_ THE _1_V10 B - TAKE-HOME EXP. # 1 Na k e d - Eye Obs e rv...

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TAKE-HOME EXP. # 1 Naked-Eye Observations of Stars and Planets Naked-eye observations of some of the brightest stars, constellations, and planets can help us locate our place in the universe. Such observations—plus our imaginations—allow us to actively participate in the movements of the universe. During the last few thousand years, what humans have said about the universe based on naked-eye observations of the night and day skies reveals the tentativeness of physical models based solely on sensory perception. Create, in your mind's eye, the fixed celestial sphere. See yourself standing on the Earth at the center of this sphere. As you make the star-pattern drawings of this experiment, your perception may argue that the entire sphere of fixed star patterns is moving around the Earth and you . To break that illusion, you probably have to consciously shift your frame of reference—your mental viewpoint, in this case— to a point far above the Earth. From there you can watch the globe of Earth slowly rotate you , while the universe remains essentially stationary during your viewing It is you that turns slowly underneath a fixed and unchanging pattern of lights. Naked eye observations and imagination has led to constellation names like "Big Bear" or "Big Dipper". These names don't change anything physically —except, and very importantly, they aid humans' memory and use of star patterns. Observer on local horizon plane + 40 degrees from meridian Observer’s Zenith point (directly overhead)
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TAKE-HOME EXPERIMENT #1 THExp#1-2 ________________________________________________ A. Overview This experiment involves going outside to a location where you can observe a simple pattern of stars, including at least 2, but preferably 3 or 4 stars. If the Moon is nearby, you can include it in your pattern. After making sure that your position and orientation as an observer is known and reproducible, you can observe any changes that occur in the stars' locations with 3 separate observations and measurements over a 2-hour time period. The angle-measures you will use are relatively easy to learn, and it's fun to be able to locate things and have the language to communicate that information. Later in class, you can compare your readings to those of your investigative colleagues in the class. If you are able to arrange it, it can be helpful to have one or two other colleagues to take the measurements with you. MAKE SURE YOU RECORD THEIR NAMES ON THE SHEET YOU HAND IN. As you will see when we discuss the detailed procedures, each person must make their own measurements, but the pattern you and your partners choose to observe can be the same. B. Procedure for This Experiment In choosing your observing time you should not start earlier than about an hour after sunset, so that evening twilight is over. (Or you can perform this entire exercise in relation to the predawn morning sky, finishing at least a half-hour before sunrise.) In picking your observing location try to select a place where you have a relatively unobstructed (by buildings and trees) view of the sky. Find one that is as far away from streetlights as you can reasonably get.
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This note was uploaded on 04/24/2010 for the course ANTH 7173 taught by Professor George during the Spring '10 term at CSU Long Beach.

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_ THE _1_V10 B - TAKE-HOME EXP. # 1 Na k e d - Eye Obs e rv...

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