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Homework Help: Location of telescopes

  1. May 26, 2012 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    What type of location for a telescope would be needed in order to oserve the emissions of the dying VY Canis Majoris? The material is rich in dust and molecules that would vaporise around hotter stars and emits infrared radiation.

    2. Relevant equations


    3. The attempt at a solution

    I am completely stumped here. At first I thought it was regarding Einstein's general relativity and how the star would distort the space around it, but I can't figure out why the location of the telescope would matter, surely it would just be where the telescope looked?
    Anyway, if anyone could help me I would be eternally greatful
  2. jcsd
  3. May 26, 2012 #2


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    Hi Johnboy! :smile:
    Well, does it need clear skies? Does it need to be high up? Does it need to be in space? Does it need to be shielded from anything? Does it need to be guarded by a big dog? etc … :wink:
  4. May 26, 2012 #3
    Haha I appreciate the humour, it has made doing this a bit more light-hearted!

    I have thought about this, but I can't think of a good reason why the telescope would need to be, for example, in space.
  5. May 26, 2012 #4
    Other than the fact that the atmosphere is known to distort light from stars, but that seems too simple!
  6. May 26, 2012 #5


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    What wavelengths does it need to receive? :wink:
  7. May 26, 2012 #6
    Ok, and what else can do the atmosphere with electromagnetic radiation?

    What can you say about infrared radiation?
    Last edited: May 26, 2012
  8. May 26, 2012 #7


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    Only the big dog was intended as humour, all the rest of the things in tiny-tim's list were really serious considerations that go into determining the locations of actual observatories.
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