Edward Charles Pickering, American astronomer

Edward Charles Pickering, American astronomer

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Credit: SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Edward Pickering. Portrait of Edward Charles Pick- ering (1846-1919), American astronomer. In 1889 he discovered the first spectroscopic binary star system by noting that the spectrum of light observed was changed due to Doppler shifting. Around 1890 Pickering introduced the colour index which measured the difference between a star's photographic (blue light) & visual (yellow light) brightness; this index indicates a star's tempera- ture. He discovered the first variable star in a globular cluster. With his large team of female assistants, Pickering made Harvard Observatory the main centre for stellar photometry and spectroscopy, producing several star catalogues.

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Keywords: astronomer, binary star, discoverer, e.c., edward charles, pickering, portraits, spectral classifier, spectroscopist, star cataloguer, surname p

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