From the June 2011 issue

Astronomy’s favorite equations

Be they useful, powerful, or beautiful, these relationships represent a few of the staff's favorite things about science.
By | Published: June 27, 2011 | Last updated on May 18, 2023

I took pains to specify in “What happened to science education?” that simply knowing an equation doesn’t imply knowledge of science as a whole. Science is more than just such simple facts to learn — it’s a process, a way of life. But that doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate such facts, or realize that we have favorite ideas, favorite relationships, or even favorite equations. Based on an ironically unscientific polling of Astronomy’s staff, these are our most cherished mathematical relationships: