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Scientific literacy questions - Essay Example

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Scientific literacy questions

Kepler developed the laws of planetary motion in 1605 CE. The laws state that the orbit of every planet is an ellipse around the Sun. In 1610 CE, Galileo published the first scientific treatise based on observations made through a telescope. When he publicly supported heliocentrism, he met with clerical opposition from the Roman Catholic Church. Galileo was warned to abandon his support for a Sun-centered cosmology, but. he later defended his views, he was tried by the Inquisition, forced to recant and spend the rest of his life under house arrest. Today, we accept that neither the sun nor the earth is the center of the Universe. The motivations of empiricists vary with the gestalt of their time. The earliest astronomers were in fact astrologers. People believed divination of the future was possible from the study of the motions of heavenly bodies. Philosophers have often viewed astrophysics as a corporeal method of simply understanding physical reality and our place in the cosmos. Physical scientists sought answers to pressing questions based interpretations of observable data. This path from subjective to objective knowledge raises an interesting question for our egos.
In 1961, Frank Drake formulated a method of estimating the likelihood of extraterrestrial life (PBS). The Drake equation states N = R* fp ne fℓ fi fc L; where, N is the number of civilizations in our galaxy, with which communication might be possible, and:
Current estimates of the values of the variables follow. Where, R* = 7/year, fp = 0.5, ne = 2, fl = 0.33, fi = 0.01, fc = 0.01, and L = 10,000 years; N = 7 × 0.5 × 2 × 0.33 × 0.01 × 0.01 × 10,000 = 2.1. Thus, two communicative civilizations probably exist in our galaxy at any given time, on average. Furthermore, there may be up to two hundred more that are not trying to communicate, and there are billions of galaxies like ours. Based on this reasoning, it seems fallacious to believe we are perfectly unique in ...Show more


It is not, however, so difficult to see how human tendencies have hampered the growth of understanding through the scientific enterprise. A brief history of some major developments in physics…
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Scientific literacy questions essay example
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