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How can we measure distances to stars in the Unioverse. also, if I could get the method of the same using amateur astronomy tools

How can we measure distances to stars in the Unioverse.


also, if I could get the method of the same using amateur astronomy tools

Grade:12

1 Answers

Sumit Majumdar IIT Delhi
askIITians Faculty 137 Points
7 years ago

Hello student,

There are different methods for measuring the astronomical distances. The most commonly used one is known as the parallax method. There are only a few stars whose distances can be measured using parallax. Other methods used to find distances to objects too far away to use a direct method use some estimation of the real brightness of the object. If you know how bright something is and compare to how bright it appears to be you can get a distance (since objects further away are fainter in a calculatable way).

Within our solar system, the most accurate way is to bounce radar off the nearby planets. In this way we can get very precise distances for the Moon, Venus, and Mars. Also, since we know the relative distances of the planets from each other, we can find the absolute distances of the ones further out by determining the absolute distances of the nearest planets..

In really far away galaxies where you cannot even distinguish individual stars, one has to rely on more indirect methods. For instance, based on the shape and color of a given galaxy, you can guess-timate its intrinsic brightness, and then from its observed brightness get the distance.

Using astronomy amateur tools, you can only estimate a very obscure answer, to get to realistic data, you would have to use some already available data and take the help of some astronomy clubs.

Hope this asnwers your queries.

Thanks & Regards
Sumit Majumdar, 
askIITians Faculty
Ph.D, IIT Delhi

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