Martin John Rees, Baron Rees of Ludlow, is a British cosmologist and astrophysicist. He has been Astronomer Royal since 1995 and was Master of Trinity College, Cambridge from 2004 to 2012 and President of the Royal Society between 2005 and 2010. Rees was born on 23 June 1942 in England. After a peripatetic life during the war his parents, both teachers, settled with Rees, an only child, in a rural part of Shropshire near the border with Wales. There, his parents founded Bedstone College, a boarding school based on progressive educational concepts, that thrives to this day, he was educated at Bedstone College from the age of 13 at Shrewsbury School. He studied for the mathematics tripos at Trinity College, graduating with first class honours, he undertook post-graduate research at Cambridge and completed a PhD supervised by Dennis Sciama in 1967. Rees's post-graduate work in astrophysics in the mid-1960s coincided with an explosion of new discoveries, with breakthroughs ranging from confirmation of the big bang, the discovery of neutron stars and black holes, a host of other revelations.
After holding postdoctoral research positions in the United Kingdom and the United States, he taught at Sussex University and the University of Cambridge, where he was the Plumian Professor until 1991, the director of the Institute of Astronomy. From 1992 to 2003, he was Royal Society Research Professor, from 2003 Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics, he was Professor of Astronomy at Gresham College, London, in 1975 and became a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1979. He holds Visiting Professorships at the University of Leicester, he is a fellow of Darwin College, an Honorary Fellow of King's College, Clare Hall, Jesus College, Cambridge. Rees is the author of more than 500 research papers, he has made contributions to the origin of cosmic microwave background radiation, as well as to galaxy clustering and formation, his studies of the distribution of quasars led to final disproof of Steady State theory. He was one of the first to propose that enormous black holes power quasars, that superluminal astronomical observations can be explained as an optical illusion caused by an object moving in the direction of the observer.
Since the 1990s, Rees has worked on gamma-ray bursts in collaboration with Peter Mészáros, on how the "cosmic dark ages" ended when the first stars formed. In a more speculative vein, he has, since the 1970s, been interested in anthropic reasoning, the possibility that our visible universe is part of a vaster "multiverse". Rees is an author of books on astronomy and science intended for the lay public and gives many public lectures and broadcasts. In 2010 he was chosen to deliver the Reith Lectures for the BBC, now published as From Here to Infinity: Scientific Horizons. Rees believes the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence is worthwhile, although the chance of success is small. Aside from expanding his scientific interests, Rees has written and spoken extensively about the problems and challenges of the 21st century, the interfaces between science and politics, he is a member of the Board of the Institute for Advanced Study, in Princeton, the Oxford Martin School and the Gates Cambridge Trust.
He co-founded the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk and serves on the Scientific Advisory Board for the Future of Life Institute. He has been a Trustee of the British Museum, the Science Museum and the Institute for Public Policy Research. In August 2014, Rees was one of 200 public figures who were signatories to a letter to The Guardian expressing their hope that Scotland would vote to remain part of the United Kingdom in September's referendum on that issue. In 2015, he was co-author of the report that launched the Global Apollo Programme, which calls for developed nations to commit to spending 0.02% of their GDP for 10 years, to fund co-ordinated research to make carbon-free baseload electricity less costly than electricity from coal by the year 2025. His doctoral students have included Roger Blandford, Craig Hogan, Nick Kaiser Priyamvada Natarajan, Susan Stepney, he has been President of the Royal Astronomical Society and the British Association, was a Member of Council of the Royal Institution of Great Britain until 2010.
Rees has received honorary degrees from a number of universities including Hull, Uppsala, Durham, Yale and Sydney. He belongs to several foreign academies, including the US National Academy of Sciences, the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Science Academy of Turkey and the Japan Academy, he became President of the Royal Society on 1 December 2005 and continued until the end of the Society's 350th Anniversary Celebrations in 2010. In 2011, he was awarded the Templeton Prize. In 2005, Rees was elevated to a life peerage, sitting as a crossbencher in the House of Lords as Baron Rees of Ludlow, of Ludlow in the County of Shropshire. In 2005, he was awarded the Crafoord Prize. Other awards and honours include: The Asteroid 4587 Rees and the Sir Martin Rees Academic Scholarship at Shrewsbury International School are named in his honour. Rees married Caroline Humphrey in 1986, he has criticised militant atheists for being too hostile to religion.
He is a member of the Labour Party. Particle chauvinism This article incorporates text available under the CC BY 4.0 license
Edmond Halley, FRS was an English astronomer, mathematician and physicist. He was the second Astronomer Royal in Britain, succeeding John Flamsteed in 1720. From an observatory he constructed on Saint Helena, Halley recorded a transit of Mercury across the Sun, he realised. He used his observations to expand contemporary star maps, he aided in observationally proving Isaac Newton's laws of motion, funded the publication of Newton's influential Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica. From his September 1682 observations, he used the laws of motion to compute the periodicity of Halley's Comet in his 1705 Synopsis of the Astronomy of Comets, it was named after him upon its predicted return in 1758. Beginning in 1698, he made sailing expeditions and made observations on the conditions of terrestrial magnetism. In 1718, he discovered the proper motion of the "fixed" stars. Halley was born in east London, his father, Edmond Halley Sr. was a wealthy soap-maker in London. As a child, Halley was interested in mathematics.
He studied at St Paul's School where he developed his initial interest in astronomy, from 1673 at The Queen's College, Oxford. While still an undergraduate, Halley published papers on sunspots. While at the University of Oxford, Halley was introduced to the Astronomer Royal. Influenced by Flamsteed's project to compile a catalog of northern stars, Halley proposed to do the same for the Southern Hemisphere. In 1676, Halley visited the south Atlantic island of Saint Helena and set up an observatory with a large sextant with telescopic sights to catalogue the stars of the Southern Hemisphere. While there he observed a transit of Mercury across the Sun, realised that a similar transit of Venus could be used to determine the absolute size of the Solar System, he returned to England in May 1678. In the following year he went to Danzig on behalf of the Royal Society to help resolve a dispute; because astronomer Johannes Hevelius did not use a telescope, his observations had been questioned by Robert Hooke.
Halley stayed with Hevelius and he observed and verified the quality of Hevelius' observations. In 1679, Halley published the results from his observations on St. Helena as Catalogus Stellarum Australium which included details of 341 southern stars; these additions to contemporary star maps earned him comparison with Tycho Brahe: e.g. "the southern Tycho" as described by Flamsteed. Halley was awarded his M. A. degree at Oxford and elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society at the age of 22. In September 1682 he carried out a series of observations of what became known as Halley's Comet, though his name became associated with it because of his work on its orbit and predicting its return in 1758. In 1686, Halley published the second part of the results from his Helenian expedition, being a paper and chart on trade winds and monsoons; the symbols he used to represent trailing winds still exist in most modern day weather chart representations. In this article he identified solar heating as the cause of atmospheric motions.
He established the relationship between barometric pressure and height above sea level. His charts were an important contribution to the emerging field of information visualisation. Halley spent most of his time on lunar observations, but was interested in the problems of gravity. One problem that attracted his attention was the proof of Kepler's laws of planetary motion. In August 1684, he went to Cambridge to discuss this with Isaac Newton, much as John Flamsteed had done four years earlier, only to find that Newton had solved the problem, at the instigation of Flamsteed with regard to the orbit of comet Kirch, without publishing the solution. Halley asked to see the calculations and was told by Newton that he could not find them, but promised to redo them and send them on which he did, in a short treatise entitled, On the motion of bodies in an orbit. Halley recognised the importance of the work and returned to Cambridge to arrange its publication with Newton, who instead went on to expand it into his Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica published at Halley's expense in 1687.
Halley's first calculations with comets were thereby for the orbit of comet Kirch, based on Flamsteed's observations in 1680-1. Although he was to calculate the orbit of the comet of 1682, he was inaccurate in his calculations of the orbit of comet Kirch, they indicated a periodicity of 575 years, thus appearing in the years 531 and 1106, heralding the death of Julius Caesar in a like fashion in −44. It is now known to have an orbital period of circa 10,000 years. In 1691, Halley built a diving bell, a device in which the atmosphere was replenished by way of weighted barrels of air sent down from the surface. In a demonstration and five companions dived to 60 feet in the River Thames, remained there for over an hour and a half. Halley's bell was of little use for practical salvage work, as it was heavy, but he made improvements to it over time extending his underwater exposure time to over 4 hours. Halley suffered one of the earliest recorded cases of middle ear barotrauma; that same year, at a meeting of the Royal Society, Halley introduced a rudimentary working model of a magnetic compass using a liquid-filled housing to damp the swing and wobble of the magnetised needle.
In 1691, Halley sought the post of Savilian Professor of Astronomy at Oxford. While a candidate for the position, Halley faced the animosity of th
The Dunsink Observatory is an astronomical observatory established in 1785 in the townland of Dunsink near the city of Dublin, Ireland. Its most famous director was William Rowan Hamilton, amongst other things, discovered quaternions, the first non-commutative algebra, while walking from the observatory to the city with his wife, he is renowned for his Hamiltonian formulation of dynamics. In the late 20th century, the city encroached more on the observatory, which compromised the seeing; the telescope, no longer state of the art, was used for public'open nights'. Dunsink observatory is part of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, it provides accommodation for visiting scientists and is used for conferences and public outreach events. Public talks on astronomy and astrophysics are given at the observatory by professional and amateur astronomers. Stargazing events are held using the Grubb telescope; the observatory was established by an endowment of £3,000 in the will of Francis Andrews, Provost of Trinity College, Dublin at his death on 18 June 1774.
The site was established on the south slope of a low hill in the townland of Dunsink, 84m above sea level. The South Telescope or 12 inch Grubb, is a refracting telescope built by Thomas Grubb of Dublin, completed in 1868; the achromatic lens, with an aperture of 11.75 inches, was donated by Sir James South in 1862, who had purchased the lens from Cauchoix of Paris 30 years earlier. He had intended it for a large but troubled equatorial that came to fruition in the 1830s, but was dismantled around 1838; the entry for the observatory in Thom's Directory gives the following account of the observatory, Dublin Mean Time, the official time in Ireland from 1880, was the mean solar time at Dunsink, just as Greenwich Mean Time was the mean solar time at Greenwich Royal Observatory near London. In 1916, Ireland moved to GMT. In 1936, Trinity College stopped rented out the land. Éamon de Valera, who had established the DIAS in 1940, added a School of Cosmic Physics to it in 1947 in order to revive the observatory, for which it was given responsibility.
The Andrews Professorship of Astronomy is a chair in astronomy in the University of Dublin associated with the director of Dunsink Observatory. It was founded in 1783 under the same endowment from Francis Andrews as the observatory, regulated by a new Statute of Trinity College Dublin, which required the professor to "make regular observations of the heavenly bodies... and of the sun and planets". The chair was vacant after 1921, abolished in 1966 when the university's statutes were revised, revived in 1984 as an honorary title for the head of the school of Cosmic Physics of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, director of the observatory since the school's creation in 1947. From 1793, under letters patent of King George III, the Andrews Professor held the title Royal Astronomer of Ireland; this title was extinguished in 1966 and has not been revived. Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies "The Andrews Professor of Astronomy of Astronomy". School of Physics. Trinity College Dublin. Retrieved 26 September 2017.
Wayman, P. A.. "The Andrews' Professors of Astronomy and Dunsink Observatory, 1785–1985". Irish Astronomical Journal. 17: 167–183. Bibcode:1986IrAJ...17..167W. Dunsink Observatory Astronomy Trail
Royal Observatory, Greenwich
The Royal Observatory, Greenwich is an observatory situated on a hill in Greenwich Park, overlooking the River Thames. It played a major role in the history of astronomy and navigation, is best known for the fact that the prime meridian passes through it, thereby gave its name to Greenwich Mean Time; the ROG has the IAU observatory code of the first in the list. ROG, the National Maritime Museum, the Queen's House and Cutty Sark are collectively designated Royal Museums Greenwich; the observatory was commissioned in 1675 by King Charles II, with the foundation stone being laid on 10 August. The site was chosen by Sir Christopher Wren. At that time the king created the position of Astronomer Royal, to serve as the director of the observatory and to "apply himself with the most exact care and diligence to the rectifying of the tables of the motions of the heavens, the places of the fixed stars, so as to find out the so much desired longitude of places for the perfecting of the art of navigation."
He appointed John Flamsteed as the first Astronomer Royal. The building was completed in the summer of 1676; the building was called "Flamsteed House", in reference to its first occupant. The scientific work of the observatory was relocated elsewhere in stages in the first half of the 20th century, the Greenwich site is now maintained exclusively as a museum, although the AMAT telescope became operational for astronomical research in 2018. 1675 – 22 June, Royal Observatory founded. 1675 – 10 August, construction began. 1714 Longitude Act established the Board of Longitude rewards. The Astronomer Royal was, until the Board was dissolved in 1828, always an ex officio Commissioner of Longitude. 1767 Astronomer Royal Nevil Maskelyne began publication of the Nautical Almanac, based on observations made at the Observatory. 1818 Oversight of the Royal Observatory was transferred from the Board of Ordnance to the Board of Admiralty. 1833 Daily time signals began. 1899 The New Physical Observatory was completed.
1924 Hourly time signals from the Royal Observatory were first broadcast on 5 February. 1948 Office of the Astronomer Royal was moved to Herstmonceux. 1957 Royal Observatory completed its move to Herstmonceux. The Greenwich site is renamed the Old Royal Observatory. 1990 RGO moved to Cambridge. 1998 RGO closed. Greenwich site is returned to its original name, the Royal Observatory, is made part of the National Maritime Museum. 2011 The Greenwich museums, including the ROG, become collectively the Royal Museums Greenwich. There had been significant buildings on this land since the reign of William I. Greenwich Palace, on the site of the present-day Maritime Museum, was the birthplace of both Henry VIII and his daughters Mary I and Elizabeth I. Greenwich Castle was a favourite place for Henry VIII to house his mistresses, so that he could travel from the Palace to see them; the establishment of a Royal Observatory was proposed in 1674 by Sir Jonas Moore who, in his role as Surveyor General at the Ordnance Office, persuaded King Charles II to create the observatory, with John Flamsteed installed as its director.
The Ordnance Office was given responsibility for building the Observatory, with Moore providing the key instruments and equipment for the observatory at his own personal cost. Flamsteed House, the original part of the Observatory, was designed by Sir Christopher Wren assisted by Robert Hooke, was the first purpose-built scientific research facility in Britain, it was built for a cost of £520 out of recycled materials on the foundations of Duke Humphrey's Tower, the forerunner of Greenwich Castle, which resulted in the alignment being 13 degrees away from true North, somewhat to Flamsteed's chagrin. The original observatory at first housed the scientific instruments to be used by Flamsteed in his work on stellar tables, over time incorporated additional responsibilities such as marking the official time of day, housing Her Majesty's Nautical Almanac Office. Moore donated two clocks, built by Thomas Tompion, which were installed in the 20 foot high Octagon Room, the principal room of the building.
They were of unusual design, each with a pendulum 13 feet in length mounted above the clock face, giving a period of four seconds and an accuracy unparalleled, of seven seconds per day. British astronomers have long used the Royal Observatory as a basis for measurement. Four separate meridians have passed through the buildings, defined by successive instruments; the basis of longitude, the meridian that passes through the Airy transit circle, first used in 1851, was adopted as the world's Prime Meridian at the International Meridian Conference on 22 October 1884. Subsequently, nations across the world used it as their standard for timekeeping; the Prime Meridian was marked by a brass strip in the Observatory's courtyard once the buildings became a museum in 1960, since 16 December 1999, has been marked by a powerful green laser shining north across the London night sky. Since the first triangulation of Great Britain in the period 1783–1853, Ordnance Survey maps have been based on an earlier version of the Greenwich meridian, defined by the transit instrument of James
William Christie (astronomer)
Sir William Henry Mahoney Christie was a British astronomer. He was born in Woolwich, the son of Samuel Hunter Christie and educated at King's College School and Trinity College, Cambridge, he was fourth wrangler in 1868 and elected a fellow of Trinity in 1869. Having been Chief Assistant at the Royal Observatory at Greenwich from 1870 to 1881, he was appointed to replace George Airy as Astronomer Royal in 1881 and remained in office until 1910, he received the degree D. Sc. from the University of Oxford in June 1902, was created a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath in 1904. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in June, 1881, he was president of the Royal Astronomical Society from 1888 to 1890. The first Astronomer Royal to retire at 65, Christie died and was buried at sea near Gibraltar in 1922, he had married in daughter of Sir Alfred Hickman. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 83 233 The Observatory 45 77 Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific 34 138 Works written by or about William Christie at Wikisource Online catalogue of Christie's working papers
The pound sterling known as the pound and less referred to as sterling, is the official currency of the United Kingdom, Guernsey, the Isle of Man, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, the British Antarctic Territory, Tristan da Cunha. It is subdivided into 100 pence. A number of nations that do not use sterling have currencies called the pound. Sterling is the third most-traded currency in the foreign exchange market, after the United States dollar, the euro. Together with those two currencies and the Chinese yuan, it forms the basket of currencies which calculate the value of IMF special drawing rights. Sterling is the third most-held reserve currency in global reserves; the British Crown dependencies of Guernsey and the Isle of Man produce their own local issues of sterling which are considered equivalent to UK sterling in their respective regions. The pound sterling is used in Gibraltar, the Falkland Islands, Saint Helena and Ascension Island in Saint Helena and Tristan da Cunha; the Bank of England is the central bank for the pound sterling, issuing its own coins and banknotes, regulating issuance of banknotes by private banks in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Banknotes issued by other jurisdictions are not regulated by the Bank of England. The full official name pound sterling, is used in formal contexts and when it is necessary to distinguish the United Kingdom currency from other currencies with the same name. Otherwise the term pound is used; the currency name is sometimes abbreviated to just sterling in the wholesale financial markets, but not when referring to specific amounts. The abbreviations "ster." and "stg." are sometimes used. The term "British pound" is sometimes incorrectly used in less formal contexts, it is not an official name of the currency; the exchange rate of the pound sterling against the US dollar is referred to as "cable" in the wholesale foreign exchange markets. The origins of this term are attributed to the fact that in the 1800s, the GBP/USD exchange rate was transmitted via transatlantic cable. Forex traders of GBP/USD are sometimes referred to as "cable dealers". GBP/USD is now the only currency pair with its own name in the foreign exchange markets, after IEP/USD, known as "wire" in the forward FX markets, no longer exists after the Irish Pound was replaced by the euro in 1999.
There is apparent convergence of opinion regarding the origin of the term "pound sterling", toward its derivation from the name of a small Norman silver coin, away from its association with Easterlings or other etymologies. Hence, the Oxford English Dictionary state that the "most plausible" etymology is derivation from the Old English steorra for "star" with the added diminutive suffix "-ling", to mean "little star" and to refer to a silver penny of the English Normans; as another established source notes, the compound expression was derived: However, the perceived narrow window of the issuance of this coin, the fact that coin designs changed in the period in question, led Philip Grierson to reject this in favour of a more complex theory. Another argument that the Hanseatic League was the origin for both the origin of its definition and manufacture, in its name is that the German name for the Baltic is "Ost See", or "East Sea", from this the Baltic merchants were called "Osterlings", or "Easterlings".
In 1260, Henry III granted them a charter of protection and land for their Kontor, the Steelyard of London, which by the 1340s was called "Easterlings Hall", or Esterlingeshalle. Because the League's money was not debased like that of England, English traders stipulated to be paid in pounds of the "Easterlings", contracted to "'sterling". For further discussion of the etymology of "sterling", see sterling silver; the currency sign for the pound is £, written with a single cross-bar, though a version with a double cross-bar is sometimes seen. This symbol derives from medieval Latin documents; the ISO 4217 currency code is GBP, formed from "GB", the ISO 3166-1 alpha-2 code for the United Kingdom, the first letter of "pound". It does not stand for "Great Britain Pound" or "Great British Pound"; the abbreviation "UKP" is used but this is non-standard because the ISO 3166 country code for the United Kingdom is GB. The Crown dependencies use their own codes: GGP, JEP and IMP. Stocks are traded in pence, so traders may refer to pence sterling, GBX, when listing stock prices.
A common slang term for the pound sterling or pound is quid, singular and plural, except in the common phrase "quids in!". The term may have come via Italian immigrants from "scudo", the name for a number of coins used in Italy until the 19th century.
A stipend is a regular fixed sum of money paid for services or to defray expenses, such as for scholarship, internship, or apprenticeship. It is distinct from an income or a salary because it does not represent payment for work performed. Stipends are lower than what would be expected as a permanent salary for similar work; this is because the stipend is complemented by other benefits such as accreditation, food, and/or accommodation. Some graduate schools make stipend payments to help students have the time and funds to earn their academic degree. Universities refer to money paid to graduate students as a stipend, rather than wages, to reflect complementary benefits. Stipends can be used to compensate interns at non-profits, however they are discouraged to be used for volunteers as this may require that they be reported as employees and therefore tax paid on the stipend; this type of stipend is temporary and lasts for less than a year. In the Catholic Church, a Mass Stipend is a payment made by members of the church, nominal, to a priest for saying a Mass, not part of his normal course of work.
It is considered simony to demand payment for a sacrament, thus, stipends are seen as gifts. In the Church of England, a stipend refers to the salary of a stipendiary minister, one who receives payment directly from the diocese. A self-supporting minister is therefore one, licensed to perform clerical duties but without receiving any kind of payment from the diocese — although non-stipendiary ministers receive reimbursement of expenses incurred in pursuit of their duties, e.g. travel and telephone costs. Non-stipendiary ministers depend on secular employment or pensions for their income and are unavailable for pastoral duties when they are fulfilling their obligations to their employer. Stipends have been used to erode employee-employer relationship and to hire junior teaching and research staff with lower pay and worse working conditions. Compulsory Rotatory Residential Internship Graduate assistant Honorarium - sometimes referred to as a stipend in the UK