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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Is Astronomy 'Useless'?


Jocelyn Bell Burnell, DBE, responds to several common criticisms of high-level scientific research. Regarding the argument that astronomical research is impractical, Burnell contends that fields like astronomy attract young minds to science. The full video is available from FORA.TV.

1 comment:

Quantum_Flux said...

predicting solar storms is helpful in protecting our satellites, averting asteroid collisions is a result of astronomy, mining the planets, the asteroids and the moon perhaps someday. The ancients used astronomy for time-keeping and cultivating crops, for navigation on the open seas. It certainly is being used in the search for other intelligent life forms. I'd venture to say there is a wealth of information about fusion energy from star astronomy, and I'd venture to say that chemistry is being advanced through knowledge of the atmospheres of other planets. Maybe a ton of stuff is being learned about magnetic fields and streamcurrents of ionized gas. Astronomy has lead to our ability to put satellites into orbit, thanks to Isaac Newton's work....