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The Cosmic Mystery Tour$
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Nicholas Mee

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198831860

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198831860.001.0001

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Diamonds in the Sky!

Diamonds in the Sky!

(p.101) Diamonds in the Sky!
The Cosmic Mystery Tour

Nicholas Mee

Oxford University Press

After consuming their nuclear fuel, most stars lose their outer envelopes and all that remains is the collapsed core of the star, an object known as a white dwarf. Ever since Galileo pointed a telescope at the night sky, each advance in telescope making has resulted in sensational discoveries. Alvan Clark & Sons ground some of the biggest telescope lenses ever made. Alvan Graham Clark discovered Sirius B while testing one of these lenses. Eddington deduced that Sirius B has a size similar to that of the Earth, but with the mass of the Sun, and was an example of a new class of stars—white dwarfs. The easiest white dwarf to see with a telescope orbits the star Keid. In Star Trek, the planet Vulcan orbits the star Keid A.

Keywords:   Sirius B, Star Trek, white dwarf, Eddington, Alvan Clark & Sons, Galileo

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