Astronomy is the science that deals with the physical universe, space and celestial objects. The sun, moon, stars, asteroids, comets, gas, galaxies, gas, dust, and other non-Earthly bodies and objects are all studied in astronomy.” As a result, this broad discipline encompasses a wide range of topics, including astrophysics, the branch of astronomy concerned with the physical workings of celestial bodies and space. Though astronomy and all that it entails is interesting in itself, you might be wondering where this knowledge will take you in terms of a career.
Astronomers are experts who study the universe, its objects, and the mechanisms that run it. They use observation and theoretical modelling to push the limits of human understanding about how the universe actually works You can work in observational astronomy, where you look at the stars, planets, and other celestial objects with telescopes and cameras, or theoretical astronomy, where you use algebra and computers to explain observations and predictions. Whether you work with real data from observatories or are involved in theoretical work, most modern research in astronomy involves significant computer programming and modelling.
Astrophysics, Astrometeorology, Astrobiology, Astrogeology, and Astrometry are some of the fields of astronomy.
Scope of astronomy in Pakistan
Careers in astronomy are quite diverse in which planetary geologists, astrobiologists, cosmologists, and telescope model engineers are some of the astronomy jobs that are available. Some organisations employ public engagement specialists and your role as an astronomer can include sharing knowledge and designing programmes for school children and the general public in museums and planetariums. Although an undergraduate degree is sufficient to work in astronomy research, a PhD is required to advance in the field. Professors in astronomy usually have a PhD as well as often several years in postdoctoral jobs before landing a permanent job.
What do Astronomers do?
Generally astronomers are employed by universities or dedicated research institutes that are sometimes, but not always, affiliated with universities. Astronomers’ duties typically include:
Gathering and analysing data from sensors, satellites, and other observations
Applying for time to observe at international observatories
Preparing and conducting research projects to address basic questions
Reading existing scholarly literature
Placing own work in the light of other scholars' work
Publishing science papers
Applying for research grants
Working with other scientists, sometimes on a global scale
Sharing your findings at conferences
Educating and mentoring students and postdoctoral scholars
Teaching astronomy or similar courses at institutes
How to become an astronomer
First, you have to complete intermediate in the science stream, especially in Mathematics & Physics. After that, you can join an undergraduate course in Astronomy. In addition to that, you can join for a bachelor’s degree in Physics or other related programs such as space science. Thereafter, you can join postgraduate degree in Physics or Astronomy. After competing master degree, you can do specialization in astronomy leading to Ph. D
If you're interested in astronomical instrumentation, needed for research telescopes or space missions, then engineering degrees are often a prerequisite.
University of Karachi
Institute of space technology
University of Punjab
Astronomy Job Market
You can get a job in the following professions after a degree in astronomy:
Jobs in SUPARCO
International Astronomical centre
Writer in international and national journals
Skills and qualities required to become an astronomer
You'll need to have:
Strong physics, mathematics and statistics skills
Must have the knowledge of computer programmes and software
Excellent communication, both oral and written
Motivation and drive to study your area of research
Project management skills
Good observation skills are required.
Should have the capacity of solving complex problems and conducting research work.