Sophie’s law of gravitation

With reference to my entry last week, here is the bit in Jostein Gaarder’s Sophie’s World about gravity. Spot the misconception. Sophie is talking to Alberto: ‘Well, if the moon was drawn to the earth with the same foce that causes the apple to fall, one day the moon would come crashing to earth instead […]

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Apollo

And while I’m on the subject of the moon, I shouldn’t forget the anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. For the record, the first landing was before my lifetime, but some later ones were not. (Not that I remember them).

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Who turned out the lights?

I feel it would be inexcusable to let a total eclipse of the sun pass without comment on a physics blog. This is especially true since I am one of the lucky people who have seen a total eclipse – in my case the 1999 eclipse that scythed across Europe. There will no doubt be millions […]

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Equation of time strikes again

Horrible…dark…mornings…..Can’t….get….out…of…bed……. It’s close to four weeks since the winter solstice (for us Southern Hemisphere types) and it’s already noticeable that the evenings are less dark that they were a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, we can’t say the same about the mornings.  This is the equation of time kicking into play again – the darkest morning […]

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Greenwich

If ever you find yourself in London, I would very much recommend a visit to Greenwich. It’s a great day out – and includes attractions such as the Maritime museum, the old Naval College, and what remains of the tea clipper Cutty Sark after a recent devastating fire. But for a physicist like me, Greenwich really […]

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Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics

I’ve just had an email invitation to subscribe to a journal called ‘Geophysical and Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics’, with a lovely note that they hope it will serve my research needs. I’m at a loss to think of how it possibly could; maybe at some conference years ago I filled in a card saying I had some […]

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Goodbye summertime

So daylight savings is over for another year. Back to boring old standard time. Now’s a good moment to comment on what time zone New Zealand sits in. In ‘winter time’ it sits twelve hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time, GMT (or Univeral Time, as astronomers like to call it). Is that reasonable? In Greenwich (south-east […]

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