Edward Arthur Milne

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Kingston upon Hull,
Birth Sign
Kingston upon Hull,

Edward Arthur Milne was an astrophysicist and mathematician from England who is best known for inventing the idea of kinematic relativity. Despite the fact that his theory was received with much hostility, it had a huge impact on the scientific community, causing them to reassess old beliefs and lead to new approaches to fundamental concepts such as space and time. He was diminutive in stature, yet he possessed incredible talent and was a continual source of inspiration for others. His early studies focused on the Earth’s and Sun’s atmospheres, as well as the interior physics of stars and the hypothesis of limb darkening. He was also a talented mathematician who contributed greatly to the armed forces throughout both world wars. He was essential in the formulation of what is now known as Milne’s integral equation, an integral equation of great mathematical relevance. He wrote on a wide range of topics, from science philosophy and mathematics to physics and astronomy. He possessed the humility and simplicity of temperament that is typically associated with scientific genius, as well as the audacity and dignity to face personal adversity. His life was a monument to scientific investigation, and he provided the groundwork for further in-depth study of cosmological patterns and other aspects of astronomy through his thoughts and principles.

Childhood and Adolescence

was born on February 14, 1896, in Hull, Yorkshire, England, to headmaster Sidney Arthur Milne and teacher Edith Cockcroft. With two younger brothers, he was the family’s oldest kid.

Hymers College in Hull, England, was where he acquired his early schooling. In 1914, he was awarded an open scholarship at Trinity College, Cambridge University, to study mathematics and natural science.

He received the highest number of points in the exam’s history. He was inspired by Chapman and Hardy while studying at Cambridge for a year and a half.

World War I interrupted his schooling at Cambridge. Despite being ruled unfit for military service due to his poor eyesight, he was assigned to a team working on ballistics at the Munitions Inventions Department’s Anti-Aircraft Section in 1916.

A Career of Edward Arthur Milne

He joined the Royal Navy Volunteer Reserve as a Lieutenant in 1917.
He was the assistant director of the Trinity College solar physics observatory from 1919 to 1924. It was here that he concentrated his efforts on creating a starry atmosphere.

He was also a mathematics lecturer (1924–1925) and a university lecturer in astrophysics (1922–1925) at Trinity College while working at the observatory. In 1923, he worked with R.H.Fowler on a project to investigate absorption lines in star spectra.

He was a professor of applied mathematics at Manchester’s Victoria University from 1925 until 1928. He continued his study on radiative equilibrium and the structure of star atmospheres while in Manchester.

He became a Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford in 1929, and he retained that position until his death in 1950. Later in life, he became interested in cosmic patterns and their ramifications.

During WWII, he worked on ballistics once more. He did research on armor-piercing weapons and projectile stability. From 1943 to 1945, he was the president of the Royal Astronomical Society.

‘Thermodynamics of the Stars’ (1930), ‘The White Dwarf Stars’ (1932), ‘Relativity, Gravitation, and World-Structure’ (1935), and ‘Kinematic Relativity’ are some of his published works (1948).

Major Projects of Edward Arthur Milne

His role as a member of a highly trained group of mathematicians during World War I was one of his most significant accomplishments. He was a key figure in the creation of a system that allowed anti-aircraft and naval guns to target Zeppelin bombers with pinpoint accuracy.

His collaboration with R.H. Fowler on radiative equilibrium and stellar atmosphere theory resulted in the determination of spectral class temperatures and pressures, the theory of limb darkening, and a better comprehension of line profiles in stellar spectra.

The creation of kinematic relativity in relation to cosmology was one of his most notable works. His cosmos was expanding, but it was nonrelativistic and utilised Euclidean space.

Although his contemporaries were originally skeptical of his hypothesis, it contributed to the sharpening of popular concepts about space-time and paved the way for future study by others.

Achievements & Awards

Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire was bestowed upon him in 1918.
For his essay on the darkening of the limb of a star disk, he received the coveted Smith’s Prize in 1922.

He was awarded the Royal Astronomical Society Gold Medal in 1935.
The Royal Society awarded him the Royal Medal in 1941.

He was awarded the prestigious Bruce Medal, one of the greatest distinctions in the area of astronomy, in 1945. The Astronomical Society of the Pacific gave it to him in recognition of his remarkable lifetime achievements to astronomy.

Milne, a massive lunar crater on the far side of the Moon in the southern hemisphere, is named after him.
In 1971, an asteroid named ‘11767 Milne’ was found and named after him.

Personal History and Legacy

He married Margaret Campbell in 1928. They are the proud parents of two daughters and a son. Margaret died tragically at the birth of their son.

He married for the second time in 1940, to Beatrice Brevoort Renwick. They had a daughter, Beatrice, but she died in 1945 as well.
He died of a heart attack on September 21, 1950, while preparing to give a series of lectures in Dublin, Ireland, at the age of 54.

Estimated Net Worth

Estimated net worth of Edward Arthur Milne is unknown.