Goodsell Observatory's Astronomy Links

There are a large number of great astronomy web sites on the internet and while we would like to be able to list them all, doing so would be next to impossible. We, therefore, have listed only our favorite sites. These include sites which we often use in astronomy classes/labs and public open houses as well as sites which are relevant to the astronomy and astrophysics program here at Carleton College.

Although we cannot list all of the web's astronomy sites, most of the sites listed on this page have a "links" page of their own. It is thus our hope that you will use these links as a jumping off point from which to explore the world of online astronomy.

Also available are some pages of links developed by students as part of special projects. These expand on the links below, focusing on certain topics or intended users.

Keep in mind that we designed this page to be browsed rather than used as a quick reference for finding specific information. In order to provide some organization, however, the links have been loosely arranged into different categories. We have also provided a short description of each link and in many cases these descriptions include sub-links which highlight a certain part of the main site being described. Enjoy!

 

General

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Astronomy Picture of the Day
A new astronomy related picture everyday with a short description from a professional astronomer.
Chandra X-ray Observatory
Learn about NASA's newest space telescope.
Comets and Meteor Showers
Gary W. Kronk's wonderful site where you can learn all about comets and meteors including currently visible comets and upcoming meteor showers.
ESA - European Space Agency
Explore the pages of NASA's European counterpart.
Heavens Above
If you like to observe satellites, this is the site for you. Get predictions for satellite passes at your location. Here's the page for Northfield.
IDA - International Dark-Sky Association
The IDA is working to increase security and protect our night skies. Read some (or all) of their terrific information sheets to learn more. Consider becoming a member!
JPL - Jet Propulsion Laboratory
NASA's JPL is the place to go to learn all about spacecraft and space missions (past, present, and future). In fact, take a look at this list of current JPL missions. While many of JPL's missions explore our solar system, some focus on Universe Today earth science and even the whole universe. After learning about the JPL missions get the most recent news on those missions. Also check out JPL's Education and Outreach program which offers a plethora of online information such as the Basics of Space Flight.
NASA - National Aeronautics & Space Administration
NASA has put together a nice site which has loads of information. While you are browsing don't forget to check out what's happening today at NASA.  Also, check out some of their featured sites including NASA's Earth Observatory and NASA's human spaceflight sites. Browse around to find out about more their numerous missions, and don't miss the plethora of multimedia materials available.
SEDS - Students for the Exploration and Development of Space
The SEDS site is a great place for people of all ages to learn about space science and astronomy. Check out their tour of the solar system called "The Nine Planets". Then take a look at their Messier database. SEDS is also the place to go to learn about the constellations or to see a list of the worlds largest optical telescopes.
Sky and Telescope Magazine
The site of the premier magazine for amateur astronomers. Not only can you see what's in the current issue, but you can find out what's currently up in the sky from their Observing page. They also have some good articles on astronomical imaging including CCD imaging.
STScI - Space Telescope Science Institute
This is the site for the "astronomical research center responsible for operating the Hubble Space Telescope." Find out what's new with Hubble. Then try some of these nifty web-based activities to learn about amazing space. STScI also hosts the Multimission Archive, an archive of data from a number of space observatories. Finally, view some of those lovely pictures from Hubble at the Hubble Heritage Project site.
Windows to the Universe
A graphics intensive educational site about our universe. Features beginning, intermediate, and advanced user levels.

Companies

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CVI Laser Corporation
Makers of the DK240 monochromator which we use here at Goodsell.
Meade Instruments
Meade makes high quality astronomical telescopes for serious amateurs. We have six of their 8-inch LX200 classic telescopes.
Photometrics Ltd.
Photometrics makes research grade CCD detectors for many scientific fields including astronomy. We have one of there discontinued series 200 CCD cameras.
SBIG - Santa Barbara Instrument Group
SBIG makes CCD cameras for the amateur astronomer. We have six of their ST-2000XM cameras which we use with our Meade telescopes, as well as an SGS self-guiding spectrograph.

Exchanged

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From time to time we receive requests to exchange links with another web site. If you would like to exchange links, please contact us.

Universe Today
This site published by Fraser Cain offers a daily collection of space related news gathered from around the internet. Check it out!

Observatories

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Arecibo Observatory
Carleton astronomy professor Joel Weisberg has taken many Carleton students (and still does) to Arecibo to collect data. Check out the observatory's general public page.
NOAO - National Optical Astronomy Observatories
The NOAO overseas a couple of large optical observatories including KPNO - Kitt Peak National Observatory where Carleton astronomy professor Cindy Blaha and students have gathered data.
NRAO - National Radio Astronomy Observatories
Like the NOAO, the NRAO overseas a number of radio observatories including the VLA - Very Large Array where both Cindy and Joel have taken data. Take a look at NRAO's Introduction to Radio Astronomy page to learn about the basics of radio astronomy.
Royal Greenwich Observatory
The Royal Greenwich Observatory on the Royal Museums Greenwich website
USNO - United States Naval Observatory
The USNO is the place to check what time it is! They maintain the United States master clock and used to do so via their own time service, similar to the one that was operated here at Carleton College. Browse the Time Service Department for more information. Take a look at the USNO Astronomical Applications Department for moon and sun rise and set times. A large part of the observatory's job is to do Astrometry to determine the positions and motions of celestial objects.

Research

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NASA ADS - The NASA Astrophysics Data System
ADS is an excellent spot to do astrophysical research from.  This NASA-funded project is a huge bibliographic database for millions of papers from many many publications.

Societies

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AAS - American Astronomical Society
North American organization for "astronomers, other scientists, and individuals interested in astronomy." The AAS held their 34th meeting at Goodsell Observatory in 1925.
AAVSO - American Association of Variable Star Observers
The AAVSO is the largest organization of variable star observers worldwide. One of Carleton's first astronomy professors, Herbert Couper Wilson helped to organize the AAVSO in 1911.
ASP - The Astronomical Society of the Pacific
International organization of professional and amateur astronomers. The largest general astronomy society in the world.

Software

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Carina Software
Makers of Voyager III, the planetarium programs that we use in the observatory's computer lab.
ExInEd - Exploration In Education
The ExInEd group has made many informative programs about different areas of space science and astronomy. We often use these programs during open houses and other such public events.
IRAF
IRAF is the standard image analysis and data reduction package used by professional astronomers. Cindy Blaha and her students use IRAF to process data on hotspot galaxies.
KestrelSpec
We use KestrelSpec to collect and analyze spectra from our CVI monochromator and CCD cameras.
MIRA AP
MIRA AP is a powerful image analysis and processing program much like IRAF only without the text-based user interface.
NIH Image Home Page
NIH Image is a free image processing and analysis program designed for performing CCD reductions in all areas of science including astronomy.
Project CLEA
The Project CLEA people have created some great labs which we use in our observational astronomy classes.

Sun

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SDAC - Solar Data Analysis Center
The SDAC offers the latest pictures of the sun as well as a large number of links to other solar resources. We recommend taking a look at their eclipse page which has a great set of links to many other eclipse sites.
SOHO - SOlar and Heliospheric Observatory
Find out what's new with the SOHO spacecraft and mission. SOHO has revolutionized our understanding of the sun and our ability to predict our local space weather. This site also features the very latest SOHO images, many of which can be found on the SDAC site as well.
STDH - Solar Terrestrial Dispatch Homepage
The STDH is the place to go for recent alerts and warnings concerning solar flares and the effect that they might have on earth. The site also has updates on daily solar and auroral activity as well as links to many other space weather and solar observing sites. A nice site, check it out.
YPOP - Yohkoh Public Outreach Program
The YPOP page is a great resource for learning more about our sun. Start in the Yohkoh Theatre Lobby to see what the site has to offer. Also, check out Yohkoh's latest images of the sun.

 

Weather

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Carleton College Weather
This is our very own weather site. You can find current conditions (updated every 5 minutes). You can also make detailed graphs of weather data we have collected. The instruments are located atop Olin Hall, right next to Goodsell Observatory. We don't forecast (yet), but we're continuing Carleton's long history of weather record keeping.
AccuWeather
A good site which features daily nighttime forecasts. Check here before you plan your observing session. Here's the forecast page for Northfield.
Intellicast
Intellicast is the place to go for current weather maps. Why not start with their surface analysis map?
Weather Underground
Another good weather site with nighttime forecasts. See their forecast for Northfield. Compare/contrast with the accuweather forecast!
Clear Sky Clock
The Clear Sky Clock is a compact but detailed weather prediction, looking at everything from cloud cover to temperature to darkness levels. There are Sky Clocks for over 2000 locations across North America, keeping star gazers everywhere more aware of the night's viewing conditions. Check on Northfield's CSC when you're planning on observing from Goodsell!

 

Women

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The Woman Astronomer
A periodical dedicated to women interested in astronomy. They have a good set of links at the bottom of their homepage.
Women Astronomers
Take a look at this page which was created by two former Carleton students, Michele Nichols and Margaretha Warnicke. Learn about some of the women who have played an important role in the field of astronomy.
Women Astronomers in History
Find out even more about famous women in the history of astronomy. This is another page created by former Carleton student Michele Nichols.