Vera Rubin’s work on dark matter led to a paradigm shift in cosmology

Bright Galaxies, Dark Matter, and Beyond
Ashley Jean Yeager
MIT Press, $24.95

Vera Rubin’s research forced cosmologists to radically reimagine the cosmos.

In the 1960s and ’70s, Rubin’s observations of stars whirling around within galaxies revealed the gravitational tug of invisible “dark matter.” Although astronomers had detected hints of this enigmatic substance for decades, Rubin’s data helped finally convince a skeptical scientific community that dark matter exists (SN: 1/10/20).

“Her work was pivotal to redefining the composition of our cosmos,” Ashley Yeager, Science News’ associate news editor, writes in her new book. Bright Galaxies, Dark Matter, and Beyond follows Rubin’s journey from stargazing child to preeminent astronomer and fierce advocate

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