Laplace |

French mathematician and astronomer Pierre-Simon Laplace (1749-1827) made several important contributions to science in general and astronomy in particular. Together with chemist Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, Laplace founded the science of thermochemistry, the science dealing with the interrelationship of heat and chemical interactions. In addition, Laplace applied Newtonian calculus in his experiments with the forces acting between particles of ordinary matter, light, heat, and electricity. By examining their results, Laplace and his colleagues were able to determine equations explaining the re-fraction of light, the conduction of heat, the flexibility of solid objects, and the distribution of electricity on conductors. In the field of astronomy, Laplace was primarily interested in the movements of the moon and the planets. He studied their gravitational effect on one another and published his results over a twenty-five-year period beginning in 1799 in a five-volume book called Traite de MÃ©chanique Celeste (Celestial Mechanics). Since his work expanded on the gravitational theories of Englishman Isaac Newton,

**Laplace earned the nickname "French Newton."**Laplace also developed a theory of the formation of the solar system and, with a colleague, introduced the concept that led to the theory of black holes.