Principles of radiation astronomy
The course objective is to provide students with the principles of radiation astronomy. At the end of the course, a student should have a well-rounded knowledge of astronomy, radiation, and observational and theoretical astronomy, each as they apply to radiation sources in the sky especially at night.
The course is built upon the ongoing research performed by astronomers around the world and in the not so empty space above the Earth's atmosphere.
In line with the Wikiversity ideal of learning by doing are sixteen laboratory opportunities, an equal number of problem sets at several levels, and participatory lessons. To present a wide variety of concepts within radiation astronomy, there are forty-eight lectures which are also partly articles as references from the scholarly literature are included to challenge the student and open doors to further curiosity. Some sixteen supplemental quiz section lectures/articles are included for additional learning.
The course material is layered from a primary, or secondary level, to a university or tertiary level, topped off with an introduction to research, some of which is here at Wikiversity. A label indicating the education level may not be present for each resource.
In some instances your interaction and responses may be used for research purposes but your username or other identifiers are not included. If the resource itself is also being used for research purposes you will see the icon: .
- 1 Prerequisites
- 2 Completion levels
- 3 Lectures
- 4 Quiz section lectures
- 5 Lectures under development for possible inclusion
- 6 Laboratories
- 7 Lessons
- 8 Problem sets
- 9 Quizzes
- 10 Hourlies
- 11 Midterm examination
- 12 Final examination
- 13 Syllabus
- 14 See also
- 15 Further reading
- 16 External links
Although a working knowledge of calculus and physics is beneficial, most of the concepts presented only require algebra. Additional learning resources where the student may increase their background knowledge while progressing through the course are provided.
This course is dynamic, but may also be taken as a semester offering by Wikiversity, see the syllabus for the next formal class period.
Each component resource has a level of completion icon following it based on ≥ 100 kb equals 100 %, or 100 questions is 100 %, the midterm and final are based on 300 questions equals 100 %:
- This resource is a stub, which means that pretty well nothing has been done yet. 0-5%.
- This resource is just getting off the ground. Please feel welcome to help! 6-15%.
- Been started, but most of the work is still to be done - 16-30%.
- About halfway there. You may help to clarify and expand it - 31-45%.
- Almost complete, but you can help make it more thorough - 46-60%.
- Ready for testing by learners and teachers. Please begin! 61-75%.
- This resource is considered to be ready for use - 76-90%. R
- This resource has reached a high level of completion - 91-100%. C
All of the resources for this class have been completed in time for students taking the course during the January to May 2015, semester. Updates to any resource that do not affect course content may occur at any time. Other updates may occur either with appropriate notices or where the subsequent update is incorporated in any subsequent hourly, midterm or final quiz. Additional content revisions or updates will occur between semester offerings.
A completion icon may not be present for resources at 100 %.
Lecture or article changes that affect content after the beginning of a semester are not included in that term's requirements:
- Meteorites has been changed to include more iron meteorites.
- Rocky objects described in Meteorites that are not meteorites or the product of meteorite falls or strikes are being removed as they are duplicates of material already in the course. Students are responsible for this material where it occurs outside the meteorites lecture/article.
Each set of three lectures are associated with the learning-by-doing laboratory experiences, mini-lectures plus quizzes for the student to test their learning progress with some additional information, 2-3 lengthier exams often referred to as 'hourlies' (may take an hour to work through at a timed pace), a mid-term exam which is all-encompassing for the first half, and a final exam over the entire course material. The examinations are designed to be taken iteratively as many times as the student desires to achieve a thorough working knowledge of the subject.
- Planetary science
- Mathematical astronomy
- Theoretical astronomy
- Source astronomy
- Radiation astronomy
- Radiation detectors
- Radiation telescopes
- Radiation satellites
- Theoretical radiation astronomy
- Cosmic-ray astronomy
- Neutron astronomy
- Proton astronomy
- Electron astronomy
- Positron astronomy
- Neutrino astronomy
- Gamma-ray astronomy
- X-ray astronomy
- Optical astronomy
- Ultraviolet astronomy
- Visual astronomy
- Violet astronomy
- Blue astronomy
- Cyan astronomy
- Green astronomy
- Yellow astronomy
- Orange astronomy
- Red astronomy
- Infrared astronomy
- Submillimeter astronomy
- Radio astronomy
- Superluminal astronomy
- Lofting technology
- Sun as an X-ray source
- X-ray classification of stars
- Coronal cloud
- Radiative dynamo
- Radiation chemistry
- Radiation geography
- Radiation history
- Radiation entities
- Radiation mathematics
- Solar binary
- Star fission
- Star-forming region
- Stellar active region
Quiz section lectures
- Astronomical observatories
- Crater astronomy
- First astronomical source
- First astronomical X-ray source
- Intergalactic medium
- Interplanetary medium
- Interstellar medium
- Meteor astronomy
- Muon astronomy
- Standard candles
- Stellar science
- Stellar surface fusion
- X-ray trigonometric parallax
Lectures under development for possible inclusion
- Airborne astronomy
- Analytical astronomy
- Background astronomy
- Balloons for astronomy
- Beta-particles astronomy
- Early telescopes
- Earth-orbit astronomy
- Empirical astronomy
- Empirical radiation astronomy
- Entity astronomy
- Exploratory astronomy
- Gaseous-object astronomy
- Heliocentric astronomy
- Intensity astronomy
- Liquid-object astronomy
- Meson astronomy
- Microwave astronomy
- Milky Way
- Mineral astronomy
- Neutrals astronomy
- Object astronomy
- Orbital-platform astronomy
- Plasma-object astronomy
- Radar astronomy
- Regional astronomy
- Rocky-object astronomy
- Solar astronomy
- Solar system
- Sounding rockets for astronomy
- Standard-candles astronomy
- Subatomics astronomy
- Sun-synchronous astronomy
- Trigonometric-parallax astronomy
For the course, sixteen laboratories should be completed. Examinations containing information from any laboratory will list it.
Lessons are participatory original research projects. They are part of the history of science and only require some skills in map reading and comparison and contrast. Some familiarity with literature searching such as on Wikipedia, SIMBAD, or the web is beneficial and included in the instructions.
- First blue source in Boötes
- First cyan source in Caelum
- First gamma-ray source in Triangulum Australe
- First green source in Tucana
- First infrared source in Crux
- First neutron source in Volans
- First orange source in Cancer
- First positron source in Phoenix
- First radio source in Pisces
- First red source in Canis Major
- First submillimeter source in Carina
- First superluminal source in Indus
- First ultraviolet source in Sagittarius
- First violet source in Leo
- First X-ray source in Andromeda
- First yellow source in Aquila
- Energy phantoms : students start from specific situations of energy, determine how to acquire more or less energy, and convert units of energy into other units to change their situation.
- Furlongs per fortnight : students use dimensional analysis to convert from one type of speed or velocity to another in a variety of situations.
- Radiation mathematics/Problem set
- Radiation astronomy/Problem set
- Vectors and coordinates
- Unknown coordinate systems
- Unusual units
- Telescopes and cameras
- Angular momentum and energy
- Cosmic circuits
- Column densities
- Planck's equation
- Synchrotron radiation
- Radiation dosage: students calculate their current situation radiation dosage, determine how long they have to live, and either change their shielding or location to increase their chances of survival.
- Star jumping: students convert angular coordinates and locations to units of displacement to layout an interstellar journey around the Galaxy and back to Earth.
The quizzes are rated by number of questions, with 100 questions being a high level of completion, even though some are left at lower numbers of questions.
- Astronomical observatories/Quiz
- Blue astronomy/Quiz
- Coronal cloud/Quiz
- Cosmic-ray astronomy/Quiz
- Crater astronomy/Quiz
- Cyan astronomy/Quiz
- Electron astronomy/Quiz
- First astronomical source/Quiz
- First astronomical X-ray source/Quiz C
- Gamma-ray astronomy/Quiz
- Green astronomy/Quiz C
- Infrared astronomy/Quiz
- Intergalactic medium/Quiz
- Interplanetary medium/Quiz
- Interstellar medium/Quiz
- Lofting technology/Quiz
- Mathematical astronomy/Quiz
- Meteor astronomy/Quiz
- Muon astronomy/Quiz
- Neutrino astronomy/Quiz
- Neutron astronomy/Quiz
- Optical astronomy/Quiz
- Orange astronomy/Quiz
- Planetary science/Quiz
- Positron astronomy/Quiz
- Proton astronomy/Quiz
- Radiation astronomy/Quiz C
- Radiation chemistry/Quiz
- Radiation detectors/Quiz R
- Radiation entities/Quiz
- Radiation geography/Quiz
- Radiation history/Quiz
- Radiation mathematics/Quiz
- Radiation satellites/Quiz
- Radiation telescopes/Quiz
- Radiative dynamo/Quiz
- Radio astronomy/Quiz
- Red astronomy/Quiz
- Solar binary/Quiz
- Source astronomy/Quiz
- Standard candles/Quiz
- Star fission/Quiz
- Star-forming region/Quiz
- Stellar active region/Quiz
- Stellar science/Quiz
- Stellar surface fusion/Quiz
- Submillimeter astronomy/Quiz
- Sun as an X-ray source/Quiz
- Superluminal astronomy/Quiz
- Theoretical astronomy/Quiz
- Theoretical radiation astronomy/Quiz C
- Ultraviolet astronomy/Quiz
- Violet astronomy/Quiz
- Visual astronomy/Quiz
- X-ray astronomy/Quiz C
- X-ray classification of stars/Quiz
- X-ray trigonometric parallax/Quiz
- Yellow astronomy/Quiz
Alternate examinations that may be used by your college or university for credit (and a grade) in this course will be available from Wikiversity by courier for closed proctored session testing of proficiency.
While this course may be taken in any order by each student, it may also be taken during a specific calendar period comparable to a university semester such as from January through May or August through December.
Next semester offering:
First full week in January 2015 through May 2015.
Consult the syllabus for the weekly schedule.
Each full week one lecture on each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Three lectures in the order indicated in the template Principles of radiation astronomy at the page bottom.
One laboratory is to be attempted for each of the sixteen weeks and is due at the beginning of the following week.
Each laboratory is to be started on Tuesday with the lab report due the following Tuesday.
The lessons are once a week beginning on Thursday and the report is due the following Thursday. Contributions to the online lesson are voluntary. Student does so being aware that the information once contributed is as "Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License; additional terms may apply." Note online contributions in lesson report.
Problem sets are to be started on Thursday with the written answers showing work due the following Thursday.
Each Tuesday has a quiz section mini-lecture.
In the Thursday quiz section, the quiz for the mini-lecture is to be taken.
Problem sets and lesson contributions are due at the beginning of the Thursday quiz section.
- Amateur astronomy
- Astronomy outline
- Backyard Astronomy
- Changes in the properties of matter (mass spectrometer and spectral analysis of stars)
- Cosmic View: Glossary of Terms
- General Astronomy - wikibook.
- Introduction to Astrochemistry
- Introduction to Astrophysics - wikibook.
- Mass spectrometry
- Nonstandard physics/Neutron star
- Observational astronomy
- Observational astronomy/Extrasolar planet
- Observational astronomy/Planning
- Observational astronomy/Supernova
- School:Physics and Astronomy
- Special relativity
- The visible sky
- Topic:Basic Astronomy
- Eberhard Haug & Werner Nakel (2004). The elementary process of Bremsstrahlung. River Edge NJ: World Scientific. p. Scientific lecture notes in physics, vol. 73. ISBN 9812385789. http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&id=v4FMtIwTri8C&dq=bremsstrahlung+haug&printsec=frontcover&source=web&ots=THjay1eeFA&sig=aHe-xMFwT8jxhpAGJHDnxKC6Jjc#PPA29,M1.
- Kaufmann, W. J. (1994). Universe. W H Freeman. ISBN 0-7167-2379-4.
- Smith, E.V.P.; Jacobs, K.C.; Zeilik, M.; Gregory, S.A. (1997). Introductory Astronomy and Astrophysics. Thomson Learning. ISBN 0-03-006228-4.
- Tenorio-Tagle G, Bodenheimer P (1988). "Large-scale expanding superstructures in galaxies". Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics 26: 145–97. General overview.
- Vedrenne, G and Atteia, J.-L. (2009). Gamma-Ray Bursts: The brightest explosions in the Universe. Springer. ISBN 978-3540390855. http://books.google.com/books?id=jZHSdrvzz0gC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_v2_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false.
- African Journals Online
- Bing Advanced search
- Google Books
- Google scholar Advanced Scholar Search
- International Astronomical Union
- Lycos search
- NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database - NED
- NASA's National Space Science Data Center
- NCBI All Databases Search
- Office of Scientific & Technical Information
- PubChem Public Chemical Database
- Questia - The Online Library of Books and Journals
- SAGE journals online
- The SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System
- Scirus for scientific information only advanced search
- SDSS Quick Look tool: SkyServer
- SIMBAD Astronomical Database
- Spacecraft Query at NASA.
- Taylor & Francis Online
- Universal coordinate converter
- Wiley Online Library Advanced Search
- Yahoo Advanced Web Search
Learn more about Principles of radiation astronomy