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Science - Introduction
 
This Science section of the website is to discuss the more advanced topics of Astronomy. One of the major concerns with a student taking a first ever course in Astronomy is the type of math they will encounter.

It is my opinion that the difficulty in computational Astronomy is three-fold:
 
1. It is important to realize a sense of scale when dealing with Astronomical computation. It is no coincidence that the term "astronomical" means very large since the distances, masses, and measurements of planets, stars, galaxies and the Universe are VERY large. It can be difficult to truly grasp the true size of our Universe.
2. Because of the large numbers involved in Astronomy, it is easy to over-think an equation - that is making a problem more difficult than it is.
3. There are many strange and unusual phenomenon in the Universe. Regardless, it is easy to forget that the laws of physics are the same no matter where we are in the Universe.

It is easy for the scientist to follow their passion in trying to understand the Universe. This passion is no different than that of a politician seeking to improve quality of life or the explorer seeking new lands and artifacts. The Astronomer is seeking understand of how the Universe and everything in it works.

In order to understand how things work in our Universe, Astronomers study the laws of physics to create models and theories that can be tested - tested by observation or simulation. By studying the planets, we hope to learn more of the formation of our solar system. By studying our Sun and other stars, we hope to learn about the life cycle of a star. By studying galaxies, we hope to learn more about the structure and formation of our Universe.

In the following sections, we will learn what type of maths the Astronomer uses to construct testable models as well as learn about the tools Astronomers use to collect valuable data.

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