The Solar System of the Olden Days

These days, we’re used to pin-sharp images of the edge of the universe and we take for granted that we can see distant stars as disks – which used to be a tenet of astronomy that this did not happen.

As a child I was enthralled by my dad’s 1974 Mitchell Beazley Concise Atlas of the Universe and I’ve preserved it against the ravages of time and not giving a toss. This is space before Hubble, before Voyager and only just after Pioneer, a time when colour photographs of space were art in themselves.

As a tribute to when space was a lot more mysterious than it is now, I now reproduce some of these pictures for your delectation.

First up, Mars:


And the outer planets:

The top one is Uranus, the second Neptune. This book uses only Clyde Tombaugh’s original 1930 photograph of Pluto – ie it’s a pinprick of light.

The advances we’ve made in capturing some of the wonders of the universe are immense. This should be a golden era for inspiring youngsters into the study of physics…

About Kevin Donnelly

I'm also known as Lawrence George, which is the name I write for Helium under. I think I ought to ditch my pseudonyms before I forget which one is me.
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1 Response to The Solar System of the Olden Days

  1. Pingback: Wife of Clyde Tombaugh Dies at 99 | David Reneke | Space and Astronomy News

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