Michell, Laplace and the origin of the black hole concept

Montgomery, Colin, Orchiston, Wayne, and Whittingham, Ian (2009) Michell, Laplace and the origin of the black hole concept. Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, 12 (2). pp. 90-96.

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Abstract

Black holes are fundamental to our understanding of modern astrophysics, yet the origin of this concept can be traced back to the writings of England’s John Michell and France’s Pierre-Simon Laplace in 1784 and 1796 respectively. Both independently postulated the existence of “non-luminous bodies”, and while Michell used graphical methods to explain his concept, Laplace published a mathematical ‘proof’ in 1799.

Item ID: 9892
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: Michell; Laplace; black holes; missing mass; dark matter
Additional Information:

Reproduced with permission from Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage.

ISSN: 1440-2807
Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2010 01:56
FoR Codes: 02 PHYSICAL SCIENCES > 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences > 020199 Astronomical and Space Sciences not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970102 Expanding Knowledge in the Physical Sciences @ 100%
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