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Thread: 4th Annual Astronomy Challenge

  1. #1
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    4th Annual Astronomy Challenge

    It's time for this year's Astronomy Challenge. This is another Bricker quiz, like the first one, or the second one, or the third one, with similar rules. This time, each answer is a list, with as many objects in the list as the number of the question, order may be important. Since there are so many answers to each question, I'm limiting the number of questions to eight this time. No partial credit, perfect score is 8. You might want to check some of those earlier quizzes to get the flavor of the game (and some hints!).

    1. What is the exact speed of light, in miles per second? (make sure all fractions are reduced and proper)
    2. Which two twin stars are "obviously" in the wrong zodiac constellation? (answer order is alphabetical)
    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    4. After the Sun sets, what are the levels of darkness?
    5. What are the common modes of telescope tracking speeds, in descending order
    6. List the current top BABB rankings, and the post counts needed to reach them, in descending order
    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    8. Who were the last persons to set foot on the moon, in the reverse order of when they first did it?

  2. #2
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    An explanation of "reduced and proper", with regards to question number 1, is available at Mathworld: Reduced Fraction and Proper Fraction

  3. #3
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    Just a nitpick, but for question 1, I think it would depend on the medium. You probably mean in a vacuum?
    As above, so below

  4. #4
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    Re: 4th Annual Astronomy Challenge

    1. What is the exact speed of light, in miles per second? (make sure all fractions are reduced and proper)
    186, 282.3970512208701185079137835

    2. Which two twin stars are "obviously" in the wrong zodiac constellation? (answer order is alphabetical)
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamali

    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    1: Venus
    2: Mercury
    3: Sedna


    4. After the Sun sets, what are the levels of darkness?
    1: Start of Civil Twilight (sunset) to End of Civil Twilight (Sun 6 below horizon)
    2: End of Civil Twilight to End of Nautical Twilight (Sun 12 below horizon)
    3: End of Nautical Twilight to End of Astronomical Twilight (Sun 18 below horizon)
    4: Night


    6. List the current top BABB rankings, and the post counts needed to reach them, in descending order
    1: Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    2: Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    3: Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    4: Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    5: Bad Fellow (301 Posts)
    6: Bad Intern (201 Posts)


    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    1: Earth
    2: Venus
    3: Jupiter
    4: Mars
    5: Mercury
    6: Saturn
    7: Uranus


    8. Who were the last persons to set foot on the moon, in the reverse order of when they first did it?
    1: Harrison Schmitt
    2: Gene Cernan
    3: Charles Duke
    4: John Young
    5: James Irwin
    6: David Scott
    7: Edgar Mitchell
    8: Alan Shepard

  5. #5
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    1. 299792458 m/s
    2. Pollux, Castor
    3. George, Venus, Mercury
    4. civil twilight, nautical twilight, astronomical twilight, night
    5. Zip, Swift, Slue, Slow, Stop
    6. ToSeek (13000), Candy (9600), Glom (7400), Maksutov (5700), The Supreme Canuck (5500), Humphrey (5200)
    7. Sun, Moon, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto
    8. Ardan, Barbicane, Nicholl, Satellite, Diana, chicken, chicken

  6. #6
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    Please clarify question three:
    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    How many objects?
    In what order? Order of rotational speed from slowest to fastest? In order of distance from the Sun? In alphabetical order?

    Thanks.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    7. Sun, Moon, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto
    OK, I can see calling the Moon a planet by some definitions (including mine), but the Sun??? I suppose it is a "wanderer" versus the "fixed stars", but has any culture actually thought of the Sun as being a planet?

    And how is Pluto (nevermind Neptune) a naked-eye visible planet? Perhaps because you can see it with your naked eye in a picture??

    Lastly, how are you defining "apparant maximum brightness". And why isn't Earth in that list somewhere...

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by pumpkinpie
    Please clarify question three:
    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    How many objects?
    In what order? Order of rotational speed from slowest to fastest? In order of distance from the Sun? In alphabetical order?

    Thanks.
    "with as many objects in the list as the number of the question"

    So 3 in this case, presumably in increasing order of rotation speed.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by pghnative
    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    7. Sun, Moon, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto
    OK, I can see calling the Moon a planet by some definitions (including mine), but the Sun??? I suppose it is a "wanderer" versus the "fixed stars", but has any culture actually thought of the Sun as being a planet?

    And how is Pluto (nevermind Neptune) a naked-eye visible planet? Perhaps because you can see it with your naked eye in a picture??

    Lastly, how are you defining "apparant maximum brightness". And why isn't Earth in that list somewhere...
    ATP generally provides his own list of sample answers to his questions. It should be obvious that these answers aren't necessarily correct.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  10. #10
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    current scores
    4 Eroica
    1 A Thousand Pardons

  11. #11
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    1. What is the exact speed of light, in miles per second? (make sure all fractions are reduced and proper)
    186, 282.3970512208701185079137835

    2. Which two twin stars are "obviously" in the wrong zodiac constellation? (answer order is alphabetical)
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamali

    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    1: Venus
    2: Mercury
    3: Moon


    4. After the Sun sets, what are the levels of darkness?
    1: Start of Civil Twilight (sunset) to End of Civil Twilight (Sun 6 below horizon)
    2: End of Civil Twilight to End of Nautical Twilight (Sun 12 below horizon)
    3: End of Nautical Twilight to End of Astronomical Twilight (Sun 18 below horizon)
    4: Night


    6. List the current top BABB rankings, and the post counts needed to reach them, in descending order
    1: Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    2: Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    3: Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    4: Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    5: Bad Fellow (301 Posts)
    6: Bad Intern (201 Posts)


    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    1: Earth
    2: Venus
    3: Jupiter
    4: Mars
    5: Mercury
    6: Saturn
    7: Uranus


    8. Who were the last persons to set foot on the moon, in the reverse order of when they first did it?
    1: Harrison Schmitt
    2: Gene Cernan
    3: Charles Duke
    4: John Young
    5: James Irwin
    6: David Scott
    7: Edgar Mitchell
    8: Alan Shepard
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  12. #12
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    5 Eroica
    5 ToSeek
    1 A Thousand Pardons

    OK, I'm going to give you guys number 4, but I like my answer better

    PS: subsequent answers supersede previous answers, but you can post a new answer to a single question without affecting the score for the other questions

    PSS: to make it even easier (and to encourage cribbing), you can declare your answers to be the same as another poster's, then just post answers to the questions you think that they got wrong.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    current scores
    5 Eroica
    5 ToSeek
    1 A Thousand Pardons
    How can Eroica and I both have 5 right when our answers are all the same except for one?
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToSeek
    How can Eroica and I both have 5 right when our answers are all the same except for one?
    I think that should be a good hint

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    Quote Originally Posted by ToSeek
    How can Eroica and I both have 5 right when our answers are all the same except for one?
    I think that should be a good hint
    Ah, good point.
    Everything I need to know I learned through Googling.

  16. #16
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    1. What is the exact speed of light, in miles per second? (make sure all fractions are reduced and proper)
    186, 282.3970512208701185079137835

    2. Which two twin stars are "obviously" in the wrong zodiac constellation? (answer order is alphabetical)
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamali

    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    1: Venus
    2: Iapetus
    3: Mercury

    4. After the Sun sets, what are the levels of darkness?
    1: Start of Civil Twilight (sunset) to End of Civil Twilight (Sun 6 below horizon)
    2: End of Civil Twilight to End of Nautical Twilight (Sun 12 below horizon)
    3: End of Nautical Twilight to End of Astronomical Twilight (Sun 18 below horizon)
    4: Night

    5. What are the common modes of telescope tracking speeds, in descending order
    slew set guide sidereal lunar

    6. List the current top BABB rankings, and the post counts needed to reach them, in descending order
    1: Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    2: Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    3: Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    4: Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    5: Bad Fellow (301 Posts)
    6: Bad Intern (201 Posts)

    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    1: Earth
    2: Venus
    3: Jupiter
    4: Mars
    5: Mercury
    6: Saturn
    7: Uranus

    8. Who were the last persons to set foot on the moon, in the reverse order of when they first did it?
    1: Harrison Schmitt
    2: Gene Cernan
    3: Charles Duke
    4: John Young
    5: James Irwin
    6: David Scott
    7: Edgar Mitchell
    8: Alan Shepard

  17. #17
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    1.
    186, 282.3970512208701185079137835 miles per second
    2.
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamal
    4.
    1: Start of Civil Twilight (sunset) to End of Civil Twilight (Sun 6 below horizon)
    2: End of Civil Twilight to End of Nautical Twilight (Sun 12 below horizon)
    3: End of Nautical Twilight to End of Astronomical Twilight (Sun 18 below horizon)
    4: Night
    6.
    1: Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    2: Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    3: Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    4: Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    5: Bad Fellow (301 Posts)
    6: Bad Intern (201 Posts)
    8.
    1: Harrison Schmitt
    2: Gene Cernan
    3: Charles Duke
    4: John Young
    5: James Irwin
    6: David Scott
    7: Edgar Mitchell
    8: Alan Shepard

    Regarding No. 7:
    ATP, from your answer to ToSeek's question I gather that you think that their answers to No. 3 are both wrong, and from that I deduce that you count their answer to No. 7 correct -I have an issue here: 4 Vesta is a (minor) planet, and it is clearly a naked-eye object at maximum brightness. So either your question contains too many answers, or we have to discount Earth as trivial, or, well, there was a glitch in the question.
    So I submit my answer cum correction:
    1: Earth
    2: Venus
    3: Jupiter
    4: Mars
    5: Mercury
    6: Saturn
    7: 4 Vesta
    8: Uranus

    And don't tell me Vesta is no planet because it's a minor planet.....

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ToSeek
    ATP generally provides his own list of sample answers to his questions. It should be obvious that these answers aren't necessarily correct.
    Well, if you say so.

    But where the line is drawn between an obviously absurd answer and where creative wordplay is involved is not always obvious.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arneb
    2.
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamal
    I don't take off for mispellings
    And don't tell me Vesta is no planet because it's a minor planet.....
    The IAU says there are nine planets.
    Quote Originally Posted by pghnative
    But where the line is drawn
    I also provide my own score

    current scores
    6 IMO
    5 Eroica
    5 ToSeek
    4 Arneb
    1 A Thousand Pardons

  20. #20
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    Re: 4th Annual Astronomy Challenge

    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    Slowest rotating object would be my cat, who pretty much just lies there and revolves.
    "Words that make questions may not be questions at all."
    - Neil deGrasse Tyson, answering loaded question in ten words or less
    at a 2010 talk MCed by Stephen Colbert.

  21. #21
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    5. What are the common modes of telescope tracking speeds, in descending order
    1) sidereal
    2) King
    3) solar
    4) lunar
    5) stop

  22. #22
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    Since corrections are allowed 8-[
    1.
    86, 282.3970512208701185079137835
    2.
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamali
    3.
    Venus, Iapetus, Mercury
    4.
    Civil twilight, nautical twilight, astronomical twilight, night
    5.
    Sidereal, "King", solar, lunar, terrestrial
    6.
    Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    Bad Fellow (301 Posts)
    Bad Intern (201 Posts)
    7.
    Earth
    Venus
    Jupiter
    Mars
    Mercury
    Saturn
    Uranus (*grumbles*)
    8.
    Harrison Schmitt
    Gene Cernan
    Charles Duke
    John Young
    James Irwin
    David Scott
    Edgar Mitchell
    Alan Shepard

  23. #23
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    Changes starred...

    1.
    186, 282.3970512208701185079137835 miles per second
    2. *
    Zubenelgenubi (Alpha Librae) and Zubeneschamali (Beta Librae)
    3. *
    1: Voyager 1 (or Voyager 2)
    2: Voyager 2 (or Voyager 1)
    3: Venus
    4.
    1: Start of Civil Twilight (sunset) to End of Civil Twilight (Sun 6 below horizon)
    2: End of Civil Twilight to End of Nautical Twilight (Sun 12 below horizon)
    3: End of Nautical Twilight to End of Astronomical Twilight (Sun 18 below horizon)
    4: Night
    5. (got to believe IMO, though I don't know what 'King' tracking is)
    1: sidereal
    2: King
    3: solar
    4: lunar
    5: stop
    6.
    1: Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    2: Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    3: Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    4: Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    5: Bad Fellow (301 Posts)
    6: Bad Intern (201 Posts)
    7.
    1: Earth
    2: Venus
    3: Jupiter
    4: Mars
    5: Mercury
    6: Saturn
    7: Uranus

    8.
    1: Harrison Schmitt
    2: Gene Cernan
    3: Charles Duke
    4: John Young
    5: James Irwin
    6: David Scott
    7: Edgar Mitchell
    8: Alan Shepard

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grand Vizier
    Changes starred...
    ...
    5. (got to believe IMO, though I don't know what 'King' tracking is)
    1: sidereal
    2: King
    3: solar
    4: lunar
    5: stop
    ...
    http://scienceworld.wolfram.com/astr...ckingRate.html

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grand Vizier
    3. *
    1: Voyager 1 (or Voyager 2)
    2: Voyager 2 (or Voyager 1)
    3: Venus
    Interesting thought! Do you have something to support the Voyager idea? I'd change the scores. I actually started the challenge basing my answer on this Wiki page, but Iapetus is clearly a better answer than that.Named after Edward S. King. Of course, a lot of telescopes can "learn" new rates.

    current scores
    7 IMO
    7 Arneb
    6 Grand Vizier
    5 Eroica
    5 ToSeek
    1 A Thousand Pardons
    0 Moose

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by A Thousand Pardons
    Quote Originally Posted by Grand Vizier
    3. *
    1: Voyager 1 (or Voyager 2)
    2: Voyager 2 (or Voyager 1)
    3: Venus
    Interesting thought! Do you have something to support the Voyager idea? I'd change the scores. I actually started the challenge basing my answer on this Wiki page, but Iapetus is clearly a better answer than that.
    ...
    Normally spacecraft such as Vgr1 and Vgr2 would have been spin stabilized with the high gain antenna pointed towards Earth. If so, they can't be considered Sun (or Earth) synchronous.

  27. #27
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    I just found this Voyager page, which says that "Gyro operations are used to rotate the probe 360 degrees 6 times a year." Nominally, that's just a tad slower than Mercury, but since they are being manuvered--and it's not clear how the manuver is done--I'll disallow the answer for now. Clearly, there are parts of the spacecraft that are spinning.

  28. #28
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    1) 42

    (I hope this is not an egregious violation of protocol).

  29. #29
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    Standing on the shoulders of those who went before me...

    1. What is the exact speed of light, in miles per second? (make sure all fractions are reduced and proper)
    186, 282.3970512208701185079137835

    2. Which two twin stars are "obviously" in the wrong zodiac constellation? (answer order is alphabetical)
    Zubenelgenubi and Zubeneschamali

    3. Name the slowest rotating objects known, in the solar system, in order.
    1: Venus
    2: Iapetus
    3: Mercury

    4. After the Sun sets, what are the levels of darkness?
    1: Start of Civil Twilight (sunset) to End of Civil Twilight (Sun 6 below horizon)
    2: End of Civil Twilight to End of Nautical Twilight (Sun 12 below horizon)
    3: End of Nautical Twilight to End of Astronomical Twilight (Sun 18 below horizon)
    4: Night

    5) What are the common modes of telescope tracking speeds, in descending order
    1) sidereal
    2) King
    3) solar
    4) lunar
    5) stop

    6. List the current top BABB rankings, and the post counts needed to reach them, in descending order
    1: Bad Astronomer (None)
    2: Bad PostDoc (5001 Posts)
    3: Bad PhD (2001 Posts)
    4: Bad Master (1001 Posts)
    5: Bad Grad (501 Posts)
    6: Bad Fellow (301 Posts)

    7. Name the naked-eye visible planets, in order of their apparent maximum brightness
    1: Earth
    2: Venus
    3: Jupiter
    4: Mars
    5: Mercury
    6: Saturn
    7: Uranus

    8. Who were the last persons to set foot on the moon, in the reverse order of when they first did it?
    1: Harrison Schmitt
    2: Gene Cernan
    3: Charles Duke
    4: John Young
    5: James Irwin
    6: David Scott
    7: Edgar Mitchell
    8: Alan Shepard

    In all fairness, I can't take credit for most of this. However, if we follow the addage "Good astronomers borrow from others, great ones steal outright" then I fit right in. [-X
    problems worthy of attack prove their worth by hitting back (Piet Hein)
    I cook with wine, and sometime I even add it to the food. (W.C. Fields)
    I don't ask stupid questions. I just make stupid statements!!!
    Experience is a wonderful thing. It enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.
    All truths are simple to understand, once they are found. The challenge is finding them. (attrib. to Galileo)


  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by IMO
    1) 42

    (I hope this is not an egregious violation of protocol).
    Cute! let me research that answer

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