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P7 ­ Further Physics

P7.1 Naked eye astronomy

The Sun rises in the east and sets in the west, moving across the sky during the day. It takes 24 hours
for the Sun to move from its highest point in the sky (at noon) back to its highest point the…

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Solar eclipse ­ A sloar eclipse happens when the
moon is (purely by chance) just the right size and
distance away that when it passes between the Sun
and the Earth an can block out the Sun.

From some parts of the Earth the Sun is completely
blocked out ­…

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Eclipses don't happen very often ­ the moon orbits the Earth at an angle to Earth's orbit around the
Sun so most of the time the Sun, Moon and Earth don't line up to cause eclipses

Partial eclipses happen a bit more often as they don't have to line up…

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A converging lens uses refraction to bend the light rays coming out of it inwards ­ this has the effect
of focusing the light to a point called the focal point

As a light ray hits the surface of the lens and passes from
air to glass it slows down…

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Some objects in the sky are so distant and faint, only a tiny amount of radiation from them reaches us
­ to collect enough of the radiation from these objects to see them you need a telescope with a
huge objective lens (or mirror) ­ the diameter of the objective…

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P7.3 Mapping the Universe

Parallax is an apparent change in position of an object against a distant background - it makes closer
stars appear to move relative to distant ones over the course of a year. In astronomy

The parallax angle is HALF the angle moved against distant background stars…

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In the 1920s there was a debate about the size and structure of the Universe, led by two famous
American astronomers ­ Shapley and Curtis

Through telescopes, people had seen some faint, fuzzy objects they had called nebulae ­ some of
these objects looked spiral-shaped but some were just blobs…

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This suggests that the whole universe is expanding from a single point which supports the big bang
theory ( all the matter and energy in the Universe was compressed into a very small space)

Scientists believe the Universe began with a `big bang 14 thousand million years ago

P7.4 The…

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If you increase the temperature of something, you give its particles more kinetic energy ­ they
move more quickly and vibrate more

The coldest that anything can ever get is -273°C ­ this temperature is known as absolute zero ­ at
absolute zero atoms have as little kinetic energy as…

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regions where supergiants, red giants, main sequence stars and white dwarfs are located.

When a star starts nuclear fusion reactions it is called a main sequence star and it is stable ­
hydrogen is being converted via fusion into helium in the core.

A star leaves the main sequence when…


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