13 Facts About Arthur Hinks


Arthur Hinks was an enthusiastic, even zealous member of the team from the start, and was responsible for the observations from Cambridge Observatory.

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Arthur Hinks published the Cambridge results in November 1901, but this was far from the end of the task.

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Arthur Hinks participated in this initial period, publishing a comparison of his Cambridge results with those from the Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton, California, and from the Goodsell Observatory near Minneapolis, Minnesota.

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However Arthur Hinks became increasingly concerned about the systematic errors in several of the results, and published his own provisional result for the solar parallax in 1904, based on photographic observations from nine observatories.

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Arthur Hinks continued to work on the problem as secretary of the Royal Astronomical Society, a post he held from 1903 to 1913 – he admitted himself that solar parallax work it took up most of his time at the Cambridge Observatory, although he did publish other papers.

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When Loewy died suddenly in 1907, Arthur Hinks appears to have taken over the final reduction of the data.

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Bonus result was that Arthur Hinks was able to calculate the ratio between the mass of the Earth and the mass of the Moon as 81.

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In 1903, Arthur Hinks undertook a course in surveying at the School of Military Engineering in Chatham in Kent.

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Arthur Hinks gained his first full academic post in 1908, a lectureship in surveying and cartography at the Cambridge School of Geography funded by the Royal Geographical Society.

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Arthur Hinks was involved in the organisation of the expeditions to observe the total solar eclipse in May 1919 from Principe off the west coast of Africa and from Sobral in Brazil, during which his nemesis from Cambridge, Eddington, would provide one of the first proofs of Einstein's theory of general relativity.

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However Arthur Hinks vetoed Finch's inclusion on the expedition, despite his altitude record during the 1922 expedition, ostensibly because he was divorced and had accepted money for lectures.

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The true reason was that Finch was Australian, and Arthur Hinks was determined that the first person to reach the summit should be British.

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Arthur Hinks published two textbooks on cartography and surveying, Map Projections and Maps and Survey.

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