About This Chapter
Characteristics of Stars - Chapter Summary
Re-examine the relationship between a star's brightness, luminosity, temperature and size with these entertaining videos. The chapter begins with lessons designed to help you take another look at how star size is determined and differentiate between a star's intrinsic and apparent brightness. You'll also review the chemistry and physics concepts behind electron transitions and spectral lines in addition to their uses for determining a star's chemical composition and temperature.
Once you have a firm grasp of these concepts, get re-acquainted with the applications of Kirchhoff's laws and the Doppler effect when studying star spectra. Wrap up your review with lessons outlining the use of the magnitude scale and methods for measuring the distance to a star. This chapter covers the following star characteristics:
- Emission spectra
Whether you want a quick refresher on spectroscopy topics or need to take another look at the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, this chapter allows you to focus on the subjects you want to study. The short videos are easy to navigate, and the transcripts let you view each lesson's main ideas and key terms at a glance.
1. How to Find the Size of a Star
This lesson will tell you how astronomers figure out the size of stars. You'll learn it has to do with a star's temperature, luminosity, and a cool thing known as the H-R diagram.
2. Electron Transitions & Spectral Lines
This lesson discusses how electrons transition between energy levels, why they do this, how photons are involved, how absorption and emission spectra come into play, and what the Lyman, Balmer, and Paschen series are.
3. Measuring The Distance to a Star
This lesson will tell you how astronomers can measure the distance to a star and how it relates to the way surveyors measure distances to landmarks right here on Earth.
4. The Brightness Of Stars
This lesson will define and describe important terms related to a star's brightness, including luminosity, intrinsic brightness, apparent brightness, and more.
5. Relating a Star's Brightness to Luminosity
This lesson will explore how luminosity, apparent brightness, and distance are related to one another using the inverse square law. You'll also learn how luminosity can be gauged based on distance and apparent brightness.
6. Determining the Temperature of a Star
This lesson will explain to you the concepts of a spectrum, electromagnetic radiation, the temperature of a faraway star and how that relates to something known as a blackbody curve and Wien's law.
7. Spectroscopy and the Chemical Characteristics of Stars
This lesson will explain how astronomers find out the chemical composition of a distant star using spectral lines and spectroscopy, and how this relates to atoms, electrons, and photons.
8. Kirchhoff's Laws and Star Spectra
This lesson will define for you three laws associated with spectra and how they relate to the composition of stars, as well as how they relate to atoms and wavelengths.
9. The Doppler Effect and Star Spectra
This lesson will outline what the Doppler effect is using a very familiar example, then parlay that knowledge into understanding how the Doppler effect is used in astronomy.
10. How Stars Generate Energy
This lesson will tell you how the sun generates energy, energy that depends on much more than the superficial notion of nuclear fusion. We'll delve deeply into this process by exploring protons, positrons, gamma rays, and a whole lot more!
11. The Spectral Sequence and Temperature
This lesson will talk about spectral classes, spectral types, and the spectral sequence. We will break down each spectral class and point out some important characteristics of each.
12. Using the Magnitude Scale to Compare Star Brightness
This lesson will describe the magnitude scale, apparent brightness, and apparent visual magnitude. It will also teach you how to compare the brightness of stars.
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Other chapters within the AEPA Earth Science (AZ045): Practice & Study Guide course
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- Scientific Data & Calculations
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- Laboratory Safety & Procedures
- Earth's Formation & Structure
- Plate Tectonics, Continental Drift & Ocean Formations
- Time & Dating in Geology
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- Physical & Chemical Properties of Earth's Minerals
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- Weather Forecasting and Analysis
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- Solar Radiation, Energy & Electromagnetic Waves
- Formation of the Solar System
- Celestial Bodies of the Solar System
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