ISP 205 Lab 9 Discussion Questions
- Why did you need to measure the brightness of both the variable
star and a companion star in this lab?
- The star Procyon in Canis Minor (the small dog) is a prominent
star in the winter sky, because its apparent magnitude is +0.37. It is
also one of the nearest stars, being only 3.51 parsecs from Earth. What
is the absolute magnitude of Procyon? How many times brighter (or
dimmer) than the Sun is it?
- Suppose two stars have the same apparent magnitude, but one star
is ten times farther away than the other. What is the difference in
their absolute magnitudes?
- A certain type of variable star is known to have an average
absolute magnitude of 0.0. Such stars are observed in a particular
star cluster to have an average apparent magnitude of +16.0. What is
the distance to that star cluster?
- If the Sun were a variable star with the same amplitude (magnitude
difference between maximum and minum brightness) variation as the star
you measured in this lab, would you be able to observe that brightness
variation with your naked eye?
- What advantages and disadvantages can you think of (given your
experience with an "observatory" you had today) if you were observing
in radio frequency rather than visual? In visual we have to consider
things like light pollution and cloud cover, etc. What do we need to
take into account with radio?