Topic 13 – Exploring starlight

13.1 - Understand the astronomical magnitude scale and how apparent magnitude relates to the brightness of stars as viewed from Earth

13.2 - Understand the term absolute magnitude

13.3 - Be able to use the distance modulus formula to determine the absolute (M) or apparent magnitude (m) of a star, given the distance to the star (d): M = m + 5 − 5log d where d is the distance in parsec

13.4 - Understand what information can be obtained from a stellar spectrum, including
a) chemical composition
b) temperature
c) radial velocity

13.5 - Understand how stars can be classified according to spectral type

13.6 - Understand how a star’s colour and spectral type are related to its surface temperature

13.7 - Be able to sketch a simple Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, including labelled axes and indicate the positions of the following:
a) main sequence stars
b) the Sun
c) red and blue giant stars
d) white dwarf stars
e) supergiant stars

13.8 - Understand how a star’s life cycle relates to its position on the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, for stars similar in mass to the Sun and those with masses that are much greater

13.10 - Understand that an angle of one degree (°) comprises 60 minutes of arc (arcmin) (60’) and that each arcminute is comprised of 60 seconds of arc (arcsec) (60”)

13.11 - Understand the term parsec (pc)

13.12 - Be able to determine astronomical distances using heliocentric parallax

13.13 - Understand how to use a Hertzsprung-Russell diagram to determine distances to stars

13.14 - Understand the light curves of the following variable stars:
a) short/long period
b) eclipsing binary
c) cepheid
d) novae and supernovae

13.15 - Understand the causes of variability in the light curve of eclipsing binary stars

13.16 - Understand how Cepheid variables can be used to determine distances

13.18 - Understand how the period of an eclipsing binary star can be deduced from its light curve

Topic 7 – Early models of the Solar System
Topic 11 – Exploring the Solar System

7.6 & 11.9 - Be able to use ... parsec (pc)

In this section you will learn about how we calculate a stars brightness, find its distance and how we measure its light.

At the end of this section take the mini quiz to test yourself.