Cosmos: Pickerings Computers from “Sisters of the Sun”

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The “Sisters of the Sun” episode of Cosmos featured stories about female scientists who helped us understand the composition and classification of stars.

Here’s a snippet to whet your interest.

The two women scientists are Cecilia Payne and Annie Jump Cannon. They are given voice in the full section of the episode by Kirsten Dunst and Marlee Matlin.

According to Wikipedia,

Cecilia Helena Payne-Gaposchkin was a British-American astronomer and astrophysicist who, in 1925, proposed in her Ph.D. thesis an explanation for the composition of stars in terms of the relative abundances of hydrogen and helium.

. . .

Annie Jump Cannon was an American astronomer whose cataloging work was instrumental in the development of contemporary stellar classification.

Neil deGrasse Tyson’s delivery is so nonjudgemental on this series, but those raised eyebrows when he says, “Wonder why,” do speak loudly.

In case you have not been watching this marvelous series, you can see past episodes on cosmosontv.com.

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