P is for Cecilia Payne – Astronomer
Dr. Cecilia Payne (1900 – 1979) helped us understand the composition and temperature of stars through the study of the spectra of starlight.
Through her research, Dr. Payne showed that it was possible to determine the actual temperature of stars based upon their spectral class, which is determined by the apparent color of the star’s light and the pattern of absorption lines throughout its color spectrum.
Her research further showed that hydrogen was the most abundant element in stars and in fact the most abundant element in the universe.
You can learn more about Cecilia Payne here.
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