Leavitt, Henrietta Swan

January 2009
World Book Science Dataset;1/1/2009, p1
Reference Entry
Leavitt, Henrietta Swan (1868-1921) was an American astronomer whose work revolutionized human understanding of the relative brightness and variability of stars. Her greatest achievement was in establishing the �period-luminosity� relationship of variable stars�stars whose brightness fluctuates over regularly occurring periods. This significant discovery became the basis for the ability of astronomers to calculate the distance of stars from the earth.


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