Today a lot of people have a camera and take photos - black and white, sepia or full of coulors. In our albums we have photos with family, friends, animals, buildings and so on... Some people became profesionalists and their pictures are a pieces of art.
But we have also a lot of photos in science.
Astronomy is one of the oldest scientific studies. It uses special physical methods to discovers new objects and studies "old". Astronomy is connected with physic, biology, chemistry and metheorology. Also the computers systems and graphics take part in this science. Informations from telescopes (e.g. from the best known Hubble's Telescope) go first to the computers, there are checked and then some of theme published.
"2009 has been declared by the UN to be the International Year of Astronomy (IYA2009). The focus is on enhancing the public’s understanding and engagement with astronomy."
Without observatory we can't see everything on the sky. But in my opinion we should better know our universe. To make this easier (and to take part in IYA2009) I want to present you few interesting photos with short comments.
One of my favourites pictures is a photo of solar eclipse.
During these eclipse Earth (or some parts of Earth) is in the Moon’s shadow. In this few minutes we cannot see the sun, only the bright corona - a white halo of solar gases.
In the other hand, when we observe lunar eclipse, Moon is in the Eath’s shadow and we see it red.
Sun is only one in our solar system, but we see it almost every day. Comets are rare, although on the sky is plenty of theme. Then why
we can’t observe comets each night? True is that... we
observe, but by telescopes in observatories. Each year astronoms discovers about a hundred of new comets! They are made of rock, metal and ice, and most often have two tails: ion and dust tail. In the picture of Comet West we can see both.
The next of astronomical photos schows galaxies. Galaxy is a large group of stars, dust and gases. Our Galaxy was named Milky Way by Romans. Milky Way is a typical spiral galaxy, bright with the light of new stars.
The next class are elliptical galaxies, the most common in
universe, which cannot “produce” new stars. They contain younger stars in centre and the outer parts are occupied by old and “dark”.
The third category are irregular galaxies,normally small and difficult to detect. Old and new stars are mixed with gases and dust. The best known irragular galaxis are the Small and Large Magellenic Clouds, that are our nearst neighbours.
On the end - supernova. Johannes Kepler in 1604 saw the last supernova before the invention of the telescope. The next was photographed in Februar 1987, during observation of Large Magellanic Cloud. This supernova quickly terned coulor and cooled. But what is more interesting in March it brightened again and this burst reached towards the end of May, when it was as luminous as billions of suns!
Based on L. Hewitt, P. Hewitt, J. Suchocki "Conceptual Physical Science"