The Universe and Galaxies: THE SOLAR SYSTEM

Discovery Space: THE SOLAR SYSTEM Advances in space travel have changed the way we have come to see the Earth, its neighboring planets, and the universe as a whole. Thanks to space probes we can now more thoroughly explore our solar system, which is governed by the sun’s energy. The sun forces planets and other … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: The Starry Sky

Discovery Space: The Starry Sky Light given off by stars is often outshone by light sources on Earth. Yet, anyone away from the big cities and looking up to the night sky can enjoy the stellar sparkle in all its glory. The sky is full of stars even during the day; however, only one of … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: Dying Stars

Discovery Space: Dying Stars The nature of the last phase in the life of a dying star is largely determined by its mass. The star’s last energy reserves are expended, which can produce stunning visual effects. When all the hydrogen in the center of a star has been used up and fused to form helium, … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: The Diversity of Stars

Discovery Space: The Diversity of Stars Stars come in many forms, and they also undergo dramatic changes over the course of their development. Stars can be distinguished on the basis of their size, brightness, and color, among other factors. Some exhibit regular or irregular variations in bright- ness. By no means are all stars singletons … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: Stars

Discovery Space: Stars Stars are colossal power plants, producing energy in abundance. They are also the source of the chemical elements that make up the planets—and our own bodies. The birth of a star The birth of a star takes place in a gigantic cloud of gas. Stars differ in mass, color, and brightness, but … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: The milky way system

Discovery Space: The milky way system The solar system is also part of a galaxy. Together with billions of stars it travels along its path around the center of the Milky Way system. Our home star system is known as the Milky Way galaxy. On a clear night, with good visibility, we can make out … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: Galaxies

Discovery Space: Galaxies Stars are very seldom lone objects; they are almost always part of a gigantic, rotating star system. The massive dimensions of a star are virtually inconceivable for most people, and the breathtaking space between them even more so. It takes about 2.5 million years for the light from the nearest large neighboring … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: Dark Matter and Dark Energy

Discovery Space: Dark Matter and Dark Energy Astronomical observations suggest the existence of an invisible material, only recognized by indirect effects of its gravity. Mysteriously, there may also be a special kind of energy accelerating the expansion of the universe. Apparently there is a very large amount of matter between the stars. This matter does … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: Theory of the Big Bang

Discovery Space: Theory of the Big Bang Most cosmologists accept the big bang theory as a realistic model of the origin of the universe. The model suggests that the universe evolved from an extremely condensed primeval state. Nobody knows for sure what really happened during the first moments. The part of the universe that we … Read more

The Universe and Galaxies: Survey of the universe

Discovery Space: Survey of the universe In order to understand the universe, it needs to be surveyed. Astronomers use various methods to measure the vast distances between stars and galaxies, and to study the behavior at these remote objects. If two objects radiate with the same intensity (luminosity), then the closer object will appear brighter. … Read more