Speed of Light

Topics: Light, Speed of light, Albert Abraham Michelson Pages: 4 (1572 words) Published: January 13, 2013
Speed of Light

Determining the speed of light is something that has been a very long and trying process. No one scientist could determine such a thing. Galileo was the first noted scientist to attempt experimentation on the speed of light. Other famous scientist, such as, Roemer, Foucault, Fizeau, Michelson, and Einstein added their own discoveries to the collage of information gathered through the years. Every scientist performed their experiments differently based on the knowledge and ability they had at that time. Along with information collected from scientists before them, technology also played a role in finding accurate information and making experimenting easier. Albert Einstein referred to Galileo Galilei as the “Father of modern science” ("Father of modern," 2007). Galileo Galilei is also sometimes known as the “father of modern astronomy” ("Father of modern," 2007), the “father of physics” ("Father of modern," 2007), and the “father of science” ("Father of modern," 2007). Galileo made observations and experiments to gather his information, pioneering the use of quantitative experiments. He believed in using the scientific method, as opposed to strictly philosophy, which was mostly used during those times. “In order to perform his experiments, Galileo had to set up standards of length and time, so that measurements made on different days and in different laboratories could be compared in a reproducible fashion. For measurements of particularly short intervals of time, Galileo sang songs with whose timing he was familiar. Galileo also attempted to measure the speed of light, wisely concluding that his measurement technique was too imprecise to accurately determine its value. He climbed one hill and had an assistant to climb another hill; both had lanterns with shutters, initially closed. He then opened the shutter of his lantern. His assistant was instructed to open his own shutter upon seeing Galileo's lantern. Galileo then measured the...
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