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What is the difference between astronomy study and astrophysics study ?

  1. Apr 4, 2015 #1
    Which one lets you to have your own lab and make mind-blowing experiments without any interuption for you to think and create something new and to explore something profound ?
    ( I know there is something wrong but i'd like to learn)
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 4, 2015 #2
  4. Apr 4, 2015 #3


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    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Usually the only "experiments" to be done are either observational studies, which would go under observational astronomy, or elaborate computational simulations, which would fall more under astrophysics.

    That being said, the distinction between the two is not a solid boundary, and there is a wide gray area between the two fields.

    Whether or not you get to have your own lab and work without interruption is more a problem of dollars than of science.
    Though, as for that, I'm partial to quantum optics because you can build your own experiments by hand, and still see amazing things (on the small scale)
  5. Apr 4, 2015 #4
    i wanna solve the wormhole and time travel theory or maybe i wanna study about gravity too
  6. Apr 4, 2015 #5
    Great, you can study all these things by studying physics and specifically astrophysics.
  7. Apr 4, 2015 #6
    what course should i take in order to be an astrophysicist ? (University level )
  8. Apr 4, 2015 #7
    It's a whole program, not just a course. Most medium to large universities have an astrophysics program.
  9. Apr 4, 2015 #8
    so what program should i take ?
  10. Apr 4, 2015 #9
  11. Apr 4, 2015 #10
    My fault.So quantum mechanics falls in advance physics category ? I don't understand what should i do when i am in the university.
  12. Apr 4, 2015 #11
  13. Apr 4, 2015 #12

    You go to your classes. Not sure what your question is.
  14. Apr 4, 2015 #13
    niflheim , that was very helpful thanks !
  15. Apr 4, 2015 #14
    If you mean what kind of classes should you take, then for all Physics majors you need the Calculus sequence, Linear Algebra, Ordinary and Partial Differential Equations, and maybe some Differential Geometry and Topology if you're into Relativity and Gravity, and maybe some advanced Probability for QM. As for Physics, undergrads usually take Classical Mechanics, Electromagnetism, and Quantum Mechanics in that order. Maybe an elective or two in Special Relativity or something, or if you're very ahead you can take Grad courses like General Relativity or Quantum Field Theory.
  16. Apr 4, 2015 #15
    No problem.
  17. Apr 4, 2015 #16


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    Staff: Mentor

    Most universities list the course requirements for their degrees on their web sites. Check out a few universities that you might be interested in.
  18. Apr 4, 2015 #17
    Wowow, hold on for a second. This is said mainly by people who don't know physics. In fact, very very very few physicists are doing stuff with wormholes and time travel. And in your undergrad education, chances are big you'll never encounter these subjects. Please don't go into physics because you've read some interesting pop-sci books or watched some documentaries that you found cool. Real physics is absolutely not like what is presented there. How do you feel about math? Math is absolutely essential in physics. I would suggest you to actually read a physics book before investing all your time into this.
  19. Apr 4, 2015 #18
    micromass , i'm taking maths and advance maths in my high school , and i find it interesting when it comes to aplied maths. Even i can solve physics problems with using advance maths , but of course i'm not genius enough
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