Category Archives: HW6

More than just a Queen lyric: Galileo and his part in 17th century Europe

Portrait of Galileo Galilei by Justus Sustermans – Source Galileo Galilei (15 Feb 1564 – 8 Jan 1642) played an integral role in the astronomical community’s transition from the Aristotelian geocentric model of the universe to the heliocentric model of the universe, which, although still incorrect, was a more accurate representation of the heavens. While he did […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

Nicolaus Copernicus formed the heliocentric model of the universe, which clashed with Aristotle’s model of celestial objects orbiting Earth in a circular path. Copernicus also hypothesized that that planetary orbit depended on distance from the sun. With this model, Copernicus was able to more accurately calculate the planets’ positions throughout the year. (Source) Events during […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

GALILEO 1564-1642 Galileo was extremely crucial to astronomy for many reasons. First of all, he was one of the first astronomers to fully utilize telescopes to observe the sky. As a result, his findings were based completely on his nightly observations – in a time where accepted published works were based largely on conjecture. Important […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

Nicholas Copernicus (February 19, 1473-May 24, 1543). Copernicus was important to astronomy because his work lead to the geocentric theory being replaced with the heliocentric theory. Up until Copernicus, Ptolemy’s theory that the earth is the center of the universe was the most accepted, but Copernicus updated Aristarchus’s heliocentric model. Copernicus also identified that the […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

Considered one of the most influential scientists in history, Sir Isaac Newton was an English Physicist and mathematician whose three laws of motions revolutionized physics. Newton went on to develop his law of universal gravitation which states “that any particle of matter in the universe attracts any other with a force varying directly as the […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

Kepler was the first astronomer to accurately describe and define the orbits of the planets around the sun. Kepler was alive from 12/27/1571 – 11/15/1630.  He was able to develop 3 laws of planetary motion.  These laws of planetary motion laid the ground work for other astronomers and scientists to make some of the greatest […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

Galileo Galilei was born in 1564 and died in 1642. His lifetime spanned an important period in human history as it covered both the end of the Renaissance and the beginning of the Scientific Revolution. During his lifetime the British East India Company was chartered and rose to prominence, and the Indian massacre of 1622 took place… Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context – Homework #6

2. Nicholas Copernicus (1473-1543) was important to astronomy because he served as a pioneer in drifting away from the geocentric model of the universe. He dove tediously into the tables and mathematics of the previous, geocentric model of the universe and found enlightenment in geometry. He thereby successfully determined the distances between planets and the Sun, as […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context: Copernicus

  Nicolaus Copernicus (February 19, 1473 – May 24, 1543) Historical events in the time of Copernicus: In 1492, when Copernicus was 19 years old, Columbus “sailed the ocean blue” from Spain and discovered America – specifically, the Caribbean islands. In 1506, when Copernicus was 33, construction began on St. Peter’s Church in Rome (and […] Continue reading Continue reading

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Historical Astronomers in Context

The astronomer I’ve picked is Sir Isaac Newton (Born January 4, 1643 – Died March 31, 1727).  Newton made discoveries that both directly indirectly impacted astronomy.  First, directly, Newton published the universal law of gravitation in The Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy, in 1687.  This law stated that the force of attraction between two objects […] Continue reading Continue reading

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