134. The sound of the solar system? Kepler: Harmony of the World

An extraordinary, ambitious, blend of art and science, Johanes Kepler’s Harmony of the World is a 17th century attempt to understand what the then known universe sounded like – on a planetary level! In the 1970s, using the latest technology Professors Willie Ruff and John Rodgers were able to make Kepler’s Harmony into music – an extended piece of electronica, hypnotic and thought provoking.

Launched to great acclaim, Harmony of the World was then included on the famous Voyager spacecraft Gold Records, an explainer-for-aliens of earth and its people, currently somewhere in interstellar space!

Prof Ruff tells the story with Dr Simon Clark alongside me to explain the science and what it all means.

Listening time: 25mins+ (podcast 23′, Harmony of the World up to 45′)

Harmony of the World is here:

There’s a comprehensive website on the Voyager missions which includes loads of interesting information on the Gold Record: https://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov

Simon Clark’s The Wikicast is on all major podcast platforms and his science videos are on his Youtube channel. There’s more from the great Willie Ruff on his website

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Thanks for listening!

Photo credit: NASA/ JPL

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