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George Darwin, British astronomer

George Darwin, British astronomer

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ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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George Darwin (1845-1912), British astronomer. Son of eminent natural historian Charles, Darwin studied law before settling on a career in astronomy. As professor of astronomy and experimental philosophy at Cambridge University, England, he studied tidal effects on the planets. He also worked on the three-body problem, specifically the interactions between the Sun, Moon and Earth. Although some of his conclusions have now been disproved, he is still considered a pioneer, having been the first to apply mathematics to describe the evolution of the Sun- Moon-Earth system. He won the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 1892, and served as president of the society from 1899-1900.

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