Astro Excelets:  Interactive Excel Spreadsheets for Introductory Astronomy

 

These interactive animated spreadsheets (aka - simulations) are used in introductory astronomy lecture and laboratory.  Through the use of numerical experimentation and "what if" scenarios, we have a powerful discovery learning tool for students using readily available off-the-shelf software.

 

Atomic Spectroscopy            ASP 2011 Draft for Proceedings – click here (pdf)

 

Laboratory activity using gas discharge tubes and diffraction glasses (pdf):

 

          Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star: How Astronomers Know What You Are

 

 

Interactive Excel Spreadsheets (all as xls files unless noted otherwise):

 

          Generating Atomic Line Spectra (good for follow-up discussion after lab)

 

          Spectroscopy in Motion:  A Method to Measure Velocity (pdf activity)

 

          Spectroscopy in Motion II:  A Method for Finding Exoplanets (forthcoming pdf activity)

 

          Atomic Spectra and Magnetic Fields:  The Zeeman Effect

 

 

Absorption and emission spectra of the elements on the periodic table – click here (Java applet)

 

 

Blackbody Spectrum

 

        Blackbody Radiation (includes estimating stellar temperature and solar spectra)

 

        Estimating Planetary Temperatures via the Stefan-Boltzmann Law  - right click and Save Target as...

 

 

Other stuff

 

        The Solar System (pdf activity)                            Gnomon                          Orbital Motion

 

        How small an impactor can reach the surface of a planet? (pdf activity)

 

        Classifying Stars (H-R Diagram)                           Roche Limit

 

        Exploring Kepler's Third Law                          Escape Velocity        The Expanding Universe

 

For information on designing Excelets and links to mathematical modeling of data support materials, see Developer's Guide to ExceletsFor more Excelets in general chemistry, see the Chemical Excelets page and for materials science, see the MatSci Excelets page.

 

            Scott A. Sinex             Prince George’s Community College                   4/2012