Astronomy is the natural science of studying objects and phenomena located outside the Earth’s atmosphere. Stars, planets, comets, asteroids, meteors, nebulae as well as other galaxies are studied by Astronomers, both professional and amateur alike, that use a wide range of instruments and technology to make determinations regarding the density and chemical composition of these objects, as well as their relative distance from Earth.
Astronomy is without a doubt one the oldest sciences known to man. Our earliest ancestors were fascinated with the celestial objects that were visible in the night sky, so much so that they developed navigational skills that used star locations as a means to guide them from one place to another.
Astronomy shouldn’t be confused with Astrology, although they both have similar origins, they involve completely different theories and beliefs. Astrology deals with the belief that the positions of celestial objects has a direct impact on human affairs, whereas Astronomy studies the evolution and formation of the entire universe, namely the birth of a star or planet, how it was created, what the chemical composition of the object is, as well as the orbital motion it maintains in conjunction with other objects in the same galaxy.
Ancient early civilizations that began studying Astronomy were only able to observe and predict the motions of celestial objects that they could see with the unaided human eye. This process was normally carried out from positions considered advantageous, such as the top of a mountain or the highest building.
Since the telescope had yet to be invented some of these civilizations actually erected enormous observatories that they used not only for astronomical purposes but for ceremonies as well. The monuments they erected were also used to determine the upcoming changes in the seasons, indicating at what times of the year crops should be planted or prepare to be harvested.
For the most part early Astronomers were only concerned with the mapping of stars and planets. It wasn’t until the construction of astronomical observatories that ideas regarding the evolution of the universe were first postulated and explored. Some of the earliest beliefs revolved around the theory that the Earth was at the center of the galaxy and that all of the stars and planets were placed in orbit around it. This theory is referred to as the Ptolemaic system, which depicts a geocentric model of the universe using the Earth as the center point.
Astronomy in the modern age involves the study of unique objects such as quasars, pulsars, neutron stars and the infamous black hole. The advancements in technology we have at our fingertips today allows us the opportunity to explore the cosmos like never before, and with each consecutive step we get closer and closer to realizing how life as we know it began centuries and centuries ago.
Astronomy continues to play a vital role in the search for more answers regarding who we are and where we came from. Astronomers often relate that the study of celestial objects is akin to traveling back in time. The further back we are able to go the better we will understand how the planets and stars were formed and how life came to be on this tiny little rock we call Earth.
From thousands of years mankind has endeavored to study as much as possible about the universe, but there are still a lot of things that are unknown. There are lot of things that we know and more than that, there a lot of things that we do not know about our universe. Science has progressed in the field of astronomy; we have learned a lot and are amazed and confused of whatever we have learnt. As the technology is progressing, more and more the learning is increasing.
Some of the interesting facts about the universe are described below.
* Scientists consider that only five percent of matter is visible in the universe and the rest of the matter is invisible to us, which is considered to be made up of Dark Matter and the strange energy present in the universe is known as the Dark Energy.
* They consider that the neutron stars are so thick that a soup can filled with the neutron star matter would end up having more mass than moon.
* The energy released by the Sun at every second is equal to the energy produced by hundred billion nuclear bombs.
* The historians believe that Galileo Galilei was not the one who invented telescope in fact, a Dutch eyeglass maker known by the name of Johannes Lipperhsey the creator of telescope. Galileo was the first person to use it in studying the universe.
* One more term is associated with Universe, which is commonly known as the Black hole. The black holes are considered to be dense with strong gravity that even does not allows light to escape. The scientists have named the situation in which light escapes as Hawking Radiation.
* The supernova explosion that took place in 1054 AD created the Crab Nebula, which was noted by the Arab and Chinese Astronomers. According to them, the outburst was so glittering that it was noticeable during the day and lighten the night sky for months.
Astrophysics is an excellent decision at the Master degree level. Individuals who complete their graduation with soaring marks can go for astrophysics for their postgraduate study. There are numerous organizations where astronomers are employed.
Many astrophysicists are also affianced in teaching at an observatory or university or museum to edify the public and other professionals. Professional writing and publishing is crucial for most astrophysicists. They are often the ones who build up the written procedures and principles for evaluating data sets.
With a Bachelor degree one can get an entry-level research position in, for e.g.
1. An aerospace company
2. Satellite manufacturer
3. National laboratory or at a observing or photographing astronomy
4. Museum or
5. Science centre
While taking into account such a vocation it is essential to become conscious that these days astronomy is not conventional astronomy-observing or photographing astronomical stuff. Instead it entails the use of physics, mathematics, or geology to value these objects. Various “astronomy” departments at institutions and universities are, actually, called departments of astrophysics or planetary science.
A considerable fraction of the Ph.D. aspirants in astrophysics hold an undergraduate degree in physics or mathematics. Many Ph.D. contenders in physics departments prefer these topics that entail astrophysics, since some of the most exhilarating subjects in contemporary physics are subjects in this field.
After accomplishing a course in astronomy, one can be a research scientist with a number of research institutions and government organizations. After completing research, employment prospect with different institutions increase. Various government institutions also employ astronomers as scientists, who are given high remuneration with additional perks and grants.
People love stargazing even without any binoculars. This is despite of the darker sky brought about by pollution. Stars have always been an interesting subject for men since thousands of years ago. They were already interesting then and they become even more interesting now that there are already advanced tools that can be used to study the stars. In fact, there is the Giant Magellan that is under development and is set to become one of the largest astronomy telescopes.
All these astronomy tools only make the universe even more fascinating to study. This is why people are always attracted to news about the latest solar flare discovery and the fact that there might be some stars going supernova. Astronomers and enthusiasts alike are always waiting for even the smallest piece of information about black holes, which are more exciting subjects than the anti-matter. Anything related to the black hole would put a great emphasis on how small our planet and even our solar system are and how big the universe truly is.
Theories on How the Universe Came to Be
Stephen Hawking, a prominent author of a book about the universe, may have wrong theories about the vast space outside our planet. However, no single man can actually tell whether a theory about the universe is true or not. This is because there is still so much that we need to know about the universe. In fact, it would be hard to determine which theories are still considered valid and which already disproved.
In the 1990s, the most widely believed theory was that there countless number of universes in space. Now, the Big Bang Theory is considered as the closest theory about the universe. However, all these theories are just deduced conclusions from all the findings that were made. There is still no concrete proof about what the universe really is all about.
If you are interested in studying the heavenly bodies, you basically just need a telescope, which is the main specialized equipment needed for this hobby. Although you can see the stars with your naked eye, you can see them up close with the help of astronomy telescopes. According to astronomy telescope reviews, even a simple backyard telescope can do a lot of things in helping you observe the universe. If it is just a hobby, the telescope’s magnification features may not be that important to you as long as you can see the stars.
But if you want to study the stars with the intent of discovering something, you need a more powerful telescope with more magnification capacity. The development of more powerful telescopes was initiated with the invention of the Hubble telescope. Their lenses are already powerful and over the years, these lenses have become even more powerful.
Research About the Universe
Aside from watching the stars, you need to do your job by analyzing every bit of data that you have obtained. This way, you will get more use out of the time you spent stargazing.
With the creation of more powerful astronomy tools, more detailed pictures are captured of the universe. These are now being analyzed by ordinary people through social networking because the human eye is still the most accurate tool in identifying objects, more than any advanced program.
There are a lot of astronomy telescopes to choose from. If you want to find the best, you may read best astronomy telescopes for a more informed decision.