Feeds

Science and religion collide for galactic conference

Vatican turns eyes to heavens

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The Vatican is hosting its second astronomy conference in seven years, as the Roman Catholic church strives to avoid being seen as anti-science. Delegates are expected from 26 countries, including Britain, the US, Italy, Germany, and Russia, the BBC reports.

Father Jose Funes, head of the Vatican Observatory, said the conference would focus on disc galaxies, cold dark matter, and black holes. "Disc galaxies are a hot topic," he told the BBC.

Our home galaxy, the Milky Way, will be the first subject for discussion. The delegates will go on to discuss the latest theories and ideas in galaxy, star, and planet formation.

The Vatican's history of involvement in astronomical research has its roots in the switch from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar. Then Pope Gregory XIII set up a task force to consider the full scientific implications of the 1582 switch in timelines. But it wasn't until 1789, almost two centuries after Galileo's "heretical" proposal that the Earth orbited the Sun, that the church set up its own observatory.

Since then, the tradition of scientific exploration has been maintained, and the Vatican now runs an observatory - the Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope with its 1.8 metre mirror - out in Tucson, Arizona.

Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno, a member of Father Funes's 13-strong team, explains that the Church has maintained its interest because science holds no fears for the faithful.

He told the BBC: "This is our way of seeing how God created the universe and they want to make as strong a statement as possible that truth doesn't contradict truth; that if you have faith, then you're never going to be afraid of what science is going to come up with." ®

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.