Astronomy and Its Benefits
No, astronomy’s benefits are not limited to just stargazing.
Astronomy is known for many things. For one thing, it’s known for bringing the heavens closer to the earth. No longer are the stars the determiners of some distant future, causing people’s fates. Instead, the heavenly bodies have become more accessible to people through a lot of astronomical research, making everyone see that humans are indeed part of something greater.
And yet, on the other hand, Astronomy is also to be thanked for a lot of human development, apart from just research on the heavenly bodies. You see, because of some researches in Astronomy as well as a number of their respective findings, scientists and inventors have discovered other aspects which have also caused a lot of benefits to the human race. (Yes, it’s a lot similar to how coupon codes on products have definitely caused a lot of benefits to you when you shop online.) Here are a few of those benefits.
Some Not-So-Commonly-Known Benefits of Astronomy
Benefit #1: Wireless networking. You’re happy that you can shop online? You’re happy that you can book your Amsterdam holiday online? You can thank Astronomy for that, dear. A technique developed in the 1970s for analyzing signals from radio telescopes was applied by the same researcher 20 years later to reduce interference in radio-based computer networks. The algorithms required were then integrated onto chips that run the now ubiquitous 802.11 wireless standard.
Benefit #2: Medical imaging. You know the science behind the MRI and the CAT scan? These imaging techniques that are now used in the medical field also has astronomy to thank. Over the years numerous algorithms and image analysis techniques, particularly using a process called Fourier analysis, have helped astronomers develop an exceptional toolkit for improving and calibrating images. No surprise then that many of these techniques have been adopted in other areas, particular the medical area, and many astronomy graduates actually wind up working in this field.
Benefit #3: Theme-park ride engineering. If you enjoy those roller coaster rides so much, then you’re someone who must also owe the roller coaster excitement to astronomy. Telescope support structures have to achieve unprecedented strength-to-weight ratios and control vibration efficiently. Much of the leading-edge design needed to meet these requirements has been carried over to a new generation of theme park rides.