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In This Month - March 2018

William & Caroline Herschel polishing a telescope lens, A. Diethe C1896 Wellcome Collection.

13 March 1781

Uranus discovered by Sir William Herschel. It expanded the known boundaries of the solar system becoming the first planet to be discovered with a telescope.

Dr Lucy Gullett at her graduation from Sydney University

28 March 1917

Dr Lucy Gullett (Pictured right) & her sister, Minnie, joined the BAA NSW Branch (now Sydney City Skywatchers). Dr Gullett was one of the first female medical doctors and served in WW1.

28 March 1949

Fred Hoyle first uses the term “Big Bang” on BBC radio’s Third Programme. He was not a proponent of the Big Bang, instead formulating the Steady State Theory. He died in 2001 never accepting the Big Bang Theory.

31 March 2005

Dwarf planet Makemake discovered. Its name derives from the mythology of the Rapa Nui people of Easter Island. It has a diameter approximately two-thirds that of Pluto and has one known satellite.


16 March 1750

Caroline Herschel born. German astronomer and sister of Sir William Herschel. She was the first woman:

  • To discover a comet, Comet C/1786 P1 (Herschel)

  • To be officially recognized in a scientific position

  • To receive honorary me

mbership into the Royal Astronomical Society

18 March 1836

Henry Chamberlain Russell born. Australian astronomer and meteorologist. He was the Government Astronomer from 1870-1907. The Russell Room at Sydney Observatory is named after him.

14 March 1879

Albert Einstein born. We all know E=mc2 ! His theories of general and special relativity endure.

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