Astronomy is the study of celestial bodies like the sun, moon, stars, planets and all the colossal entities observed in outer space. All these discernable bodies and their discreet activities constitute the fascinating branch of astronomy. It also deals with phenomenon like orbits and cosmic radiations. In simpler terms, all the activities undergoing outside the confines of the earth’s atmosphere come under the scope of astronomy.
The importance of astronomy can be gauged from the fact that the whole concept of time and time-keeping is a fruit of astronomy. Life was an unstructured progression for the inhabitants of the Earth before the astronomical theories found their roots. The observations of the periodic patterns resulted in the idea of day and night. It is so essential to understand the Universe we live in, and this is possible only with the aid of astronomy. The mind boggling questions pertaining to the origins of the Universe, its progress, the numerous galaxies and solar systems and their physical environments; all have been tackled by astronomy.
Astronomy is a very old branch of scientific study, and its progress also marked the development of various useful mathematical tools like constants and logarithms. The quantities of measurements involved in astronomy were so gigantic that special methods of expression were necessitated. This led to the coming up of logarithmic scale. Hipparchus, a Greek astronomer, made the branch of trigonometry blossom. The skies were used as navigational aids by the explorers of ancient times, and the set up of several great civilizations can be attributed to the ancient knowledge of astronomy. There was a time when it was believed that the Earth was a stationary body. The present day age is the age of communication. Space shuttles and satellites have congregated the entire world into a unified body.
However, such a situation would have been unimaginable had it not been for the discovery that the Earth revolved around the Sun in a fixed path. It was the knowledge of physical phenomenon occurring around the Earth that enabled scholars and scientists establish the first communication links in the form of radio waves. Astronomy may be safely regarded as the master branch that has resulted in the sub branch of meteorology. Astronomy unveiled the nature of the space beyond the Earth’s confines, and opened vistas of infinite opportunities for the human race. Dedicated enthusiasts of astronomical phenomenon have devoted their lives to the purpose of unearthing the mysteries and enigmas of the Universe. Astronomy is the candle that has illuminated the minds of human beings from the ancient times to the present day.