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Kepler, Gauss and Orbits Presentation

Kepler, Gauss and Orbits Presentation

The final project is a joint effort between Gary Bengier and Mitchell Oster. We shall attempt to explain a bit about celestial mechanics. Specifically, we will begin with the very basics— —orbits as ellipses —the main parameters that define an ellipse —Kepler’s laws, and how they relate planetary motion to elliptical orbits —how the mathematician Gauss predicted the location of the asteroid Ceres in 1801 (thereby becoming world famous), and the techniques that he used —how astrophysicists can predict the orbits of bodies in space, based upon only a few measurements (2-3 observations of position at specific times) We will use a few “hands-on” mathematical models that you can manipulate to see at the least the basics of how this works in practice.

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