Radiation astronomy/Courses/Principles/Syllabus/Spring

For those wishing to take a formally structured undergraduate university semester-length course, this is the Spring offering for principles of radiation astronomy. Resource titles here are conventional although the actual resource may appear slightly different. For example, X-ray astronomy has been changed to Radiation astronomy/X-rays which is a suggestion for naming resources. See Wikiversity:Naming conventions which is a proposal. There are no consensus approved naming conventions at Wikiversity. Re-directs will automatically take you to each resource.

Samples from comet Wild 2 have been returned to Earth by NASA's Stardust spacecraft. Credit: Erica Hupp/ Merrilee Fellows and William Jeffs, NASA.{{free media}}

General course details may be found at the Syllabus.

"Scientists have found minerals formed near the sun or other stars in the samples returned to Earth by NASA's Stardust spacecraft in January [2006]."[1]

"The interesting thing is we are finding these high-temperature minerals in materials from the coldest place in the solar system."[2]

"We have found very high-temperature minerals, which supports a particular model where strong bipolar jets coming out of the early sun propelled material formed near to the sun outward to the outer reaches of the solar system."[3]

"It seems that comets are not composed entirely of volatile rich materials but rather are a mixture of materials formed at all temperature ranges, at places very near the early sun and at places very remote from it."[3]

Spring hits for 30 d periodEdit

For some 219 course resources such as laboratories (L), lectures, mini-lectures, lessons, problems, and quizzes, the total hits over the 219 elements was 9302 for the last full week in February combined with the first full three weeks in March.

The breakdown per course elements was laboratories (L), 1.96 %, lectures, 76.1 %, lessons, 4.38 %, problems, 2.57 %, or quizzes, 14.9 %.

Highest individual course element is Mathematical astronomy at 1,007.

January 3, 2022, MondayEdit

This image is a composite of several types of radiation astronomy: radio, infrared, visual, ultraviolet, soft and hard X-ray. Credit: NASA.{{free media}}

January 4, 2022, TuesdayEdit

The invisible cloud is plummeting toward our galaxy at nearly 700,000 miles per hour. Credit: Saxton/Lockman/NRAO/AUI/NSF/Mellinger.{{free media}}

January 5, 2022, WednesdayEdit

The universe within 1 billion light-years (307 Mpc) of Earth is shown to contain the local superclusters, galaxy filaments and voids. Credit: Richard Powell.{{free media}}

January 6, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is a visual image of lambda Boötis. Credit: Aladin at SIMBAD.{{free media}}
  • Problem set: Energy phantoms, solutions including work steps due on January 13, 2022.

January 7, 2022, FridayEdit

The irregular galaxy NGC 1427A is passing through the Fornax cluster at nearly 600 kilometers per second (400 miles per second). Credit: NASA, ESA, and The Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA).{{free media}}

January 10, 2022, MondayEdit

This Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX) image of the spiral galaxy Messier 81 is in ultraviolet light. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/J. Huchra (Harvard-Smithsonian CfA).{{free media}}

January 11, 2022, TuesdayEdit

The image contains a series of radio images at successive epochs using the VLBA of the jet in the broad-line radio galaxy 3C 111. Credit: M. Kadler, E. Ros, M. Perucho, Y. Y. Kovalev, D. C. Homan, I. Agudo, K. I. Kellermann, M. F. Aller, H. D. Aller, M. L. Lister, and J. A. Zensus.{{fairuse}}
  • Laboratory: Cratering, report is due on January 18, 2022.

January 12, 2022, WednesdayEdit

This color picture was made by combining several exposures taken on the night of December 28th 1994 at the 0.9 m telescope of the Kitt Peak National Observatory. Credit: N.A.Sharp/NOAO/AURA/NSF.{{fairuse}}

January 13, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is an image of NGC 1679 in Caelum. It is a spiral galaxy located two degrees south of Zeta Caeli. Credit: NASA/ESA (Wikisky).{{fairuse}}

January 14, 2022, FridayEdit

This is a Hubble Space Telescope Image of NGC 4414. Credit: Hubble Heritage Team (AURA/STScI/NASA).{{free media}}

January 17, 2022, MondayEdit

The Hubble Space Telescope image shows four high-velocity, runaway stars plowing through their local interstellar medium. Credit: NASA - Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys.{{free media}}

January 18, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This is a real visual image of the red giant Mira by the Hubble Space Telescope. Credit: Margarita Karovska (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics) and NASA.{{free media}}

January 19, 2022, WednesdayEdit

On July 19, 2012, an eruption occurred on the sun that produced a moderately powerful solar flare and a dazzling magnetic display known as coronal rain. Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Music: 'Thunderbolt' by Lars Leonhard, courtesy of artist.{{free media}}

January 20, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is a color composite image of NGC 7662. Credit: Judy Schmidt.{{free media}}

January 21, 2022, FridayEdit

The diagram shows scattered disc objects out to 100 AU. Credit: Eurocommuter.{{free media}}

January 24, 2022, MondayEdit

This is a multicolor image from the Pan-STARRS1 telescope of the free-floating planet PSO J318.5-22, in the constellation of Capricornus. Credit: N. Metcalfe & Pan-STARRS 1 Science Consortium.{{free media}}

January 25, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This graphic shows the distance from the Oort cloud to the rest of the Solar System and two of the nearest stars measured in astronomical units (AU). Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech.{{free media}}

January 26, 2022, WednesdayEdit

This image shows a cumulus cloud above Lechtaler Alps, Austria. Credit: Glg.{{free media}}

January 27, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This star is listed in SIMBAD as having spectral type G. Credit: Aladin at SIMBAD.{{fairuse}}

January 28, 2022, FridayEdit

Known objects in the Kuiper belt, are derived from data from the Minor Planet Center. Credit: WilyD.{{free media}}

January 31, 2022, MondayEdit

Asteroids in the solar system are categorized by size and number. Credit: Marco Colombo, DensityDesign Research Lab.{{free media}}

February 1, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This image shows Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Credit: ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/ UPM/DASP/IDA.{{fairuse}}

February 2, 2022, WednesdayEdit

An atmospheric river forms over Hawai'i then heads toward California 10-11 April 2017. Credit: UW-CIMSS.{{fairuse}}

February 3, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This infrared image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the nebula nicknamed "the Dragonfish". Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Toronto.{{free media}}

February 4, 2022, FridayEdit

This Sin-Kamen (Blue Rock) near Lake Pleshcheyevo used to be a Meryan shrine Credit: Viktorianec.{{free media}}

February 7, 2022, MondayEdit

This is an image of the mineral pitchblende, or uraninite. Credit: Geomartin.{{free media}}

February 8, 2022, TuesdayEdit

Representation of upper-atmospheric lightning and electrical-discharge phenomena are displayed. Credit: Abestrobi.{{free media}}
  • Laboratory: Galaxies, report is due on February 15, 2022.
  • Hourly: Principles of radiation astronomy/Hourly 1 for lectures 1-16. Questions may include quiz section lectures, lessons, problem sets, and laboratories up to today but not today's laboratory or quiz section lecture.

February 9, 2022, WednesdayEdit

This is a scanned photograph of the bolide EN131090, originally captured on a glass photographic plate. Credit: European Fireball Network.{{free media}}

February 10, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is a visual image of NGC 2788A near the edge of the constellation Volans. Credit: Aladin at SIMBAD.{{fairuse}}

February 11, 2022, FridayEdit

The Aurigid meteor shower is observed by a group of astronomers on a NASA mission at 47,000 feet. Credit: Jeremie Vaubaillon, Caltech, NASA.{{free media}}

February 14, 2022, MondayEdit

This is a fireball meteor trail with some burning still visible above the Urals city of Chelyabinsk, Russia, on February 15, 2013. Credit: Reuters/www.chelyabinsk.ru.{{fairuse}}

February 15, 2022, TuesdayEdit

The image shows the first film ever of a meteor plunging down at terminal velocity. Credit: Anders Helstrup / Dark Flight, montage, Hans Erik Foss Amundsen.{{fairuse}}}

February 16, 2022, WednesdayEdit

The image shows the Orion nebula surrounded by a ring of dust. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Megeath(University of Toledo).{{free media}}

February 17, 2022, ThursdayEdit

Cloud bands are clearly visible on Jupiter. Credit: NASA/JPL/USGS.{{free media}}
  • Problem set: Unusual units, solutions including work steps due on February 24, 2022.

February 18, 2022, FridayEdit

Malaspina Glacier in southeastern Alaska is considered the classic example of a piedmont glacier. Credit: NASA.{{free media}}

February 21, 2022, MondayEdit

This image shows a late-summer rainstorm in the village Lunde, The north of Funen, Denmark. Credit: Malene Thyssen.{{free media}}

February 22, 2022, TuesdayEdit

Shown here is a portion of the SPIRE spectrum of VY Canis Majoris (VY CMa). Credit: ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech.{{fairuse}}

February 23, 2022, WednesdayEdit

Phase shift induced by free-streaming neutrinos and other light relics in the spectrum of baryon acoustic oscillations. Credit: Daniel Baumann, Florian Beutler, Raphael Flauger, Daniel Green, Anže Slosar, Mariana Vargas-Magaña, Benjamin Wallisch & Christophe Yèche.{{fairuse}}

February 24, 2022, ThursdayEdit

Positron astronomy results have been obtained using the INTEGRAL spectrometer SPI shown. Credit: Medialab, ESA.{{fairuse}}

February 25, 2022, FridayEdit

The image shows the hydrogen concentrations on the Moon detected by the Lunar Prospector. Credit: NASA.{{free media}}

February 28, 2022, MondayEdit

This is an artist's rendering of the Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) satellite. Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center Conceptual Image Lab.{{free media}}

March 1, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This is an image obtained from muon radiography of Japan's Asama volcano. Credit: H T M Tanaka.{{fairuse}}
  • Laboratory: Meteorites, report is due on March 8, 2022.

This quiz is for lectures up through and including optical astronomy (1-24), the prior weeks laboratories, quiz section lectures from the course beginning through and including interplanetary medium, lessons and problem sets through and including those due previously to today.

March 2, 2022, WednesdayEdit

Cosmic Ray Intensity (blue) and Sunspot Number (green) is shown from 1951 to 2006. Credit: University of New Hampshire.{{fairuse}}

March 3, 2022, ThursdayEdit

The image shows 54 Piscium, its red dwarf companion and a Saturn-sized planet. One of these may be a radio source. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech / T. Pyle (SSC).{{free media}}

March 4, 2022, FridayEdit

Alpha particle is detected in an isopropanol cloud chamber. Credit: Cloudylabs.{{free media}}

March 7, 2022, MondayEdit

The eight toroid magnets can be seen surrounding the calorimeter that is later moved into the middle of the detector. Credit: Maximilien Brice.{{free media}}

March 8, 2022, TuesdayEdit

"This graph shows the neutrons detected by a neutron detector at the University of Oulu in Finland from May 16 through May 18, 2012. The peak on May 17 represents an increase in the number of neutrons detected, a phenomenon dubbed a ground level enhancement or GLE. This was the first GLE since December of 2006. Credit: University of Oulu/NASA's Integrated Space Weather Analysis System"[4].{{free media}}

March 9, 2022, WednesdayEdit

This image is the first direct observation of a neutron star in visible light. The neutron star is RX J185635-3754. Credit: Fred Walter (State University of New York at Stony Brook) and NASA.{{free media}}

March 10, 2022, ThursdayEdit

Sirius is the brightest star as seen from Earth, apart from the Sun. Credit: Mellostorm.{{free media}}
  • Problem set: Cosmic circuits, solutions including work steps due on March 17, 2022.

March 11, 2022, FridayEdit

The diagram shows a possible proton collision with an atmosphere molecule. Credit: Magnus Manske.{{free media}}

March 14, 2022, MondayEdit

This "neutrino image" of the Sun is produced by using the Super-Kamiokande to detect the neutrinos from nuclear fusion coming from the Sun. Credit: R. Svoboda and K. Gordan (LSU).{{fairuse}}

March 15, 2022, TuesdayEdit

Compilation is shown of the measurements of the total extragalactic gamma-ray intensity between 1 keV and 820 GeV, with different components from current models. Credit: The e-ASTROGAM Collaboration.{{free media}}

March 16, 2022, WednesdayEdit

The Moon's cosmic ray shadow, as seen in secondary muons generated by cosmic rays in the atmosphere, and detected 700 meters below ground, at the Soudan II detector. Credit: Deglr6328.{{fairuse}}

March 17, 2022, ThursdayEdit

Observations made with the APEX telescope reveal the cold dusty clouds from which stars form. Credit: ESO/APEX/T. Preibisch et al. (Submillimetre); N. Smith, University of Minnesota/NOAO/AURA/NSF (Optical).{{fairuse}}
  • Problem set: Column densities, solutions including work steps due on March 24, 2022.

March 18, 2022, FridayEdit

Flux (Φ) of 8B solar neutrinos which are μ or τ flavor vs the flux of electron neutrinos (Φe) deduced from the three neutrino reactions in the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO). Credit: Ahmad et al..{{fairuse}}

March 21, 2022, MondayEdit

The simulation attempts to answer how thunderstorms launch particle beams into space. Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center.{{free media}}

March 22, 2022, TuesdayEdit

Auroras are mostly caused by energetic electrons precipitating into the atmosphere.[5] Credit: Samuel Blanc[1].{{free media}}

March 23, 2022, WednesdayEdit

Observation of positrons from a terrestrial gamma ray flash is performed by the Fermi gamma ray telescope. Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.{{free media}}

March 24, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is an Aladin at SIMBAD image of ICRF J230343.5-680737, a Seyfert 1 galaxy in the constellation Indus. Credit: Aladin at SIMBAD.{{fairuse}}

March 25, 2022, FridayEdit

This is a colour composite image of RCW120. Credit: ESO/APEX/DSS2/ SuperCosmos/ Deharveng(LAM)/ Zavagno(LAM).{{free media}}

March 28, 2022, MondayEdit

The electric vectors of PKS0521-36 show clear structure and alignment. Credit: Keel.{{fairuse}}

March 29, 2022, TuesdayEdit

A mechanism is suggested for anomalous cosmic rays (ACRs) of the acceleration of pick-up ions at the solar wind termination shock. Credit: Eric R. Christian.{{fairuse}}

March 30, 2022, WednesdayEdit

The Moon is seen by the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, in gamma rays of greater than 20 MeV. Credit: D. J. Thompson, D. L. Bertsch (NASA/GSFC), D. J. Morris (UNH), R. Mukherjee (NASA/GSFC/USRA).{{free media}}

March 31, 2022, ThursdayEdit

These two photographs were made by combining data from NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer spacecraft and the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/JHU.{{free media}}

April 1, 2022, FridayEdit

This is a montage of ten years' worth of Yohkoh SXT images, demonstrating the variation in solar activity during a sunspot cycle, from after August 30, 1991, to September 6, 2001. Credit: David Chenette, Joseph B. Gurman, Loren W. Acton.{{free media}}

April 4, 2022, MondayEdit

This is a false-color image of the Sun's corona as seen in extreme ultraviolet (at 17.1 nm) by the Extreme ultraviolet Imaging Telescope aboard Stereo B. Credit: NASA.{{fairuse}}

April 5, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This is an optical image of U Camelopardalis from the Hubble Space Telescope. Credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA and H. Olofsson (Onsala Space Observatory).{{free media}}

April 6, 2022, WednesdayEdit

Lhotse is seen from the climb up to Chhukung Ri. Credit: Jamie O'Shaughnessy.{{free media}}

April 7, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is an image of the Sun using an H I violet band pass filter. Credit: NASA.{{fairuse}}

April 8, 2022, FridayEdit

This image of Venus is taken through a violet filter by the Galileo spacecraft on February 14, 1990. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech.{{free media}}

April 11, 2022, MondayEdit

Neptune's south pole is photographed by Voyager 2. Credit: NASA.{{free media}}

April 12, 2022, TuesdayEdit

Messier 83 in Hydra is shown in the image. Credit: David Malin, Anglo-Australian Observatory.{{fairuse}}

April 13, 2022, WednesdayEdit

Northern Lights are usually green, but in this image there is the very rare blue light. Credit: Varjisakka.{{free media}}

April 14, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is an X-ray image of the Andromeda galaxy. Credit: ESA/XMM-Newton/EPIC/W. Pietsch.{{fairuse}}
  • Problem set: Radiation dosage, solutions including work steps due on April 21, 2022.

April 15, 2022, FridayEdit

This photo of yellow and green auroras shows convincingly that yellow is a distinctive result of the auroral process. Credit: Belinda Witzenhausen.{{fair use}}

April 18, 2022, MondayEdit

This is a wide-field image in the region of NGC 3603 taken on the ground by the Digitized Sky Survey 2. Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Digitized Sky Survey 2.{{free media}}

April 19, 2022, TuesdayEdit

The Red Rectangle is a proto-planetary nebula. Here is the Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) image. Broadband red light is shown in red. Credit: JPL/NASA.{{free media}}

April 20, 2022, WednesdayEdit

The mid-infrared image of the Moon was taken during a 1996 lunar eclipse by the SPIRIT-III instrument aboard the orbiting Midcourse Space Experiment satellite. Credit: DCATT Team, MSX Project, BMDO (Ballistic Missile Defense Organization of the US DoD).{{free media}}

April 21, 2022, ThursdayEdit

NGC 6741 is the Phantom Streak Nebula. Credit: ESA/Hubble and NASA.{{fairuse}}
  • Problem set: Star jumping, solutions including work steps due on April 28, 2022.

April 22, 2022, FridayEdit

This image shows two young brown dwarfs, objects that fall somewhere between planets and stars in terms of their temperature and mass. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/D. Barrado [CAB/INTA-CSIC].{{free media}}

April 25, 2022, MondayEdit

A view of the Milky Way galaxy in microwaves is captured by the European Space Agency's Planck satellite. Credit: ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech.{{fairuse}}

April 26, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This image is of asteroid 2012 LZ1 by the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico using the Arecibo Planetary Radar. Credit: Arecibo Observatory.{{fairuse}}
  • Hourly: Principles of radiation astronomy/Hourly 3 for lectures 33-48, including quiz section lectures, lessons (except the last one), problem sets (except the last one), and laboratories not included in the first two hourlies.

April 27, 2022, WednesdayEdit

This image has the radio image of Greg Taylor, NRAO, overlain on the X-ray image from Chandra. The radio source Hydra A originates in a galaxy near the center of the cluster. Optical observations show a few hundred galaxies in the cluster. Credit: NASA/CXC/SAO; Radio: NRAO.{{free media}}

April 28, 2022, ThursdayEdit

This is a composite image of the Whirlpool Galaxy (also known as M51). Credit: Joint Astronomy Centre, University of British Columbia and NASA/HST (STScI).{{fairuse}}

April 29, 2022, FridayEdit

The images show LIGO and Livingston, Louisiana, measurement of gravitational waves. Credit: B. P. Abbott et al. (LIGO Scientific Collaboration and Virgo Collaboration).{{free media}}

May 2, 2022, MondayEdit

5-GHz radio image shows Cygnus A (3C405). Credit: Martin J. Hardcastle.{{free media}}

May 3, 2022, TuesdayEdit

This photo shows the Livingston LIGO detector. Credit: Caltech/MIT/LIGO Laboratory.{{free media}}

May 13, 2022, FridayEdit

This image shows a pair of objects ejected from GRS 1915+105 moving apart at an apparently superluminal speed. Credit: Felix Mirabe, Saclay, France, and Luis Rodriguez, the National Autonomous University, Mexico City.{{free media}}

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.


  1. Courses offered in the Spring have higher student participation than ones offered in the Fall.

See alsoEdit


  1. Erica Hupp, Merrilee Fellows and William Jeffs (January 2006). "NASA's Stardust Findings May Alter View of Comet Formation". Pasadena, California USA: NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 2016-11-22.
  2. Donald Brownlee (January 2006). "NASA's Stardust Findings May Alter View of Comet Formation". Pasadena, California USA: NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 2016-11-22.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Michael Zolensky (January 2006). "NASA's Stardust Findings May Alter View of Comet Formation". Pasadena, California USA: NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Retrieved 2016-11-22.
  4. Karen C. Fox (May 31, 2012). Science Nugget: Catching Solar Particles Infiltrating Earth's Atmosphere. Greenbelt, Maryland: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/particles-gle.html. Retrieved 2012-08-17. 
  5. S. Wolpert (July 24, 2008). Scientists solve 30-year-old aurora borealis mystery. University of California. http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/article/18277. Retrieved 2008-10-11. 

External linksEdit

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