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Physics LibreTexts

Map: Astronomy (OpenStax)

Astronomy is defined as the study of the objects that lie beyond our planet Earth and the processes by which these objects interact with one another. We will see, though, that it is much more. It is also humanity’s attempt to organize what we learn into a clear history of the universe, from the instant of its birth in the Big Bang to the present moment. Throughout this book, we emphasize that science is a progress report—one that changes constantly as new techniques and instruments allow us to probe the universe more deeply.

Thumbnail: This is a modification of the Flammarion Woodcut is an enigmatic woodcut by an unknown artist. The woodcut depicts a man peering through the Earth's atmosphere as if it were a curtain to look at the inner workings of the universe. The original caption below the picture (not included here) translated to: "A medieval missionary tells that he has found the point where heaven and Earth meet...".