This research network is part of the project 'Bridging Across Disciplines: Medieval Visions of Modern Science', funded by the British Academy as part of the Rising Star Public Engagement award. It is linked to the more ambitious APEX project, 'Before and After Halley: Medieval Visions of Modern Science' funded by the Leverhulme Trust, Royal Society, British Academy and Royal Academy of Engineering in support of outstanding interdisciplinary research and collaboration across disciplines, with a particular emphasis on the boundary between science and the humanities.
The project ‘Before and After Halley: Medieval Visions of Modern Science’, led by Dr Marilina Cesario from Queen’s University Belfast in collaboration with astrophysicist Dr Pedro Lacerda, renegotiates the meaning and importance of medieval science and demonstrates how medieval records of comets can help test the theory of the existence of the elusive Planet 9. This ground-breaking project, for the first time, looks at celestial occurrences, as they appear in English, Irish, Western European and Russian Chronicles from the 9th to the 12th centuries from a fresh perspective, by relying on up-to-date scientific tools in an attempt to demonstrate the importance of astronomy and scientific thought in early medieval Europe. This project is also motivated by a strong scientific goal: to test the theory that our solar system includes an additional, undiscovered planet. In the past year or two, analysis of orbits of small bodies in the outer solar system has led to speculation that a distant planet, twice the mass of Neptune and twenty times more distant, may await discovery.
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