Author Archives: OscarBen

What’s Next?

Wow. In these last few months, we have gone over the entire cosmic calendar. The last topic of the class, life elsewhere in the universe, covered stuff that hasn’t even happened on this calendar yet. In this class, I really believe I’ve learned a lot of material, rather than memorizing a lot. Studying for this upcoming… More What’s Next? Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog9, cosmic calendar, Historical | Comments Off on What’s Next?

Quantum Entanglenment

  Quantum entanglement is a central principle of quantum physics that says some particles, like photons or electrons, are linked together so that the state of one particle cannot be described independently of the other. Another central principle of quantum theory is that before a particle is measured, it doesn’t have a definite state but… More Quantum Entanglenment Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog8, physics | Comments Off on Quantum Entanglenment

Creation of the Kuiper Belt

Recently in class we’ve been talking about the outer portion of our Solar System. Beyond Neptune lies the Kuiper Belt, the disc-shaped region that begins at about 30 AUs and ends around 55 AUs. The Kuiper Belt is home to hundreds of thousands of icy bodies, an estimated trillion or more comets, and Pluto, according to… More Creation of the Kuiper Belt Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog7, Kuiper Belt, Observables, Solar System | Comments Off on Creation of the Kuiper Belt

Spaghettification

The event horizon of a black hole is the point of no return. When an object gets close to this event horizon, extreme tidal forces from the black hole create a gravitational field that is so strong it begins to compress objects into long, thin shapes, like spaghetti. These are the same tidal forces we’ve discussed… More Spaghettification Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog6, physics | Comments Off on Spaghettification

The Fermi Paradox

Have you ever sat around and wondered, where are all the aliens? Well, you certainly aren’t the only one. In 1950, Enrico Fermi came to the realization that “any civilization with a modest amount of rocket technology and an immodest amount of imperial incentive could rapidly colonize the entire galaxy” according to SETI.  His theory, known… More The Fermi Paradox Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in Aliens, astro2110, blog4, Class, fermi | Comments Off on The Fermi Paradox

MUSE Telescope

The Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) telescope is one of the newest telescopes that allows us to get 3D views of the universe. MUSE is installed on the European Southern Obserbatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile. It took over a decade to design and develop it but finally went online in March of 2014 and captured… More MUSE Telescope Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog3, Class, Instruments, technology, telescope | Comments Off on MUSE Telescope

Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe has recently been described as “the first competent mind in modern astronomy to feel ardently the passion for exact empirical facts” by Edwin Burtt in The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Physical Science; a Historical and Critical Essay (1925). He is the best naked-eye observer of all time, and was able to observe a supernova… More Tycho Brahe Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, brahe, Historical, Historical Context, HW6 | Comments Off on Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe has recently been described as “the first competent mind in modern astronomy to feel ardently the passion for exact empirical facts” by Edwin Burtt in The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Physical Science; a Historical and Critical Essay (1925). He is the best naked-eye observer of all time, and was able to observe a supernova… More Tycho Brahe Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, brahe, Historical, Historical Context, HW6 | Comments Off on Tycho Brahe

Solar Eclipses

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 Eclipses Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog2, Solar Eclipse, Sun | Comments Off on Solar Eclipses

Consequences of breaking the speed limit

The effects of aberration and the Doppler Effect. Source: Comic Vine During one of the first class sessions, we were given a minute or so to write down what would happen if the speed of light was only 100 mph. I’d never really thought about this before, so I struggled to get anything more than “The… More Consequences of breaking the speed limit Continue reading Continue reading

Posted in astro2110, blog1, Light, physics, speed of light | Comments Off on Consequences of breaking the speed limit