January 21, 2019

Review: Miss Leavitt’s Stars by George Johnson.

An outstanding read!

Sometimes, the greatest discoveries in astronomy can come from those willing to interpret the data in a new way. Just such a paradigm shifting discovery was the result of the diligent work of one Henrietta Swan Leavitt, the subject of a biography by George Johnson which in turn is the topic of this weeks’ review, Miss Leavitt’s Stars out from Norton/Atlas Books. [Read more...]

08.02.11: A Standard Candle Re-tweak?

The size of a proton. The definition of a planet. The Periodic Table. One of the hallmarks of science is the ability to alter and modify what we know as new information comes to light. Of course, this is much to the chagrin of the man on the street, who likes his science bit-sized, tweet-able, and unchanging…

[Read more...]

How Far Can YOU See?

How far can you see with that thing?” I hear that one a lot at star parties. It’s a sort of ambiguous question to an astronomer; distance varies with the scale of the structures in our universe observed, and a myriad of factors both near and far conspire to make this number an enigma not as straight forward as it might sound. On the Earth, we’re limited by the atmosphere and the curvature of the planet to a line of sight of maybe 50 or so miles on a clear day from a high mountain top… but in space…

[Read more...]