Posted by: BibleScienceGuy | September 11, 2013

13. Evidence for God – Astronomy Quiz Answers 2

Design is inescapable. From a cell’s intricate molecular machinery to the large-scale structure of the universe with trillions of stars organized into clustered galaxies—everything shouts “Design.”

The recent Astronomy Quiz highlighted interesting features of the universe.
Astronomy Quiz Answers 1 has answers for the first 10 questions.
Below is the second group of answers (in red) for questions 11-18.

If you haven’t taken the Astronomy Quiz yet, then I suggest you take it before looking at the answers below.

The remaining Quiz Questions (19-27) with perspective on their significance for Creation/Evolutionism will be answered next week in Astronomy Quiz Answers 3.

Each of the 8 questions in this second group is worth 4 points for a maximum of 32 points. Tally your score, add it to your score on the first 10 questions, and save it to add to your score on the final group of questions to see what kind of astronomer you are.

Astronomy Quiz Answers 11–18

11. What is a Supermoon?
A Supermoon is a full moon which occurs at the perigee (nearest point) of the moon’s orbit around the earth (also called a perigee-syzygy). Supermoons are the nearest and largest full moons of the year. On average, a supermoon occurs every 14 full moons or about once a year. The last one was June 23, 2013, and the next one will be August 10, 2014.
Full moons appear to vary in size due to the oval orbit of the moon. The moon follows an elliptical path around Earth with one side (perigee) closer than the other (apogee). The closer a full moon is to the earth in its orbit, the larger it looks. Perigee full moons (supermoons) look extra large and bright.
At perigee, the moon is about 30,000 miles closer to the earth than at its apogee (farthest point), and it’s about 30% brighter and looks 14% larger. But it’s still about 220,000 miles away from earth.
The gravitational attraction of the moon on the earth is inversely proportional to the square of the distance between them. Thus as the distance decreases the gravitational force increases by the square (at half the distance, it’s 4 times as great).
Calculating using the inverse square law shows that the moon’s attractive force on the earth is about 30% stronger at perigee than at apogee. This significant increase (30%) in the moon’s pull on the earth affects tides and possibly helps generate earthquakes.
(The calculation is (250,000/220,000)**2 = 1.29, so 29% greater attractive force of the moon on the earth at perigee.)

Relative Sizes in order from the sun: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars

12. T or F: The earth’s atmosphere is mostly oxygen.
False. It is 80% nitrogen.

13. The diameter of Mars is about
a) twice
b) the same as
c) half
the diameter of the earth.

14. How many earths would fit across the face of Jupiter?
a) 5
b) 11
c) 53
d) 101
Jupiter is the largest planet of the Solar System with a mass one-thousandth that of the Sun. However its mass is two and a half times that of all the other planets combined. On average, it’s the third brightest orb in the night sky after the Moon and Venus.

Jupiter and its 4 Galilean Moons
Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto
(top to bottom in order of increasing distance from Jupiter)

15. The planet with the most moons in the Solar System is Jupiter. How many moons does Jupiter have?
a) 4
b) 17
c) 29
d) 42
e) 67
Jupiter, the largest planet of the Solar System, also has the most moons. However, 51 of the 67 currently known are less than 10 km (6.2 miles) in diameter and have only been discovered since 1975.
Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto are Jupiter’s four largest moons. They were discovered by Galileo in 1610 and are called the Galilean moons in his honor. Io and Europa are about the size of the Moon, and Ganymede and Callisto are about 50% larger. Ganymede is the largest moon of the Solar System with a diameter larger than that of the planet Mercury.

16. T or F: The most volcanically active object in the Solar System is a moon.
Jupiter’s moon Io has over 400 active volcanoes. Some of Io’s mountains are taller than Mt. Everest. Io is the innermost of the four Galilean moons. NASA spacecraft flybys have shown that Io is geologically active with a “young surface with no obvious impact craters.” A “young surface” is what creationists would expect. The dark spot left of center on Io in the image below is the erupting Prometheus volcano.


Moon – Io – Earth Size Comparison

17. Which planet has a “day” that is longer than its “year”?
a) Mercury
b) Venus
c) Mars
d) Pluto
e) Saturn
Venus rotates clockwise once every 243 Earth days—the slowest rotation period of any planet. Venus orbits the sun in 224.7 Earth days. Thus a Venusian day lasts longer than a Venusian year.
If you lived on Venus, it might make more sense to measure your age in days rather than years.

18. After the sun, what is the nearest visible star to the earth?
a) Polaris
b) Sirius
c) Proxima Centauri
d) Alpha Centauri
e) Canopus
Alpha Centauri is a binary star system about 4.37 light-years from the Sun. It’s the third brightest star of the night sky. Proxima Centauri is actually closer to the sun at 4.24 light-years away, but it’s not visible to the naked eye.
A light-year is the distance light travels in a year–about 6 trillion miles. If you could travel at the speed of light, it would take over 4 years to get to these stars.

Questions to Ponder
  1. If space travel becomes reliable and affordable, do you want to go? Why or why not?
  2. Why do you think God gave Jupiter so many moons?
  3. Share your thoughts on these questions in the comments below. It could encourage or help another reader.

Want More Astronomy?

For more from the BibleScienceGuy on astronomy, click Astronomy Articles.

Soli Deo Gloria.

This is the thirteenth article in the Evidence for God series that discusses the question,
“Is There Evidence for God?”
Read the prequels:
1. Evidence for God – Can You Answer a 6th-Grader?
2. Evidence for God – Design
3. Evidence for God – Experience
4. Evidence for God – Can You Prove God Exists?
5. Evidence for God – Design Is Best Argument for God – Simple
6. Evidence for God – Design Is Best Argument for God – Logical
7. Evidence for God – Design Is Best Argument for God – Biblical
8. Evidence for God – Design Is Best Argument for God – Old Testament
9. Evidence for God – Design Is Best Argument for God – New Testament
10. Evidence for God – Stephen King & the Argument from Design
11. Evidence for God – Astronomy Quiz
12. Evidence for God – Astronomy Quiz Answers 1

Read the sequel:
14. Evidence for God – Astronomy Quiz Answers 3

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©William T. Pelletier, Ph.D.
“contending earnestly for the faith”
“destroying speculations against the knowledge of God”
(Jude 1:3; 2 Cor 10:4)
Wednesday September 11, 2013 A.D.

O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Thy name in all the earth, Who hast displayed Thy splendor above the heavens! … When I consider Thy heavens, the work of Thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which Thou hast ordained; what is man, that Thou dost take thought of him? And the son of man, that Thou dost care for him? Yet Thou hast made him a little lower than God, and dost crown him with glory and majesty! (Psalm 8:1,3-5)


  1. Good thing #12 is true or we would all spontaneously combust!

    Why would God make so many moons for one planet? Because He could, and it has to be fun. How many artists love doing variations on a theme because it shows off their genius to best advantage!


    • Great answer!


  2. I just now had time to read, because I am STILL working on my blog. I noticed there is not much comment on here. We need to get your message and blogs out. Please Tweet, Face book, pin these posts. I placed this on Stumble, which is a real great way to find interested people. Please stumble all your posts. I am sooooo behind with my work, that I can’t do it for you.


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