Astronomy college course/Chasing Pluto

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1

The trip by New Horizons from Earth to Pluto took almost a

week
month
year
decade
century

2

The time to reach __________ was shortened from 9 days to 3 hours due to the speed of the rocket that delivered New Horizons

the Moon
Mars
the asteroid belt
Jupiter

3

When the discovery of the "ninth planet" was made in 1930, the name Pluto was chosen after a cartoon that was a common childhood experience shared by most astronomers of the day

true
false

4

The image to the right corresponds to
Pluto HST lower left.jpg

Pluto HST upper left.jpg
Pluto HST upper right.jpg

5

The image to the right corresponds to
Pluto HST lower right.jpg

Pluto HST upper left.jpg
Pluto HST upper right.jpg

6

These two images of Pluto represent:
Hst pluto1 derivative.png

a land-based telescope and the Hubble Space Telescope
raw and processed images
New Horizons near Earth and mid-way to Pluto
New Horizons mid-way to Pluto and near Pluto
New Horizons and the Hubble Space Telescope

7

The atmosphere of Pluto

emerges when the surface thaws as it approaches the Sun
emerges when the surface thaws due to tidal heating from the Moons
emerges when the surface thaws due to tidal heating from Jupiter
emerges when the surface thaws due to tidal heating from Neptune
is mostly oxygen

8

Energy for the New Horizons is provided by

lithium batteries
fuel cells
solar power
nuclear power

9

As it approached Pluto, New Horizons was slightly larger than

a grand piano
the Hubble Space Telescope
a 10 story building

10

The "Chasing Pluto" video showed a stellar occultation that was observed in order to learn something about Pluto's

mass
atmosphere
size

11

The "Chasing Pluto" video showed a stellar occultation that was observed

from the Keck Observatory in 1994
from the 200 inch Hale Telescope in 1968
from the Hubble Space Telescope in 1998
from a cargo plane in 1988

12

A stellar occultation occurs when a planet passes in front of a star

true
false

13

A stellar occultation occurs when the north or south pole of a planet is aligned with a star

true
false

14

Stellar occultation tells something about a planet because

blocking the nearby stars allows a better view of the planet
the star acts as a light source for the detection of planetary spectral lines that are absorption lines
the star acts as a light source for the detection of planetary spectral lines that are emission lines
the orientation of the planet's rotation about its axis can be precisely determined

15

Silicon carbide was used to construct the telescope LORRI because this material is

strong
light
not prone to warp at low temperature
all of these

16

The darker portions of Pluto are believe to be from "snowflakes" of

silicates
water
hydrocarbons
nitrogen

17

"Pepssi", "Rex", "Swap", "Lorri", "Alice" and "Ralf" are

named after friends of the cartoon charactor 'Pluto'
instruments on the New Horizon
asteroids discovered by New Horizon
the people responsible for calculating the orbit of New Horizon
Kuiper objects discovered by New Horizon

18

What was the concern about taking a telescope/camera to the cold environment near Pluto?

the telescope might bend
the the mirror might crack
the plates might crack
the electronics might fail

19

As New Horizon's approaches Jupiter, it was essential that

it approach Jupiter closely enough for Jupiter's gravity to pull New Horizons to a 20% higher speed
avoid hitting the moons of Jupiter
avoid going into the rings of Jupiter

20

While close to Jupiter, New Horizons the most spectacular image was of

the great red spot
Jupiter's rings
a newly discovered moon
a live volcano

21

The Kuiper belt has been described as a ___________ made of ___________

deep freeze ... rock and metal
mystery band ... rock and ice
mystery band ... rock and metal
deep freeze ... rock and ice

22

For most of its nine-year journey, it was asleep, but once a week, the New Horizon's spacecraft

photographed EARTH
photographed PLUTO
called MOM
adjusted the ORBIT

23

Clyde Tombaugh, who discovered Pluto back in the 1930s

privately funded the Lowell observatory
was self educated
had resigned from a position at Yale to focus his efforts on discovering "Planet X"

24

Clyde Tombaugh's reward for discovering Pluto was

a Nobel prize
a college education
an invitation to teach at Yale

25

The blink comparator compared

the atmosphere around an object with the object itself
the size of two different objects
the location of an object on two different days

26

A typical average radio station uses 50,000 watts to transmit a signal. The transmitter on New Horizons used

5 thousand times less power
5 thousand times more power
5 times less power
5 times more power
almost the same amount of power

27

Mike Brown's search for another Pluto-like object eventually led to the discovery of [[w:Eris|]] in 2005. What was the first clue that Eris was larger than Pluto?

It was brighter in the sky than Pluto
it was surprisingly bright for an object moving that quickly
it was surprisingly bright for an object moving that slowly
it had a surprisingly large influence on Pluto's orbit

28

Pluto ceased to be called a planet in 2006, after the IAU defined a planet of our Sun as an object that is (1) in orbit around the Sun, (2) roughly spherical due to it's mass, and (3):

lies in the same plane as the other nine planets
has cleared the neighborhood around its orbit.
has a nearly circular orbit
is larger than Earth's moon
is more massive than Mercury

29

The influence of Jupiter's gravity on Pluto is that Jupiter gradually pushes Pluto away

true
false

30

The influence of Jupiter's gravity on Pluto is that Jupiter gradually brings Pluto closer

true
false

31

Which was NOT listed as one of the three things commonly considered necessary for the formation of life?

sunlight
water
energy
organic matter

32

As New Horizons approached Jupiter, it looked for new moons, and the ground crew was glad that

the New Horizons discovered three new moons
there were no new moons because moons are debris generators
there were no new moons because moons are capable of capturing spacecraft


References and footnotes[edit]

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