Spectral Analysis


Objective: To discover how spectral analysis assists scientists in gathering facts about our universe.

Background: Scientists gather evidence about our universe in a number of ways. Stars come in many different colors from blue stars, to yellow stars such as the Sun, all the way to red stars. To study starlight, astronomers use a spectroscope. This instrument consists of slit for admitting light from external sources, a group of lenses, a prism, and an eyepiece. It is able to break down starlight in a spectrum of colors, which helps scientists find out more about the star itself.

Hypothesis: Sunlight hypothesis- I think when look at the sunlight I will see a variety of colors with the diffraction grating glasses. The lens will break down the white light into a spectrum of colors.
Fluorescent and Incandescent hypothesis- I think there will be a difference in the spectrum pattern between the fluorescent and incandescent light compared to sunlight because due to the shade of light between them it will cause a different effect.

Experiment: Materials:
Diffraction grating glasses, colored pencils, assorted bulbs, gas tubes, generator

Procedure:
1) Look at the sun's light through the glasses. Do not look directly at the sun. Draw or describe what you see.
2) Repeat for a fluorescent and incandescent bulbs, and the gases. Draw or describe what you see.


Data: See Spectral Analysis chart on attached page.
Conclusion: 1) I can conclude that the make up of white light is really a series of colorful spectrums when seen through a prism.2) All lights sources do not produce the same results. Every light source has a different pattern and color in its own spectrum.3) Using a spectroscope is helpful in gaining information about our universe because they break down the different color spectrums of stars. If a star has more of a blue color in its spectrum than red it means that the star is moving closer to Earth. This is known as a Blue shift. If a star has more of a red color than blue its means the star is moving father away from the Earth. This is known as a Red shPift. This helps scientists learn more about other stars in the galaxy.