Eclipse’s Contribution to Science Today

If in the past eclipses were called because of the actions of the gods, then the astronomical event will provide some scientific discoveries

JAKARTA – In the history of space, eclipses, both solar and lunar, both have made a real contribution to the development of science today. Previously, in the past, all civilizations in the world considered eclipses to be the work of the gods and would bring harm.

LAPAN Space Science Center researcher, MZ Nurzaman in his writing on the site Science and Space Education explained, a Greek lyric poet, Archilochus said that eclipses were the actions of the god Zeus who had changed the light during the day to dark at night.

According to him, Zeus had hidden the light from the sun and caused fear for the men. The statement of Archilochus refers to the event of a total solar eclipse and is the first event recorded in history.

Meanwhile, the ancient Egyptian civilization described the sun as the god Ra, who was called the highest god in their culture. When a solar eclipse occurs, people believe disaster will come soon because they can no longer see the god (sun) from their eyes.

However, according to Nurzaman, eclipses make a real contribution to human civilization. There are several important discoveries in science that have come from observing eclipses so far.

“The eclipse phenomenon has brought human civilization from being just a sign to a sense of awe and giving influence to the development of knowledge for humans,” he wrote.

In the record, the science that comes from observing eclipses was first observed at the time of the solar eclipse in 1868. At that time, a scientist from France, Janssen observed the presence of the element Helium which was observed from the light spectrum.

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In today’s modern era, the largest use of Helium is to cool superconducting magnets. Superconducting magnets are electromagnets made of coils of superconducting wire. They must be refrigerated during use to cryogenic temperatures.

Under these conditions the superconducting wire has no electrical resistance and therefore can conduct much larger electric currents than ordinary wire, thus creating a strong magnetic field.

Today, superconducting magnets are commonly used in MRI machines in hospitals. Also in other scientific equipment such as NMR spectrometers, mass spectrometers, fusion reactors and particle accelerators. They are also used for levitation, propulsion in rail systems magnetic levitation (maglev) in Japan.

Meanwhile, the next discovery is the proof of Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity. In the film Einstein and Eddington, Eddington observed how he observed a solar eclipse to prove Einstein’s theory of general relativity, which was carried out in 1919.

In short, if Einstein’s general theory of relativity is correct, then the stars around the sun’s disk during an eclipse will appear to have shifted from their actual position. And this was successfully observed by Eddington. This is where the role of Einstein’s general relativity is the theory of gravity that is generally accepted in every gravitational phenomenon both on earth and in outer space.

The last of the contributions due to eclipse events is the discovery of the coronal mass ejection or CME. The CME was first observed during a total solar eclipse in 1971 by Tousey of the Noval Research Laboratory. Initially certain parts of the sun’s image appeared to be more luminous than their surroundings and were considered an instrument failure by technicians.

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But the next image is the more luminous part moving away from the sun. The technician found it strange and reported it to Tousey and now it is known that the phenomenon is CME. Knowledge of CME is very necessary, especially in the current era where all technology on earth relies heavily on satellite technology.

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