chapter  8
54 Pages

LAWS OF MOTION IN THE HEAVENS: OPENING NEWDOORS THROUGH PRECISION

The Revolution had only just begun. Tycho Brahe (1546-1601) and Johannes Kepler (1571-1630), the dual heroes of this chapter, took the Reformation of astronomy to a new level, ushering in an age of precision and rigour. They were binary astronomers with richly contrasting characters. One had a passion for cold, hard facts collected with elaborate instruments and tireless energy. The other was possessed by a spiritual longing to penetrate the design of the universe, and reach its long-sought harmonies. Their union was an epic confluence of minds, approaches and discoveries, leading directly to Newton’s breakthrough concept that gravity is the force which rules the solar system, and the law that runs

the universe. Following the trail-blazers, precise measurements of natural phenomena and exacting comparisons with existing theoretical structures have become the twin forces which have guided progress in understanding nature.