Galileo Galilei, Italian scientist and a pendulum

Galileo Galilei, Italian scientist and a pendulum

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Galileo Galilei. Engraving of Galileo Galilei (1564-1642), Italian scientist, first noticing how a pendulum swings. While Galileo was a medical student in Pisa in 1582 he observed a lamp which was swinging in the city's cathedral, and so acting as a simple pendulum. He noticed that the lamp took the same time to do one swing, regard- less of how far it had to swing. This observation led him to perform experiments which showed that the period of a pendulum's swing depends on its length. He used pendulums to monitor a person's pulse rate and to regulate a clock. "Galileo's lamp" which hangs in the cathedral was not installed until 1587 (and is now electric).

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Keywords: cathedral, clock pendulum idea, engraving, galilei, galileo, inspiration, pendulum, pisa, portraits, surname g, time

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