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astro vocab

vocabulary for astronomy

astronomy The study of the moon, stars, and other objects in space.
axis An imaginary line that passes through Earth's center and the North an South poles, about which Earth rotates.
rotation The spinning motion of a planet about its axis.
revolution The movement of an object around another object.
orbit The path one object takes around another.
tilt When something is almost straight or flat.
solstice Time of the year when the day is either shortest, or longest depending on where you are.
equinox Twice a year, when the day and night are the same amount of time all around the world.
phase The apparent change in the shape of the Moon, Mercury, and Venus due to how much of the sunlit side is facing the Earth.
eclipse When our view of one object in the sky is blocked by either another object, or the Earths shadow.
gravity The force that holds planets in their orbits around the Sun.
tide The rise and fall of the level of water in the ocean.
satellite A small object orbiting a larger one. There are many electronic objects that orbit the Earth.
telescope A device built to study distant objects by making them appear closer.
geocentric A description of the solar system in which all planets revolve around Earth.
heliocentric A description of the solar system in which all of the planets revolve around the sun.
inner planet Mercury and Venus which lie closer to the Sun than the Earth are called inferior planets.
outer planet The planets which lie further from the Sun than the Earth.
comet A small, frozen mass of dust and gas revolving around the sun.
asteroid A rock, or Minor Planet orbiting the Sun.
meteroid Any small object in Outer Space, such as dust, or a rock.
constellation A grouping of stars which have been given names by ancient astronomers because of the way they look.
galaxy A group of stars, gas and dust held together by gravity.
universe All of space and everthing in it.
Milky Way Our Galaxy. (the word "Galaxy" actually means milky way in Greek).
Created by: siobhank