Pierre-Simon Laplace Biography
(French Mathematician and Astronomer Who was Best Known for His Investigations into the Stability of the Solar System)
Birthday: March 23, 1749 (Aries)
Born In: Beaumont-en-Auge, France
Pierre-Simon Laplace was a French mathematician and astronomer who carried out remarkable studies regarding the stability of the solar system and is famously known as the ‘French Newton’. He also did pioneering work in mathematics regarding the theory of probability and statistics which influenced a whole new generation of mathematicians. Born in a poor family, his education was financed by neighbors and he was sent to study theology at the age of 16. But, he soon developed a keen interest in mathematics and was subsequently drawn to physics and astronomy. He served as a professor of mathematics for seven years and also published several scientific papers alongside. Laplace successfully accounted for all the observed deviations of the planets from their theoretical orbits by applying Sir Isaac Newton’s theory of gravitation to the solar system, and he developed a conceptual view of evolutionary change in the structure of the solar system. He also demonstrated the usefulness of probability for interpreting scientific data and applied his own definition of probability to justify the fundamental mathematical manipulations. He restated and developed the nebular hypothesis of the origin of the solar system and also postulated the existence of black holes along with the notion of gravitational collapse