# Astronomy Test

100 Questions
• 1.
The basic unit of length in the metric system is the
• A.

Micron

• B.

Meter

• C.

Mile

• D.

Kilometer

• 2.
Which of the following numbers has the same meaning as 8670
• A.

8.67 x 10 ^ 3

• B.

8.67 x 10 ^ 2

• C.

8.67 x 10 ^ 1

• D.

0.867 x 10 ^ 3

• 3.
The distance traveled by light or by an object is equal to speed times
• A.

Frequency

• B.

Meters

• C.

Mass

• D.

Time

• 4.
The procedure of writing numbers as a decimal value between 1 and 10 times 10 raised toa n integer power (e.g., 2.4 x 10 ^4) is called
• A.

The scientific method

• B.

Mathematical precision

• C.

Scientific notation

• D.

Astronomical designation

• 5.
A light-year is defined as the
• A.

Speed of light in a vacuum

• B.

Average distance from the Earth to the Sun

• C.

Length of the Solar Year

• D.

Distance light travels in one year

• 6.
Which unit of measure, often used by astronomers, is not a preferred SI unit of combination?
• A.

Meter

• B.

Second

• C.

Kg/m^3

• D.

Km/s

• E.

Angstrom

• 7.
• A.

3 m/s

• B.

300 m/s

• C.

300 km/s

• D.

300,000 km/s

• 8.
The process of breaking light down into its component colors creates a(n)
• A.

Image

• B.

Hologram

• C.

Spectrum

• D.

Pulse

• 9.
Ancient astronomers divided the sky into regions containing distinct groups of stars called
• A.

Clusters

• B.

Coordinates

• C.

Constellations

• D.

Galaxies

• E.

Nebula

• 10.
Scientific results must be
• A.

Hyptothetical

• B.

Reproducible

• C.

Controversial

• D.

Believed by at least 50% of scientists

• 11.
The Earth's atmosphere shields us from most kinds of electromagnetic radiation. The exceptions are
• A.

• B.

• C.

Only visible light frequencies.

• D.

X-rays and gamma rays

• E.

• 12.
Compared with visible-light photons, a photon of radio waves has
• A.

Less energy.

• B.

More energy

• C.

The same energy

• D.

Redder energy

• E.

AM energy.

• 13.
The type of electromagnetic radiation with a wavelength just longer than that of red light is
• A.

• B.

X-rays.

• C.

• D.

Gamma rays.

• E.

• 14.
The rule describing the relationship between the temperature of a material and the wavelength of its peak emittedradiation is
• A.

The blackbody rule.

• B.

The quantum theory.

• C.

Planck's law.

• D.

The Stefan-Boltzmann law.

• E.

Wien's law.

• 15.
The rule describing the relationship between the total radiant energy emitted by a blackbody to its temperature is
• A.

The blackbody rule.

• B.

The quantum theory.

• C.

Planck's law.

• D.

The Stefan-Boltzmann law.

• E.

The Wien displacement law.

• 16.
The atomic model that places electrons in definite orbits around the nucleus but allows only certain orbits to exist isthe
• A.

Bohr model.

• B.

Einstein model.

• C.

Feynman model.

• D.

Rutherford model.

• E.

Thomson model.

• 17.
If electrons are or removed from a neutral atom the atom is said to be
• A.

Nuclear.

• B.

Ionized.

• C.

Doubly neutral.

• D.

Electronic.

• E.

A proto-atom.

• 18.
The lowest possible energy state of an atom is called the
• A.

Excited state.

• B.

Ground state.

• C.

Neutral state.

• D.

Photon level.

• E.

Balmer level.

• 19.
When a gas removes energy at a particular wavelength from radiation passing through it, it creates a(n)
• A.

Continuous spectrum.

• B.

Emission line.

• C.

Stellar spectrum.

• D.

Absorption line.

• E.

Black hole.

• 20.
In a spectrum, bright lines that appear at wavelengths where there is more radiation than at neighboring wavelengthsare called
• A.

Absorption lines.

• B.

Emission lines.

• C.

Fraunhofer lines.

• D.

Continuum lines

• E.

Stellar lines.

• 21.
A curved lens or mirror can form an image by bringing light to a(n)
• A.

Aberration.

• B.

Focus.

• C.

Resolution.

• D.

Divergence.

• E.

Ray.

• 22.
A reflecting telescope that uses a secondary mirror to reflect light to the side of the telescope is called a(n)
• A.

Newtonian.

• B.

Cassegrain.

• C.

Schmidt.

• D.

Gregorian.

• E.

Halleyan.

• 23.
All other things being equal, and ignoring atmospheric effects, a reflecting telescope with a large objective mirror willhave, compared with a telescope with a smaller mirror,
• A.

Better light-gathering power only

• B.

Better resolution only.

• C.

Better light-gathering power and better resolution.

• D.

Better light-gathering power but poorer resolution.

• E.

Better infrared sensitivity.

• 24.
Today, sites for new large ground-based telescopes are selected primarily on the basis of all the following except
• A.

Proximity to universities and research centers

• B.

Elevation above sea level.

• C.

The characteristics of the atmosphere above the proposed site.

• D.

Ability to see the southern sky.

• E.

Dark sky.

• 25.
The Hubble Space Telescope is a(n)
• A.

Ground-based refracting telescope

• B.

Ground-based reflecting telescope.

• C.

Orbiting refracting telescope.

• D.

Orbiting reflecting telescope.

• E.

• 26.
A radio telescope 100 meters across, when used to measure 10-centimeter waves, is
• A.

1,000,000 wavelengths across.

• B.

1000 wavelengths across.

• C.

100 wavelengths across.

• D.

10 wavelengths across.

• E.

1 wavelength across.

• 27.
A method for improving the images produced by ground-based optical telescopes despite blurring by the Earth'satmosphere is called
• A.

Fourier transformation.

• B.

Very long baseline interferometry

• C.

Down-conversion

• D.

• E.

Narrow-band filtering.

• 28.
The ability to distinguish between details or to distinguish two adjacent objects as separate is
• A.

Reflection.

• B.

Refraction

• C.

Aperture.

• D.

Resolution.

• E.

Spectroscopy.

• 29.
NASA's successor to the Hubble Space Telescope is to be the
• A.

Planck Telescope.

• B.

Extremely Large Telescope.

• C.

Neil Armstrong Space Telescope.

• D.

George Washington Telescope.

• E.

James Webb Space Telescope.

• 30.
NASA's set of Great Observatories includes all but
• A.

Hubble Space Telescope

• B.

Spitzer Space Telescope

• C.

Compton Gamma-ray Observatory

• D.

Chandra X-ray Observatory

• E.

Keck Telescope

• 31.
The most obvious difference between the images of planets and stars, as seen from the ground, is that stars
• A.

Twinkle.

• B.

Change color.

• C.

Are very small.

• D.

Move through the sky.

• E.

Change their shape.

• 32.
For any location on the Earth there is a point directly overhead in the sky called the
• A.

Autumnal equinox.

• B.

Vernal equinox.

• C.

Hour circle.

• D.

Meridian.

• E.

Zenith.

• 33.
The calendar containing 365 days with every fourth year a leap year, except century years not divisible by 400, is the
• A.

Babylonian calendar.

• B.

Gregorian calendar.

• C.

Julian calendar

• D.

Roman calendar

• E.

King James calendar.

• 34.
If the Sun is just setting, and the Moon is at its first quarter phase, the Moon will be
• A.

• B.

On the meridian.

• C.

On the eastern horizon.

• D.

Below the horizon

• E.

5Â° below the zenith.

• 35.
The period between new Moons is called a
• A.

Lunar year

• B.

Month.

• C.

Sidereal day

• D.

Fortnight

• E.

Saros.

• 36.
The photosphere of the Sun as seen from Earth, covers an angle of about
• A.

1/2Â°.

• B.

1Â°.

• C.

2Â°.

• D.

5Â°.

• E.

10Â°.

• 37.
A star that is 100 times fainter than another star at the same distance will be
• A.

1 magnitude dimmer

• B.

2.5 magnitudes dimmer.

• C.

3 magnitudes dimmer.

• D.

5 magnitudes dimmer.

• E.

10 magnitudes dimmer.

• 38.
The moon looks reddish at a total lunar eclipse because
• A.

The Sun hits it at sunset.

• B.

It is illuminated mainly by the Sun's H-alpha red radiation.

• C.

It is red hot.

• D.

It is Dopper shifted into the red.

• E.

Sunlight is bent through the Earth's atmosphere, with blue scattered out.

• 39.
If the North Star is Polaris, the South Star is
• A.

Betelgeuse

• B.

Orion

• C.

Non-existent.

• D.

Octans.

• E.

Sirius.

• 40.
When the next total solar eclipse occurs in the United States, viewers will have to
• A.

Use solar filters during totality.

• B.

Travel to a path about 200 km wide.

• C.

Use pinhole cameras to see it.

• D.

• E.

Cover their eyes.

• 41.
Not long after the death of Nicholas Copernicus, a Danish nobleman used giant instruments to makeobservations of the planet's motions with unprecedented accuracy. This astronomer was
• A.

Galileo Galilei

• B.

Johannes Kepler.

• C.

Isaac Newton.

• D.

Tycho Brahe.

• E.

Ole RÃ¸mer.

• 42.
Ptolemy's ideas about the Universe and a summary of the ideas of his predecessors were contained in his majorwork,
• A.

The Almagest.

• B.

The Encyclopedia.

• C.

Primum Mobile.

• D.

Revolutionibus.

• E.

Sidereus Nuncius.

• 43.
Which pair of planets was known to the ancient Greeks?
• A.

Venus, Mars

• B.

Earth, Uranus

• C.

Jupiter, Pluto

• D.

Saturn, Neptune

• E.

Pluto, Mars

• 44.
The closer a planet, asteroid, or comet is to the Sun in its orbit, the faster it moves. This is a consequence of
• A.

Kepler's first law.

• B.

The Law of Equal Areas.

• C.

Kepler's third law.

• D.

The speed of light.

• E.

Newton's second law.

• 45.
Galileo's telescopic observations of Venus proved conclusively that
• A.

Venus does not travel on a deferent centered on the Earth.

• B.

The Earth orbits the Sun.

• C.

The orbit of Venus is elliptical.

• D.

The orbit of the Earth is elliptical.

• E.

The axis of the Earth is inclined.

• 46.
If a satellite orbiting just above the surface of the Earth orbits in about 1.5 hours, then at about how many Earthradii from the Earth's center must a satellite orbit to have a period of 24 hours?
• A.

2.1

• B.

6.4

• C.

8

• D.

11.3

• E.

24

• 47.
The line that extends from one edge of an ellipse to the other, passing through both foci of the ellipse is calledthe
• A.

Eccentric.

• B.

Major axis.

• C.

Semimajor axis.

• D.

Minor axis.

• E.

Semiminor axis.

• 48.
An object is moving through space. If all forces are removed from the object, then it will
• A.

Continue in a straight line but slow down and stop

• B.

Move in random directions.

• C.

Continue in a straight line at constant speed.

• D.

Enter a circular orbit.

• 49.
Two remarkable aspects of our solar system that must be accounted for in any theory of cosmogony are that
• A.

The planets all have the same density and composition

• B.

All of the planets revolve around the Sun in the same sense as the Sun rotates, and the orbits of all of the planets lie in nearly the same plane.

• C.

All of the planets rotate in the same sense as the Sun, and all have a density similar to that of water

• D.

The orbits of all of the planets lie in nearly the same plane, and all have the same composition

• 50.
Which is the only planet (of the 9-planet system) whose orbit is significantly tilted with respect to the ecliptic?
• A.

Mercury

• B.

Earth

• C.

Jupiter

• D.

Saturn

• E.

Pluto

• 51.
Much of our knowledge of the interior of the Earth comes from the study of planetary vibrations, which is thescience of
• A.

Geography.

• B.

Geology.

• C.

Meteorology.

• D.

Planetology.

• E.

Seismology.

• 52.
The process of forming layers within a body because of differences in thermal characteristics and densitybetween materials is called
• A.

Differentiation.

• B.

Geothermal energy

• C.

Internal heat.

• D.

Isotopes.

• E.

Plate tectonics

• 53.
The highest and lowest tides occur
• A.

In spring

• B.

When the Moon is at first or last quarter

• C.

When the Moon is new or full.

• D.

When the Sun's gravitational pull is the greatest

• E.

When the spring tide is neap

• 54.
Charged particles trapped in Earth's magnetic field may collide with molecules in the upper atmosphere andproduce the glowing lights called
• A.

Aurorae.

• B.

Ionosphere.

• C.

Ozone layer.

• D.

Magnetic field.

• E.

Van Allen belts.

• 55.
Of the inner planets, which has the strongest magnetic field?
• A.

Mercury

• B.

Venus

• C.

Earth

• D.

Mars

• E.

None of the above

• 56.
Most of the rocks found on the Moon are
• A.

Metamorphic.

• B.

Limestone.

• C.

Shales.

• D.

Igneous.

• E.

Sedimentary.

• 57.
Of all Moon rocks sampled, rocks taken from the lunar maria tend to be the
• A.

Heaviest.

• B.

Lightest.

• C.

Oldest.

• D.

Youngest.

• E.

Hollowest.

• 58.
The theory that the Moon formed from a ring of material ejected from the Earth by a collision is the
• A.

Condensation theory

• B.

Capture theory.

• C.

Fission theory.

• D.

Co-accretion theory.

• E.

Collision theory.

• 59.
The fraction of the light falling on a body that is reflected is the body's
• A.

Albedo.

• B.

Density.

• C.

Phase.

• D.

Color index

• E.

Refraction.

• 60.
Which is heavier, a ton of feathers or a ton of lead?
• A.

Feathers by a little

• B.

• C.

Neither (you still need to know why!)

• D.

Feathers by a lot

• E.

Half the feathers plus half the lead

• 61.
The largest planetary satellite in the solar system is
• A.

Charon

• B.

Ganymede

• C.

The Moon

• D.

Titan

• E.

Triton

• 62.
Violently volcanic, with many simultaneous eruptions now going on, is Jupiterâ€™s satellite
• A.

Io

• B.

Europa

• C.

Ganymede

• D.

Callisto

• E.

Amalthea

• 63.
The closest views of Jupiter's moons have come from which spacecraft?
• A.

Pioneer 10

• B.

Voyager 1

• C.

Cassini

• D.

Mariner 10

• E.

Galileo

• 64.
The Galileo atmospheric probe found that the amount of water vapor in Jupiter's atmosphere, at least where itentered, is
• A.

Zero.

• B.

• C.

Less than expected.

• D.

More than expected.

• E.

Enough for it to rain every day.

• 65.
The largest satellite of Saturn is
• A.

Ganymede.

• B.

Hyperion.

• C.

Tethys.

• D.

Titan.

• E.

Triton.

• 66.
Saturnâ€™s satellite with water geysers, discovered from the Cassini mission, is
• A.

Mimas

• B.

• C.

Rhea

• D.

Iapetus

• E.

Titan

• 67.
Compared with the Earth's orbit around the Sun, Uranus's orbit is
• A.

2 times larger.

• B.

12 times larger.

• C.

19 times larger.

• D.

84 times larger.

• E.

1,000 times larger.

• 68.
The initial discovery of the rings of Uranus came accidentally during observations of its
• A.

Phases.

• B.

Occultation of a star.

• C.

Rotation period

• D.

Revolution period.

• E.

Transit of the Sun.

• 69.
It is possible to explain the peculiar orientation of Uranus's magnetic field if the field is generated
• A.

Deep in its core.

• B.

In the crust.

• C.

In a thin shell outside the core.

• D.

• E.

In the atmosphere.

• 70.
The period of Neptune's solar orbit is about
• A.

30 Earth years.

• B.

100 Earth years.

• C.

165 Earth years.

• D.

195 Earth years.

• 71.
The period of the orbit of Pluto around the Sun is
• A.

2 Earth years

• B.

12 Earth years.

• C.

30 Earth years.

• D.

248 Earth years.

• E.

1000 Earth years.

• 72.
The first satellite of the planet Pluto that was discovered is named
• A.

Chiron.

• B.

Charon.

• C.

Puck.

• D.

Oberon.

• E.

Hamlet

• 73.
The known Kuiper belt objects have orbital semimajor axes in the approximate range
• A.

5 to 10 A.U.

• B.

10 to 20 A.U.

• C.

20 to 30 A.U.

• D.

30 to 80 A.U.

• E.

1 to 2 light years

• 74.
The density of Pluto is about
• A.

1 g/cm3.

• B.

2 g/cm3.

• C.

5.5 g/cm3.

• D.

10 g/cm3.

• E.

30 g/cm3.

• 75.
The matter at the center of the head of a comet is the
• A.

Coma.

• B.

Dust tail

• C.

Gas tail

• D.

Hydrogen cloud.

• E.

Nucleus.

• 76.
The gas tail of a comet is created by the effects of the
• A.

Nucleus.

• B.

Coma.

• C.

Reaction force

• D.

Solar wind.

• E.

Gas jets.

• 77.
The composition of the dust in Comet Halley, as measured by the Giotto spacecraft in 1986, is most like that of
• A.

Venus.

• B.

A giant planet moon.

• C.

The early Solar System.

• D.

Planetary material ejected by meteorite impacts.

• E.

Saturn's moon Titan.

• 78.
When a fragment of interplanetary matter survives its trip through an atmosphere to reach the surface of anastronomical body it is called a
• A.

Bolide.

• B.

Fireball.

• C.

Meteor.

• D.

Meteoroid.

• E.

Meteorite.

• 79.
A few meteorites contain
• A.

Iron.

• B.

Stone.

• C.

Liquid water

• D.

Organic compounds

• E.

Methane.

• 80.
Among the many bodies that resulted from the aggregation of planetesimals when the solar system was formedwere minor planets, less than 1000 km across, called
• A.

Asteroids.

• B.

Meteoroids.

• C.

Meteorites.

• D.

Planetoids.

• E.

Plutoids.

• 81.
Modern theories of solar system formation posit that planets formed through aggregation of many smaller bodies, each perhaps only hundreds of kilometers in size, called
• A.

Planetoids.

• B.

Planetesimals.

• C.

Protoplanets.

• D.

Nebulae.

• E.

Venusians.

• 82.
The first extra-solar planets detected are not likely candidates for life because
• A.

The planets are too small

• B.

Their surface temperatures are probably too low for liquid water

• C.

They orbit pulsars, which emit too much powerful radiation

• D.

They are too distant from the star they orbit.

• E.

They are invisible.

• 83.
So far, it appears that one way extra-solar planetary systems differ from our solar systems in that
• A.

Stars in the centers of these systems are all much more massive than the Sun

• B.

The planetary systems are typically larger than our solar system.

• C.

These planetary systems never have more than one planet.

• D.

Many have giant planets are located closer to the central star than Jupiter in our system.

• E.

They are found around B stars

• 84.
Several early reports of the detection of extrasolar planets later proved to be incorrect. This illustrates that
• A.

Most astronomers are careless.

• B.

Detecting such objects is very difficult.

• C.

Extrasolar planets do not exist

• D.

All such objects are smaller than Jupiter.

• E.

The planets were there but they evaporated

• 85.
As of this writing, how many of the newly-discovered extrasolar planets have been imaged directly?
• A.

None

• B.

At least one

• C.

5

• D.

All of them

• E.

• 86.
Doppler methods are biased toward finding planets
• A.

Smaller than Earth

• B.

Composed of ices.

• C.

With orbital periods greater than 20 years

• D.

With orbital planes along the line of sight.

• E.

With large moons

• 87.
Which spacecraft mission is not intended to search for extrasolar planets?
• A.

Eddington

• B.

Space Interferometry Mission (SIM)

• C.

Cassini

• D.

Terrestrial Planet Finder (TPF)

• E.

Kepler

• 88.
Most of the extrasolar planets detected since 1995 are unlikely to harbor life as we know it because
• A.

UFO's patrol space to wipe out incipient life in new places

• B.

They are too far from their stars

• C.

Their orbits are too inclined relative to the equators of their stars.

• D.

They are too small

• E.

They are gas giants, without solid surfaces

• 89.
________________ are objects more massive than Jupiter but not massive enough to start fusing hydrogen intheir cores
• A.

White dwarfs

• B.

Black holes

• C.

Red dwarfs

• D.

Yellow Dwarfs

• E.

Brown dwarfs

• 90.
As of this writing, the most massive extrasolar planets detected are about ________________ times the mass ofJupiter
• A.

Two

• B.

Three

• C.

Five

• D.

Ten

• E.

Fifteenths

• 91.
The outermost level of the Sun is the
• A.

Photosphere.

• B.

Solar corona.

• C.

Solar wind.

• D.

Scattering of sunlight.

• E.

Sunspots.

• 92.
All of the energy of the Sun is generated in the
• A.

Chromosphere.

• B.

Core.

• C.

Corona.

• D.

Photosphere.

• E.

Solar wind.

• 93.
About 94 percent of the nuclei in the outer parts of the Sun are
• A.

Helium.

• B.

Hydrogen.

• C.

Heavy elements.

• D.

Gas.

• E.

Iron.

• 94.
The light we receive from the Sun comes from the layer of the Sun's atmosphere called the
• A.

Photosphere.

• B.

Solar corona

• C.

Solar wind.

• D.

Scattering of sunlight

• E.

Sunspots.

• 95.
The wavelength peak of the Sun's radiation is in the middle of the
• A.

Infrared region.

• B.

• C.

Ultraviolet region

• D.

Visible spectrum

• E.

X-ray region

• 96.
The solar corona is so hot it emits mainly
• A.

• B.

• C.

• D.

Visible light.

• E.

X-rays

• 97.
The dark region of a sunspot is often surrounded by a less dark region called the
• A.

Granule.

• B.

Hole.

• C.

Penumbra.

• D.

Spicule.

• E.

Umbra.

• 98.
Dark lines threading their way across the Sun, visible in H light near sunspots are
• A.

Coronal holes.

• B.

Filaments.

• C.

Solar flares

• D.

Plages.

• E.

Prominences.

• 99.
The Maunder minimum was a period beginning in the late 17th century when there were apparently no
• A.

Coronal holes

• B.

Eclipses.

• C.

Solar flares

• D.

Solar magnetic reversals.

• E.

Sunspots.

• 100.
Compared to surrounding regions on the photosphere, sunspots are
• A.

Hotter.

• B.

Cooler.

• C.

Much less dense

• D.

Deficient in helium

• E.

Bluer.

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