Asked in Astronomy
Why is it important to study astronomy?
February 22, 2012 8:03AM
It is important to study astronomy because it is a "big" subject. It's essentially the study of the universe and the workings of all its parts, both individually and collectively. We live in the "reality" of the universe, and by understanding it better, we might be able to know how it began, how it is evolving, and where it is going to end up.
We're bright creatures living on a small ball of watered down rock that orbits a "regular" star in a moderate sized galaxy. There are some 200 to 400 billion stars in the Milky Way, and some 50 to 100 billion other galaxies in the observable universe. How did all this stuff get here? What is it doing? What all is out there? Is there any other life like us? Any other life at all?
Closer to home we wonder about how the moon was captured by the earth, how the planets formed and what is it about them that makes them appear and act like they do. Even the moons of these planets are amazing places to visit. Solar orbiting bits and pieces of rock, or balls of ice are also part of our solar system, as are bands of debris, some as large as moons. And what lies outside the orbits of the outer planets and dwarf planets yet within the sway of the gravity of our sun?
Our sun is gigantic nuclear fusion engine, and most all stars are as well. How do they work? What similarities and differences can we observe in them? Are there any planetary systems around them? Any like ours? The questions pile up as man, driven by the "curiosity gene" welded into his DNA, tries to get a handle on all of it. As we peer deeper in the ultimate nature of the particles that make up the atom, we also look deeper into space in an attempt to enlarge our understanding of the depth and breadth of spacetime and all the constructs in it.
Why is it important to study astronomy? Why wouldn't we study it? We wouldn't miss it for the world.
because it is baliww!