Questions tagged [astronomy]

For questions about the fictitious in-universe astronomy found in works of speculative fiction. Questions purely concerning real-world astronomy are off-topic but can be asked on Astronomy.SE (https://astronomy.stackexchange.com/).

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32
votes
3answers
7k views

Why don't we see the Milky Way out the windows in Star Trek?

Given that the Star Trek franchise takes places within the Milky Way, and in particular near the galactic plane, I would expect that the view out the windows would show the Milky Way similar to the ...
31
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3answers
7k views

Did J.K. Rowling ever explain how Harry Potter could see Orion during the O.W.L. Examination?

How was Harry able to see the constellation, Orion, in the middle of summer in the far northern hemisphere? Did they use magic?
27
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2answers
3k views

Does Tatooine orbit two stars or just one, with a second more distant star?

Tatooine has two suns in the sky, this much is very clear. Of the planets discovered in our galaxy that have two suns in their skies, there are two possible arrangements of the stars and planet: A "...
20
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7answers
6k views

What's the point of studying Astronomy at Hogwarts?

They had to study the night skies through their telescopes every Wednesday at midnight and learn the names of different stars and the movements of the planets. (describing Astronomy class in HP and ...
16
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3answers
3k views

What planets or moons in the Solar system are Class M?

A friend of mine has listed as her twitter location that she lives on a Class M planet. Not everyone tweets from Earth, but I assume she tweets from within the Solar System. Which planets or moons ...
15
votes
3answers
875 views

What was the first SciFi work that referred to Pluto as NOT a planet?

In 2006, IAU changed its rules on what constitutes a planet. The most famous downstream impact of the new rules was that Pluto is now classified as Dwarf Planet (Plutoid) among Trans-Neptunial objects;...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

Book where the stars go black due to aliens stopping human observation collapsing quantum possibilities [duplicate]

In this book the stars went black and the people on Earth took a while to figure out why. The solar system had been surrounded with a 'sheet' to stop human observation. It turns out human observation ...
13
votes
2answers
974 views

1980s series of books about Ice and Fire?

In the 80s, I read a pair (possible trilogy) of books about Ice and Fire and a planet with a very slow orbit. The orbit may have been highly elliptical around twin suns — but I'm not sure about ...
10
votes
1answer
272 views

Astronomer experiments with irradiating mushrooms to preserve them and creates very deadly plague

I read this short story at least 30 years ago. I believe it was in a book of short stories. I'm not sure if the other stories were by the same author. It was about an astronomer trying to create a ...
8
votes
3answers
202 views

Why couldn't the crew of the Phoenix use known pulsars to determine their position?

In C J Cherryh's novel Visitor (17th novel in the Foreigner series), it's revealed that: In real life, we made a point of engraving the solar system relative vectors of known pulsars on the Pioneer ...
6
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4answers
1k views

Did wizards know more about the Milky Way galaxy than Muggles?

In Harry Potter's third year, Harry had to restrain himself from buying a perfect moving model of the Milky Way galaxy. Perfect model implies that wizards know everything that is in the galaxy and ...
6
votes
0answers
139 views

Story Identification : An astronomer, superconduction in the human brain, tricyclics, electron spin resonance and SETI

Looking for the title and author of a short story that appeared in one of Analog's sister magazines, featuring an astronomer, Electron Spin Resonance, tricyclics, neural superconduction and SETI. The ...
4
votes
1answer
265 views

How long is a “rotation” on Mars?

I'm reading the novel Mechanicum in the Warhammer 40k universe. A group of engineers need to solve a complex problem in "seven rotations". Is there a clear indication how long a rotation is? ...
4
votes
1answer
400 views

Book series with an astronomer exploring a golden egg shaped spaceship in Earth orbit [duplicate]

So when I was younger I got a series of books involving an astronomer with Kung fu abilities who discovers a rogue object orbiting Jupiter. Next, he and his team figure out that it has left Jupiter's ...
3
votes
1answer
480 views

When did practical Astronomy lessons take place at Hogwarts and what were they like?

While we get plenty of insight into all other subjects Harry took, the professors and what their lessons are like throughout the books, we do not see any Astronomy lessons happening, nor are the ...
3
votes
0answers
133 views

Astronomy in Witcher: how long is a year and a synodic month?

In the world of Andrzej Sapkowski's Witcher books, how many days long is a year? How many days long is a synodic month (the average time between two full moons)? I used to assume that the stories ...
1
vote
1answer
171 views

Do eclipses have an effect on the efficacy of potions?

In Harry Potter, when you cook a potion during an eclipse, either lunar or solar, would that affect the strength of a potion like in the Switch game, Breath of the Wild, when a blood moon approaches ...
1
vote
1answer
244 views

What Is the Dying Sun of Thra? [closed]

Here are the "three suns" that the planet Thra orbits in the mythology of The Dark Crystal: They are all named, according to the Dark Crystal Wiki, the Greater, Rose and Dying suns. From this ...
-6
votes
2answers
576 views

Which planet resembles Hoth? [closed]

Which planet or moons in our solar system resembles the Hoth planet from Star Wars?