Finding the Speed of Light: The 1676 Discovery that Dazzled the World

Book Verdict

Finding the Speed of Light: The 1676 Discovery that Dazzled the World


First Release:

September 2019

ISBN: 9780884485452

More than two centuries before Einstein, using a crude telescope and a mechanical timepiece, Danish astronomer Ole Romer measured the speed of light with astounding accuracy. How was he able to do this when most scientists didn’t even believe that light traveled? Like many paradigm-shattering discoveries, Romer’s was accidental. Night after night he was timing the disappearance and reappearance of Jupiter’s moon Io behind the huge, distant planet. Eventually he realized that the discrepancies in his measurements could have only one explanation: Light had a speed, and it took longer
to reach Earth when Earth was farther from Jupiter. All he needed then to calculate light’s speed was some fancy geometry.

  • ISBN: 9780884485452
    Format: Print Book
    Edition: Hardcover edition
    Publisher: Tilbury House
    Page Count: 32
    Trim Size: 9 1/3" x 11 1/3"
    Genre: Nonfic
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