Daily Archives: January 25, 2016

Blog #2

The topic of zodiac signs and how they the constellations and the ecliptic is fascinating to me. Humans have recognized the appearance of certain constellations behind the sun throughout a large part of history. Of course, the true cause of the changing zodiac signs is that the earth’s position changes relative to the sun and […] Continue reading

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No Need to Feel Small

The Powers of Ten video, originally made in 1977 by Charles and Ray Eames, is a stunning look into not only the unimaginable vastness of the universe, but also the depth of biological life itself. The video takes away the anxiety of being a very small human in a very large universe by presenting the […] Continue reading

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The Speed Limit of the Universe

58,536 km/h. That’s the speed of the fastest ever man-made vehicle: the New Horizons space probe. Though this may seem like an unfathomable feat to the layperson, there’s something that can travel even faster than that by five orders of magnitude. Light is the current “speed limit of the universe.” It travels at 3 x 108  m/s or 1 […] Continue reading

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Blog #1

For my first blog, I will write about the size and scale of the universe and what that might mean from a human and space travel perspective. Our galaxy, the Milky Way, is about 100,000 light years across. The nearest major galaxy, Andromeda, is 2.5 million light years away. The limit of direct space exploration for […] Continue reading

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Common Misconception: The Earth’s Tilt At An Equinox

Upon visiting Dr. Grundstrom with a homework, I caught myself making a pretty silly error regarding the Earth’s Equinoxes. Looking at one of the homework questions for the seasons, I was asked to rank the order of several globes in order of how much daylight they received. One of the globes stood straight up, rotating […] Continue reading

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Solar Eclipse

A total solar eclipse. Source: SoftPedia There are two types of eclipses, lunar and solar, but I’d like to talk about the latter. Solar eclipses can be broken down into four subtypes: total, partial, annular and hybrid. In order for any of these to happen, the Sun, Moon and Earth must form a straight–or almost… More Solar Eclipse Continue reading

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The Vast Size and Scale of the Universe

Image Source The universe is so massive that it is difficult to grasp a sense of scale. In the image above, you can see what astrophysicists call the “observable universe.” This is unique to the entire universe because it excludes the parts of space that are so far away that their light has not had […] Continue reading

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One Long Trip

When we look up at the sky during the night, it can feel comforting that instead of being surrounded by darkness, we see the bright twinkles of stars all around us. Though this might make us feel like we are not simply on a rocky planet hurtling through space far from everything else, this is not […] Continue reading

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Precession of Earth

I think one of the most interesting topics in Chapter 2 of the Astronomy textbook is about the concept of precession, or the gradual change in the rotational axis of Earth. The direction of Earth’s axis rotates on a 26,000 year cycle. That may mean next to nothing to us in our lifespan, but precession will gradually […] Continue reading

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The Cosmic Calendar

We, as humans, can have difficulty understanding amounts that exceed our narrow perspective. To aid us in understanding the 14 billion years that the universe has existed and the minuscule amount of time humans have inhabited it, scientists have put it in our terms of one year. Each month of the “cosmic calendar” represents roughly 1 … Continue reading “The Cosmic Calendar” Continue reading

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