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Originally posted by 25cents
the moon spins, it just spins at exactly the right speed to always present the same face.
Originally posted by tim_dorset_uk
What I find interesting is how nobody spotted the satellites of the other plantes until recently in our solar system. Yet ancient tribes in africa knew of them 1000's of years ago such as the dogma tribes.
The Dogon are famous for their astronomical knowledge taught through oral tradition, dating back thousands of years, referencing the star system, Sirius. Sirius is the dog star. It is linked with the Egyptian goddess Isis. The astronomical information known by the Dogon since that time, was not discovered and verified until the 19th and 20th centuries, making one wonder how the Dogon came by this knowledge. Their oral traditions say it was given to them by the Nommo. The source of their information may date back to the time of the ancient Egyptian priests.
The Dogon priests said that Sirius had a companion star that was invisible to the human eye. They also stated that the star moved in a 50-year elliptical orbit around Sirius, that it was small and incredibly heavy, and that it rotated on its axis.
Initially the anthropologists wrote it off publishing the information in an obscure anthropological journal, because they didn't appreciate the astronomical importance of the information.
What they didn't know was that since 1844, astronomers had suspected that Sirius A had a companion star. This was in part determined when it was observed that the path of the star wobbled. In 1862 Alvan Clark discovered the second star making Sirius a binary star system (two stars).
In the 1920's it was determined that Sirius B, the companion of Sirius, was a white dwarf star. White dwarfs are small, dense stars that burn dimly. The pull of its gravity causes Sirius' wavy movement. Sirius B is smaller than planet Earth.
The Dogon name for Sirius B is Po Tolo. It means star - tolo and smallest seed - po. Seed refers to creation. In this case, perhaps human creation.
By this name they describe the star's smallness. It is, they say, the smallest thing there is.
They also claim that it is 'the heaviest star' and is white in color.
The Dogon thus attribute to Sirius B its three principal properties as a white dwarf: small, heavy, white.
watch the rocks
The chances of this happening perfectly - or at least to within 3 cm a year as far as I can remember - must be astronomical.
Originally posted by masqua
What blows my mind is how the moon seems exactly the size of the solar disc during an eclipse.
Also why does the moon not spin?
and what are the chances of that?
tim dorset uk
Yet ancient tribes in africa knew of them 1000's of years ago such as the dogma tribes.
Originally posted by Nygdan
Its not. It only appears that way. The only part of the eclipsing moon that you would see is the part eclipsing the sun, not the rest of it. Because the moon appears as a circle, the part that you see is also a curve.
"The Sun is far larger than the Moon -- about 400 times larger in diameter," explains James C. White II, executive director of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific. "Yet a happy circumstance is that the Sun is also about 400 times farther from the Earth than the Moon."
This makes the Moon and Sun appear roughly the same size in the sky. When the Moon's orbit about the Earth takes it directly between the Sun and us, the Moon can obscure all or part of the Sun. Exactly what happens depends on minor changes in distance and position.