For the People Interested in Astronomy

Newly, or recently, interested in astronomy ? Or just curious ? Just want to know something on the background of these images ? Or find an old interest revived ?

In any of these cases, you may stroll through our pages with (hopefully) a certain amount of pleasure and enjoyment..

Moreover, you can have a look into our brief Introduction to Astronomy.

If your interest is still deeper, and you are considering to invest more time (and/or money) for astronomy, then maybe you are the right future amateur astronomer. In this case, you may find it useful to get some more info on what you can do as an amateur, what you should know if you want to observe the sky (and especially the Messier objects), which instruments to use for what kind of astronomy, what are good introductory books, what internet resources have amateur stuff, and more.

Find out How to Become an Amateur Astronomer !

It may also be that you are considering to enter professional astronomy, i.e. become a professional astronomer. Then you should be aware that astronomy is a physical science, i.e. wanna-be professionals have to study physics, math, and sometimes chemistry to a deep level - often astronomy is covered by the departments of physics in the universities. If, knowing this, you still want to make astronomy your profession, you should be aware that most work done by professional astronomers is done on computers, on paper, and in libraries. Most professionals hardly ever have a look through their telescopes, at least when doing their research work (ok, there are exceptions, but..). In many cases work is done from remote, i.e. the researcher is a great distance away from the telescopes (sometimes thousands of miles, and some telescopes are on spacecraft !). These facts should be taken into account from the beginning if you are thinking of an astronomical profession. If then, you still feel it is your destination to make astronomy your profession, it may be that you are made of the stuff they use for forming astronomers.

These pages cannot provide deeper information what you should do in order to become a professional astronomer; check at more appropriate sources (e.g., at the universities and observatories, or watch the newsgroups and mailing lists for info which sometimes occurs there). Some info on this thread is available from the Astronomical League and from the AAS.

It should be mentioned that, besides research level professionals, there is staff working on the telescopes, professional telescope makers (and dealers), astronomy writers (and librarians) and other fields which may be of interest for you. As for the researchers, I must point you to more appropriate information sources in this case (look for potential employers, e.g.).

If you are looking for general informations on astronomy and space (including how to become an astronaut), you should have a look at the astronomy related FAQ existing on the internet:

Hartmut Frommert
Christine Kronberg

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Last Modification: February 23, 1998