Carl Sagan – bringing science to the people!

Dearest friends,

we have reached Sunday and here is your weekly quote about science:

“We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology.”

– Carl Sagan (American astronomer, astrophysicist and science communicator)

Carl Sagan with the Viking lander. By JPL [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Carl Sagan with the Viking lander (image credit: JPL)

 Carl Sagan’s work ranges from investigations into surface temperatures on Venus to the possibility of extraterrestrial life. He showed for example that radiation can induce the formation of amino acids from basic chemicals under the right conditions. He published an enormous amount of peer-reviewed papers (600) and books (20) and run the famous and award-winning TV-series Cosmos in the 1980ies, for which he also had to endure much ridicule from his fellow scientists. Few people have in modern American history done more to educate and engage the American people in science.

He was a professor at Cornell University and worked many years at the Smithsonian Institute.  Carl Sagan died in 1996, only 62 years old.

His catch-phrase:

“Billions upon billions…”

…something he often repeated in the Cosmos series:

“A galaxy is composed of gas and dust and stars—billions upon billions of stars.”

His use of this phrase finally become a measure of expressing a large number of just about anything and found its way into the common language of many Americans in the 1980ies.

Science Safely!

Dr. Anna of The Imaginarium

...really admires Carl Sagan.

…Admires Carl Sagan.

Posted in Astronomy, Science History, Scientists and tagged , , .


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