For an explanation, see the main splats page
The principles of stellar physics
- Astronomers can use Wilhelm Wien's displacement law to estimate the surface temperature of a distant star by measuring its intensity at different wavelengths.
- In 1863, William Huggins suggested that stellar spectra indicated that the stars are made of exactly the same elements as can be found on Earth.
- In 1920, Harkins and Arthur Eddington suggested that the fusion of hydrogen to form more massive atoms and release energy could be the energy source of stars.
- In 1924, Eddington developed the main-sequence mass-luminosity relationship, that stars of similar composition and energy are brighter when they have more mass.
- In 1938, Hans Bethe, Critchfield, Carl von Weizsäcker worked out that stars were powered by nuclear fusion, involving the carbon-nitrogen cycle.
- In 1939, Hans Bethe and Carl von Weizsäcker proposed the proton-proton chain as the thermonuclear energy source for the sun, where four protons form helium.
- In 1942, J. J. L. Duyvendak, Nicholas Mayall, and Jan Oort deduce that the Crab nebula was a remnant of the 1054 supernova observed by Chinese astronomers.
- In 1967, Jocelyn Bell and Anthony Hewish discovered radio pulses from a pulsar, the first of four that Bell found. Some 350 pulsars are now known.
- Pulsars are rotating bodies that emit directional radio signals, so that in certain positions, the signals are intermittent, forming a series of pulses.
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