# osei_Lab11.docx - Rowan Introduction to Astronomy Lab 11 /...

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Gravitational lens created by a galaxy cluster reveals the presence of daRowan Introduction to AstronomyLab 11 / Rotation Curves, Mass Distribution, andDark MatterName:Score:SummaryIn this exercise, you will compare the mass distribution found in the solar system with thatfound in galaxies.BackgroundMost astronomers are convinced that there is matter in the universe which we have neverseen because it is dark and does not emit or reflect light. It appears that over 90% of thematter in the universe may be dark matter. The existence of this dark matter has hugeimplications for the future of the universe.Whether the universe continues to expand indefinitely (becoming less and less dense, andcolder and colder) or starts contracting again as the force of gravity pulls the masses in theuniverse back together depends on how dense the universe is. Current research indicates thatthere is not enough dark matter plus regular matter to halt indefinite expansion. Our currentknowledge of dark matter comes from its gravitational effect on regular matter.Part 1: Orbital Speeds of the Planets in the Solar System[27 pts total]Procedure[Note rounding instructions!]Though the orbits of the eight planets are ellipses, the orbital paths have rather low eccentricities. In other words, their orbits are fairlyclose approximations of a circle. We can calculate the length of a circular orbital path using the simple formula for the circumferenceof a circle:r, whereris the radius or, in the case of the solar system, the average distance from the planet to the Sun.1.Using the radius of orbit data in column 3 (see table below), calculate the length of each planet’s orbit and place in column 4.(Round each answer to2decimalplaces.)8km)
*Express in appropriate scientific notationNext, calculate the number of seconds in a year(use 3 decimal places and scientific notation): _3.154x10^7
Lab 11 / Rotation Curves, Mass Distribution, and Dark Matter2

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