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Multiple Choice Quiz


Why are there no white dwarf stars that can be seen with the unaided eye?
A)the nearest white dwarf is thousands of parsecs away
B)white dwarfs are very small in size
C)even the hottest white dwarf is very cool
D)white dwarf stars are surrounded by thick dust shells

Which of the following best describes the relationship between mass and radius for white dwarf stars?
A)radius is independent of mass
B)more massive white dwarfs are larger
C)more massive white dwarfs are smaller
D)it is not possible to predict the radius of a white dwarf of known mass

What fraction of the white dwarfs have masses greater than five times the mass of the sun?
A)about one in a thousand
B)about one in a hundred
C)about one in ten
D)none have masses that large

Which of the following is not true of neutron stars?
A)they rotate slowly
B)they are a few km in radius
C)they have large magnetic fields
D)some of them are observed to be pulsars

How do we know that pulsars aren't rotating white dwarfs?
A)a white dwarf would break up if it rotated as fast as a pulsar
B)there is only one rate at which white dwarfs can rotate
C)white dwarf stars can't rotate
D)there are not enough white dwarfs to account for the number of known pulsars

Pulsars were first discovered:
A)while studying radio scintillations in the solar wind
B)as a crucial check of the General Theory of Relativity
C)while studying rapidly variable stars
D)in globular clusters

Which of the following is an essential part of Einstein's explanation of gravity?
A)matter causes curvature of space
B)the gravity of a moving object varies with time
C)gravitational forces exist only over a limited distance
D)anti-matter has negative gravity

Which of the following are two of the things that we can discover (in principle) about the matter within a black hole?
A)mass and chemical composition
B)mass and age
C)mass and angular momentum
D)mass and density

What happens to the light from a star which has contracted within its event horizon?
A)it cannot escape from the region around the star
B)it begins to travel faster than the speed of light
C)it has a strong blue shift
D)there is no longer any relationship between wavelength and energy

If the sun were replaced by a black hole having a mass of one solar mass, what would happen to the Earth's orbit?
A)the Earth would spiral inward
B)the Earth would jump to a smaller orbit
C)the size of the Earth's orbit would increase rapidly
D)the Earth's orbit would remain the same

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