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5 January: Remembering Julio Garavito on Birth Anniversary

5 January: Remembering Julio Garavito on Birth Anniversary

Julio Garavito Armero (5 January 1865 – 11 March 1920) was a Colombian mathematician and astronomer. He is best known for his work on the three-body problem, a mathematical problem in physics that involves trying to predict the movement of three celestial objects, such as planets or asteroids, under the influence of their mutual gravitational attraction. Garavito made significant contributions to the understanding of the problem and is considered one of the pioneers of modern celestial mechanics.

Life and Career

Julio Garavito Armero was born in Colombia on 5 January 1865. He received his early education in Bogotá, and later studied mathematics and physics at the National University of Colombia. After completing his studies, he began working as a mathematics professor at the National University, where he taught for many years.

Garavito’s work on the three-body problem began in the 1890s, and he made significant contributions to the understanding of the problem. He developed a method for approximating the solution to the problem, which was later named the “Garavito method.” He also wrote several papers on the topic, which were published in scientific journals and helped to establish him as an authority on celestial mechanics.

In addition to his work on the three-body problem, Garavito was also involved in the study of meteorology and geophysics. He served as director of the National Observatory of Colombia and was a member of several scientific societies, including the Colombian Academy of Sciences and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.

Garavito died on 11 March 1920 at the age of 56.

Award and Legacy

He is remembered as an important figure in the history of mathematics and astronomy, and his contributions to the understanding of the three-body problem continue to be recognized and studied today.

he is remembered as an important figure in the history of mathematics and astronomy, and his contributions to the understanding of the three-body problem have had a lasting impact on the field.

Garavito’s work on the three-body problem helped to establish him as an authority on celestial mechanics, and his method for approximating the solution to the problem, known as the “Garavito method,” is still studied and used by researchers today. His papers on the topic were widely read and influenced the work of other scientists in the field.

In addition to his work on the three-body problem, Garavito also made significant contributions to the study of meteorology and geophysics. He served as director of the National Observatory of Colombia and was a member of several scientific societies, including the Colombian Academy of Sciences and the Astronomical Society of the Pacific.

Garavito’s legacy as a mathematician and astronomer continues to be recognized and celebrated in Colombia and around the world. He is remembered as an important figure in the history of science and his contributions to the understanding of celestial mechanics are still highly regarded today.

A crater on the Moon’s far side is named Garavito after him. The Colombian School of Engineering “Julio Garavito”, created in 1972, is also named after him. It emphasizes the development of applied sciences and engineering.

His face appears on the 20,000 Colombian peso bill, with the Moon on the same side of the bill, and the Earth as viewed from the Moon’s surface on the other side. Because of this, and the blue color of the bill, there is a local folk superstition that bringing offerings of blue candles and blue flowers to his grave in the Central Cemetery of Bogotá and praying there can help one to become wealthy.

On 5 January 2022, Google Doodle celebrated Julio Garavito’s 157th birthday.

OV Digital Desk

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