Monthly Archives: March 2013

Essay Topics on Astronomy

Question:  What are some good topics to do on an expository essay? I want to become and astronomer some day and I want to do my essay on something related to astronomy.  — Disha Answer: Really any topic that you … Continue reading

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Can We Measure an Exoplanet’s Orbital Decay?

Question:  Is it possible for a planet of an established solar system orbiting a star to be in a decaying orbit and if so how do astronomers confirm this as the star and its solar system can be vast numbers … Continue reading

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How Does One Measure the Flux of a Radio Source?

Question:  How to measure the flux density of radio sources in the sky, using single dish, VLA, or VLBA? (how  to do the flux scale in those measurements.)  — Hongmin Answer:  Radio source fluxes are measured by radio telescopes, whether … Continue reading

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Why do the Planets in our Solar System Orbit the Sun Counter-Clockwise?

Question: The planets in our solar system are orbiting the Sun counter clockwise, why? Do the laws of physics dictate that all planet orbit their respective stars counter clockwise or is it possible to have a solar system where the … Continue reading

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The Life Cycle of a Black Hole

Questions: Please may I ask some questions regarding black holes: — David Have black holes always existed ever since the “Big Bang”? What happens if two black holes were to collide, do they destroy one another or merge into an … Continue reading

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What Does a Black Hole Look Like?

Question: I would like to know what would show that a black hole was moving farther away from you?  My specific wonders would be how light around the hole would act, how its shape would change, or if the black … Continue reading

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What Happens to the Planets When the Sun Becomes a Red Giant and White Dwarf?

Question: I’ve been watching a very interesting series of television programmes in which Professor Brian Cox has been delving into Astronomy. One programme focused on the life cycle of stars. I understand from the programme that as our Sun enters … Continue reading

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Objects that Collide with Earth

Question: Hypothetical question: We hear about what would happen when the Earth is struck by comets and asteroids; the extinction of the dinosaurs for example or the end of life on our planet for us humans. In its infancy the … Continue reading

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What Happens as the Moon Moves Away from the Earth?

Question(s): The Earth’s moon is moving away from Earth by a few centimeters a year.  Will it break free from Earth’s gravitational influence before our Sun turns into a red giant and fries the inner planets of our solar system? … Continue reading

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