The Harmonies of the World
“By the study of the orbit of Mars, we must either arrive at the secrets of astronomy or forever remain in ignorance of them.”
Kepler, Johannes (1571-1630) who was a German astronomer and natural philosopher is noted for coming up with and verifying the three laws of planetary motion. These laws are now known as Kepler's laws of Planetary Motion. Johanne was born on December 27, 1571.
Johanne was born in Weil der Stadt in Swabia and moved to nearby Leonberg with his parents in 1576. His father was a mercenary soldier and his mother was the daughter of an innkeeper. He was their first child. His father left home for the last time when Johannes was five, and is believed to have died in a war in the Netherlands. Whenever he was a child, Kepler lived with his mother in his grandfather's inn. Sources said that he used to help by serving in the inn. Customers were amused by the child's unusual competence at math. Kepler's early education was in a local school and then at a nearby seminary, from which, intending to be ordained, he went on to enroll at the University of Tübingen, a bastion of Lutheran orthodoxy.
Leaving Prague for Linz
Johanne’s years in Prague were peaceful, and scientifically productive. In fact, even when things went badly, he never seemed to have allowed external circumstances to prevent him from getting on with his work.
Things began to go very badly in late 1611. His seven year old son died. Kepler wrote to a friend that this death was particularly hard because the child reminded him so much of himself at that age. Then his wife died. Emperor Rudolf, whose health was failing, was forced to abdicate in favor of his brother Matthias, who, like Rudolf, was a Catholic but (unlike Rudolf) did not believe in tolerance of Protestants. Kepler had to leave Prague. Before he departed he had his wife's body moved into the son's grave, and wrote a Latin epitaph for them. He and his remaining children moved to Linz (now in Austria).
Marriage and Wine Barrels
Johanne seemed to have married his first wife, Barbara, for love (though the marri...
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...net sweeps out equal areas in equal intervals of time.
3. The ratio of the cube of a planet's mean distance, "d", from the sun to the square of its orbital period, "t", is a constant-that is, d3/t2 is the same for all planets. The squares of the periods of the planets are proportional to the cubes of their semimajor axes. Ta2 / Tb2 = Ra3 / Rb3 Mathematical statement: T = kR3/2 , where T = sideral period, and R = semi-major axis Example - If a is measured in astronomical units (AU = semi-major axis of Earth's orbit) and sidereal period in years (Earth's sidereal period), then the constant k in mathematical expression for Kepler's third law is equal to 1, and the mathematical relation becomes T2 =R3
Robert S. Westman
Encarta 97 CD-Rom
Internet-Laws of Planetary Motion
Internet- Laws of Planetary Motion
Internet- Laws of Motiion
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