Galileo's Birthday

Polymath Galileo Galilei was born into the Earthling tribe on 15th February, 1564. He used a telescope to revolutionise our view of the cosmos from our one star planet along with other such stars as Copernicus before him and near contemporaries Johannes Kepler and Tycho Brahe. Many consider Galileo the father of modern science with his stress on proper experimentation as a means for discovering the facts of nature. A spacecraft was named after Galileo and it observed the comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 crashing into Jupiter in 1994.

 

"Nature is a book written in the language of mathematics” Galileo

 

We now have had so many great telescopes showing such oddities as a celestial jellyfish and sombrero as well as indicating that we have cast light on as little as 2 - 5% of the universe, with the remainder of our hygge universe being dark to us.

The marvelous JWST is the most recently launched and now successfully in place. It will, we hope, CHIME in to explore the cosmic dawn, exoplanets maybe even attempt a picture or two of the fast receding Oumuamua ballistic baguette. We think Galileo would have agreed with the comment by Mark McCaughrean (ESA's senior science advisor) that happiness is a hot rocket and a cold telescope!

With the impending birthday of Nobel Laureate Jennifer Doudna, of CRISPR repute, we may yet see slightly warmer, genetically modified astronomers scanning the sky with their enhanced eyes! Regrettably they may need to be off world by then if satellite constellations make terrestrial observations too difficult.

 

“I think the biggest innovations of the twenty first century will be the intersection of biology and technology”  Steve Jobs