Sunday, January 2, 2011

Galileo Galilei’s Vision, By Sharon Powell

     Have you ever wondered what Galileo Galilee noticed while gazing into the night sky? Some people might think the astronomer saw nothing at all. According to Howard Schneider’s, and National Geographic’s Backyard Guide to the Night Sky, Galileo was considered legally blind by the age of seventy.  Although his blindness was not caused from the suns rays, Galileo spent countless hours gazing into the earth’s atmosphere while discovering some simple, but very important facts about our solar system.

     Galileo was a famous inventor during the 17th. Century, and classified as physicist, astronomer, and philosopher who played a major role within the world of science. Galileo was also professor of mathematics at the University of Padua from 1592-1610, instructing students on the concepts and functional processes of math.  Among Galileo's most famous inventions were the first high-powered telescope, a horse powered pump to draw water, and hydrostatic balance, making him a well known figure within the world of technology.

     Discoveries of the 17th. Centuries were often difficult for scientists. New methods of technology were questioned by officials, and church denominations who continually disputed the scientific theories Galileo presented. Although suffering much criticism throughout his career, Galileo’s work led to the development of new discoveries and helpful tools used today, including the 12 month calendar.

     There are many different kinds of telescopes in use today, but the basis of all, is to view objects from a distance. A Dutch eyeglass maker known as Hans Lippershey invented the first optical, or Refracting Telescope.  Refracting Telescopes magnify the object while bending light in order to bring the subject into focus.  Other models include the Reflecting Telescope, and Solar models. Reflecting Telescopes incorporate the use of mirrors to enhance magnification. Positioning and precision, are specifics found necessary in order to reflect the image into a single lens.  Solar Telescopes allow scientists to look directly into the sun without suffering damage from the effects of the suns rays.

     Galileo was a powerful and significant thinker, whose research laid the framework for the theory of relativity, and laws of motion. Future scientists, such as Sir Isaac Newton, and Albert Einstein studied Galileo’s theories, and later redefined them as scientific knowledge.  To learn more about our solar system and Galileo’s study of Jupiter’s’ Moon’s go to your local library, or search engine……...S. Powell, 2011
1.) Howard Schneider, National Geographic’s Backyard Guide to the Night Sky; National Geographic Publishers, Washington, D.C., 2009.

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