The line above is the spectrum of a star Beta Ursae Minoris “recorded” in 1976. As I mentioned in a recent post, I was working on astronomical photographic plates. There are about 2000 of such plates in the archives of Tartu Observatory’s astrophysics department and they all hold important and unique observing data of various stars. I digitalized a part of the collection and data which also had to be adjusted and organized.The spectrums recorded from the stars’ light show the chemical composition of them. It was discovered in 19th century and it lead to the birth of astrophysics. (You can read all about its history here.) The technique involved a telescope which collected the light from the object of interest (it didn’t have to be a star), spectrograph which broke the light into a spectrum, and a glass plate with specific emulsion.Observatories around the world have similar archives as the spectroscopy  with astronomical photoplates was the best way to research stars at that time. Now most of them are being digitalized to make an available database which could be very useful for historical research.This is what the spectrum plates of our observatory look like:

The line above is the spectrum of a star Beta Ursae Minoris “recorded” in 1976. As I mentioned in a recent post, I was working on astronomical photographic plates. There are about 2000 of such plates in the archives of Tartu Observatory’s astrophysics department and they all hold important and unique observing data of various stars. I digitalized a part of the collection and data which also had to be adjusted and organized.

The spectrums recorded from the stars’ light show the chemical composition of them. It was discovered in 19th century and it lead to the birth of astrophysics. (You can read all about its history here.) The technique involved a telescope which collected the light from the object of interest (it didn’t have to be a star), spectrograph which broke the light into a spectrum, and a glass plate with specific emulsion.
Observatories around the world have similar archives as the spectroscopy  with astronomical photoplates was the best way to research stars at that time. Now most of them are being digitalized to make an available database which could be very useful for historical research.

This is what the spectrum plates of our observatory look like:

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