Every human has always wondered what lies beneath and beyond the sky. One always tends to try and put meaning to the universe that lies around him. And thus, astronomy came into being. Astronomy, in simple words, is the study of moon, stars, gas, comets, planets, sun, galaxies, dust and every other non-Earthly bodies and their phenomena.
Astronomy is the branch of science which deals with the study of celestial bodies (like the stars, comets, galaxies and planets) and the phenomena which originates outside the Earth’s atmosphere (like the cosmic background radiation). It is known to be one of the oldest sciences and is concerned with evolution, meteorology, physics, chemistry and the motion of the celestial objects along with the development and formation of the universe. NASA defines astronomy to be the study of the stars, planets and space.
To enable astronomy in becoming a modern science, the invention of the telescope was important. There are two fields for the modern astronomers i.e. observational astronomers who focus directly on the study of stars, galaxies, planets etc. and the theoretical astronomers who analyse and make models for the evolution of the systems.
Both the fields of astronomy complement each other owing to the fact that theoretical astronomy wants to explain the observational results while those observational results are used for confirming the theoretical results.
THE SCIENCE BEHIND ASTRONOMY
The early astronomers observed patterns in the sky and then organised them for tracking and predicting the motion. The patterns helped the people to measure seasons. These patterns were known to be constellations. The movement of the heavenly bodies and stars was majorly tracked and prevalent in Egypt, Greece, China, Central America, Mesopotamia and India.
Astronomers provide the intensely graphic yet detailed pictures of the space that is helpful in the field of science and it also makes the general people look in wonder. They snap the pictures of Earth from the space and thus, contribute in studying our own planet Earth.
Astronomy is the probably the only field of science where even amateurs can be helpful in discovering and observing the transient phenomena. Studying the stars and the stellar evolution is essential for understanding the basic concepts of universe. The star formation that occurs in the dense regions of the gas and dust are called as giant molecular clouds. They form protostar when they collapse due to gravity.
Modern astronomy make discoveries like how are the black holes formed, from where do the elements come from, how does the universe expand and accelerate and etc.