Four centuries ago, Galileo trained a small telescope on a wandering star to discover it was not just a twinkling point of light but another world. Astronomers around the world are marking the anniversary with the International Year of Astronomy 2009.
Galileo’s discovery literally turned the world of astronomical thought upside down. Today, there’s a tiny space telescope that is changing our understanding of the cosmos – one that was designed and built right here at UBC. Dr. Jaymie Matthews shares discoveries made by the MOST satellite, Canada’s first space telescope, which is not much bigger than Galileo’s original telescope but capable of measurements beyond the abilities of almost every other observatory in the world.
Like Galileo, MOST is also turning photons of light into fully realised perceptions of worlds – in this case, around stars other than the Sun. Dr. Matthews will consider what historians may say four centuries from now as they look back at our time and the revolution in cosmic view that is currently underway.