Practice the basics of professional observational astronomy with C2PU

Practice the basics of professional observational astronomy with C2PU

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Maybe there will be many of us who have dreamed of one day astronomerastronomer Or astronomyastronomyBut for this you have to study until you get thesis and doctor in astronomy astrophysicsastrophysics Their number is too large to find a place in research. Fortunately, there are many online courses in astronomy and theoretical astrophysics that you can take on the web and train yourself in mathematics as well. physiquephysiqueFailing to pass at least one license at a university with modules in these areas.

The basics of observational astronomy are less obvious to the self-taught because they are taught in a master’s degree in astronomy and, above all, not everyone has a binocular telescope. mirrormirror of several tens of centimeters and equipped with a spectrographspectrograph (The instruments under the dome and at the observation site are not mentioned AtmosphereAtmosphere slightly turbulent and largely free light pollutionlight pollution,

Therefore it is an unexpected opportunity to be able to apply for DUAO (University Diploma in Observational Astronomy). A diploma awarded by the University of the Côte d’Azur, which is, in a way, nothing less than a practical astronomy module extracted from the first year of the MAUCA master’s degree (Master of Astrophysics of the Côte d’Azur University of the Côte d’Azur). D’Azur Observatory (OCA).

The training takes place over a year, remotely, with one lesson for three hours in the evening per week from mid-September to mid-June. Applications are open to anyone with at least a bachelor’s degree in physics, mathematics or earth science, but possibly also to an experienced amateur astronomer with sufficient background to interview.

DUAO requires a lot of individual work on a regular basis, but courses given online by professional OCA astronomers are recorded and posted online throughout the year. In case of difficulty the teachers are also available by email or zoom.

C2PU in drone. © Ste Marara

The practical part of DUAO is based on the possibility of prior training on data taken as part of the C2PU project (Planet University Educational Center), which makes it possible to use two professional astronomical telescopes with a diameter of 1 m located at the Calern site. Côte d’Azur Observatory, but also to carry out a short observation program at the end of the year by remotely controlling one of the telescopes to take data in the field of both photometry and spectroscopy.

In practice, DUAO makes it possible to specifically train in processing basic data for searching for exoplanets, rotations of some asteroids, establishing date clusters.StarsStars and even study in the scene GalaxiesGalaxies and microquasars. so its purpose is not to learn how to draw beautiful pictures nebulanebula Jones-Emberson 1 who had the honorastronomy picture of the dayBut learning how to do astronomical observations from A to Z is key to getting professional quality physical parameters.

DUAO starts with general theoretical courses, which cover almost all astrophysics and its equipment, such as cameras. CCDCCD, the spectrograph and the telescope itself. The level and its content are equivalent to Agnes Acker’s famous astronomy and astrophysics course and do not require concepts in mathematics and physics that go beyond the first volume of Feynman’s famous physics course on mechanics, optics, and physics. thermodynamicsthermodynamicsIncluding basic notions of statistics and Fourier analysis.

softwaresoftware Data processing tools such as AstroImageJ or IRAF used by professional astronomers make it possible to analyze images from the C2PU telescope, but DUAO also shows and teaches that the actual data processing is often done by writing code in Python, so that It is recommended, though not mandatory, for the exercises and practicals that are offered, but also to learn from the examples provided to train in astronomy and get used to coding, which many The bulk is done by professional astronomers. you can imagine the level of PythonPython We enter courses assuming a certain familiarity with the open access material already short work Python for Astronomers, those below LinuxLinux at macmac Some of the courses will be easier to follow but DUAO is also designed to enable you to use Windows.

Episode 9/10 of Robert Pansard-Besson’s famous series. Scientific advisors Pierre Lena, Jean-Claude Pecher, Michel Serres. Music Georges Deleru: ” In order to discover the Earth, the Sun, the planets, billions of stars, our galaxy, billions of other galaxies, the universe, space, time, it has been necessary to build observatories, astronomical observatories, for a few thousand years. It is his history and the story of his discoveries that is told here in ten rounds of the world, ten rounds of the sky. » © Berthemont Productions, LA September

Having had the opportunity to attend the training offered by OCA DUAO, I can only highly recommend it. The courses are very educational, even if you realize that they require more work than you previously thought, when you already have a professional activity, it is now appropriate to change them from one semester to a year. The teachers are particularly accessible and leave no stone unturned to answer questions and problems that may arise while using the data processing software.

DUAO, in fact, gives all the keys to study observational astronomy more deeply afterwards and even exploits the data available exclusively online provided by the virtual observatory, as a professional Or the beginning student does. his thesis. But of course this is only the entire alphabet, a few hundred words and basic grammar, then a whole life is required to perfect itself in the structure of the rest of the text to be written. We feel close to the scenes commented by Pierre Léna, Jean-Claude Pecher and Michel Serres in the famous documentary in 10 episodes. world tour sky tour,

For those who have followed the previous three courses (p5, 6, 7) of du Lumières on the cosmos of the Paris Observatory, the DUAO of the OCA is the upper level to which it is added and which completes it. At Masters level 1.

Registration is open from 1Is July and till 15 September. This can be done from the DUAO page which gives additional information on the Diploma, the preparation of which now ranges from semester to annual., Its cost is higher for those who are neither teachers nor university students, and then it is necessary to count 1,250 euros, which is possible to pay in several installments.





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