HOU 2 - Ruchi Sharma Cosmic Perspective Chapter 3: February...

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Ruchi Sharma February 1, 2008 Cosmic Perspective Chapter 3: 1. In what way is scientific thinking natural to all of us? How does modern science differ from this everyday type of thinking? Scientific Thinking is natural to us because every decision we make is similar to the scientific model. It relies on the same type of trial and error thinking that we use in our everyday lives, but in a carefully organized way. 2. How are the names of the seven days of the week related to astronomical objects? The correspondence between celestial objects and days is clear only if we look at the names of the objects used by the Teutonic tribes that lived in the region of modern day Germany. Modern measures of time comes directly from ancient observations of motion in the sky. The length of out day is the time it takes the sun to make one full circuit of the sky. The length of month comes from the Moon’s cycle of phases and our year is based on the cycle of the seasons. The seven days of the week were named after the seven naked eyes objects that appear to move along the constellations: The sun, the Moon, and the five planets recognized in ancient times. 4. Describe three ways ancient people recognized the time of the day. a. People told the time of the day by observing the Sun’s path through the sky. Many cultures probably used the shadows to cast by sticks as simple sundials. The ancient Egyptians built huge obelisks, often inscribed or decorated in homage to the Sun, that probably also served as clocks. b. As night, the ancient people could estimate the time from the position and phase of the Moon by using the ideas. First quarter moon sets around the midnights. Also, the position of the starts indicate the time. The Egyptians used ancient clocks and divided it into 12 equal parts, and still break the 24 hour day into 12 hours each of AM and PM. The Egyptian hours varied in length because of amount of daylight during the year. They also divided the nights into 12 equal parts, the Egyptian star clock. These clocks were used to estimate the time of the day, particularly by knowing the date from the calendar and observing the position of particular stars in the sky. . c. Egyptians abandoned the use of star clocks in favor of clocks that measure time by the flow of water through an opening of a particular size. The water clocks were useful especially during times of cloudy skies. 6.What do we mean by a model in science? A model in science represents the theory or idea we are trying to represent. For example, Greek architecture tried to represent architecture of the universe by constructing models of nature. The idea of modeling nature is central to modern science. Scientific model is a conceptual representation whose purpose is to explain and predict observed phenomena. Greek Models sought to explain mater and motions of Stars, Sun, Moon, and planets.
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8. Who was Plotemy? How did the Ptolemaic model account for the apparent retrograde motion of planets in out sky? Plotemy’s model still placed the earth in the center of the universe, but it differed in
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HOU 2 - Ruchi Sharma Cosmic Perspective Chapter 3: February...

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