modern astronomy

Topics: Heliocentrism, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler Pages: 4 (1415 words) Published: November 15, 2013
The Copernican Revolution started with the publishing of the book De revolutionibus orbium coelestium by Nicolaus Copernicus. His book proposed a heliocentric system verses the widely accepted geocentric system of that time. Tycho Brahe accepted Copernicus's model but reasserted geocentricity. However, Tycho challenged the Aristotelian model when he observed a comet that went through the region of the planets. This region was said to only have uniform circular motion on solid spheres, which meant that it would be impossible for a comet to enter into the area. Tycho Brahe (1546-1601) was a Danish nobleman who was well known as an astronomer in his time. Further advancement in the understanding of the cosmos would require new, more accurate observations than those that Nicolaus Copernicus relied on and Tycho made great strides in this area. In 1572, Tycho Brahe observed a new star in the constellation Cassiopeia. For eighteen months, it shown brightly in the sky with no visible parallax, indicating it was part of the heavenly region of stars according to Aristotle's model. However, according to that model, no change could take place in the heavens so Tycho’s observation was a major discredit to Aristotle’s theories. In 1577, Tycho observed a great comet in the sky. Based on his parallax observations, the comet passed through the region of the planets. According to Aristotelian theory, only uniform circular motion on solid spheres existed in this region, making it impossible for a comet to enter this region. Tycho concluded there were no such spheres, raising the question of what kept planets in orbit.[1] Johannes Kepler followed Tycho and developed the three laws of planetary motion. Kepler would not have been able to produce his laws without the observations of Tycho, because they allowed Kepler to prove that planets traveled in ellipses, and that the sun does not sit directly in the center of an orbit but off to the side. Johannes Kepler was a German scientist...
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