Astronomy is one of the oldest and most fascinating sciences that deal with all
the celestial bodies and the material universe which is beyond the earth's atmosphere.
It is the science of the Universe that includes the study of nature, motion, constitution,
law, possibility and history. Most importantly astrology deals with the possible
future development of celestial bodies like the planets, sun, stars, meteors, comets,
satellites, galaxies etc. Astronomy is at times considered as a sub-field of Physics.
It is further divided into several branches such as Astrometeorology, Astrophysics,
Astrogeology, Astrobiology, Cosmology, Astrometry etc. These branches when put together
help to unfold the mysteries of the universe. It is one of the most amazing and
promising career for those who want to pursue it. As each country is trying to make
its mark in the field of celestial activities, the need for scientists in this field
Professionals in the field – Astronomy:
Few of the most important qualities to become an astronomer are curiosity, enthusiasm
and countless absorption. These professions are required to have an above average
intelligence, high persistence,imagination, analytical skills and problem-solving
skills. They must also possess both mathematical and computer skills. A large amount
of patience is required in this field as the astronomer has to work long and irregular
hours. Superior verbal and written communication skills are also required because
most astronomers are required to work as part of a team. They should be capable
of explaining scientific phenomena and bringing across the information in an easily
captivating format and language.
An astronomer must apply equal measures of imagination and analytical thinking along
with intuition and logic which is required to answer the most fundamental questions
about the cosmos.
Those who want to take up astronomy as a career should pass their plus two examination
under the science stream, with majors in math and physics. To take up a career in
observational or theoretical astronomy a person may go through the science stream
after plus two. As it is observed that there are very few universities which offer
undergraduate program in Astronomy a person can join for a major or honors in Physics
with Mathematics as the secondary subject. After this they can take up a master’s
degree in Physics or Astronomy. After this one can do specialization in astronomy
leading to Ph. D. which enables one to become an astronomer or astronaut or an astrophysicist
or a scientist or a research officer etc. in the field of space sciences and research.
Career Options in Astronomy:
For the professionals in this field astronomy is divided into two major parts. This
is theoretical astrophysics and observational astronomy. While the former is concerned
with data analysis which is finding out the conclusions regarding the observations
of computers along with explaining the observational results; the latter deal with
observing celestial bodies by using binoculars, telescopes, cameras, eyes which
unaided and gathering data for building and maintaining instruments. Theoretical
astrophysics is anastrophysicist’s model data which is much more analytical.
Astronomy Salary and Remuneration:
The remuneration depends on the nature of work, experience and the kind of organization
in the field. As a fresher in the research work, a junior can earn a monthly stipend
of approximately Rs.10,000 per month. Government organization and research institutes
employ astronomers who are very highly paid with many other perks and allowances.