By Sherman Hollar

Fathoming the boundlessness of house and the universe, we're instantly full of interest approximately our personal origins and beauty in regards to the gadgets, existence types, and subject that populate the cosmos. during the observations and paintings of astronomers over the years, now we have slowly been capable of lessen the variety of unknowns and enhance motives or theories for a number of the celestial gadgets and phenomena we see. This space-traveling survey recounts a number of the significant discovery milestones within the box of astronomy and examines the instruments and methods at present utilized by astronomers to review the universe.

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Stars have bright or dark lines in their spectra. These bright or dark lines are narrow regions of extra-high emission or absorption of electromagnetic radiation. The presence of a certain chemical, such as hydrogen or calcium, in the star causes a particular set of lines in the star’s spectrum. Since most of the lines found in stellar spectra have been identified with specific chemicals, astronomers can learn from a star’s spectrum what chemicals it contains. 30 Tools and Techniques of Astronomy Computer Modeling: Worlds Inside a Machine While astronomers mostly cannot experiment with real astronomical objects in the laboratory, they can write computer programs to employ the laws of physics to simulate the structure and behavior of the actual objects.

As a comet approaches the Sun, some of its ices evaporate. The solar wind pushes these evaporated gases away from the head of the comet and away from the Sun. This temporarily gives the comet one or more long, glowing tails that point away from the Sun. Determining the source of comets has been a puzzle for astronomers. Some comets return to the inner solar system periodically, traveling in long, elliptical orbits that may reach from Earth’s orbit to beyond Neptune. Halley’s comet, for example, appears about every 76 years.

This suggests that the basic ingredients for life are common in the solar system. Mars is an intriguing place to look for life. Spacecraft have photographed large features that appear to be dry riverbeds. Data from NASA’s Spirit and Opportunity rovers in the early 2000s strongly suggest that liquid water once existed on the planet’s surface. Also, data from the European Mars Express orbiter and from Earth-based telescopes suggest that methane is being released from beneath the surface, and a possible source for this could be subsurface colonies of bacteria.

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