the tower of Eratosthenes

Contrary to popular belief, no explorer or scientist in the days of Christopher Columbus thought the earth was flat. In fact, people in ancient times knew that the earth was round from watching ships come over the horizon, studying the motion of stars, observing lunar and solar eclipses, and contemplating shadows cast by the sun.

Ancient people not only knew the shape of the earth but also could measure the diameter and axial tilt of the earth with surprising accuracy. Eratosthenes, born in 276 BCE, discovered a way to measure the circumference of the earth. In this chapter, you’ll use LEGO parts and some simple tools to re-create the tower Eratosthenes used to make his measurement. Then you’ll learn how to calculate ...

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