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Observational vs theoretical Astrophysics

Posted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 3:18 am
by Monicka1991
Hello.I have decided to do MS in Astrophysics after finishing my BE degree in ECE.But I am not sure if I want to do Observational or Theoretical Astrophysics.Can anyone tell me the pros and cons of both.I am very much interested in maths and physics but not interested to sit and work with computers..I mean programing..:)

Re: Observational vs theoretical Astrophysics

Posted: Sat Jul 09, 2011 9:10 am
by now_priyanka
I am not a physics graduate but from what I have learnt from different universities is that both observational and theoretical astrophysics include quite a lot of computations, however u might be working less with computers if you do theoretical astrophysics, I think! You could also check the module details from the university website you are applying to (to have a detailed idea).

Re: Observational vs theoretical Astrophysics

Posted: Sat Jul 09, 2011 10:24 am
by physics123
Astronomy and astrophysics requires a lot of programming in both observation and theory.

Observation requires reducing data and data mining. Theory often entails numerical simulations. But even if you joined a theory group that didn't do simulations, they will test and visualize data collected by the observationalists to guide their models--which requires programming.

Maybe you'd be more interested in something like instrumentation, which is more hands-on, and requires more use of software to design than, say, writing code.

Re: Observational vs theoretical Astrophysics

Posted: Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:33 am
by nayam
Observational astronomy is a division of the astronomical science that is concerned with recording data, in contrast with theoretical astrophysics, which is mainly concerned with finding out the measurable implications of physical models.