Ethan Siegel’s article, “The Scientific Failure of the Original Elegant Universe,” talks about how Kepler came about to bring forth his three laws of planetary motion. Siegel discusses how Kepler had developed an idea, but it did not succeed and found himself having to abandon his hypothesis. Siegel expresses his admiration towards Kepler for allowing himself to open “to whatever the data [showed], and be willing to follow it, no matter where it leads.” Kepler being open to what the data showed helped him develop his three laws; “that planets move in ellipses around the Sun, that they sweep out equal areas in equal times, and that the ratio of the squares of the orbital period to the cube of the semi-major axis are a constant for any central mass. ”

In connection to the class, this article relates because we covered Kepler’s laws, but mostly the second and third law in our lecture tutorials.

As you can see by the image above, the lecture tutorial uses the picture to help represent Kepler’s second law, equal areas in equal times, because in the tutorial it says “note that the time between each position shown is exactly one month.”

Now in the lecture tutorial to cover Kepler’s third law they used a table to show that there is no relationship between the mass of a planet with the orbital period (i.e. Mars and Saturn).

Overall, I think it was interesting to read about Kepler’s original idea and how he had to have an open mind to come up with his laws of planetary motion. Learning about Kepler’s laws has given me a better understanding of how planets move in our universe and what relationships do exist when is comes to planets motion.