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JENAM2001-Abstracts

Abstracts for the Special Colloquium /
Zusammenfassungen der Beiträge

 


New Proposition for Redating of Mithraic Tauroctony Scene

Poster

Edi Bon, Milan Cirkovic
(Astronomical Observatory, Belgrade, Volgina 7, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia, Yugoslavia)
Ivana Milosavljevic (student at Belgrade University)

Considering the idea that figures in the central icon of the Mithraic religion, with scene of tauroctony (bull slaying), represent equatorial constellations in the times in which the spring equinox was in between of Taurus and Aries (Ulansey, 1989) , it was hard to explain why some equatorial constellations were not included in the Mithraic icons (constellations of Orion and Libra), when those constellations were equatorial in those times.  With simulations of skies in the times in which the spring equinox was in the constellation of Taurus, only small area of spring equinox positions allows excluding those two constellations, with all other representations of equatorial constellations included (Taurus, Canis Minor, Hidra, Crater, Corvus, Scorpio). These positions were the beginning of the ages of Taurus. But these positions of spring equinox included Gemini as equatorial constellation.

Two of the main figures in the icons of Mithaic religions were two identical figures, usually represented on the each side of the bull, wearing frigian caps and holding the torches. Their names, Cautes and Cautopates, and their looks could lead to the idea that they represent the constellation of Gemini. In that case the main icon of Mithraic religion could represent  the event that happened around 4000 BC, when the spring equinox entered the constellation of Taurus. Also, this position of equator contain Perseus as the equatorial constellation. In the work of Ulansey was presented that the god Mithras was the constellation of Perseus. In that case, all figures in the main scene would be equatorial constellations.


Milutin Milankovic (1879-1958) and his contribution to the European Astronomy

oral talk / Vortrag

Milan S. Dimitrijevic
(Astronomical Observatory,
Volgina 7, 11160 Belgrade, Yugoslavia)

Milutin Milankovic (Dalj, May 28, 1879 - Belgrade, December 12, 1958), former director of the Belgrade Astronomical observatory and vice president of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, is the most distinguished Serbian astronomer of the XX century. In honour to his scientific achievements in astronomy a crater on the far side of the Moon (coordinates +170o, +77o) was given his name at the 14th IAU General Assembly in Brighton in 1970. His name is given also to a crater on Mars (coordinates +147o, +55o) at the 15th IAU General Assembly in Sidney in 1973. In 1982 a small planet, provisorily designated 1936 GA, discovered in 1930 by M. Protic and P. Djurkovic, received its permanent name: 1605 Milankovic.

Milutin Milankovic went down in the history of science as the man who explained the phenomenon of the Ice Ages by slow changes of the Earth insolation in consequence of changes of the Earth's axis inclination and of those of the parameters of the Earth's motion round the Sun. Milankovic elucidated also the history of the Earth's climate as well as that of other planets, being in addition the author of the mathematical theory of climate and of the Earth's pole motion. His scientific results, life and activities will be discussed in this contribution.


Development of Astronomy in Serbia in the 20th Century

Poster

Milan S. Dimitrijevic
(Astronomical Observatory,
Volgina 7, 11160 Belgrade, Yugoslavia)

A short review of the developement of astronomy in Serbia from the foundation of Department of Astronomy and Meteorology in 1884 and of Belgrade Astronomical observatory in 1887 up to now is given.

Certainly the central place within the history of Serbian astronomy in 20th century has the Belgrade Astronomical observatory, his history and development, as well as the foundation and development of studies of astronomy at the Belgrade University. The particular merit for the development of astronomy in Serbia has Milan Nedeljkovic, whose contribution will be discussed. Moreover, the contribution of other astronomers as Djordje Stanojevic, the first serbian astrophysicist, Milutin Milankovic , who gave the astronomical solution to the quartenary ice ages problem and others will be considered as well as the development of Serbian Astronomical society and of amateur astronomy.


European extragalactic research 1900 - 1950

oral talk / Vortrag

H.W. Duerbeck
(WE/OBSS, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Pleinlaan 2, B-1050 Brussel)

While the theoretical foundations of modern relativistic cosmology were laid, to a large extent, by European researchers like Einstein, de Sitter, Friedmann, Lemaître, and others, observational cosmology was (and to a large extent, still is) dominated by US astronomers, working at major observatories (Lick, Mt. Wilson). >From today's viewpoint, Hubble appears to dwarfen all his - national and international - peers. However, Slipher and Fath, Shapley and Curtis carried put groundbreaking work in the US, as did Wolf, Wirtz, Lundmark, de Sitter and Oort in Europe, both observationally and by statistical analysis of data.

European extragalactic research in the first half of the 20th century will be outlined and compared with contemporary studies elsewhere. Reasons for the small impact of European research are manifold: a mixture of deliberate and accidental neglect and suppression, as well as the lack of technical and organizational infrastructure.


The Impact of New Media on 20th-Century Astronomy:
From Individual Records to Catalogs, Data Centers, Information Hubs and so-called `Virtual Observatories'

oral talk / Vortrag

André Heck
(Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory, 11 rue de l'Université,
F-67000 Strasbourg, France, heck@astro.u-strasbg.fr)

Astronomy is largely a virtual science.

Most of our knowledge of the universe is derived from photons reaching us from the outer space. And because of the finite speed of light, we do not observe the objects the way they are, but the way they were when the photons we are collecting actually left them.

What we have thus in our data files is nothing other than a huge and complex virtuality of prior stages, differenciated as a function of the distance in space and time of the various sources. Thus the job of astronomers is to work on that space-time mosaicked virtual universe in order to figure out what is exactly the real universe and to understand the place and rôle of man in it.

As a result of the huge amount of data accumulated, but also by necessity for their extensive international collaborations, astronomers have been pioneering the development of distributed resources, electronic communications and networks coupled to advanced methodologies and technologies often much before they become of common world-wide usage.

This talk will offer a few comments on the impact and changing sociology of astronomy information handling over the past century, drifting from individual measurements or records to catalogs and data centers, and moving now from information hubs to those advanced digital research facilities called `virtual observatories'.


Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory:
Its People through its Eventful History (Progress Report)

oral talk / Vortrag

André Heck
(Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory, 11 rue de l'Université,
F-67000 Strasbourg, France, heck@astro.u-strasbg.fr)

Strasbourg Observatory changed nationality several times since its foundation in the 19th century.

A progress report will be presented on a project aiming not only at tracing back all its scientific personnel from publications and available archives on both sides of the Rhine, but also at offering detailed biographies for the major figures.


 Eugen Goldstein and his Laboratory Work at the Berlin Observatory

oral talk / Vortrag

Michael Hedenus
(Oberdorfstraße 16, 69253 Heiligkreuzsteinach, Germany)

At the end of the 19th century the astronomer and director of the Berlin Observatory, Wilhelm Foerster, started an extraordinary research project: He asked the physicist Eugen Goldstein to examine the nature of electricity in space experimentally.

Eugen Goldstein (1850-1930) was one of the most deserving pioneers in the field of electricity, e.g. he discovered the canal rays and he introduced the term ``cathode ray''. He became assistent at the Berlin Observatory and his official duty was the research on relations between electricity and cosmic phenomena. As a result Goldstein successfully reproduced comet tails in gas discharge tubes.

My speech is about the biography of Eugen Goldstein and his work at the Berlin Observatory. I will discuss some of his experiments and show a reproduction of his artificial comet tails.


KARL KNORRE - FIRST ASTRONOM OF THE NIKOLAEV OBSERVATORY

Poster

G.Petrov and G.Pinigin
(Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory, Ukraine, root@mao.nikolaev.ua)

Karl Friedrich Knorre was born 28th March 1801 in family of the professor of astronomy of Dorpat university Ernst Knorre. During education in the Dorpat university he got acquantance with the future director of Pulkovo observatory Wilhelm Struve. According passion of K.Knorre for astronomy W. Struwe recommended him to the director position of planned naval observatory in Nikolaev. From the foundation of Nikolaev naval and later astronomical observatory in 1821 K.Knorre was a first director. He made star position observations with the meridian circle, worked as a teacher of astronomy for sea navigators, compiled the fifth page of star map of the Berlin Academy of sciences and headed by all hydrographic determinations on the sea of Asov and Black sea. After 50 years K.Knorre retired 1871 from the Directorship of the Nikolaev observatory and moved to Berlin. Nikolaev astronomical observatory arranges the international scientific conference devoted to the 180 anniversary of NAO and 200's birthday of Karl Friedrich Knorre in 2001.


433 Eros Opposition of 1900 and Solar Parallax Measurement

Poster

L. Pigatto, V. Zanini
(Astronomical Observatory of Padova,
Vicolo dell'Osservatorio 5,
35122 Padova, Italy)

On August 13 1898, G. Witt, of the Berlin Observatory, and independently on the same day, A. Charlois of the Nice Observatory, discovered a new asteroid, 1898 DQ, on their photographic plates. This new planet (433 Eros) was the first member of the group of Earth-approaching asteroids to be discovered. The opposition of October 30 1900 suggested the Comité International Permanent pour l'Exécution Photographique de La Cartes du Ciel to institute a special temporary Commission to plan micrometric, heliometric and photographic measurements of the positions of Eros, in order to derive the solar parallax. An executive permanent Committee was encharged with co-ordinating work and observations. 58 Astronomical Observatories, including the Italian Observatories of Arcetri, Padova and Teramo, took part in the project with visual and photographic observations. A.M. Antoniazzi, of the Padova Observatory, made 180 micrometric observations with a 19-cm Merz refractor, following the ''method of transits''; he first chose comparison stars from the Astronomische Gesellschaft Catalogue and obtained a parallax value of tex2html_wrap146. Later, he re-elaborated his measurements following the more precise positions of Hinks' standard photographic catalogue, obtaining a value of tex2html_wrap147. Antoniazzi's observations formed part of the data used by A.R. Hinks of the Cambridge Observatory, who had the task of reducing the series of different measurements.


Ernst Öpik's Fundamental Ideas on the Structure of Red Giants

oral talk / Vortrag

I.Pustylnik
(Tartu observatory, Tõravere, 61602, Estonia)

As early as in 1932 Estonian astronomer E. Öpik in his pioneering investigation indicated that the only source of stellar radiative energy capable of sustaining the observed stellar luminosities for billions of years must be the process of nuclear fusion transforming in stellar cores hydrogen into helium, carbon and so forth up to iron. He was the first to introduce in 1938 the so-called compound unmixed stellar models with stellar convective core consisting of helium and hydrogen envelope in radiative equilibrium lying on the top of it. Contrary to the universally adopted view of A. Eddington who firmly believed that rotationally induced convection would inevitably lead to full mixing up of the stellar matter, calculations of E. Öpik confirmed the viability of compound models and indicated that upon the exhaustion of hydrogen fuel the core will start contracting whereas the hydrogen envelope will expand. In this way the structural differences between the giant and main sequence stars were interpreted and in broad features stellar evolution along the H-R diagram explained (for earlier discussions see, for instance, J. Einasto and M. Jõeveer 1975, J. Einasto 1994). E. Öpik was ahead of F. Hoyle and K. Schwarzschild who reached similar conclusions only 15 years afterwards. In our report we analyze various implications of E. Öpik's research dedicated to the internal structure of red giants for the treatment of the advanced stages of stellar evolution. It took almost half a century before the priority of this discovery by the Estonian astrophysicist found a deserved recognition. We discuss the reasons behind it and summarize briefly also other fundamental accomplishments of E. Öpik from the pre-war period in Tartu observatory where he founded Tartu school of astrophysics and stellar astronomy.


The Founders of the XXth Century Stellar Photometry in Russia

oral talk / Vortrag

I.Pustylnik
(Tartu observatory, Tõravere, 61602, Estonia)
A.Mironov
(Sternberg Astron. Institute, Universitetskij prosp. 13a, 119899 Russia)

Our contribution is dedicated to two "godfathers" of astrophotometry in Russia - Vitold Karlovich Ceraski (1849-1925) and Vladimir Borisovich Nikonov (1905-1987). We discuss their scientific legacy and its impact upon the formation of the school of stellar photometry in Russia and the USSR. The graduate of Moscow University in 1871 V. Ceraski started his scientific career in the University astronomical observatory. Already at the dawn of XXth century he was universally regarded as an indisputable authority in Russian astrophotometry. Ceraski introduced essential improvements into the K.-F. Zöllner's visual polarimetric photometer. With its aid he measured in 1903-1905 the stellar magnitude of the Sun with an accuracy close to its modern value (within a 5% margin) by carefully comparing the brightness of Venus with that of the speck of the solar light reflected from the convex glass surface (during the day) and by comparing the brightness of Venus with that of the brightest stars (in the night). V. Nikonov, the graduate of Leningrad University, in 1925 embarked upon scientific investigations in the local Astronomical Institute. During these years the 13 inch reflector has been installed by Leningrad astronomers at the mountain Kanobili (Abastumani observatory, Georgia). In 1937 Nikonov constructed the first in the USSR photoelectric photometer. Experiments with it indicated that the attainable precision for tex2html_wrap_inline162 stars amounted to tex2html_wrap_inline164. It was obvious for Nikonov that with such a precision one should exercise extreme care in reduction of stellar magnitudes beyond the earth's upper atmosphere. In 1944 he elaborated a method to account for atmospheric extinction which is now universally known as Nikonov's method. Its underlying idea lies in the observations of all non-variable stars available in the program for different air masses.


H� OF THE ASTRONOMY IN THE CENTURY XX: PERSPECTIVE COSMO-PHILOSOPHICALLY OF ITS ADVANCES AND THEIR ORIGENES.

Poster

J.F. Quintano (Spain)

 

The man has for the first time been able to contemplate from the Earth space. For the first time, a cosmological theory, the big-bang, physically explains the origin of the universe. But also, for the first time, the man has seen reunited the origins of this celestial science through the paleol�thics antecedents, and just discovered in Mesopotamia. Now, the philosophy proposes through the thinking J. Habermas, an ideal community of speech. Now, astronomy proposes a model that explains the causal origins of all the created one. Of the assembly of recoveries, it excels the recovery of the old cuneiform cultures. Compared vision of assembly and between the assyriologists outstanding work like Epping, Strassmaier and Kugler, goes to der Waerden and Neugebauer, along with the work of eminent physicists and thinkers of this century.


The History of Gamma-Ray Astronomy

oral talk / Vortrag

V. Schönfelder
(Max-Planck Institut für extraterrestrische Physik,
Postfach 1312, D-85741 Garching, Germany)

An overview of the history of gamma-ray astronomy is given starting with predictions in the 1950's and first detections in the 1960's. Tremendous efforts have been made since then, with exciting discoveries, which finally culminated in the "Golden Age" of gamma-ray astronomy which we are presently experiencing.


THE DESTINY OF AN EASTERN OBSERVATORY FOLLOWS THE DRAMATIC ONE OF THIS PART OF EUROPE DURING THE 20th CENTURY

oral talk / Vortrag

Magda Stavinschi
Astronomical Institute of the Romanian Academy

Founded at the dawn of the 20th century (1908), the Astronomical Observatory of Bucharest had an evolution that followed the destiny of its country. After about half a century along which it lives the usual life of any European institution for research and education, it leaves the education after the World War II, becoming an institute of the Academy. A short period of progress is followed by an unprecedented, total isolation, even from the neighbouring countries. The fall of the communist system in the last decade of the 20th century brings new endeavours, but also a hard competition with the worldwide astronomy. What is important is that in each situation the Romanian astronomers have found the interior resources to resist and to keep the national astronomy competitive, at least as regards some of its fields. Moreover, by setting the South-Eastern Branch of the European Astronomical Society, it wishes to contribute to the finding of local solutions, with the goal of increasing the level of astronomy in countries that face the same problems, the same difficulties.


THE LAST DESCENDANT OF TYCHO BRAHE LIVES IN ROMANIA

Poster

Magda Stavinschi
Astronomical Institute of the Romanian Academy

On 24 October 1601 passed away, in the 55th year of his life, the great astronomer Tycho Brahe. Now, four centuries since his death, his last descendant is living in Romania: Lydia Baroness Løvendal-Papae. An encyclopedic culture and training as hers can rarely be found today; she also is an excellent specialist in genealogy and heraldry. She has not only the merit of studying the cosmic symbols in heraldry, but especially that of establishing the genealogical tree of the famous Danish astronomer. She also holds a genealogical record: as the last descendant of the old Danish dynasty, she descends from all European dynasties, including the founders of the Romanian countries. We shall dwell here neither upon the great personality of Tycho Brahe, nor on his role in the modern astronomy. We shall not refer to the Tycho catalogue resulted from the space mission Hipparcos. We shall dwell upon the ancient aristocratic family Brahe. The oldest firm mention goes as far back as in 1364, but there are data enough on the existence of some members of this family in the 13th century. The Brahe family was related to a no less famous family, that of the Barons Løvendal. One of the ancestors of Lydia Baroness Løvendal is the renowned Ulrik Frederik Voldemar, Baron, then Count Lovendal, marshal of France (1700-1755), whose name was assigned to one of the most important boulevards of Paris.


Evidence for Precise Calendrical Observations
in the 17th Century at the `Bruchhauser Steine',
Olsberg, Northrhine-Westphalia, Germany

Poster

B. Steinrücken
(Westfälische Volkssternwarte und Planetarium Recklinghausen, Stadtgarten 6, D-45657 Recklinghausen,
email: steinruecken@sternwarte-recklinghausen.de)

The `Bruchhauser Steine', four large rocks of volcanic origin in southern Westphalia, form perfect foresights for calendrical observations from the surrounding country. The ancient walls and embankments on the `Istenberg' with the rocks as cornerstones were built 500 BC. In the landscape are placed shrines with images of Christian saints, erected in the late 17th and the early 18th century. The positions of these shrines can be interpreted as observing sites with respect to the stones. The foresights reach several degrees to the sky, so variations in the astronomical refraction are strongly suppressed. The most impressive observing site with a shrine of 1699 (8°31'13''E, 51°18'49''N) is exactly at the position to observe the summer solstice sunrise at the topmost rock, the `Feldstein'. The solstice sun rises between two stones and grazes the Feldstein at 6:20 CEST. Today the sun is obstructed 2'-3' by the stone. Taking into account the slight variation of the obliquity of the ecliptic of 2' since 1699 the grazing procedure at the time of erection was perfect, without any obstruction of the suns disc. Similar shrines are placed at positions to observe the sunrise on May 1st in the identical manner (8°29'39''E, 51°18'41''N) and the lunar declination minimum on the meridian (8°32'44''E, 51°20'33''N). Some evidence indicates a prehistoric origin of this calendrical system.


The driving role of ESO in European Astronomy

oral talk / Vortrag

C. Sterken
(University of Brussels, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels)

The European Southern Observatory was founded in the 1960s with the aim to develop a state-of-the-art observatory in Chile and to foster the development of astronomical research and international collaboration in and among the astronomical institutes in its member states. ESO runs now one of the world's largest observatories located on two high-quality sites in Chile: the La Silla and Paranal Observatories.

This talk describes the early ESO history from the mid-1950s on and illustrates the consecutive stages of development of the Institution as an international scientific organisation running a remote observatory towards a powerhouse that brought European astronomy on a most competitive international level.


From white dwarves to black holes (70th anniversary of the theory of compact objects)

oral talk / Vortrag

A.F. Zakharov
(Institute of Theoretical and Experimental Physics, Moscow 117259, Russia)

We discuss basic ideas which were foundations of the black hole concept. The main goal of the historical part is an attempt of an explanation of the very long way of the black hole concept birth, since black hole solution was discovered by K. Schwarzschild in 1916, but black hole concept was introduced by J.A. Wheeler only in 1967. We empasize the great contribution by S. Chandrasekhar into development of this concept and contributions by Frenkel, Stoner, Landau into theory of white dwarves.


Early German Plans for a Southern Observatory

oral talk / Vortrag

Gudrun Wolfschmidt
(Institut für Geschichte der Naturwissenschaften,
Universität Hamburg, Bundesstr. 55, D-20146 Hamburg)

As early as the 18th and 19th centuries, French and English observers were active in South Africa. Around the beginning of the 20th century the Heidelberg astronomer Max Wolf (1863-1932) proposed a southern observatory. In 1907 Hermann Carl Vogel (1841-1907), director of the Astrophysical Observatory Potsdam, suggested a southern station in Spain. His ideas for building an observatory in Windhuk for photographing the sky and measuring the solar constant were taken over by the Göttingen astronomers. In 1910 Karl Schwarzschild (1873-1916), after having visited the observatories in America, pointed out the usefulness of an observatory in South West Africa, where it would have better weather than in Germany and also give access to the southern sky. Seeing tests were begun in 1910 by Potsdam astronomers, but WW I stopped the plans.

In 1928 Erwin Finlay-Freundlich (1885-1964), inspired by the Hamburg astronomer Walter Baade (1893-1960), worked out a detailed plan for a southern observatory with a reflecting telescope, spectrographs and an astrograph with an objective prism. Paul Guthnick (1879-1947), director of the Berlin observatory, in cooperation with APO Potsdam and Hamburg, made a site survey to Africa in 1929 and found the conditions in Windhuk to be ideal. Observations were started in the 1930s by Berlin and Breslau astronomers, but were stopped by WW II. In the 1950s, astronomers from Hamburg and The Netherlands renewed the discussion in the framework of European cooperation, and this led to the founding of ESO in 1963, as is well described by Blaauw (1991).


The early days of ESO as seen from a student's perspective

oral talk / Vortrag

C. Sterken
(University of Brussels (VUB), Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels, Belgium)

This talk gives a description of how the speaker got involved in his observational research while joining ESO on a staff position in 1971. Based on pictures and documents of the 1970s, changes in research methods and philosophy are illustrated and discussed.