Observations

Daily Cosmobite: Kepler’s birthday

Today’s Cosmobite is by Sam Knox, an astronomy guide at MAAS – Sydney Observatory.

December 27th 1571 marked the birth of the mastermind behind the laws of planetary motion, Johannes Kepler. His three laws described the motion of all the planets around the Sun and consolidated Copernicus’ Sun centered, or heliocentric, solar system. Kepler’s laws linked how the speed of a planet is described by its elliptical orbit. These laws, as described in Astronomia nova, Harmonices Mundi and Epitome Astronomiae Copernicanae, also provided the foundations for Isaac Newton’s theory of Universal Gravitation.

Kepler
Kepler’s second law of planetary motion. Credit: Gonfer

early-telescopes-1600s-early-1700s-jena-opticshes-museum

Early telescopes on display at Jena as the astronomer Johannes Kepler looks on, image Melissa Hulbert

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related