Astronomy 3 - Next Steps

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This course deals with subjects not covered by Astronomy 1 and Astronomy 2.

This course deals with subjects not covered by Astronomy 1 and Astronomy 2. We will look at different types of telescopes as well as optical telescopes such as radio, infra-red and X-ray telescopes. We look at what amateurs can contribute to astronomy without needing a telescope but just using the naked eye or binoculars. We will look at the Big Questions that remain on the Universe and what the best theories are at the moment. We will understand what the theories of Einstein were and why they were fundamental to astronomy and how they were finally proved one hundred years after being published.

What I'll learn

  • Different types of telescopes
  • How is the information from different types of telescopes compiled
  • How can amateurs help with meteor watches or with variable stars?
  • How do you map a meteor watch programme, how is the brightness of variable stars estimated with binoculars and how do we deal with errors?
  • What are the Big Questions left in astronomy?
  • Do we now know more and more about less and less; what is matter, dark matter and dark energy?
  • What are the two main Einstein theories on relativity, the Special and General theories. Why did it take decades to be accepted. How were they both proved 100 years later?


How I'll learn

Audio Visual. Discussion. Distance Learning. Formal Instruction. Practical Demonstration.


Entry Requirements

Attendance at Astronomy 1 and/or 2 would be useful but us not necessary. There will be no mathematical equations involved.