Astronomy

Category archives for Astronomy

Numbers Game (Synopsis)

No one science can stand wholly on its own. For inquiry about the Universe to give a correct, complete picture, it requires that we bring in a whole slew of evidence, often from tangentially related fields. The interplay between three fields in particular — astronomy, physics, and math (not a science, but the tool used…

“These spots have never been observed by anyone before me; and from my observations of them, often repeated, I have been led to the opinion which I have expressed, namely, that I feel sure that the surface of the Moon is not perfectly smooth, free from inequalities and exactly spherical… but that, on the contrary,…

Observing Night (Synopsis)

“For my confirmation, I didn’t get a watch and my first pair of long pants, like most Lutheran boys. I got a telescope. My mother thought it would make the best gift.” -Wernher von Braun A telescope is only as good, mind you, as the amount of time you spend looking through it. And for…

“In the year 1456 … a Comet was seen passing Retrograde between the Earth and the sun… Hence I dare venture to foretell, that it will return again in the year 1758.” -Edmond Halley When ESA’s Rosetta mission “caught” its target, Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in August, 2014, one of its main science goals was to watch…

“We like to admit to only that which already glows, although it is nobler to support brightness before it glows, not afterwards.” -Dejan Stojanovic When we look back to greater and greater distances in the Universe, we’re looking back to earlier and earlier times as well. At some point, we can see far enough back…

“Girls blush, sometimes, because they are alive, half wishing they were dead to save the shame. The sudden blush devours them, neck and brow; They have drawn too near the fire of life, like gnats, and flare up bodily, wings and all. What then? Who’s sorry for a gnat or girl?” -Elizabeth Barrett Browning As…

“The Milky Way is nothing else but a mass of innumerable stars planted together in clusters.” -Galileo Galilei It is, in fact, almost exactly as Galileo said. Galileo missed a few things, though, including a plethora of unclustered stars, dust, nebulae and star-forming regions as well. Want to view it all at once? Check out…

“I lie on the floor, washed by nothing and hanging on. I cry at night. I am afraid of hearing voices, or a voice. I have come to the edge, of the land. I could get pushed over.” -Margaret Atwood We had a great run with Messier Monday, followed by a fun mini-series on Mini-Movie…

“Even when Darwin’s teaching first made its appearance, it became clear at once that its scientific, materialist core, its teaching concerning the evolution of living nature, was antagonistic to the idealism that reigned in biology.” -Trofim Lysenko We love having debates when there’s a disagreement. When there are multiple competing explanations for an effect, multiple…

“He who would search for pearls must dive below.” -John Dryden Sometimes falling can be a painful thing, as Ween might sing you in their ominous composition, Falling Out, but sometimes it can be absolutely wonderful, like when the Hubble space telescope allows you to “fall in” to the closest large galaxy to us: Andromeda. Thanks to…