Imagine the Universe!


Video has a top and bottom half. The top half shows what you would see looking at a nearby star over time from Earth. The nearby star, whose distance you are trying to measure, is in red and can be observed to move against the fixed background stars. The bottom portion shows the view of the Earth/Sun/star system from above. The Earth is shown in blue orbiting the Sun (yellow). The line of sight from the Earth to the nearby star, and onto the distant background stars, is shown in red. As the Earth orbits the Sun, the line of sight to the nearby star changes, and the apparent position of the star on the sky (in the top portion of the diagram) can be seen to change as well.

In the movie two different cases are shown, one after another. In the first, the nearby star is closer to the Earth, while in the latter, it is further away. The size of the apparent shift is shown to be smaller when the star is further away.

Imagine the Universe is a service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Alan Smale (Director), within the Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

The Imagine Team
Acting Project Leader: Dr. Barbara Mattson
All material on this site has been created and updated between 1997-2012.

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