Hands-On Astronomy: Observing Stars and Planets

Full Moon, November 8, 1992. MIT Campus.

Full Moon, November 8, 1992. MIT Campus. (Image courtesy of MIT.)


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As Taught In

Spring 2002



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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

This class introduces the student to the use of small telescopes, either for formal research or as a hobby.

This course covers background for and techniques of visual observation, electronic imaging, and spectroscopy of the Moon, planets, satellites, stars, and brighter deep-space objects. Weekly outdoor observing sessions using 8-inch diameter telescopes when weather permits. Indoor sessions introduce needed skills. Introduction to contemporary observational astronomy including astronomical computing, image and data processing, and how astronomers work. Student must maintain a careful and complete written log which is graded. (Limited enrollment with priority to freshmen. Consumes an entire evening each week; 100% attendance at observing sessions required to pass.)

Related Content

James Elliot. 12.409 Hands-On Astronomy: Observing Stars and Planets. Spring 2002. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, https://ocw.mit.edu. License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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