SCI 110, Kung Craig P.
29 April 2013
Identify three (3) specific challenges to making direct measurements in the fields of astronomy, chemistry, physics, or earth science. Describe how scientists have utilized indirect forms of measure to overcome these challenges
Since the ancient times people have always been attracted to the unknown. Humans have always been curious about everything they have come across; How big is our earth?, how deep is the sea? Are there any other lands past the horizon?, and how big is our universe?. These types of questions have always led humans to forcefully exercise their minds into figuring them out. Till today some of these questions still roaming around waiting for answer to be assigned to them.
Astronomy is a natural science that deals with the study of celestial objects such as: moons, planets, stars, nebulae, and galaxies. (konrad B. Krauskopf, 2012). Astronomy is one of the oldest sciences. Is known that astronomy has been exercised by different civilizations like the Babylonians, Mayans, Indians, Chinese, and the Greek. Most of them kept track of the skies by following the movement of objects through out the years. One of the main issues they came across was finding out the precise distances of planets and stars form Earth. However, through out the years astronomers have been able to figure out ways to overcome these issues. One way to figure out the accurate distance of objects in our universe is by using the Luminosity and Brightness of the astronomical objects. Luminosity is the measurement of brightness or amount of energy emitted by any form of matter in our universe. (Muldrew, 2012). This means that the distance is calculated by measuring the time it takes light of a star to reach us here in earth. In chemistry one of the biggest challenges that chemists have encounter has been calculating the amount of bacteria located in one place. Chemistry is a science that studies the composition and properties of matter in terms of quantity. In the case of bacteria it is important for the chemist to know the amount of bacteria found at a certain location. This will let him know the gravity of the problem he may encounter in the future. Since bacteria are organism that cannot be counted by just looking at it, other instruments have been created to make this process a little bit easier. The microscope is an instrument that can be use to directly measure the amount of bacteria and have a closer look at these microorganisms.
Another form of direct measurement that has had many challenges is the lager scale surveying and mapping problems. When objects are found beyond the reach of measuring instruments, it is almost impossible to use any type of direct measurements to obtain the distance. In types of cases we must turn to use different types of measurements. Indirect measurements is the process where the measurement of some entity is not obtained by the direct reading of a measuring tool, or by counting of units superimposed alongside or on that entity. (konrad B. Krauskopf, 2012)
Scientist has utilized indirect forms of measure to overcome these challenges for many years. Stellar parallax is an indirect measurement that helps us find the distance of stars in our galaxy that are not too far away. Parallax is the apparent displacement of an object because of a change in the observer's point of view. Stellar parallax uses measurements done every six months (Khrutskaya, 2010). Also scientists have used different types of mathematics such as geometry and trigonometry to figure out distances by measuring angles from the location of objects. Choose two (2) of the most historically influential tools or techniques in the physical sciences. Explain how these techniques or tools work and how they helped to advance our understanding of the physical sciences.
The things that we know...