Galaxies & the Universe Modified by D. Dailey Hewitt-Trussville High School
It does this by precisely measuring the speed of gas and stars around a black hole. This provides clues for the existence of a black hole. Astronomers measure the motion of stars swirling around the black hole to determine the mass. The Hubble Space Telescope measures black holes that cannot be seen.
A Black Hole A black hole is an object with a gravitational pull so intense that not even light can escape. It pulls in other stars and gas with its gravitational force.
By measuring a star's period of pulsation, astronomers can determine its luminosity and calculate how far away a variable star must be to appear as dim or as bright as it does. Variable Stars
The Shape of the Milky Way Astronomers have determined the shape of the Milky Way by using radio waves because they penetrate the interstellar gas and dust without being scattered or absorbed.
Discovering Other Galaxies Discovering Other Galaxies Other galaxies were first believed to be nebulae or star clusters within the Milky Way.
Discovering Other Galaxies – cont. Discovering Other Galaxies – cont. Edwin Hubble's discovery of Cepheid variable stars in the Great Nebula in the Andromeda constellation proved the existence of galaxies outside the Milky Way.
Mass of the Milky Way Studies provide evidence that there is a great amount of unseen matter called dark matter composed of dim stellar remnants that have mass. Estimates vary from 200 billion x, up to 1,000 billion x the Mass of our Sun.
The halo and bulge of the Milky Way are made of old stars which suggests that the halo and bulge formed first. Formation and Evolution of the Milky Way
Other Galaxies in the Universe Objectives: Describe how astronomers classify galaxies. Identify how galaxies are organized into clusters and super clusters. Describe the expansion of the universe.
Superclusters Gigantic formation of clusters of galaxies hundreds of millions of light-years in size are called superclusters.
Active Galaxies Core of a galaxy in which highly energetic objects or activities are located. (also known as AGNs!)
Quasars The redshift in many quasars is very large, which means that those quasars are far away.
The Expanding Universe – Hubbles Law The farther away from Earth a galaxy is, the faster it is moving. Hubble Constant - A value of approximately 70 kilometers per second per megaparsec
Elliptical Galaxy This is an elliptical galaxy. Galaxies that are not flattened into disks and do not have spiral arms. Their shapes range from round ellipticals to very elongated ellipticals. Possible example: Virgo A Please copy illustration
Elliptical Galaxy – cont. Elliptical galaxies are divided into subclasses based on the ratio of their major and minor axes.
Spiral Galaxy This is a spiral galaxy. Disklike galaxy with spiral arms consisting of interstellar matter and young star clusters. A bulge consists of an old stellar population. There are normal and barred spirals. Possible example: Milky Way. Please copy illustration
Irregular Galaxy This is an irregular galaxy. These galaxies do not fit the elliptical or spiral classification. They typically have no distinct shape. Possible example: Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. Please copy illustration
Galaxy Cluster This is a galaxy cluster. These groups of galaxies may have from a few to hundreds of member galaxies and may range in sizes up to 30 million ly. In a cluster, most of the inner region galaxies are ellipticals. Galaxies in the outer portions are a mix of ellipticals and spirals. The galaxies often merge to form strangely shaped galaxies with more than one nucleus. Possible example: Local Group. Please copy illustration
Galaxy Clusters – cont. Most galaxies in the inner region of a large cluster are ellipticals.
Galaxy Shapes An Sc galaxy is a normal spiral with loosely wound arms and a small, dim nucleus. M74 Spiral Galaxy
Galaxy Shapes – Cont. Galaxy shapes aTightly wound arm and large, bright nucleus cLoosely wound arms and a small, dim nucleus E7Very elongated elliptical EORound elliptical IrrIrregular galaxy SNormal spiral SBBarred spiral SOFlat disks that do not have spiral arms
Cosmology Objectives: Explain the different theories about the formation of the universe. Describe the possible outcomes of universal expansion.
Models of the Universe Steady-state theory - Proposes that the universe looks the same on large scales to all observers and that it has always looked that way
Cosmic background radiation Has a wavelength of approximately 1 mm, which makes it microwave radiation.
Cosmic background radiation Provides information about conditions very early in the expansion of the universe.
The Hubble Constant Recent observations show that the rate of expansion of the universe is speeding up.
Models of the Universe – cont. Big Bang Theory - States that the universe began as a point and has been expanding ever since
The Big Bang – cont. The theory does not suggest an explosion into space, but instead that there is an expansion of space with matter going along for the ride.