Astronomy Question

Research Paper 4: Astrobiology
For this fourth paper you will do some research on potential catastrophic events, and how mankind may prevent our own extinction. You will pick one of the topics below, research it, and write a 2 page paper on it.
The Drake Equation: The Drake Equation is designed to give us an idea of the possibility of us finding life somewhere else in the universe. When it was originally formulated it largely gave an indication that the odds are very small, but with new evidence that may have changed. Research the Drake Equation and describe in what ways you would change it based on modern evidence. With your reformulation, what do you think the odds of us coming into contact with life on another world is in the future?
Extremophiles: Though we have no evidence to prove the fact, we as humans seem to have trouble picturing life that is drastically different then the life we see on Earth. When we picture a life-form outside of our planet, we tend to picture it with legs, maybe arms, eyes, etc., even though not even all life on this Earth have all of these characteristics. Some life on Earth has even evolved to survive in very extreme circumstances (very high temperatures, conditions with little to no light, highly acidic water supplies, etc.). Research four such life-forms and write a paper on them. In the paper, discuss whether studying these creatures leads you to believe that there is a greater chance of life evolving and surviving outside of our planet.
Aliens: Do the laws of physics limit the variety of life that exist outside of the Earth in any way? What senses, outside of our five, might alien-life have? How far would an alien civilization have to be if it is to detect life on Earth? These are just some of the questions asked to Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson on his show StarTalk Radio. For this paper, listen to the podcast at the link below (you should all be listening to this podcast every week anyway) and summarize at least 4 concepts discussed that you find most interesting. Did this podcast sway your current concept of alien life in any way and why?
http://www.startalkradio.net/show/cosmic-queries-aliens/
SETI: The SETI Institute is one of the sole institutions whose only goal is to hunt for extraterrestrial life. The institute runs a weekly lecture series on their instrumentation, algorithms, new discoveries, or some key aspect of the hunt for intelligent life outside of our planet. Watch the lecture “Challenge for SETI” by Ben Zuckermen and write a paper summarizing and discussing some of the key points made. Be sure to discuss your opinion of the topics in the paper as well.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJbJRWMCO_shttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJbJRWMCO_shttp://www.seti.org/seti-institute/weeky-lecture/search-intelligent-life-universe-some-great-challenges-seti
General requirements for the project are as follows:
Use at least 3 reputable sources. Two must be from journal articles found on our library website.
Turn in a title page and a works cited page or bibliography. This does not get included in page count.
Put thought into your opinion. You will be graded on how well put together your ideas are.
You can include no more than one quote that is no more than 50 words long.
Plagiarism will be dealt with as outlined in the syllabus. Anything not in your own words will count as plagiarism. Just changing a few words of someone else’s sentence is still plagiarizing.
For more detailed explanations on the report requirements, see the syllabus.

Astronomy PHYS1081

If there is a First Quater Moon on the date of the vernal equinox, estimate the Moon’s Right Ascension and Declination. [5 marks]
If a First Quater Moon is observed from Durham (latitude = 55◦) at 18:00 on the date of the vernal equinox, estimate the azimuth and altitude of the Moon. [5 marks]
(c) (i) Briefly describe the annual apparent motion of the Sun seen by ob- servers at the North and South poles. [2 marks]
(d)
(ii) At the time of the summer solstice, what is the lowest northern lati- tude from which the Sun can be seen above the horizon at midnight? [3 marks]
Estimate the maximum altitude that the Sun reaches at the time of the summer and winter solstices as observed from the La Palma Observatory (latitude = 28.8◦). [5 marks]

Astronomy Question

For this paper you will do some research on a major current topic in the field of cosmology. You will pick one of the topics below, research it, and write a 2 page paper on it.
1. Multiverse: One of the modern explanations used to explain some of the weirder issues of Quantum Mechanics, as well as String Theory, is the idea that we are just one universe in a collection known as the multiverse. It has even begun to show up in popular culture, such as in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Listen to this podcast, research the history of the idea of the multiverse, and write a paper describing what the multiverse is, why some scientists believe it exists, whether or not there are any ways to test for the existence of it, and the principles of quantum mechanics that the multiverse helps to explain.
https://www.startalkradio.net/show/cosmic-queries-multiverse/
2. Dark Energy: Ever since the results were presented from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, we have been made aware that not only is our universe expanding, but that the expansion rate of the universe is speeding up. Many scientists have attributed this to a mysterious negative vacuum pressure known as Dark Energy. Listen to the podcast at the link below, and research the subject of dark energy, some of the major theories about what it is, as well as some dissenting opinions and what they believe is causing the acceleration of the expansion rate.
http://www.astronomycast.com/2018/04/ep-488-dark-energy-2018-edition/
3. Unified Field Theory: One of the last goals of Albert Einstein before he died was to unite all of the known forces of nature into a single concept, a Theory of Everything. Since his attempts, many physicists have taken up the hunt and models such as String Theory and Loop Quantum Gravity, as well as many others, have been proposed. Research some of the Grand Unified Theories, what they propose, and what some of the major differences between them are, what effects do they have on things like space, time, the origin of the universe, etc. If you Google Unified Field Theory, or Grand Unified Theory, etc., you are likely to come across a rabbit hole of non-scientists trying to link the ideas to some fairly nonsensical ones about things like consciousnesses and religion, so please stay away from that. There are many articles and podcasts you can find on this subject, a few podcast links can be found below (though you may use all of them, only one of the below can count toward your three sources).
https://www.listennotes.com/podcasts/deepak-chopras/the-theory-of-everything-dr-fmQ1iVhnky7/
https://www.space.com/theory-of-everything-definition.html
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/the-elusive-thoery-of-everything/
General requirements for the project are as follows:
Use at least 3 reputable sources. Two must be from journal articles found on our library website.
Turn in a title page and a works cited page or bibliography. This does not get included in page count.
Put thought into your opinion. You will be graded on how well put together your ideas are.
You can include no more than one quote that is no more than 50 words long.
Plagiarism will be dealt with as outlined in the syllabus. Anything not in your own words will count as plagiarism. Just changing a few words of someone else’s sentence is still plagiarizing