Exploring the Realm of the Double Stars

  • Neil T. English
Part of the The Patrick Moore Practical Astronomy Series book series (PATRICKMOORE)


It is estimated that more than half of all stars are born and live out their long lives with other siblings making up so-called binary and multiple star systems. Throughout much of the 19th and all the way up to the mid-20th century, professional astronomers were very actively engaged in measuring these systems, as they demonstrated that the laws that govern the motion of the planets in our own Solar System also govern the dynamics of double and multiple star systems throughout the universe. Indeed, it was this realization that led astronomers to confidently proclaim that the laws of Newtonian gravitation operate in precisely the same way throughout the cosmos, giving scientists confidence that what they see and study in the far distant universe can be readily understood in terms of what they had learned in studying the motion of the planetary bodies within our own Solar System!

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neil T. English
    • 1
  1. 1.Fintry, GlasgowUK

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