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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index B > Walter Baade Quotes

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Walter Baade
(24 Mar 1893 - 25 Jun 1960)

German-American astronomer who, with Fritz Zwicky, proposed that supernovae could produce cosmic rays and neutron stars (1934). Baade made extensive studies of the Crab Nebula and its central star. He also determined there were two kinds of Cepheid variable stars, resulting in a new estimation of the size of the universe.


Science Quotes by Walter Baade (1 quote)

[Asteroids are] the vermin of the skies.
— Walter Baade
Asteroids used to be an irritation because they distracted from, or obscured, objects of interest on astronomical photographs. The nickname, used as late as the 1970s-1980s, fell out of use as asteroids themselves were closely studied. As quoted in Fred L. Whipple, Earth, Moon, and Planets (1968), 43.
Science quotes on:  |  Asteroid (16)  |  Vermin (3)



Quotes by others about Walter Baade (2)

Dr. Walter Baade of Mount Wilson Observatory facetiously accused the present generation of Milky Way astronomers of not having looked sufficiently far beyond our “local swimming hole”.
At then-recent symposium of the American Astronomical Society, as stated in Leaflet The Cemter of the Galaxy (1948), No. 230, 254.
Science quotes on:  |  Accuse (4)  |  Astronomer (94)  |  Beyond (308)  |  Facetious (2)  |  Generation (242)  |  Hole (16)  |  Local (19)  |  Look (582)  |  Milky Way (26)  |  Mount (42)  |  Mount Wilson (2)  |  Observatory (15)  |  Present (620)  |  Swimming (19)  |  Way (1216)

[Walter] Baade, like all scientists of substance, had a set view of how things were put together, to be sure a view to be always challenged by the scientist himself, but defended as well against all less informed mortals who objected without simon-pure reasons.
From Owen Gingerich in Physics Today (1994), 47, No.12, 34-40. As quoted and cited in Donald Lynden-Bell and Franηois Schweizer, 'Allan Rex Sandage: 18 June 1926—13 November 2010', Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society (2012), Vol. 58, 251.
Science quotes on:  |  Against (332)  |  All (4107)  |  Biography (242)  |  Challenge (85)  |  Defend (30)  |  Himself (461)  |  Inform (47)  |  Informed (5)  |  Mortal (54)  |  Object (422)  |  Pure (292)  |  Reason (744)  |  Scientist (825)  |  Set (394)  |  Substance (248)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Together (387)  |  View (488)


See also:
  • 24 Mar - short biography, births, deaths and events on date of Baade's birth.
  • Walter Baade: A Life in Astrophysics, by Donald E. Osterbrock. - book suggestion.

Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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