's high level of programmability. This paper gives an overview of the SIDECAR ASIC architecture, including its optimized microcontroller featuring a customized instruction set. It describes the firmware components, including timing generation, biasing, commanding, housekeeping and synchronization of multiple detectors. The firmware development tools including compiler and supporting development environment and hardware setup are presented. The firmware capability for ground-based HxRG applications and for flight-based applications like the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), the repair of the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), and others are also discussed.

  4. Engaging Parents and Pupils in Astronomy (United States)

    Stevenson, Rod


    "The British National Space Centre partnership has recognised for some time that Space and Astronomy are particularly attractive subjects for school students and that including these in the science curriculum can have a positive effect on student interest in science. Drivers are that the number of young people studying science and engineering subjects at A-level and beyond is declining; young people should have an understanding of the importance of science and technology to the world around them; and that UK space industry (including technology, engineering, space science, Earth observation science) must renew itself." BRINGING SPACE INTO SCHOOL Professor Martin Barstow, University of Leicester Published by PPARC on behalf of the British National Space Centre Partnership October 2005 "It has become more and more difficult to persuade young people to follow a career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) subjects. Across the EU, the number of graduates in STEM subjects has dropped from 24.3% in 2002 to 22.6% in 2011" (Source EUSTAT) It was Martin Barstow's report in 2005 that started my attempt to interest people in Science and Technology, At Ormiston Victory Academy (OVA) for the past two years, we have embarked on a program to enthuse pupils to study science related subject through the medium of Astronomy. We teach Edexcel GCSE Astronomy to a joint parent and pupil group. They study together and at the end of the course, both take the GCSE examination. The idea is that the pupils see that science is important to their parents and that a very practical facet of science is also fun. Astronomy is a multidisciplinary course bringing together elements of Science, Maths, Technology, Geography and History. It is hoped that the enthusiasm shown by the pupils will spill over into the mainstream subjects including maths. The parents get an idea of the work and level of knowledge required by their children to complete a GCSE level subject. They also report

  5. Multichannel interference mitigation methods in radio astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Leshem, A; Boonstra, A J; Leshem, Amir; Veen, Alle-Jan van der; Boonstra, Albert-Jan


    Radio-astronomical observations are increasingly corrupted by RF interference, and online detection and filtering algorithms are becoming essential. To facilitate the introduction of such techniques into radio astronomy, we formulate the astronomical problem in an array signal processing language, and give an introduction to some elementary algorithms from that field. We consider two topics in detail: interference detection by rank estimation of short-term covariance matrices, and spatial filtering by subspace estimation and projection. We discuss experimental data collected at the Westerbork radio telescope, and illustrate the effectiveness of the space-time detection and blanking process on the recovery of a 3C48 absorption line in the presence of GSM mobile telephony interference.

  6. Digital Instrumentation for the Radio Astronomy Community

    CERN Document Server

    Parsons, Aaron; Backer, Donald; Bastian, Tim; Bower, Geoffrey; Brisken, Walter; Chen, Henry; Deller, Adam; Filiba, Terry; Gary, Dale; Greenhill, Lincoln; Hawkins, David; Jones, Glenn; Langston, Glen; Lazio, Joseph; van Leeuwen, Joeri; Mitchell, Daniel; Manley, Jason; Siemion, Andrew; So, Hayden Kwok-Hay; Whitney, Alan; Woody, Dave; Wright, Melvyn; Zarb-Adami, Kristian


    Time-to-science is an important figure of merit for digital instrumentation serving the astronomical community. A digital signal processing (DSP) community is forming that uses shared hardware development, signal processing libraries, and instrument architectures to reduce development time of digital instrumentation and to improve time-to-science for a wide variety of projects. We suggest prioritizing technological development supporting the needs of this nascent DSP community. After outlining several instrument classes that are relying on digital instrumentation development to achieve new science objectives, we identify key areas where technologies pertaining to interoperability and processing flexibility will reduce the time, risk, and cost of developing the digital instrumentation for radio astronomy. These areas represent focus points where support of general-purpose, open-source development for a DSP community should be prioritized in the next decade. Contributors to such technological development may be...

  7. Compact Radiative Control Structures for Millimeter Astronomy (United States)

    Brown, Ari D.; Chuss, David T.; Chervenak, James A.; Henry, Ross M.; Moseley, s. Harvey; Wollack, Edward J.


    We have designed, fabricated, and tested compact radiative control structures, including antireflection coatings and resonant absorbers, for millimeter through submillimeter wave astronomy. The antireflection coatings consist of micromachined single crystal silicon dielectric sub-wavelength honeycombs. The effective dielectric constant of the structures is set by the honeycomb cell geometry. The resonant absorbers consist of pieces of solid single crystal silicon substrate and thin phosphorus implanted regions whose sheet resistance is tailored to maximize absorption by the structure. We present an implantation model that can be used to predict the ion energy and dose required for obtaining a target implant layer sheet resistance. A neutral density filter, a hybrid of a silicon dielectric honeycomb with an implanted region, has also been fabricated with this basic approach. These radiative control structures are scalable and compatible for use large focal plane detector arrays.

  8. Applications of Integrated Photonic Spectrographs in Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Harris, Robert James


    One of the problems of producing instruments for Extremely Large Telescopes is that their size (and hence cost) scales rapidly with telescope aperture. To try to break this relation alternative new technologies have been proposed, such as the use of the Integrated Photonic Spectrograph (IPS). Due to their diffraction-limited nature the IPS is claimed to defeat the harsh scaling law applying to conventional instruments. In contrast to photonic applications, devices for astronomy are not usually used at the diffraction limit. Therefore to retain throughput and spatial information, the IPS requires a photonic lantern (PL) to decompose the input multimode light into single modes. This is then fed into either numerous Arrayed Waveguide Gratings (AWGs) or a conventional spectrograph. We investigate the potential advantage of using an IPS instead of conventional monolithic optics for a variety of capabilities represented by existing instruments and others planned for Extremely Large Telescopes. We show that a full I...

  9. A Roadmap for Canadian Submillimetre Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Webb, Tracy; Di Francesco, James; Matthews, Brenda; Murray, Norm; Scott, Douglas; Wilson, Christine


    We survey the present landscape in submillimetre astronomy for Canada and describe a plan for continued engagement in observational facilities to ~2020. Building on Canada's decadal Long Range Plan process, we emphasize that continued involvement in a large, single-dish facility is crucial given Canada's substantial investment in ALMA and numerous PI-led submillimetre experiments. In particular, we recommend: i) an extension of Canadian participation in the JCMT until at least the unique JCMT Legacy Survey program is able to realize the full scientific potential provided by the world-leading SCUBA-2 instrument; and ii) involvement of the entire Canadian community in CCAT, with a large enough share in the partnership for Canadian astronomers to participate at all levels of the facility. We further recommend continued participation in ALMA development, involvement in many focused PI-led submillimetre experiments, and partnership in SPICA.

  10. The next detectors for gravitational wave astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Blair, David; Zhao, Chunnong; Wen, Linqing; Miao, Haixing; Cai, Ronggen; Gao, Jiangrui; Lin, Xuechun; Liu, Dong; Wu, Ling-An; Zhu, Zonghong; Hammond, Giles; Paik, Ho Jung; Fafone, Viviana; Rocchi, Alessio; Ma, Yiqiu; Qin, Jiayi; Page, Michael


    This paper focuses on the next detectors for gravitational wave astronomy which will be required after the current ground based detectors have completed their initial observations, and probably achieved the first direct detection of gravitational waves. The next detectors will need to have greater sensitivity, while also enabling the world array of detectors to have improved angular resolution to allow localisation of signal sources. Sect. 1 of this paper begins by reviewing proposals for the next ground based detectors, and presents an analysis of the sensitivity of an 8 km armlength detector, which is proposed as a safe and cost-effective means to attain a 4-fold improvement in sensitivity. The scientific benefits of creating a pair of such detectors in China and Australia is emphasised. Sect. 2 of this paper discusses the high performance suspension systems for test masses that will be an essential component for future detectors, while sect. 3 discusses solutions to the problem of Newtonian noise which ari...

  11. iSTAR: The International STudy on Astronomy Reasoning (United States)

    Tatge, Coty B.; Slater, Timothy F.; Slater, Stephanie J.


    This paper reports the first steps taken in the International STudy on Astronomy Reasoning (iSTAR). The iSTAR Project is an attempt to look beyond traditional wisdom and practices in astronomy education, to discover the ways in which cognitive abilities and human culture interact to impact individuals’ understanding of and relationship to astronomy content knowledge. In contrast to many international studies that seek to rank nations by student performance on standardized tests, the iSTAR Project seeks to find ways that culture may unexpectedly enhance performance in astronomy. Using the Test of Astronomy Standards (TOAST) as a reasonable, initial proxy for the content knowledge a well educated person might know in astronomy, the iSTAR team then defined culture as a construct with five components: practices, traditional knowledge, historical and genealogical relationships, place-based knowledge, and language. Given the complexity of this construct, Stage 1 of the project focuses on the cultural component of language, and assumed that prior to the collection of data from students, the process of translating the TOAST could provide valuable expert-based information on the impact of language on astronomy knowledge. As such, the work began with a study of the translation process. For each of the languages used in the testing phase of the iSTAR protocol, a succession of translators and analysts were engaged, including two educated, non-astronomer native speakers, a native speaking astronomer, and a native speaking linguistics expert. Multiple translations were analyzed in order to make relevant meaning of differences in the translations, and provide commentary on the ways in which metaphor, idiom, cultural history are embedded in the language, providing potential advantages in the learning of astronomy. The first test languages were German, Hawaiian, and American Sign Language, and initial findings suggest that each of these languages provide specific advantages

  12. The Development and Validation of the Test Of Astronomy STandards (TOAST) (United States)

    Slater, Stephanie J.


    The Test Of Astronomy STandards (TOAST) is a comprehensive assessment instrument designed to measure students' general astronomy content knowledge. Built upon the research embedded within a generation of astronomy assessments designed to measure single concepts, the TOAST is appropriate to measure across an entire astronomy course. The TOAST's…

  13. 47 CFR 5.91 - Notification of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. (United States)


    ... 47 Telecommunication 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Notification of the National Radio Astronomy... Astronomy Observatory. In order to minimize possible harmful interference at the National Radio Astronomy... Astronomy Observatory, P.O. Box NZ2, Green Bank, West Virginia, 24944, in writing, of the...

  14. Building worlds and learning astronomy on Facebook (United States)

    Harold, J. B.; Hines, D. C.


    James Harold (SSI), Dean Hines (STScI/SSI) and a team at the National Center for Interactive Learning at the Space Science Institute are developing an end-to-end stellar and planetary evolution game for the Facebook platform. Supported by NSF and NASA, and based in part on a prototype funded by STScI several years ago ('MyStar'), the game uses the 'sporadic play' model of games such as Farmville, where players might only take actions a few times a day, but continue playing for months. This framework is an excellent fit for teaching about the evolution of stars and planets. Players will select regions of the galaxy to build their stars and planets, and watch as the systems evolve in scaled real time (a million years to the minute). Massive stars will supernova within minutes, while lower mass stars like our sun will live for weeks, possibly evolving life before passing through a red giant stage and ending their lives as white dwarfs. In addition to allowing players to explore a variety of astronomy concepts (stellar lifecycles, habitable zones, the roles of giant worlds in creating habitable solar systems), the game also allows us to address specific misconceptions. For instance, the game's solar system visualization engine is being designed to confront common issues concerning orbital shapes and scales. 'Mini games' will also let players unlock advanced functionality, while allowing us to create activities focused on specific learning goals. This presentation will focus on the current state of the project as well as its overall goals, which include reaching a broad audience with basic astronomy concepts as well as current science results; exploring the potential of social, 'sporadic play' games in education; and determining if platforms such as Facebook allow us to reach significantly different demographics than are generally targeted by educational games.

  15. Berkeley's Advanced Labs for Undergraduate Astronomy Majors (United States)

    Heiles, C.


    We currently offer three advanced laboratory courses for undergraduate majors: optical, IR, and radio. These courses contain both intellectual and practical content; in this talk we focus on the radio lab as a representative example. The first half of the semester concentrates on fundamentals of microwave electronics and radio astronomy techniques in four formal laboratory exercises which emphasize hands-on use of microwave devices, laboratory instruments, and computer-controlled data taking. The second half of the course emphasizes astronomy, using a horn with ~ 1 m(2) aperture to map the HI in the Galaxy and a two-element interferometer composed of ~ 1 m diameter dishes on a ~ 10 m baseline to measure accurate positions of radio sources and accurate diameters for the Sun and Moon. These experiments and observations offer ideal opportunities for teaching coordinates, time, rotation matrices, data reduction techniques, least squares, signal processing, image processing, Fourier transforms, and laboratory and astronomical instrumentation. The students can't get along without using computers as actually used by astronomers. We stay away from packaged software such as IRAF, which are ``black boxes''; rather, students learn far more by writing their own software, usually for the first time. They use the IDL language to take and reduce data and prepare them for the lab reports. We insist on quality reports---including tables, postscript graphs and images, correct grammar, spelling, and all the rest---and we strongly urge (successfully!) the students to use LATEX. The other two lab courses have the same emphasis: the guiding spirit is to place the students in a real-life research-like situation. There is too much to do, so students perform the work in small groups of 3 or 4 and groups are encouraged to share their knowledge. Lab reports are written individually. These courses are very demanding, requiring an average of 20 hours per week from the students (and probably

  16. Gravitational wave astronomy: the current status (United States)

    Blair, David; Ju, Li; Zhao, ChunNong; Wen, LinQing; Chu, Qi; Fang, Qi; Cai, RongGen; Gao, JiangRui; Lin, XueChun; Liu, Dong; Wu, Ling-An; Zhu, ZongHong; Reitze, David H.; Arai, Koji; Zhang, Fan; Flaminio, Raffaele; Zhu, XingJiang; Hobbs, George; Manchester, Richard N.; Shannon, Ryan M.; Baccigalupi, Carlo; Gao, Wei; Xu, Peng; Bian, Xing; Cao, ZhouJian; Chang, ZiJing; Dong, Peng; Gong, XueFei; Huang, ShuangLin; Ju, Peng; Luo, ZiRen; Qiang, Li'E.; Tang, WenLin; Wan, XiaoYun; Wang, Yue; Xu, ShengNian; Zang, YunLong; Zhang, HaiPeng; Lau, Yun-Kau; Ni, Wei-Tou


    In the centenary year of Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, this paper reviews the current status of gravitational wave astronomy across a spectrum which stretches from attohertz to kilohertz frequencies. Sect. 1 of this paper reviews the historical development of gravitational wave astronomy from Einstein's first prediction to our current understanding the spectrum. It is shown that detection of signals in the audio frequency spectrum can be expected very soon, and that a north-south pair of next generation detectors would provide large scientific benefits. Sect. 2 reviews the theory of gravitational waves and the principles of detection using laser interferometry. The state of the art Advanced LIGO detectors are then described. These detectors have a high chance of detecting the first events in the near future. Sect. 3 reviews the KAGRA detector currently under development in Japan, which will be the first laser interferometer detector to use cryogenic test masses. Sect. 4 of this paper reviews gravitational wave detection in the nanohertz frequency band using the technique of pulsar timing. Sect. 5 reviews the status of gravitational wave detection in the attohertz frequency band, detectable in the polarisation of the cosmic microwave background, and discusses the prospects for detection of primordial waves from the big bang. The techniques described in sects. 1-5 have already placed significant limits on the strength of gravitational wave sources. Sects. 6 and 7 review ambitious plans for future space based gravitational wave detectors in the millihertz frequency band. Sect. 6 presents a roadmap for development of space based gravitational wave detectors by China while sect. 7 discusses a key enabling technology for space interferometry known as time delay interferometry.

  17. Astronomy Education & Outreach in South Africa (United States)

    Throop, Henry B.


    Although South Africa has evolved greatly in the 20 years since the end of apartheid, it remains a very divided country. The highest-performing students are comparable in ability to those in the US and Europe, but nearly all of these students are from priveleged Afrikaaner (European) backgrounds. The vast majority of students in the country are native African, and school standards remain very low across the country. It is common that students have no textbooks, teachers have only a high school education, and schools have no telephones and no toilets. By high school graduation, the majority of students have never used a web browser -- even students in the capital of Johannesburg. And while a few students are inspired by home-grown world-class projects such as the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) and Southern African Large Telescope (SALT), most remain unaware of their existence.Despite the poor state of education in the country, students work hard, are curious, and desire information from the outside world. Astronomy is one subject in which students in rural Africa often show exceptional interest. Perhaps astronomy serves as a 'gateway science,' linking the physically observable world with the exotic and unknown.Here I report on many visits I have made to both rural and urban schools in South Africa during the 2013-2015 period. I have interacted with thousands of grade 7-12 students at dozens of schools, as well as taught students who graduated from this system and enrolled in local universities. I will present an assessment of the state of science education in South Africa, as well as a few broader suggestions for how scientists and educators in developed countries can best make an impact in Southern Africa.

  18. What types of astronomy images are most popular? (United States)

    Allen, Alice; Bonnell, Jerry T.; Connelly, Paul; Haring, Ralf; Lowe, Stuart R.; Nemiroff, Robert J.


    Stunning imagery helps make astronomy one of the most popular sciences -- but what types of astronomy images are most popular? To help answer this question, public response to images posted to various public venues of the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) are investigated. APOD portals queried included the main NASA website and the social media mirrors on Facebook, Google Plus, and Twitter. Popularity measures include polls, downloads, page views, likes, shares, and retweets; these measures are used to assess how image popularity varies in relation to various image attributes including topic and topicality.

  19. The Deep Space Network: An instrument for radio astronomy research (United States)

    Renzetti, N. A.; Levy, G. S.; Kuiper, T. B. H.; Walken, P. R.; Chandlee, R. C.


    The NASA Deep Space Network operates and maintains the Earth-based two-way communications link for unmanned spacecraft exploring the solar system. It is NASA's policy to also make the Network's facilities available for radio astronomy observations. The Network's microwave communication systems and facilities are being continually upgraded. This revised document, first published in 1982, describes the Network's current radio astronomy capabilities and future capabilities that will be made available by the ongoing Network upgrade. The Bibliography, which includes published papers and articles resulting from radio astronomy observations conducted with Network facilities, has been updated to include papers to May 1987.

  20. An Overview of the Swinburne Online Astronomy Courses (United States)

    Dempsey, F.


    (Abstract only) An overview of the online astronomy courses at Swinburne University of Technology is presented for the benefit of AAVSO members who might be interested in the courses or programs. The decision to take the online Master's degree in astronomy at Swinburne was a natural evolution from being interested in astronomy at an early age, being an amateur astronomer all my life, and being a variable star observer and member of the AAVSO for the past several decades. This presentation provides an overview of the program and examples of the course materials, assignments, and projects that may provide some idea of the commitment and expectations for AAVSO members considering the program.

  1. Writing an Electronic Astronomy Book with Interactive Curricular Material (United States)

    Thompson, Kristen L.; Belloni, Mario; Christian, Wolfgang


    With the rise of tablets, the past few years have seen an increase in the demand for quality electronic textbooks. Unfortunately, most of the current offerings do not exploit the accessibility and interactivity that electronic books can deliver. In this poster, we discuss how we are merging our curriculum development projects (Physlets, Easy Java/JavaScript Simulations, and Open Source Physics) with the EPUB electronic book format to develop an interactive textbook for use in a one-semester introductory astronomy course. The book, Astronomy: An Interactive Introduction, combines the narrative, equations, and images of a traditional astronomy text with new JavaScript simulations.

  2. Resource Letter: Research-based Assessments in Physics and Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Madsen, Adrian; Sayre, Eleanor C


    This resource letter provides a guide to research-based assessments (RBAs) of physics and astronomy content. These are standardized assessments that were rigorously developed and revised using student ideas and interviews, expert input, and statistical analyses. RBAs have had a major impact on physics and astronomy education reform by providing a universal and convincing measure of student understanding that instructors can use to assess and improve the effectiveness of their teaching. In this resource letter, we present an overview of all content RBAs in physics and astronomy by topic, research validation, instructional level, format, and themes, to help faculty find the best assessment for their course.

  3. Highlighting the History of Astronomy in the Asia-Pacific Region

    CERN Document Server

    Nakamura, Tsuko; Strom, Richard G; ICOA-6 Conference


    This book provides readers with the results of recent research from some of the world's leading historians of astronomy on aspects of Arabic, Australian, Chinese, Japanese, and North and South American astronomy and astrophysics. It contains peer-reviewed papers gathered from the International Conferences on Oriental Astronomy 6 (ICO-6) with the chosen theme of "Highlighting the History of Astronomy in the Asia-Pacific Region." Of particular note are the sections on Arabic astronomy, Asian applied astronomy and the history of Australian radio astronomy, and the chapter on Peruvian astronomy. This title is a valuable complement for those with research interests in applied historical astronomy; archaeoastronomy; calendars, manuscripts, and star charts; historical instruments and observatories, and the history of radio astronomy.

  4. Ancient astronomy an encyclopedia of cosmologies and myth

    CERN Document Server

    Ruggles, Clive


    Long before astronomy was a science, humans used the stars to mark time, navigate, organize planting and dramatize myths. This encyclopaedia draws on archaeological evidence and oral traditions to reveal how prehistoric humans perceived the skies and celestial phenomena.

  5. ACUMEN: Astronomy Classes Unleashed — Meaningful Experiences for Neophytes (United States)

    Fauerbach, M.; Schonberg, S.; Mon, M. J.


    In an effort to enhance the learning experience for astronomy students two freely distributable computer-based laboratory exercises were developed. One dealing with the heights of lunar features, the other one concentrating on stellar spectra.

  6. Emergence and Growth of Solar Astronomy in Korea (United States)

    Yun, Hong Sik


    In this article I review the past and current status of solar astronomy in Korea and present some future prospects. Along with a brief historical account on the introduction of modern astronomy to Korea, I describe in detail how solar astronomy in Korea has developed since its birth about 20 years ago. With education of solar astronomers at domestic universities and collaboration with foreign scientists in China, Japan and the U. S., there has been a rapid growth of solar physics in Korea in the past decade. For further advance of solar astronomy in Korea, Korean solar astronomers have to build their own observing facilities and develop instrumentation programs. Also it is very important to bring up manpower competent for these projects.

  7. ``Astrophysique sur Mesure'', E-learning in Astronomy and Astrophysics (United States)

    Mosser, Benoît; Delsanti, Audrey; Guillaume, Damien; Balança, Christian; Balkowski, Chantal


    ``Astrophysique sur Mesure'' (astrophysics made-to-measure) is a set of e-learning programmes started 4 years ago at the Paris Observatory. In order to deliver attractive and efficient programmes, we have added many multimedia tools to usual lectures: animations, Java applets. The programmes are presented on two different platforms. The first one offers the content of all the lectures in free access. A second platform with restricted access is provided to registered students taking part in the e-learning program and benefiting from the help of tutors. The development of these programs helps to increase the sphere of influence of astronomy taught at the Paris Observatory, hence to increase the presence of astronomy in various degree courses. Instead of teaching classical astronomy lectures to a happy few, we can bring astronomy and astrophysics to a wider audience.

  8. The Importance of Site Selection for Radio Astronomy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Radio sources are very weak since this object travel very far from outer space. Radio astronomy studies are limited due to radio frequency interference (RFI) that is made by man. If the harassment is not stopped, it will provide critical problems in their radio astronomy scientists research. The purpose of this study is to provide RFI map Peninsular Malaysia with a minimum mapping techniques RFI interference. RFI mapping technique using GIS is proposed as a tool in mapping techniques. Decision-making process for the selection requires gathering information from a variety of parameters. These factors affecting the selection process are also taken account. In this study, various factors or parameters involved such as availability of telecommunications transmission (including radio and television), rainfall, water line and human activity. This study will benefit radio astronomy research especially in the RFI profile in Malaysia. Keywords: Radio Astronomy, Radio Frequency Interference (RFI), RFI mapping technique : GIS

  9. New Detector Development for X-ray Astronomy Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — "We propose to continue our detector development program in X-ray astronomy. Under our current grant we are developing a new type of active pixel detector. The...

  10. Jupiter in close view bags photographer astronomy prize (United States)

    Banks, Michael


    UK photographer Damian Peach has beaten more than 700 entries from all over the world to win the Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2011 competition run by the Royal Observatory Greenwich and 'Sky at Night' magazine.

  11. A New Resource for College Distance Education Astronomy Laboratory Exercises

    CERN Document Server

    Vogt, Nicole P; Muise, Amy Smith


    This article introduces a set of distance education astronomy laboratory exercises for use by college students and instructors and discuss first usage results. This General Astronomy Education Source (GEAS) exercise set contains eight two-week projects designed to guide students through both core content and mathematical applications of general astronomy material. Projects are divided between hands-on activities and computer-aided analyses of modern astronomical data. The suite of online resources includes student and instructor guides, laboratory report templates, learning objectives, video tutorials, plotting tools, and web-based applications that allow students to analyze both images and spectra of astronomical objects. A pilot usage study indicates that distance learners using these materials perform as well or better than a comparison cohort of on-campus students. We are actively seeking collaborators to use these resources in astronomy courses and other educational venues.

  12. The Importance of Site Selection for Radio Astronomy (United States)

    Umar, Roslan; Zainal Abidin, Zamri; Abidin Ibrahim, Zainol


    Radio sources are very weak since this object travel very far from outer space. Radio astronomy studies are limited due to radio frequency interference (RFI) that is made by man. If the harassment is not stopped, it will provide critical problems in their radio astronomy scientists research. The purpose of this study is to provide RFI map Peninsular Malaysia with a minimum mapping techniques RFI interference. RFI mapping technique using GIS is proposed as a tool in mapping techniques. Decision-making process for the selection requires gathering information from a variety of parameters. These factors affecting the selection process are also taken account. In this study, various factors or parameters involved such as availability of telecommunications transmission (including radio and television), rainfall, water line and human activity. This study will benefit radio astronomy research especially in the RFI profile in Malaysia. Keywords: Radio Astronomy, Radio Frequency Interference (RFI), RFI mapping technique : GIS.

  13. Scalable, Asynchronous, Distributed Eigen-Monitoring of Astronomy Data Streams (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In this paper, we develop a distributed algorithm for monitoring the principal components (PCs) for next generation of astronomy petascale data pipelines such as...

  14. Peer-review Platform for Astronomy Education Activities

    CERN Document Server

    Russo, Pedro; Gomez, Edward; Strubbe, Linda


    Hundreds of thousands of astronomy education activities exist, but their discoverability and quality is highly variable. The web platform for astronomy education activities, astroEDU, presented in this paper tries to solve these issues. Using the familiar peer-review workflow of scientific publications, astroEDU is improving standards of quality, visibility and accessibility, while providing credibility to these astronomy education activities. astroEDU targets activity guides, tutorials and other educational activities in the area of astronomy education, prepared by teachers, educators and other education specialists. Each of the astroEDU activities is peer-reviewed by an educator as well as an astronomer to ensure a high standard in terms of scientific content and educational value. All reviewed materials are then stored in a free open online database, enabling broad distribution in a range of different formats. In this way astroEDU is not another web repository for educational resources but a mechanism for ...

  15. Exploring Ancient Skies A Survey of Ancient and Cultural Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Kelley, David H


    Exploring Ancient Skies brings together the methods of archaeology and the insights of modern astronomy to explore the science of astronomy as it was practiced in various cultures prior to the invention of the telescope. The book reviews an enormous and growing body of literature on the cultures of the ancient Mediterranean, the Far East, and the New World (particularly Mesoamerica), putting the ancient astronomical materials into their archaeological and cultural contexts. The authors begin with an overview of the field and proceed to essential aspects of naked-eye astronomy, followed by an examination of specific cultures. The book concludes by taking into account the purposes of ancient astronomy: astrology, navigation, calendar regulation, and (not least) the understanding of our place and role in the universe. Skies are recreated to display critical events as they would have appeared to ancient observers—events such as the supernova of 1054 A.D., the "lion horoscope," and the Star of Bethlehem. Explori...

  16. Modelling a case study in Astronomy with IMS Learning Design

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Burgos, Daniel; Tattersall, Colin


    Burgos, D., & Tattersall, C. (2008). Modelling a case study in Astronomy with IMS Learning Design [Electronic Version]. Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 2008 from

  17. SABER: The Searchable Annotated Bibliography of Education Research in Astronomy (United States)

    Bruning, David H.; Bailey, J. M.; Brissenden, G.


    Starting a new research project in astronomy education is hard because the literature is scattered throughout many journals. Relevant astronomy education research may be in psychology journals, science education journals, physics education journals, or even in science journals themselves. Tracking the vast realm of literature is difficult, especially since libraries do not carry many of these journals and related abstracting services. SABER is an online resource ( that was started in 2001 specifically to reduce this “scatter” by compiling into one place an annotated bibliography of relevant education research articles. The database now includes more than 150 articles specifically addressing astronomy education research. Visit SABER and see what it can do for you.

  18. International Agreement Will Advance Radio Astronomy (United States)


    Two of the world's leading astronomical institutions have formalized an agreement to cooperate on joint efforts for the technical and scientific advancement of radio astronomy. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in the United States and the Max-Planck Institute for Radioastronomy (MPIfR) in Germany concluded a Memorandum of Understanding outlining planned collaborative efforts to enhance the capabilities of each other's telescopes and to expand their cooperation in scientific research. The VLBA The VLBA CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF In the first project pursued under this agreement, the MPIfR will contribute $299,000 to upgrade the continent-wide Very Long Baseline Array's (VLBA) capability to receive radio emissions at a frequency of 22 GHz. This improvement will enhance the VLBA's scientific productivity and will be particularly important for cutting-edge research in cosmology and enigmatic cosmic objects such as gamma-ray blazars. "This agreement follows many years of cooperation between our institutions and recognizes the importance of international collaboration for the future of astronomical research," said Fred K.Y. Lo, NRAO Director. "Our two institutions have many common research goals, and joining forces to keep all our telescopes at the forefront of technology will be highly beneficial for the science," said Anton Zensus, Director at MPIfR. In addition to the VLBA, the NRAO operates the Very Large Array (VLA) in New Mexico and the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. The MPIfR operates the 100-meter Effelsberg Radio Telescope in Germany and the 12-meter APEX submillimeter telescope in 5100 m altitude in the Cilean Atacama desert (together with the European Southern Observatory and the Swedish Onsala Space Observatory). With the 100-meter telescope, it is part of the VLBA network in providing transatlantic baselines. Both institutions are members of a global network of telescopes (the Global VLBI Network) that uses simultaneous

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


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


    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 hours of video lecture, nearly 1,000 Powerpoint slides, 250 pages of background readings, and 20 podcast interviews with leading researchers. Perhap...

  20. Music and Astronomy Under the Stars - 2009 Update (United States)

    Lubowich, Donald A.


    Bring telescope to where the people are! Music and Astronomy Under the Stars is a three-year NASA-funded outreach program at parks during and after concerts and family events - a Halloween Spooky Garden Walk. While there have been many outreach activities and telescope observations at city sidewalks and parks, this program targets a completely different audience - music lovers who attend summer concerts held in community parks. These music lovers who may never have visited a science museum, planetarium, or star party are exposed to telescope observations and astronomy information with no additional travel costs. Music and Astronomy Under the Stars increased awareness, engagement, and interest in astronomy at classical, pop, rock, and ethnic music concerts. This program includes solar observing before the concerts, telescope observations including a live image projection system, an astronomical video presentation, and astronomy banners/posters. Approximately 500 - 16,000 people attended each event and 25% to 50% of the people at each event participated in the astronomy program. This program also reached underrepresented and underserved groups (women, minorities, older adults). The target audience is 2,900,000 people, which is larger than combined population of Atlanta, Boston, Denver, Minneapolis, and San Francisco. Although eleven events were planned in 2009, two were canceled due to rain and our largest event, the NY Philharmonic in the Park (attended by 67,000 people in 2008), was cancelled for financial reasons. Our largest event in 2009 was the Tanglewood Music Festival, Lenox MA, attended by 16,000 people where 5000 people participated in astronomy activities. The Amateur Observers' Society of NY assisted with the NY concerts and the Springfield STARS club assisted at Tanglewood. 1500 people looked through telescopes at the Halloween program (6000 saw the posters). In 2009 over 15,000 people participated in these astronomy activities which were attended by

  1. To be a priest should to know astronomy... (United States)

    de Alba-Martinez, D. J.


    In spite of that recently some academic programs try to join science and religion themes in the same course, was during nineteenth century that was necessary to study astronomy for those that want to be catholic priest in Jalisco State, Mexico. A brief description on this astronomy courses is shown and some products from this activity and persons that were involved. This work was partially supported by Coord. de Servs. Acad.-CUCEI, Universidad de Guadalajara.

  2. AstroSat - a multi-wavelength astronomy satellite

    CERN Document Server

    Rao, A R; Bhattacharya, D


    AstroSat is a multi-wavelength astronomy satellite, launched on 2015 September 28. It carries a suite of scientific instruments for multi-wavelength observations of astronomical sources. It is a major Indian effort in space astronomy and the context of AstroSat is examined in a historical perspective. The Performance Verification phase of AstroSat has been completed and all instruments are working flawlessly and as planned. Some brief highlights of the scientific results are also given here.

  3. Current Trends in Graduate Education in Astronomy in Canada (United States)

    Percy, J. R.; Douglas, K. A.


    We begin by describing the infrastructure for graduate education and research in astronomy in Canada. We then describe recent and current trends and issues, including facilities, funding, curriculum, and job prospects. This information has been collected through two channels: through graduate coordinators in astronomy departments and groups in Canadian universities, and through the Graduate Student Committee of the Canadian Astronomical Society (CAS). We emphasize the benefits of having a graduate student chapter in societies such as the CAS and the AAS.

  4. OLFAR - Orbiting low frequency antennas for radio astronomy


    Bentum, M.J.


    One of the last unexplored frequency ranges in radio astronomy is the frequency band below 30 MHz. New interesting astronomical science drivers for low frequency radio astronomy have emerged, ranging from studies of the astronomical dark ages, the epoch of reionization, exoplanets, to ultra-high energy cosmic rays. However, astronomical observations with Earth-bound radio telescopes at very low frequencies are hampered by the ionospheric plasma, which scatters impinging celestial radio waves.

  5. Introduction. Progress in astronomy: from gravitational waves to space weather. (United States)

    Thompson, J Michael T


    This brief paper introduces and reviews the 'visions of the future' articles prepared by leading young scientists throughout the world for the first of two Christmas 2008 Triennial issues of Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A, devoted, respectively, to astronomy and Earth science. Contributions in astronomy include the very topical gamma-ray bursts, new ideas on stellar collapse and the unusual atmospheres of synchronized planets orbiting nearby stars.

  6. A dictionary of Astronomy for the French Sign Language (LSF) (United States)

    Proust, Dominique; Abbou, Daniel; Chab, Nasro


    Since a few years, the french deaf communauty have access to astronomy at Paris-Meudon observatory through a specific teaching adapted from the French Sign Language (Langue des Signes Françcaise, LSF) including direct observations with the observatory telescopes. From this experience, an encyclopedic dictionary of astronomy The Hands in the Stars is now available, containing more than 200 astronomical concepts. Many of them did not existed in Sign Language and can be now fully expressed and explained.

  7. Gravitational Waves Astronomy: a cornerstone for gravitational theories

    CERN Document Server

    Corda, Christian


    Realizing a gravitational wave (GW) astronomy in next years is a great challenge for the scientific community. By giving a significant amount of new information, GWs will be a cornerstone for a better understanding of gravitational physics. In this paper we re-discuss that the GW astronomy will permit to solve a captivating issue of gravitation. In fact, it will be the definitive test for Einstein's general relativity (GR), or, alternatively, a strong endorsement for extended theories of gravity (ETG).

  8. Building a Successful Teachers' Workshop in Astronomy & Astrophysics (United States)

    Smecker-Hane, T. A.; Thornton, C. E.


    We discuss the Teachers' Workshop in Astronomy & Astrophysics, a 2-day long summer workshop we designed to aid K-12 grade teachers in incorporating astronomy and astrophysics into their curricula. These workshops are part of a faculty-led outreach program entitled Outreach in Astronomy & Astrophysics with the UCI Observatory, funded by an NSF FOCUS grant to the University of California, Irvine. Approximately 20 teachers from the Compton, Newport/Mesa and Santa Ana Unified School Districts attend each workshop. Our teachers realize that astronomy captures the imagination of their students, and thus lessons in astronomy can very effectively convey a number of challenging math and science concepts. Our workshop is designed to give teachers the content and instruction needed to achieve that goal. Because only a small fraction of teachers have taken a college astronomy course, an important component of the workshop is lectures on: (1) the motion of objects in the night sky, moon phases and the seasons, (2) the solar system, (3) the physics of light, and (4) interesting applications such as searching for planets around other stars and charting the expansion history of the Universe. The second important component of the workshop is the kit of material each teacher receives, which includes a introductory astronomy textbook, planetarium software, and the ASP's "Universe at Your Fingertips" and "More Universe at Your Fingertips", etc.. The latter two books give teachers many examples of creative hands-on activities and experiments they can do with their classes and instruction on how to build a coherent curriculum for their particular grade level. We also introduce teachers to Contemporary Laboratory Exercises in Astronomy (CLEA), a suite of computer lab exercises that can be used effectively in high school physics classes. For more information, see Funding provided by NSF grant EHR-0227202 (PI: Ronald Stern).

  9. Improving Education and Public Outreach Through Astronomy Education Research (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.


    Following in the footsteps of physics education research, the relatively new field of astronomy education research is already making dramatic improvements to the teaching and learning of astronomy. Whereas physics education research has focused predominantly on the introductory physics course, astronomy education is working on developing instruments and models to understand widely ranging domains that span K-12, undergraduate majors and non-majors, and even into the realms of public outreach. As one example, the repeated call for a more student-centered approach to teaching due to the ineffectiveness of lecture has been gaining prominence in the astronomy teaching community. At the beginning of a large-enrollment introductory astronomy survey course, we administered 68-multiple choice items as a pretest to 81 students. At the end of each lecture we administered the specific items related to that particular day's lecture a second time as a posttest. The pretest was 30% correct and the test, when given after lecture alone showed 52% correct. These results illustrate that instructor-centered strategies are largely ineffective at promoting meaningful conceptual gains. Alternatively, when using curriculum materials created from a basis of astronomy education research, we find that the posttest average score grows beyond 70%. Each 15-minute Lecture-Tutorial poses a carefully crafted sequence of conceptually challenging, Socratic-dialogue driven questions, along with graphs and data tables, all designed to encourage students to reason critically about difficult concepts in astronomy. A significant effort was focused on carefully evaluating changes in students' conceptual understanding and attitudes toward learning astronomy. The quantitative and qualitative results strongly suggest that the Lecture-Tutorials help students make significant conceptual gains.

  10. Georgians Experience Astronomy Research in Schools: An Introduction (United States)

    Webster, Zodiac T.; Aguilar, J. C.; Higdon, S. J. U.


    Georgia Department of Education and its partners at Columbus State and Georgia Southern Universities are engaged in creating a comprehensive program to institutionalize high quality astronomy in its high schools. The goal of the Georgians Experience Astronomy Research in Schools (GEARS) project is to transform the way high-school Astronomy is taught in 100% of GA's public schools by 2012. GEARS will be an innovative and rigorous, NASA research-infused Astronomy curriculum, which will reach thousands of students in rural, urban, and suburban areas and will be taught by highly trained teachers. GEARS project leaders have two objectives: 1) Develop and implement an online high-school Astronomy course for inclusion in the GA Virtual School portal. The GEARS course will be a progression through inquiry-based research experiences culminating in authentic data analysis and data mining activities selected from the NASA archives. The GEARS framework and units will meet the new Georgia Performance Standards in Astronomy and will be incorporated into teacher workshops. 2) Ensure the sustainability and utilization of GEARS both online and in a blended classroom approach by providing teacher professional development, integrating it into Space Science for Teachers graduate courses, and by developing a network of Georgia Astronomy Resource Teachers who will teach GEARS astronomy and mentor other teachers in their local areas. This poster will provide an overview of the workshop and course curricular framework, design philosophy and sample units. Partnerships with interested parties, especially those with NASA data, are sought. The project website is shigdon/GEARS/GEARS.html. This project is funded by NASA Grant NNX09AH83A through the GADOE, supported by CSU and GSU.

  11. C46 `ASTRONOMY Education and Development': a Peculiar Commission (United States)

    de Greve, Jean-Pierre; García, Beatriz; Gerbaldi, Michèle; Ferlet, Roger; Guinan, Edward; Hearnshaw, John; Jones, Barrie; Marschall, Laurence; Miley, George; Pasachoff, Jay; Ros, Rosa; Stavinschi, Magda; Torres-Peimbert, Silvia


    C46 was a Commission of the Executive Committee of the IAU under Division XII (Union-Wide Activities), then after 2012 under Division C (Education, Outreach, and Heritage). It was the only commission dealing exclusively with astronomy education; a previous Commission 38 (Exchange of Astronomers), which allocated travel grants to astronomers who needed them, and a Working Group on the Worldwide Development of Astronomy, have been absorbed by Commission 46.

  12. Uncovering Student Ideas in Astronomy 45 Formative Assessment Probes

    CERN Document Server

    Keeley, Page


    What do your students know-or think they know-about what causes night and day, why days are shorter in winter, and how to tell a planet from a star? Find out with this book on astronomy, the latest in NSTA's popular Uncovering Student Ideas in Science series. The 45 astronomy probes provide situations that will pique your students' interest while helping you understand how your students think about key ideas related to the universe and how it operates.

  13. 'Astronomy' or 'astrology': a brief history of an apparent confusion (United States)

    Losev, Alexandre


    The modern usage of the words 'astronomy' and 'astrology' is traced back to distinctions that are largely ignored in recent scholarship. Three interpretations of celestial phenomena (in a geometrical, a substantialist and a prognostic form) co-existed during the Hellenistic Period. From Plato to Isidore of Seville, the semiotic contrast is evidenced, and its later developments are sketched. The concept of astronomy is found to be rather constant and distinct from changing views about astrology.

  14. Episodes from the Early History of Astronomy (United States)

    Aaboe, Asger

    The author does not attempt to give a general survey of early astronomy; rather, he chooses to present a few "episodes" and treats them in detail. However, first he provides the necessary astronomical background in his descriptive account of what you can see when you look at the sky with the naked eye, unblinkered by received knowledge, but with curiosity and wit. Chapter 1 deals with the arithmetical astronomy of ancient Mesopotamia where astronomy first was made an exact science. Next are treated Greek geometrical models for planetary motion, culminating in Ptolemy's equant models in his Almagest. Ptolemy does not assign them absolute size in this work, but, as is shown here, if we scale the models properly, they will yield good values, not only of the directions to the planets, but of the distances to them, as well. Thus one can immediately find the dimensions of the Copernican System from parameters in the Almagest - we have evidence that Copernicus did just that. Further, Islamic astronomers' modifications of Ptolemy's models by devices using only uniform circular motion are discussed, as are Copernicus's adoption of some of them. finally, it is made precise which bothersome problem was resolved by the heliocentric hypothesis, as it was by the Tychonic arrangement. Next, the Ptolemaic System, the first cosmological scheme to incorporate quantitative models, is described as Ptolemy himself did it in a recenlty recovered passage from his Planetary Hypotheses. Here he does assign absolute size to his models in order to fit them into the snugly nested spherical shells that made up his universe. This much maligned system was, in fact, a harmonious construct that remained the basis for how educated people thought of their world for a millennium and a half. Finally, after a brief review of the geometry of the ellipse, the author gives an elementary derivation of Kepler's equation, and shows how Kepler solved it, and further proves that a planet moves very nearly

  15. Capturing Public Interest in Astronomy through Art and Music (United States)

    Sharma, M.; Sabraw, J.; Salgado, J. F.; Statler, T.; Summers, F.


    This is a summary of our 90-minute International Year of Astronomy (IYA) symposium workshop about engaging greater public interest in astronomy during the International Year of Astronomy 2009 through art and music. The session focused on: (i) plans for visually interesting and challenging astronomy presentations to connect with an audience at venues such as museums, concert halls, etc that might be apprehensive about science but open to creative experiences; (ii) the nuts-and-bolts of turning creative ideas into exhibits or visualizations; (iii) balancing scientific accuracy with artistic license; and (iv) how scientists, Education and Public Outreach (EPO) professionals, artists, musicians et al. can bridge the ``two cultures''---starting and sustaining multi-disciplinary collaborations, articulating expectations, and building synergy. The presenters shared with the EPO community some of the astronomy-art projects and resources that we have been developing for the IYA through a variety of collaborations. Our portfolios include state-of-the-art astronomy visualizations and tools, music videos and podcasts that highlight stunning images from NASA's Great Observatories; a video suite of astronomical images that can accompany live performances of Holst's The Planets and Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition; and SCALE, a multicomponent traveling art installation including the largest pastel drawing of the Milky Way.

  16. How Create an Astronomy Outreach Program to Bring Astronomy to Thousands of People at Outdoor Concerts Astronomy Festivals, or Tourist Sites (United States)

    Lubowich, Donald


    I describe how to create an astronomy program for thousands of people at outdoor concerts based on my $308,000 NASA-funded Music and Astronomy Under the Stars (MAUS) program (60 events 2009 - 2013), and the Astronomy Festival on the National Mall (AFNM, 10,000 people/yr).MAUS reached 50,000 music lovers at local parks and at the Central Park Jazz, Newport Folk, Ravinia, or Tanglewood Music Festivals with classical, folk, pop/rock, opera, Caribbean, or county-western concerts assisted by astronomy clubs. Yo-Yo-Ma, the Chicago and Boston Symphony Orchestras, Ravi Coltrane, Esperanza Spalding, Phish, Blood Sweat and Tears, Deep Purple, Tony Orlando, and Wilco performed at these events. AFNM was started in 2010 with co-sponsorship by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. MAUS and AFMN combine solar, optical, and radio telescope observations; large posters/banners; hands-on activities, imaging with a cell phone mount; citizen science activities; hand-outs; and teacher info packet. Representatives from scientific institutions participated. Tyco Brahe, Johannes Kepler, and Caroline Herschel made guest appearances.MAUS reached underserved groups and attracted large crowds. Young kids participated in this family learning experience-often the first time they looked through a telescope. While events; use many telescopes for multiple targets; project a live image or video; select equipment that is easy to use, store, set-up, and take down; use hands-on astronomy activities; position the displays for maximum visibility (they are teachable moments); have educator hand-outs, show citizen science projects, promote astronomy clubs and science museums.

  17. Astronomy for Everyone: Harvard's Move Toward an All-Inclusive Astronomy Lab and Telescope (United States)

    Bieryla, Allyson


    Harvard University has a growing astronomy program that offers various courses to the undergraduate concentrators, secondaries and non-majors. Many of the courses involve labs that use the 16-inch DFM Clay Telescope for night-time observations and the heliostat for observing the Sun. The goal is to proactively adapt the lab and telescope facilities to accommodate all students with disabilities. The current focus is converting the labs to accommodate visually impaired students. Using tactile images and sound, the intention is to create an experience equivalent to that of a student with full sight.

  18. The power of Bayesian evidence in astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Jenkins, C R


    We discuss the use of the Bayesian evidence ratio, or Bayes factor, for model selection in astronomy. We treat the evidence ratio as a statistic and investigate its distribution over an ensemble of experiments, considering both simple analytical examples and some more realistic cases, which require numerical simulation. We find that the evidence ratio is a noisy statistic, and thus it may not be sensible to decide to accept or reject a model based solely on whether the evidence ratio reaches some threshold value. The odds suggested by the evidence ratio bear no obvious relationship to the power or Type I error rate of a test based on the evidence ratio. The general performance of such tests is strongly affected by the signal to noise ratio in the data, the assumed priors, and the threshold in the evidence ratio that is taken as `decisive'. The comprehensiveness of the model suite under consideration is also very important. The usefulness of the evidence ratio approach in a given problem can be assessed in adv...

  19. Gravitational wave astronomy: needle in a haystack. (United States)

    Cornish, Neil J


    A worldwide array of highly sensitive ground-based interferometers stands poised to usher in a new era in astronomy with the first direct detection of gravitational waves. The data from these instruments will provide a unique perspective on extreme astrophysical objects, such as neutron stars and black holes, and will allow us to test Einstein's theory of gravity in the strong field, dynamical regime. To fully realize these goals, we need to solve some challenging problems in signal processing and inference, such as finding rare and weak signals that are buried in non-stationary and non-Gaussian instrument noise, dealing with high-dimensional model spaces, and locating what are often extremely tight concentrations of posterior mass within the prior volume. Gravitational wave detection using space-based detectors and pulsar timing arrays bring with them the additional challenge of having to isolate individual signals that overlap one another in both time and frequency. Promising solutions to these problems will be discussed, along with some of the challenges that remain. PMID:23277598

  20. 2002 Kuiper prize lecture: Dust Astronomy (United States)

    Grün, Eberhard; Srama, Ralf; Krüger, Harald; Kempf, Sascha; Dikarev, Valeri; Helfert, Stefan; Moragas-Klostermeyer, Georg


    Dust particles, like photons, carry information from remote sites in space and time. From knowledge of the dust particles' birthplace and their bulk properties, we can learn about the remote environment out of which the particles were formed. This approach is called "Dust Astronomy" which is carried out by means of a dust telescope on a Dust Observatory in space. Targets for a dust telescope are the local interstellar medium and nearby star forming regions, as well as comets and asteroids. Dust from interstellar and interplanetary sources is distinguished by accurately sensing their trajectories. Trajectory sensors may use the electric charge signals that are induced when charged grains fly through the detector. Modern in-situ dust impact detectors are capable of providing mass, speed, physical and chemical information of dust grains in space. A Dust Observatory mission is feasible with state-of-the-art technology. It will (1) provide the distinction between interstellar dust and interplanetary dust of cometary and asteroidal origin, (2) determine the elemental composition of impacting dust particles, and (3) monitor the fluxes of various dust components as a function of direction and particle masses.

  1. Astronomy and its role in ancient Mesoamerica (United States)

    Šprajc, Ivan


    The observation of the sky had an important rôle among the Maya, Aztecs and other prehispanic peoples of Mesoamerica. Their familiarity with the regularities of the apparent motion of the Sun, the Moon and bright planets is attested in a large amount of astronomical data contained in codices and monumental hieroglyphic inscriptions, as well as in their sophisticated calendrical system. On the other hand, the study of architectural alignments has disclosed that civic and ceremonial buildings were largely oriented on astronomical grounds, mostly to sunrises and sunsets on certain dates, allowing the use of observational calendars that facilitated a proper scheduling of agricultural and the associated ritual activities in the yearly cycle. Both accurate knowledge and other astronomically-derived concepts reveal that the significance attributed to certain celestial events by the ancient Mesoamericans can be explained in terms of the relationship of these phenomena with specific environmental and cultural facts, such as seasonal climatic changes and subsistence strategies. It was particularly due to its practical utility that astronomy, intertwined with religious ideas and practices, had such an important place in the worldview and, consequently, in the cosmologically substantiated political ideology of Mesoamerican societies

  2. Gravitational wave astronomy with the SKA

    CERN Document Server

    Janssen, G H; McLaughlin, M; Bassa, C G; Deller, A T; Kramer, M; Lee, K J; Mingarelli, C M F; Rosado, P A; Sanidas, S; Sesana, A; Shao, L; Stairs, I H; Stappers, B W; Verbiest, J P W


    On a time scale of years to decades, gravitational wave (GW) astronomy will become a reality. Low frequency (nanoHz) GWs are detectable through long-term timing observations of the most stable pulsars. Radio observatories worldwide are currently carrying out observing programmes to detect GWs, with data sets being shared through the International Pulsar Timing Array project. One of the most likely sources of low frequency GWs are supermassive black hole binaries (SMBHBs), detectable as a background due to a large number of binaries, or as continuous or burst emission from individual sources. No GW signal has yet been detected, but stringent constraints are already being placed on galaxy evolution models. The SKA will bring this research to fruition. In this chapter, we describe how timing observations using SKA1 will contribute to detecting GWs, or can confirm a detection if a first signal already has been identified when SKA1 commences observations. We describe how SKA observations will identify the source(s...

  3. Teaching Astronomy from Elementary School to University (United States)

    Amorim, V.; Pereira, M. G.; Liberato, M. L. R.; Caramelo, L.; Amraoui, M.; Alencoão, A. M.; Reis, A.


    Earth sciences are included in both elementary and secondary education school curricula in Portugal because it increases students' skills concerning living in planet Earth. Astronomy concepts and laws are learned to provide a global understanding of the constitution and characterization of the universe, the solar system and the position of Earth in these systems. The Earth in Space theme comprises: the universe (scale measurements and characterization); the solar system (origin, constitution, orientation, dimension and characterization); the Earth in the solar system (movements and forces); and the Earth (shape and constitution). Interaction processes between the Sun, the Earth and the Moon, (e.g. earth position, explanation of day and night, reason for the seasons, phases of the moon) are also studied. It is aimed that the students learn to monitor and to register the observations. In this sense, besides the use of planetarium and field observations using telescopes we also propose the use of internet and simulation software. Our experience reveals that software dynamics studies and online exploitation techniques improve student outcomes since they provide the opportunity for students to develop their own mental models. All these resources collectively seem to provide an appropriate creative environment for students. For these reasons, we are working with elementary and secondary school teachers. We firmly believe that it is more likely to result in a gradual progress in their practices, in the curricula and in long-term improvements in students' outcomes.

  4. Gamma-ray astronomy with underground detectors

    CERN Document Server

    Halzen, Francis


    Underground detectors measure the directions of up-coming muons of neutrino origin. They can also observe down-going muons made by gamma rays in the Earth's atmosphere. Although gamma ray showers are muon-poor, they produce a sufficient number of muons to detect the sources observed by GeV and TeV telescopes. With a threshold higher by one hundred and a probability of muon production of about 1\\% for the shallower AMANDA and Lake Baikal detectors, these instruments can, for a typical GRO source, match the detection efficiency of a GeV satellite detector since their effective area is larger by a factor 10^4. The muons must have enough energy for accurate reconstruction of their direction. Very energetic muons on the other hand are rare because they are only produced by higher energy gamma rays whose flux is suppressed by the decreasing flux at the source and by absorption on interstellar light. We show that there is a window of opportunity for muon astronomy in the 100~GeV energy region which nicely matches th...

  5. Failed Subject: Communication and Didactics of Astronomy (United States)

    del Puerto, Carmen

    In the overall context of science popularisation, it is often remarked the need for specialised journalism: good training programmes for journalists would provide them with scientific communication skills. Thus, science journalists are usually educated at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC). However, the success of the scientific communication also depends on the skills of the scientists. They have to learn to communicate scientific projects and results, because this is both a necessity (even to themselves) and an obligation. Moreover, many young scientists will get positions in education and divulgation. As we are aware of these issues, our MSc degree in astrophysics (IAC-University of La Laguna) incorporates a course in "Communication of Scientific Results and Teaching of Astronomy". The Science and Cosmos Museum (Cabildo de Tenerife) is also involved in this 4-month (3 ECTs) compulsory course. MSc students not only learn how to get funds, apply for observing time, write scientific papers, present contributions to scientific meetings, edit their own CV, or communicate their results to colleagues, they also learn techniques for divulgation and promotion of science in a practical and funny way. Students act as popularisers, scientific journalists and high-school teachers within the classroom. In this contribution, we report our experience over the past two academic years.

  6. Data challenges of time domain astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Graham, Matthew J; Mahabal, Ashish; Donalek, Ciro; Drake, Andrew; Longo, Giuseppe


    Astronomy has been at the forefront of the development of the techniques and methodologies of data intensive science for over a decade with large sky surveys and distributed efforts such as the Virtual Observatory. However, it faces a new data deluge with the next generation of synoptic sky surveys which are opening up the time domain for discovery and exploration. This brings both new scientific opportunities and fresh challenges, in terms of data rates from robotic telescopes and exponential complexity in linked data, but also for data mining algorithms used in classification and decision making. In this paper, we describe how an informatics-based approach-part of the so-called "fourth paradigm" of scientific discovery-is emerging to deal with these. We review our experiences with the Palomar-Quest and Catalina Real-Time Transient Sky Surveys; in particular, addressing the issue of the heterogeneity of data associated with transient astronomical events (and other sensor networks) and how to manage and analy...

  7. The Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (sofia) (United States)

    Gehrz, R. D.; Becklin, E. E.


    The joint U.S. and German Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) is a 2.5- meter infrared airborne telescope in a Boeing 747-SP that began science flights in 2010. Flying in the stratosphere at altitudes as high as 45,000 feet, SOFIA can conduct photometric, spectroscopic, and imaging observations at wavelengths from 0.3 microns to 1.6 millimeters with an average transmission of greater than 80 percent. SOFIA is staged out of the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center aircraft operations facility at Palmdale, CA and the SOFIA Science Mission Operations Center (SSMOC) is located at NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA. SOFIA's first-generation instrument complement includes high speed photometers, broadband imagers, moderate resolution spectrographs capable of resolving broad features due to dust and large molecules, and high resolution spectrometers suitable for kinematic studies of molecular and atomic gas lines at km/s resolution. About 100 eight to ten hour flights per year are expected by 2014, and the observatory will operate until the mid 2030's. We will review the status of the SOFIA facility, its initial complement of science instruments, and the opportunities for advanced instrumentation.

  8. Astronomy Festival on the National Mall (United States)

    Lubowich, D.


    The annual Astronomy Festival on the National Mall (AFNM) takes place on 11 acres north of the Washington Monument in June (previous AFNM were April and July). AFNM, sponsored by Hofstra University, features optical and radio telescope viewing of the Sun, Moon, planets, stars, clusters, and nebulae; a live large-screen image, a cell phone imaging mount; exhibits; hands-on activities; videos; large outdoor banners and posters; citizen science activities; hand-outs; bookmarks, and teacher information materials. With no tall buildings almost the entire sky is visible and 10th mag. moons of Saturn and the Ring Nebula (9.75 mag.) were easily visible on clear nights. Representatives from some of the nation's foremost scientific and educational institutions presented exciting demonstrations and activities; and answered questions about careers in science, celestial objects, and the latest astronomical discoveries. Local amateur astronomers set up twenty telescopes on the Mall and long lines of 20-30 people waited to look through the telescopes. Visitors met astronaut Dr. John Grunsfeld (Associate Administrator, NASA) and astronomers Dr. Lisse, Dr. Livengood, Dr. Warren, and Dr. Paul Hertz (Director, Astrophysics Division, NASA). Important historical astronomers spoke to the attendees: Caroline Herschel (Lynn King); Tycho Brahe (Dean Howarth); and Johannes Kepler (Jeff Jones). Free telescopes, donated by Celestron, were raffled off.

  9. How Swift is redefining Time Domain Astronomy

    CERN Document Server

    Gehrels, Neil


    NASA's Swift satellite has completed ten years of amazing discoveries in time domain astronomy. Its primary mission is to chase gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), but due to its scheduling flexibility it has subsequently become a prime discovery machine for new types of behavior. The list of major discoveries in GRBs and other transients includes the long-lived X-ray afterglows and flares from GRBs, the first accurate localization of short GRBs, the discovery of GRBs at high redshift (z>8), supernova shock break-out from SN Ib, a jetted tidal disruption event, an ultra-long class of GRBs, high energy emission from flare stars, novae and supernovae with unusual characteristics, magnetars with glitches in their spin periods, and a short GRB with evidence of an accompanying kilonova. Swift has developed a dynamic synergism with ground based observatories. In a few years gravitational wave observatories will come on-line and provide exciting new transient sources for Swift to study.

  10. The new Andean Regional Office of Astronomy for Development (ROAD) (United States)

    Char, Farid; Forero-Romero, Jaime


    The Andean Regional Office of Astronomy for Development (ROAD) is a new effort in South America to serve several goals in astronomical development. Six countries (Bolivia, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Perú and Venezuela) will work together, representing a common language block in the Andean region and focusing on develop strategies to strengthen the professional research, education and popularization of astronomy. Our current Working Structure comprises a ROAD Coordinator and Coordinators per Task Force, as well as Organizing Committees, Collaborators and Volunteers.The participating institutions of this new ROAD have been involved in many projects involving each of the current OAD’s Task Forces: research, schools and children and public, exploring educational activities/material to be shared among the Andean countries, standardizing the knowledge and creating inspirational experiences. We expect to generate many efforts in order to bring a more homogeneous activity in each Andean country, taking into account the special role of Chile in global astronomy, due to its great conditions for astronomy and the involvement of many professional observatories, universities and astronomy institutions.Our current (and upcoming) most relevant activities includes: Andean Schools on Astronomy, Andean Graduate Program and Massive Open Online Courses (TF1); Virtual Training Sessions and Teaching material for the visually impaired students; Annual TF2 meeting to gather all the collaborators (TF2); Development for planetariums and Communicating Astronomy with the Public (TF3). The Andean region, in the other hand, will also be involved in at least two important events: the CAP Meeting in May 2016 and the XV LARIM in October 2016 (both in Colombia); and Chile will bid to host the XXXI IAU GA in 2021, with the aim of show the great advances in astronomical development from the Andean region and South America.

  11. Introducing Slide Sets for the Introductory Astronomy Instructor (United States)

    Meinke, Bonnie K.; Schneider, Nicholas; Brain, David; Schultz, Gregory; Buxner, Sanlyn; Smith, Denise


    The NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) Science Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) community and Forums work together to bring the cutting-edge discoveries of NASA Astrophysics and Planetary Science missions to the introductory astronomy college classroom. These mission- and grant-based E/PO programs are uniquely poised to foster collaboration between scientists with content expertise and educators with pedagogy expertise. We present two new opportunities for college instructors to bring the latest NASA discoveries in Space Science into their classrooms.In an effort to keep the astronomy classroom apprised of the fast moving field of planetary science, the Division of Planetary Sciences (DPS) has developed “DPS Discoveries”, which are short, topical presentations that can be incorporated into college lectures. The slide sets are targeted at the Introductory Astronomy undergraduate level. Each slide set consists of three slides that cover a description of the discovery, a discussion of the underlying science, and a presentation of the big picture implications of the discovery, with a fourth slide that includes links to associated press releases, images, and primary sources. Topics span all subdisciplines of planetary science, and sets are available in Farsi and Spanish. The NASA SMD Planetary Science Forum has recently partnered with the DPS to continue producing the Discovery slides and connect them to NASA mission science. Similarly, the NASA SMD Astrophysics Forum is coordinating the development of a series of slide sets to help Astronomy 101 instructors incorporate new discoveries in their classrooms. The “Astro 101 slide sets” are presentations 5-7 slides in length on a new development or discovery from a NASA Astrophysics mission relevant to topics in introductory astronomy courses. We intend for these slide sets to help Astronomy 101 instructors include new developments (not yet in their textbooks) into the

  12. A Partnership in Observational and Computational Astronomy (POCA) (United States)

    Walter, Donald K.; Brittain, S. D.; Cash, J. L.; Hartmann, D. H.; Howell, S. B.; King, J. R.; Leising, M. D.; Mayo, E. A.; Mighell, K. J.; Smith, D. M., Jr.


    A partnership has been established between South Carolina State University (SCSU, a Historically Black College/University), the National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO) and Clemson University (CU) under an award from NSF's "Partnerships in Astronomy and Astrophysics Research and Education (PAARE)" program. The mission of POCA is to develop an effective, long-term partnership that combines the strengths of the three institutions to increase the scientific and educational output of all the partners with special emphasis on enhancing diversity in the field of astronomy. Components of the program include enhancing faculty and student research in astronomy at SCSU, recruiting and retaining underrepresented minority students into the field, outreach through planetarium programs and museum exhibits and developing web based resources in astronomy education. Activities in the first year of the program are discussed. We have begun developing and testing several new astronomy laboratory exercises. Our first summer internship program has concluded successfully. With PAARE scholarship money, we are now supporting four physics majors at SCSU who have chosen the astronomy option (concentration) for their degree. SCSU undergraduates have acquired observing experience on the KPNO Mayall 4-meter telescope under the guidance of faculty and graduate students from CU. NOAO astronomers have collaborated with SCSU faculty to begin a research program that studies RV Tauri stars. Funds from PAARE are supporting follow-up research to a just-completed doctoral dissertation by E. A. Mayo described elsewhere in these proceedings. Future plans for graduate fellowships and related activities are discussed in addition to summer internships for POCA undergraduates at CU and NOAO. Support for this work was provided by the NSF PAARE program to South Carolina State University under award AST-0750814.

  13. Astronomy Outreach for Large, Unique, and Unusual Audiences (United States)

    Lubowich, Donald


    My successful outreach program venues include: outdoor concerts and festivals; the US National Mall; churches, synagogues, seminaries, or clergy conferences; the Ronald McDonald Houses of Long Island and Chicago; the Winthrop U. Hospital Children’s Medical Center the Fresh Air Fund summer camps (low-income and special needs); a Halloween star party (costumed kids look through telescopes); a Super Bowl Star Party (targeting women); Science Festivals (World, NYC; Princeton U.; the USA Science and Engineering Festival); and the NYC Columbus Day Parade. Information was also provided about local science museums, citizen science projects, astronomy educational sites, and astronomy clubs to encourage lifelong learning. In 2010 I created Astronomy Festival on the National Mall (co-sponsored by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy) with the participation of astronomy clubs, scientific institutions and with Tyco Brahe, Johannes Kepler, and Caroline Herschel making guest appearances. My programs include solar, optical, and radio telescope observations, hands-on activities, a live image projection system; large outdoor posters and banners; videos; hands-on activities, and edible astronomy demonstrations.My NASA-funded Music and Astronomy Under the Stars (MAUS) program (60 events 2009 - 2013) reached 50,000 music lovers at local parks and the Central Park Jazz, Newport Folk, Ravinia, or Tanglewood Music Festivals with classical, folk, pop/rock, opera, Caribbean, or county-western concerts assisted by astronomy clubs. Yo-Yo-Ma, the Chicago and Boston Symphony Orchestras, Ravi Coltrane, Esperanza Spalding, Phish, Blood Sweat and Tears, Deep Purple, Tony Orlando, and Wilco performed at these events. MAUS reached underserved groups and attracted large crowds. Young kids participated in this family learning experience - often the first time they looked through a telescope. While education

  14. Critical Issues in the Philosophy of Astronomy and Cosmology (United States)

    Dick, Steven J.


    Although the philosophy of science and of specific sciences such as physics, chemistry, and biology are well-developed fields with their own books and journals, the philosophy of astronomy and cosmology have received little systematic attention. At least six categories of problems may be identified in the astronomical context: 1) the nature of reasoning, including the roles of observation, theory, simulation, and analogy, as well as the limits of reasoning, starkly evident in the anthropic principle, fine-tuning, and multiverse controversies; 2) the often problematic nature of evidence and inference, especially since the objects of astronomical interest are for the most part beyond experiment and experience;3) the influence of metaphysical preconceptions and non-scientific worldviews on astronomy, evidenced, for example in the work of Arthur S. Eddington and many other astronomers; 4) the epistemological status of astronomy and its central concepts, including the process of discovery, the problems of classification, and the pitfalls of definition (as in planets); 5) the role of technology in shaping the discipline of astronomy and our view of the universe; and 6) the mutual interactions of astronomy and cosmology with society over time. Discussion of these issues should draw heavily on the history of astronomy as well as current research, and may reveal an evolution in approaches, techniques, and goals, perhaps with policy relevance. This endeavor should also utilize and synergize approaches and results from philosophy of science and of related sciences such as physics (e.g. discussions on the nature of space and time). Philosophers, historians and scientists should join this new endeavor. A Journal of the Philosophy of Astronomy and Cosmology (JPAC) could help focus attention on their studies.

  15. Laboratory Experiments in Physics for Modern Astronomy With Comprehensive Development of the Physical Principles

    CERN Document Server

    Golden, Leslie


    This book presents experiments which will teach physics relevant to astronomy. The astronomer, as instructor, frequently faces this need when his college or university has no astronomy department and any astronomy course is taught in the physics department. The physicist, as instructor, will find this intellectually appealing when faced with teaching an introductory astronomy course. From these experiments, the student will acquire important analytical tools, learn physics appropriate to astronomy, and experience instrument calibration and the direct gathering and analysis of data. Experiments that can be performed in one laboratory session as well as semester-long observation projects are included. This textbook is aimed at undergraduate astronomy students.

  16. 47 CFR 73.6027 - Class A TV notifications concerning interference to radio astronomy, research and receiving... (United States)


    ... interference to radio astronomy, research and receiving installations. 73.6027 Section 73.6027... radio astronomy, research and receiving installations. An applicant for digital operation of an existing... astronomy, research and receiving installations....

  17. School Astronomy Club: from Project to Knowledge (United States)

    Folhas, Alvaro


    Prepare a generation of young people for the challenges of the future is a task which forces us to rethink the school, not just for being difficult, but also because students feel that the school has very little to offer, especially something that interests them. Thus, the school is dysfunctional, is ill, and needs prompt treatment. School have to adjust to the new times, and this does not mean changing the old blackboards by advanced interactive whiteboards. The school has to find the way to the students with something that seduce them: the Challenge. The Astronomy Club that I lead in my school is essentially a Project space. Students who voluntarily joined the club, organize themselves according to their interests around projects whose outcome is not defined from the beginning, which requires them to do, undo and redo. Which obliges them to feel the need to ask for help to mathematics or physics to achieve answers, to feel the passion to study with a genuine purpose of learning. Some examples of the work: The younger students are challenged to reproduce the historical astronomical experiments that have opened the doors of knowledge such as the Eratosthenes experiment to determine the perimeter of the Earth (on equinox), or by using congruent triangles, determine the diameter the sun. These students are driven to establish distance scales in the solar system, which, to their astonishment, allows them to clear misconceptions that arise from some pictures of books and allows them to have a scientifically correct idea of the planetary orbit and distance separating the planets of the Solar System. For students from 15 to 18 years, I have to raise the level of the challenges and use the natural tendency of this age bracket to assert making new and exciting things. To this purpose, I am fortunate to have the support of large organizations like NUCLIO, ESA, CERN, and Go-Lab Project, Inspiring Science Education, Open Discovery Space and Global Hands on Universe. Through

  18. Astronomy Legacy Project - Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (United States)

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


    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 ( 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 (

  19. Crank Astronomy as a Teaching Tool. II (United States)

    Bridgman, William T.; Young, C.; Robbins, S.


    Many astronomers - and indeed, scientists in general - have dealt with them: You receive one or more emails from intense individuals who insist that your interpretation of any data is wrong and THEIR idea is Truth (with a capitol "T"). The person contacting you might have some scientific background, or none at all. You might respond to the individual, trying to be helpful, perhaps pointing out some misinterpretation they have of your results, or a fatal flaw their idea. They respond with accusations of ignorance, incompetence and conspiracies, and it goes rapidly downhill from there. While most scientists consider these individuals - some of whom are part of more organized groups with various non-scientific agendas - as a nuisance, it might be better to regard them as an opportunity to improve classroom teaching. A surprising number of the claims from these individuals can be addressed at the level of introductory physics or other science classes. They provide simple examples of hypotheses that do not work making them valuable for teaching science and critical thinking. These skills are important for any member of the scientifically literate public and are imperative for any scientist. We present some crank astronomy claims with a focus on heliophysics which are suitable for actual analysis by students with undergraduate-level physics background. The analyses may also be suitable for high school physics classes. We also encourage educators interested in using examples of where people go wrong in their thinking to use these as teachable examples. Some lessons, writing assignments, or extra credit can be assigned to students to require them to use both critical thinking and the information learned in class to counter these kinds of claims. In doing so, one not only encourages the development of a student's critical thinking that will serve them in any field, but the student is also better prepared when they will face similar types of claims in the future.

  20. Leveraging Metacognition to Enhance Learning Astronomy (United States)

    van der Veen, Wil E.


    For students to think deeply about their own thinking (to be metacognitive) is critical to the enterprise of science and science learning. Scientists integrate new knowledge gained through investigations only when that knowledge is examined in relation to what they already know, tentatively believe, or previously doubted. We will summarize the research on the crucial role of metacognition in learning astronomy and science in general. We will emphasize two essential components of metacognition: (1) Elicitation of students’ prior knowledge, and (2) Students’ reflection on how their initial ideas are changing over time. Research has shown convincingly that students do not come to class as empty vessels. They come with ideas and beliefs gleaned from books, television, movies, real-life, and previous classroom experiences. These ideas can either facilitate or impede their learning as explained in "How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School” (NRC, 2003). In many cases, students have ideas that get in the way of learning new ones. Considerable evidence from research shows that instruction is most effective when it elicits students’ initial ideas, provides them with opportunities to confront those ideas, helps them formulate new ideas based on evidence, and encourages students to reflect upon how their ideas have evolved ("Effective Science Instruction: What Does Research Tell Us?", Horizon Research, Inc., 2008). Without these opportunities, students "may fail to grasp the new concepts and information that are taught, or they may learn them for purposes of a test but revert to their preconceptions outside the classroom” ("How People Learn", NRC, 2003, page 14). Multiple approaches are needed in order for students to develop the ability to think about scientific thinking. We will briefly discuss a variety of techniques and resources to elicit student ideas and to reflect on how students’ ideas change over time.