By Andrea Wulf
The writer of the hugely acclaimed Founding Gardeners now offers us an enlightening chronicle of the 1st actually foreign clinical endeavor—the eighteenth-century quest to watch the transit of Venus and degree the sunlight system.
On June 6, 1761, the realm paused to monitor a momentous get together: the 1st transit of Venus among the earth and the sunlight in additional than a century. via that remark, astronomers may well calculate the dimensions of the sun system—but provided that they can collect info from many various issues of the globe, all recorded in the course of the brief interval of the transit. Overcoming very good odds and political strife, astronomers from Britain, France, Russia, Germany, Sweden, and the yank colonies organize observatories in distant corners of the area, purely to have their efforts thwarted via unpredictable climate and warring armies. thankfully, transits of Venus take place in pairs: 8 years later, the scientists might have one other chance to succeed.
Chasing Venus brings to lifestyles the personalities of the eighteenth-century astronomers who embarked upon this complicated and crucial medical enterprise, portray a shiny portrait of the collaborations, the rivalries, and the risky foreign politics that hindered them at each flip. in any case, what they entire might swap our notion of the universe and may without end modify the character of medical research.
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Additional resources for Chasing Venus: The Race to Measure the Heavens
These results are in disagreement with earlier work (4245), which suggested that addition of monomer at a rate greater than a critical value (the maximum polymerization rate) gave "flooded" conditions and addition at a rate slower than the critical rate gave "starved" conditions where the rate of polymerization was a constant times the rate of monomer addition. The present results show that the maximum rate is that of the batch polymerization, with those of the semi-continuous polymerizations approaching that of the batch polymerization with increasing monomer addition rates.
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Chasing Venus: The Race to Measure the Heavens by Andrea Wulf