Stellar Properties Stars are hundreds of thousands of times farther away from us than the planets are from us. The nearest star (other than the Sun) is so far away that the fastest spacecraft the human race has built so far would take almost several tens of thousands of years to get there. Yet we are a curious and ambitious species, and we want to know how those stars are born, live out their lives, and die. How can we learn about objects that are so remote and beyond our physical grasp? This chapter gives you an idea of how we learn about the stars and what we find about the stars. Because the stars in our galaxy are so far away, they appear as just pinpoints of light in even the most powerful of telescopes on the ground or in space. We have to rely on the information encoded in the feeble starlight. Before continuing with this chapter, be sure to review carefully the concepts in the Electromagnetic Radiation (Light) chapter so that you will understand this Stellar Properties chapter. By the end of the chapter you will see there is an internal consistency of star properties and that
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This note was uploaded on 12/15/2011 for the course AST AST1002 taught by Professor Emilyhoward during the Fall '10 term at Broward College.