The Sun’s path, as viewed from the equator, is highest in the sky on _________.
the spring and fall equinoxes
For most of history, the lack of observable stellar parallax was interpreted to mean that _________.
Earth is stationary at the center of the universe
Which of the following statements about the celestial sphere is NOT true?
The “celestial sphere” is another name for our universe.
How does Earth’s varying distance from the Sun affect our seasons?
It doesn’t — Earth’s orbital distance plays no significant role in the seasons.
During the period each year when we see Mars undergoing apparent retrograde motion in our sky, what is really going on in space?
Earth is catching up with and passing by Mars in their respective orbits.
It’s 6 am and the Moon is at its highest point in your sky (crossing the meridian). What is the Moon’s phase?
Suppose it is full moon. What phase of Earth would someone on the Moon see at this time?
The Andromeda Galaxy is faintly visible to the naked eye in the constellation Andromeda. Suppose instead it were located in the same direction in space as the center of the Milky Way Galaxy (but still at its current distance). How would it appear to the eye in that case?
We could not see it at all.
Suppose you use the Southern Cross to determine that the south celestial pole appears 40 degrees above your horizon. Then you must be located at _________.
latitude 40 degrees south
Suppose Earth’s axis tilt was significantly greater than its current 23.5 degrees, but Earth’s rotation period and orbital period were unchanged. Which statement below would not be true?
The length of each season (for example, the number of days from the summer solstice to the fall equinox) would be significantly longer than it is now.
When traveling north from the United States into Canada, you’ll see the North Star (Polaris) getting _________.
higher in the sky
Suppose you live in the United States and you see a crescent moon in your evening sky tonight. What will a friend in South America see tonight?
Your friend will also see a crescent moon.
An angle of 1 arcsecond is _________.
less than the thickness of a human hair held at arm’s length
All the following statements are true. Which one explains the reason that there is not a solar eclipse at every new moon?
The orbital plane of the Moon is tilted slightly (by about 5 degrees) to the ecliptic plane.
In any particular place on Earth, certain constellations are visible in the evening only at certain times of the year because _________.
our evening view of space depends on where Earth is located in its orbit around the Sun
Suppose you are facing north and you see the Big Dipper close to your northern horizon, with Polaris (and the Little Dipper) above it. Where will you see the Big Dipper in six hours?
To the right of Polaris; that is, 90 degrees counterclockwise from its current position
Which of the following best describes a set of conditions under which archaeoastronomers would conclude that an ancient structure was used for astronomical purposes?
The structure has holes in the ceiling that allow viewing the passage of constellations that figure prominently in the culture’s folklore, and many other structures built by the same culture have ceiling holes placed in the same way.