GCSE Astronomy The Night Sky: an introduction to

GCSE Astronomy The Night Sky: an introduction to

GCSE Astronomy The Night Sky: an introduction to stars, constellations, clusters etc.

Observing the Constellations: pointers, seasonal constellations

Celestial Co-ordinates: RA and declination, star charts, declination of Polaris

Circumpolar Stars: analysis of star trail photographs

Practical Observing: planning and carrying out naked-eye observations

Size, scale and nature of the Solar System: including scale models

Orbits: elliptical obits; ecliptic; zodiacal band; perihelion etc.

Exploring the Solar System: characteristics of planets, space probes

Satellites and Ring Systems: origins of moons, planetary rings Comets and the Oort Cloud: structure, origin and orbits of comets

Meteors: meteors, meteoroids, meteorites and micrometeorites

Collision Course! PHOs and the hazards that they pose

The Earth from Space: size, shape, rotation of the Earth

Observatory Earth: Earths atmosphere, telescopes and observatories

Observing the Moon: principal features, lunar rotation

Exploring the Moon: seas, craters etc. and their origin; project Apollo

Origin of the Moon: Giant Impact Hypothesis

The Sun: surface and atmosphere Sunspots: nature and appearance, solar rotation

The Suns source of energy

Observing the Sun: solar observations at different wavelengths

Lunar phases: the Moons orbit, phase cycle

Eclipses: mechanisms for, and durations of, lunar and solar eclipses

Time: solar day, sidereal day, sun dials, Equation of Time

Aurorae: the solar wind, mechanism for aurorae

The heliocentric Solar System: Copernicus, Tycho & Kepler

Galileo and his discoveries Gravity: inverse square law nature of gravity, discovery of planets

The discovery of exoplanets: evidence for exoplanets, difficulties finding them

The origin of water on Earth: water on Earth and its likely origins

Extra-terrestrial life? Drake Equation, Goldilocks zones

Collections of stars: clusters, binary stars

Magnitudes and distances: magnitudes, distances, the parsec

Variable stars: Cepheid variables, binary stars

Spectroscopy: classification of stars, temperatures and colours of stars

The birth of stars: emission nebula, absorption nebula, HR diagram The death of stars: planetary nebulae, supernovae, neutron stars, black holes

Observing the Milky Way: unaided and aided Milky Way observations

Structure of the Milky Way: size, shape and constituents of our galaxy, 21 cm radio

Classification of galaxies: types of galaxy, Tuning Fork diagram

Active galaxies: Types of active galaxy, AGNs and their evidence

Groupings of galaxies: Local group, clusters and superclusters

Redshift: The Doppler principle, redshift-radial velocity relation

Quasars: nature and discovery

Hubbles law: distance-redshift relation and estimation of the age of the Universe Cosmic microwave background radiation: discovery and nature of CMB radiation

Dark matter and dark energy: possible nature and significance

The Universe past and future: Big Bang, expanding Universe, future models

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