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Astronomy History

Important People and Events in Astronomy History

Egyptian Calendar is called this? Sothis (Sirius) calendar, or Canicular calendar
During the time of Hammurabi in Mesopotamia, what kinds of ideas did they develop? Ideas of constellations from myths and religions
What is Enuma Anu Enlil? Ancient text written in cuneiform on 68-70 tablets
Who was Anu? God of Heaven, Sky, and Constellations
Who was Enlil? God of Wind
What were the New Babylonians two achievements? They could predict planetary motion and executed excellent implementation of the sexagesimal system of numbers as 60 as the base
Where was Thales from and what did he do? Turkey; predicted a solar eclipse in 585 BCE during a war between the Medians and Lydians. He refused to accept supernatural explanations for natural phenomena.
Who was Anaximander and what did he do? He was the student of Thales; he was the first known to write down his studies and was the first to develop a mechanical model of the world.
What was the order of Greek Spheres? Earth, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn
Who was Pythagoras and what did he do? He was a mathematician responsible for the Pythagorean Theorem; had the knowledge of Earth being spherical
What did Anaxagoras do? Brought philosophy to Athens; attempted to scientifically account for eclipses, meteors, and rainbows; was imprisoned for saying the Sun reflects off the Moon.
What did Oenopides do? Measured the angle between the celestial equator and the ecliptic (angle of the Earth)
What did Democritus do? He believed the Earth was round; proposed the concept of the atom
What did Meton do? Known for discovering that 19 solar years are almost equal to 235 lunar months
Who was Plato and what did he do? Founder of Academy in Athens; said that the visible world is just an appearance and that "ideas" are the real world
What did Eudoxus do? Proposed that the Universe was geocentric and that the Earth was at the center; other objects centered on Earth, turning at different speeds
What did Aristotle do? Said that the real world is observed phenomena, not ideas; everything in the sky moves in circles
Who was Heracleides and what did he do? Philosopher and astronomer; proposed the Earth rotates once every 24 hours; attributed Mercury and Venus's motion to revolving around the Sun
Who was Aristarchus and what did he do? Mathematician; proposed heliocentricism; developed system of measuring distances
Who was Eratosthenes and what did he do? Poet, geographer, astronomer; measured circumference of the Earth; calculated tilt of earth's axis; invented leap day
Who was Apollonius and what did he do? Geometer and astronomer; noted for conic sections; gave names to ellipse, parabola, hyperbola: orbital paths
Who was Hipparchus and what did he do? Greatest ancient astronomical observer; invention of the astrolabe; developed trigonometry; discovered Earth's axis is precessing; compiled first star catalogue; developed method to predict solar eclipses
Ancient Greek Universe Earth: center of universe; planets orbited Earth in perfect circles; all planets are perfect spheres; orbiting outward: Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Moon, Jupiter, Saturn
What did Ptolemy do? Proposed model to better explain retrograde motion; wrote the Almagest: only ancient treatise in Astronomy; circle upon circle model: epicycle
Who was Copernicus and what did he do? Astronomer, mathematician, cleric; heliocentric model; published Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres on his death bed
What did Tycho Brahe do? Granted an observatory with large instruments; Tychonic System: hybrid model blending Copernican model with Ptolemaic Model (Moon and Sun revolve around Earth, and other planets revolve around Sun)
Who was Johannes Kepler and what did he do? Mathematician, astronomer; Assistant to Tycho Brahe; Kepler took 20 years of planetary data, deriving 3 laws of Planetary Motion
Kepler's Laws of Motion 1. The orbit of every planet is an ellipse with the Sun at a focus 2. A line joining a planet and Sun sweeps out equal areas in equal time intervals 3. The square of the orbital period of a planet is directly proportional to the cube of the semi-major a
Who was Giordana Bruno and what did he do? Philosopher, mathematician; "martyr of science"; believed in infinite universe and plurality of worlds
Who was Galileo and what did he do? Physicist, astronomer, philosopher, math; improved invention of the telescope, 1st to look at sky with it; supported Copernican system; all objects fall at same rate
Who was Isaac Newton and what did he do? Astronomer, physicist, alchemist, theologian; described 3 laws of motion and the universal law of gravitation; built reflecting telescope; shares credit for developing calculus
Benjamin Banneker First black astronomer; predicted eclipse- sun partially covered: famous
Edward Charles Pickering Hires women for tedious computer work; director of Harvard Observatory; famous women: Annie Cannon, Henrietta Leavitt, Antonia Maury, and Wilamina Fleming
Annie Cannon catalogued 300,000 stars (OBAFGKM- temp of stars)
Henrietta Leavitt Luminosity-distance relationships
Antonia Maury Described spectral lines of stars
Wilamina Fleming Discovered 79 stars, 10 novae, 59 nebulae, 94 Wolfrayet, 222 long-period variables
Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson Created microwave telescope; discovered cosmic microwave background radiation
Arthur BC Walker Sally Ride's advisor; developed normal incidence multilayer telescopes to photograph solar corona; leader of black physicists
Jocelyn Bell Burnell Discovered 1st radio pulsar (highly magnetized rotation neutron star emitting beams of radiation)
Sultan Abdulaziz 1st Muslim in Space
Abdul Ahad Momand 1st Afghani in Space
Reva Kay Williams 1st African American Woman Astrophysicist; research on black holes: Penrose Mechanism
Pope John Paul II Oct 31st, 1992, apologized for Galileo's house arrest
Mike Brown Discovered Eris and Dysmonia
Created by: jsolender