Chapters 15-16 Multiple Choice


  1. The ____________ explains how our solar system probably formed from a giant cloud of gases and dispersed solid particles.

            a. protogalactic theory                                      

            b. nebular hypothesis

            c. extrastellar solar hypothesis                           

            d. planetary compression theory


  2. ____________ meteorites are thought to be analogous in composition to Earthís core.

            a. Calcareous               

            b. Iron                         

            c. Stony                       

            d. Ammonical


  3. One of the discoveries which led to the modern view of the solar system was that the orbits of the planets are__________.

            a. circles                      

            b. ellipses                     

            c. hyperbolas                

            d. parabolas


  4. According to the Ptolemaic (Greek) model of the universe, how many "heavenly" bodies could be observed wandering along the background of stars?

            a. one                          

            b. two                          

            c. five                          

            d. seven


  5. Compared to the density of liquid water (1 gram/cc), the appropriate range in average densities of the terrestrial planets is ____________.

            a. l to 2 grams/cc          

            b. 0.4 to 0.7grams/cc    

            c. 4 to 6 grams/cc         

            d. 2 to 3grams/cc


  6. Galileo observed several features using the telescope. Which one of the following did he NOT discover?

            a. sunspots                                                       

            b. phases of Venus

            c. Jupiter's four largest moons                           

            d. the two moons of Mars


  7. The first modern astronomer to propose a Sun-centered universe was __________.

            a. Sir Isaac Newton      

            b. Galileo                     

            c. Tycho Brahe            

            d. Nicolaus Copernicus


  8. This scientist determined the nature of the forces that kept the planets in their orbits.

            a. Sir Isaac Newton      

            b. Galileo                     

            c. Tycho Brahe            

            d. Nicolaus Copernicus


  9. This scientist was the first to use the telescope in astronomy.

            a. Sir Isaac Newton      

            b. Galileo                     

            c. Tycho Brahe            

            d. Nicolaus Copernicus


10.  Three laws of planetary motion were discovered by __________.

            a. Johannes Kepler       

            b. Galileo                     

            c. Tycho Brahe            

            d. Nicolaus Copernicus


11.  In the Ptolemaic (Greek) model of the universe the __________.

            a. Earth was flat                                               

            b. Earth was in the center of the universe

            c. Sun was in the center of the solar system       

            d. Earth rotated on its axis to produce night and day


12.  The apparent westward "drift" of the planets compared to the background stars is called __________.

            a. Ptolemaic motion      

            b. occultation                

            c. precession                

            d. retrograde motion


13.        One of the most common units used to express stellar distance is the __________.

a. mile                                                 

b. meter                                               

c. light-year                                          

d. kilometer


14.        The distance to stars can be determined from __________.

a. fluorescence             

b. stellar parallax                                              

c. stellar mass                                                  

d. emission nebulae


15.        Hubble's law states that galaxies are receding from us at a speed that is proportional to their ____.

a. distance                                           

b. orientation                            

c. volume                                             

d. mass


16.  The discovery that the universe appears to be expanding led to a widely accepted theory called __________.

a. the Big Bang                        

b. Hubbleís Law                      

c. Einsteinís Law                     

d. the Doppler effect


17.  Based on the observed red shifts in the spectral lines of distant galaxies, astronomers conclude that __________.

a. Earth is in the center of the universe                          

b. the universe is contracting

c. the universe is expanding                                                                   

d. the universe is in a steady state



  1. b

  2. b

  3. b

  4. d

  5. c

  6. d

  7. d

  8. a

  9. b

10. a

11. b

12. d

13. c

14. b

15. a

16. a

17. c