Sunday, December 24, 2017

Tychonic System -- A Conceptual Bridge Between Geo-Centrism And Helio-Centrism

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portrait-of-tycho-brahe
A portrait of Tycho Brahe
Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Once upon a time; a long forgotten Danish Astronomer, Astrologer, Alchemist, and a well known Writer Tycho Brahe established a theoretical model of the solar system known to us nowadays as Tychonic System or Tychonian Model Of The Solar System which basically combined or unified the mathematical benefits of the Copernican System (Heliocentrism) with the philosophical benefits of Aristotelian-Ptolemaic System (Geocentrism).



What Is Tychonic System?

The Tychonic System is a theoretical model of the solar system hypothesize that earth is the center of the universe; the sun, moon, and the stars revolve around the earth; and other planets within our solar system revolves around the sun. Tychonic System is sometimes also referred as the Geo-Helio-Centric System; because it inherits the combination of both.

representation-of-tychonic-system
17th-century demonstration of Tychonic system where sun, moon, and stars orbit around the earth and other planets orbiting around the sun
Credit: Wikimedia Commons
In simple terms, it is a model of the Solar System which retains the ancient Aristotelian-Ptolemaic Idea that earth is fixed as the center of the universe, where sun and the moon revolve around the earth; on the other hand, retains the modern concept of the Copernican Idea that all the other planets within our solar system revolves around the sun. This theoretical model is known as the Tychonic system; named after Danish Astronomer, Astrologer, Alchemist, and a Writer Tycho Brahe who proposed this law around the 1570s.



Advocates And Admirerer Of Tychonic System

Well, if we go down the history of the Astronomical Timeline, in the 4th Century BC, it was a Greek Philosopher and Astronomer Heraclides Ponticus who first proposed a similar model to Tychonic Model Of The Solar System; where he proposed that at least Mercury and Venus revolves around the Sun. Later after Heraclides, in 4th century AD a Roman Astronomer Macrobius Theodosius also proposed a similar model to the Tychonic System.



Capellan Geo-Helio Centric Model
Naboth's representation of Martianus Capella's geo-heliocentric astronomical model (1573)
Credit: Wikimedia Commons

according to the written scriptures, the Tychonic Model has been inspired by the two German Astronomer and Mathematician Valentin Naboth and Paul Wittich whose Capellan Geo-Helio Centric Model theorized that the inner planets (Mercury and Venus) indeed revolve around the sun; but the outer planets (Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn) orbits around the Earth. Almost a century before the Tycho Model, an Indian Mathematician, and Astronomer Nilakantha Somayaji of the Kerala School Of Astronomy And Mathematics proposed the Geo-Helio-Centric Model Of The Solar System in which all the planets (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn) revolve around the Sun except the Earth.



Historical View And Development

Well, in some sense; Tycho Brahe, Nicolaus Copernicus, and Johannes Kepler were contemporary to each other. Brahe was a philosophical man; that was the reason he retained the philosophical view of Aristolean-Ptolemaic Geocentric system where the earth was fixed at the center i.e earth is immobile (motionless) and the sun and moon revolve around the earth. On the other hand, Tycho Brahe admired the work of Nicolas Copernicus; so in order to make his system (Tychonic System) mathematically correct, he retained the view from the Copernicus Heliocentrism that the rest of planets (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn) indeed revolve around the sun; making his model (Tychonic model of solar system) a Geo-Helio-Centric Model of the solar system.



Aristolean-Ptolemaic-Geocentric-System
A 1524 representation of Aristolean-Ptolemaic Geocentric universe
Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Though Tycho Brahe admired the work of Nicolas Copernicus, yet he had some ideological difference regarding physics, astronomical observations of stars; as Brahe wrote,
This innovation expertly and completely circumvents all that is superfluous or discordant in the system of Ptolemy. On no point does it offend the principle of mathematics. Yet it ascribes to the Earth, that hulking, lazy body, unfit for motion, a motion as quick as that of the aethereal torches, and a triple motion at that.
Source: Owen Gingerich, The eye of heaven: Ptolemy, Copernicus, Kepler, New York: American Institute of Physics, 1993, 181 


Copernican-Heliocentrism
Copernicus heliocentric model
Credit: Wikimedia Commons



Tycho was disturbed by the facts regarding the physics (physical motion) given by Nicolas Copernicus; therefore he held the notion that earth is too heavy and inactive to be continuously moving. As per the prevailing Aristolean-Ptolemaic Universe of that time; the heavens and stars were made up of Aether or in modern day word "Quintessence"-- a substance so light on one hand and so strong on other; responsible for the natural circular motion of stars and heaven. A substance not found on earth making earth immobile or lazy to be moved.

As regarding astronomical observations of stars given by Copernicus, Tycho Brahe theorized that if planet earth orbited around the sun (as in helio-centric model); then there had to be an observable Stellar Parallax (the apparent shift of the position of an object against the background of the distant object) over a period of six months, that there had to be a change in the angular orientation of the given star because of the motion of earth. After the death of Tycho Brahe, his assistant Johannes Kepler used his observation and fused it with the Copernican Model; and derived his Kepler's Law Of Planetary Motion.




Rise And Demise Of Tychonic System

After the theoretical explanation given by the Tycho Brahe for his Tychonic system; it became the major competitor with the existing Copernican Heliocentrism because Tychonic Universe commenced the idea of Aristolean-Plotemic model (Geo-Centrism) as well as the idea of the Copernican Model (helio-Centrism) into a Unified Model Of Solar System i.e Tychonic Model Of Universe (Geo-Helio-Centrism) providing a conceptual bridge between Geo-Centrism and Helio-Centrism. In the view of Tycho Brahe-- the Tychonic system neither violated the laws of physics (Mathematical View) nor the sacred scriptures (Philosophical View).



The Tychonic System was more influential than the Copernican System in the late 16th and 17th century due to being philosophically more intuitive than the Copernican System. Brahe's Cosmological System remained the center of the astronomy until the discovery of Stellar Parallax in 1838 by a German Astronomer and Physicist Friedrich Bessel.


The observation of stellar parallax proved the fact that the earth did, in fact, revolve around the sun and became the only reason for the downfall or demise of the Tycho Brahe's Tychonic System Of The Universe from the heart of the Astronomical world.


That’s it for this Article — hope you like the way I tried to explain the Tychonic System. Please share it if you like, like it if you share

 Don’t Believe It As I Said Till You Yourself Believe It First – Gautama Buddha
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1 comment:

  1. You say " The Tychonic System was more influential than the Copernican System in the late 16th and 17th century due to being philosophically more intuitive than the Copernican System. Brahe's Cosmological System remained the center of the astronomy until the discovery of Stellar Parallax in 1838 by a German Astronomer and Physicist Friedrich Bessel." The second sentence implies that the Tychonic system dominated up until 1838, which is nonsense. Most of European astronomy was decidedly Copernican from 1700 onwards, and certainly just about 100% by 1775 onwards.

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