Astronomy 103

Fall 2014

Sections 1-2-3-4.

These are introductory courses to astronomy, with more emphasis on active thinking than memorizing facts. The main points of this course are (1) a general understanding of astronomy, (2) what can be observed in the sky, (3) the stars and the Universe.


Test 2 grades have been posted, together with the correct solutions.
They are significantly better than Test 1 grades. Good job, students!

In all classes and for all tests,

students need a new scantron # 16485,

one scantron for each class.

What's up in the sky?

The Sun.
There are quite a few sunspots now!

First Quarter: Oct. 30, Full Moon: Nov. 6,

Last Quarter: Nov. 14, New Moon: Nov. 22.


Uranus is up all night in Pisces, but looks little (3.7 as) and faint (5.7 mg) in the telescope.

Neptune is up all night in Aquarius, but looks very tiny (2.3 as) and quite faint (7.9 mg) in the telescope.



1. Philae, a space probe on board of the Rosetta spacecraft, will land on a comet on Nov. 11 - a first landing on a comet's nucleus.

2. Meteor impact carve new craters on Mars.

3. Jupiter's Great Red Spot is shrinking and fading?


Unusual events and objects

(Students might want to ask help in how to use the coordinates, ephemerids and finder charts.)

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