Astronomy is a phenomenon-based subject. You hear about the latest eclipses, shooting comets, the solar system, and new exoplanets from time to time. It’s time to navigate our thirst for knowledge towards the very universe we exist in. Distance in space is measured in light years. However, that doesn’t mean we have to remain oblivious to our surroundings. We may very well not be alone. Here are some elements of astronomy that you can investigate/contribute towards by yourself.
Stargazing from anywhere with equipment:
The Astronomy Magazine – Interactive Star Charts, Planets, Meteors, Comets, Telescopes supplies visitors with a wealth of information on the current night sky viewing conditions, news, as well as advice on technical equipment to be used when stargazing. Equipment from telescopes to binoculars are all recommended according to the astronomical abilities of users, whether they are beginners or experts.
Writing about astronomical discoveries/topics:
There are many online publications dedicated to the research of astronomical observations. For example, the Physics World website provides a section on astronomy and space in which the latest discoveries and sightings are recorded. If one wishes to gain expert insight, it may be worth turning towards university lecturers and academics to gain their insight for whatever piece of written work you are aiming to write. It may be well worth looking into academic research journals for further information and intellectual insight.
Visiting observatories and gaining deeper insight:
Observatories are a great way to observe the night sky and its wonders – most are open to the public. Here’s an example of an observatory open to the public: HSS >> Astronomy Section >> Observatory (hampsteadscience.ac.uk). Be sure to check their website, as opening times during the year may differ. Observatories can allow further viewings of space and allow for further research. Many universities and research facilities have observatories within their institutions.
Catching up on the latest news via blogs, books, and articles online:
The internet has a wealth of information at your fingertips. These are just a few sources of information. Educate yourself today and look into the free resources whilst investing in the worthwhile paid one. Consider networking with physics/astrophysics researchers professionally via LinkedIn, and start a project, write a book, or go on an observatory journey to find the best sightings. There are many talented writers out there creating informative resources on astronomy on the web. Many of these writers have been educated with a PhD in their chosen subject:
The Astronomy Book: Big Ideas Simply Explained: Amazon.co.uk: DK: 9780241225936: Books
Astronomy Magazine – Interactive Star Charts, Planets, Meteors, Comets, Telescopes
The Astronomical Journal – IOPscience
Support astronomical projects on crowdfunding websites:
There are many crowdfunded projects happening in the world of astronomical discovery and insight. Consider donating to one of these or starting your own crowdfunded project and involve the community around you:
Keeping astronomy and our heritage alive – a Heritage crowdfunding project in Herstmonceux by The Observatory Science Centre (crowdfunder.co.uk)
Astronomy Legacy Project | Indiegogo
OAD Project Crowdfunding To Train Students as Astroguides (astro4dev.org)
Take an astronomy-based course online or in person:
Courses are a fantastic way to not only learn, but also become qualified in the field of astronomy and astrophysics:
Astronomy Diploma Course | Study & Learn Astronomy Online (centreofexcellence.com)
Free Online Course: AstroTech: The Science and Technology behind Astronomical Discovery from Coursera | Class Central
Astronomy courses at the Royal Observatory | Royal Museums Greenwich (rmg.co.uk)