Contextual Outline

The wonders of the Universe are revealed through technological advances based on tested principles of physics.

Our understanding of the cosmos draws upon models, theories and laws in our endeavour to seek explanations for the myriad of observations made by various instruments at many different wavelengths.

Techniques, such as imaging, photometry, astrometry and spectroscopy, allow us to determine many of the properties and characteristics of celestial objects. Continual technical advancement has resulted in a range of devices extending from optical and radio-telescopes on Earth to orbiting telescopes, such as Hipparcos, Chandra and HST.

Explanations for events in our spectacular Universe, based on our understandings of the electromagnetic spectrum, allow for insights into the relationships between star formation and evolution (supernovae), and extreme events, such as high gravity environments of a neutron star or black hole.

This module increases students’ understanding of the nature and practice of physics and the implications of physics for society and the environment.

Extract from Physics Stage 6 Syllabus (Updated August 2013). © 2009, Board of Studies NSW.