video record
Media not available in the Digital Archive
The programme concentrates on a number of methods of measuring distances in the Earth-Moon system. It starts by showing a version of Eratothenes' experiment for measuring the Earth's radius. With t...he data from this experiment combined with data from a simultaneous experiment at a site due north of it; Steve Swithenby explains the method for calculating the Earth's radius, though the final calculation is left to the student to perform. The argument develops to measuring the radius of the Moon. Animation is used to show that light from the sun cannot strictly be regarded as parallel and that this introduces an error into a technique previously introduced to students. With the help of a model, indication is given of how this error can be accounted for. Keith Hodgkinson then gives some tips on performing the home experiment to measure the distance to the Moon and then concludes the programme by giving a brief account of the modern technique of laser ranging.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: S102, Science: a foundation course
Item code: S102; 02
First transmission date: 14-02-1988
Published: 1988
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:25:00
+ Show more...
Producer: Tony Jolly
Contributors: Keith Hodgkinson; Steve Swithenby
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Eratosthenes experiment; Laser ranging
Subject terms: Earth; Lunar bases; Moon
Master spool number: HOU5645
Production number: FOUS452A
Videofinder number: 1153
Available to public: no