People of Space: Astronomy Resources

The study of astronomy has fascinated humans for thousands of years, dating as far back as the ancient Egyptians and even earlier. While planetary and celestial events were once linked to religion and various deities, it slowly gave way to the fields of mathematics and science. In modern times, astronomy has branched off into many different sub-fields in order to better explore the vastness of space. Have a look through some of the following resources to learn more about our galaxy and beyond!

Famous Astronauts

  • Yuri Gagarin – Gagarin, a Soviet astronaut, was the first human being to ever travel in space and he did a full orbit of the Earth in 1961.
  • Alan Shepard – The first American astronaut in space in 1961, Shepard later also later went on to walk on the surface of the Moon.
  • John Glenn – In 1962, John Glenn became the first American to fully orbit the Earth.
  • Gus Grissom – Officially known as Virgil Ivan Grissom, this astronaut was the second American to venture out into space.
  • Neil Armstrong – Neil Armstrong became a household name worldwide when he became the first human to ever walk on the Moon.
  • Buzz Aldrin – Closely following the footsteps of Neil Armstrong, Aldrin became the second man to ever walk on the Moon.
  • Jim Lovell – Despite a rash of dangerous problems and failures with Apollo 13, Captain Jim Lovell became famous for successfully saving his crew and bringing the spacecraft back to Earth in 1970.
  • Edward White – In 1965, White marked a new victory for the American space program when he became the first of his nation to walk in space.
  • Valentina Tereshkova – In 1963, Tereshkova, a Russian woman, was the first ever female human in space, as well as the first civilian.
  • Sally Ride – In 1983, Ride was not only the first American woman in space but also the youngest American overall!
  • Roberta Bondar – With a background in medicine, Bondar was the first Canadian woman and the first neurologist to enter space in 1992.
  • Guion Bluford – Aboard the Challenger in 1983, Bluford was the first African-American to travel in space.
  • John Young – Young is famous for holding the longest-running astronaut career to date.
  • Mae Jemison – Jemison is known for being the first African-American woman to travel in space.
  • Christa McAuliffe – McAuliffe was supposed to be the first teacher to ever travel in space when she stepped aboard the Challenger in 1986.

Solar Astronomy

  • Solar Oscillations – Solar oscillations are pressure waves that travel across the Sun’s surface.
  • Images of the Sun – View up to date images of the Sun showing different details about its current state.
  • The Sun’s Layers – Learn about the different layers of the Sun, from the core to the surface.
  • The Structure of the Sun – Read more about the composition, structure and zones of the sun.
  • Sun Facts – Browse through several images and explanations about different aspects of the sun, including the corona, sun flares and nuclear fusion.

Planetary Science

  • An Introductory Guide to the Planets – Refresh your memory about our solar system and the planets that revolve within it.
  • Explore Saturn – Take a virtual tour of the ringed planet with this in-depth explanation of Saturn and its moons.
  • The Surface of Venus – Read about the craters and coronas that mark the surface of Venus.
  • A Current View of the Solar System – A generated image shows an accurate and up-to-date positioning of all the planets in our solar system at any given time.
  • How are Planets Formed? – Using digitally generated models, researchers explain how planets are created from dust and debris in space.
  • Welcome to Mars – Learn all about Mars, its fascinating atmosphere and dramatic dust storms.
  • Exploring Neptune – Discover the planet Neptune with this series of facts and archival images.
  • Planetary Names – Click on “Nomenclature” on the left menu to learn about the names and characteristics of the planets in our solar system.
  • Distant Solar Systems – Learn about other, far off solar systems and their planetary bodies.
  • The Planets in Our Solar System – There are plenty of articles, images, timelines and more at this site which discusses the past, present and even possible future findings of our planets.

Stellar Astronomy

  • Stars and Constellations – View and read about different stars and constellations and learn how they differ.
  • All About Constellations – Explore the various constellations and review a primer on what they are and how they are formed.
  • Pronunciation Guide – Learn how to pronounce the names of several known constellations.
  • Nebula Images – Sift through a bank of photographic images of numerous planetary nebulae.
  • A Virtual Planetarium – Try this free virtual planetarium program to view 3D images of the sky.
  • Star Numbers – Information for telescope-users on viewing stars in the sky with different ranges and apertures.
  • Questions About Constellations – Find answers to your most commonly asked questions about the star formations and browse through a list of related reading resources.
  • Constellation Resources – This list of constellation resources outlines several excellent books on the subject as well as websites.
  • The Constellations – Choose from any of the main constellations and learn more about each one in greater detail.

Galactic Astronomy


Amateur Astronomy

  • The Challenger – Trace the various missions and timeline of the Challenger spaceshuttle.
  • The Hubble Telescope – Find out all about the Hubble Telescope, its team and how it works.
  • Training to be an Astronomer – Learn what it takes to become an astronomer in terms of physical and mental capabilities, education and training.
  • Astronomy News – Catch up on the latest news and findings about outer space.
  • Air and Space Magazine – This bimonthly publication covers past and present aspects of astronomy and aviation.
  • Astronomy Resources – Scour through a wealth of astronomy links and resources on this page, sorted by popular subjects.
  • The Astronomer Magazine – Amateur astronomers can enjoy plenty of free content from the online version of the long-running print magazine.
  • Telescope Reviews – Make an informed decision before purchasing a telescope by reading brand reviews and advice on the best types to use.
  • An Astronomy Glossary – Easily look up any astronomy-related word or term and find the meaning in this online glossary.
  • American Meteor Society – Learn the basics of meteors and meteor showers, as well as how and when to observe them.


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