Story: Physics, chemistry and mathematics

Bickerton's partial impact theory

These diagrams illustrate Alexander Bickerton's theory of the partial impact of stars, from one of his papers in the 1879 Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute. Bickerton's theory held that the origin of the universe and many other astronomical phenomena could be explained by the partial collisions of stars and other heavenly bodies. He continued to promote the theory into the 20th century, long after it had been disproven by advances in physics and astronomy.

Using this item

Royal Society of New Zealand
Reference: A. W. Bickerton, 'Partial Impact (Paper No. 4): On the General Problem of Stellar Collision' in Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 12 (1879), plate VI

Permission of the Royal Society of New Zealand must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Rebecca Priestley, 'Physics, chemistry and mathematics - New Zealand research institutions, 1870s to 2000s', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 July 2024)

Story by Rebecca Priestley, published 22 Oct 2014