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View Resource Astronomy of the Earth's Motion in Space

An algebra-based overview of elementary and pre-telescope astronomy. Topics covered include sundials, seasons, calendars, precession, shape and rotation of Earth, Greek astronomy, the path to heliocentric theory and extensive sections on Kepler's laws. It also has sections on the Moon and how its distance was found. Many historical details, stories, and applications are included. This is part...

View Resource Parallax

This web page, authored and curated by David P. Stern, outlines the math and applications of parallax. Parallax is the shift in the apparent direction to an object when it is viewed from two separated locations. It allows the object's distance to be derived. A simple method is developed for distance estimation, with a related "extended thumb method" useful outdoors. The page ends by discussing...

View Resource Distance to the Moon

This pair of web pages, authored and curated by David P. Stern, describes early calculations of the Earth-Moon distance by Greek astronomers. Using lunar and solar eclipses, the astronomers Aristarchus and Hipparchus determined the distance to the moon using geometry. The methods and mathematics used are described as well as the accuracy and errors. These pages are linked to other information on...

View Resource Trigonometric Parallax Movie

Created by Richard W. Pogge of Ohio State University, this movie demonstrates trigonometric parallax. The top half of each frame shows the appearance of a star in the sky as seen from the Earth, and the bottom half shows a fixed view looking down onto the plane of the Earth's orbit around the Sun. The motion of the star relative to its background due to the motion of the earth around the sun is...

View Resource The Moon

This is a series of web pages on the Earth's Moon. It includes information about the Moon as observed by the eye from Earth, its orbital period, its phases, appearance and the reason it always presents one face, There is also material on the Moon as seen through a telescope, Moon landings, and librations of the Moon, the reason more than 50% of it can be observed from Earth. This part of the...

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