# Beyond the Stones: Stonehenge and Circular Measures

Stonehenge is a world-famous prehistoric monument located in Wiltshire, England. It consists of a circular arrangement of massive standing stones set within earthworks.The history of Stonehenge is a fascinating and complex tale that spans thousands of years. While many aspects of its history remain shrouded in mystery, archaeologists and historians have pieced together a general timeline of its development.

It is thought to be constructed approximately around 3100-2600 BCE, in this process, bluestones from Wales and sarsen stones from the Marlborough Downs Region were brought to the location and positioned to align with astronomical events.

Circular Measures

## Appreciating Stonehenge through circular measures

While not a direct relation, the lessons that teach radian, degrees, arc length and sector area of circle in the A level syllabus can help you to further enjoy the mechanics of the stonehenge. For example:

Degrees and Astronomical Alignments: Stonehenge’s alignments with celestial events, such as the solstices, are often expressed in degrees. For example, the axis of the monument aligns with the sunrise on the summer solstice at approximately 51.18 degrees east of north. Degrees are a common unit for measuring angles, including those in astronomical observations.

Radians and Angular Measurements: While degrees are commonly used in everyday angular measurements, radians are another unit for measuring angles and are particularly useful in trigonometry and calculus. In astronomy and celestial mechanics, radians are used to describe the position and motion of celestial bodies. The use of radians may not be directly related to Stonehenge but is relevant in broader astronomical contexts.

Arc Length and Celestial Circles: The concept of arc length, derived from the circumference of a circle, can be applied in celestial measurements. When observing the apparent motion of celestial objects across the sky, their positions can be expressed in terms of degrees of arc. The knowledge of arc length and angular measurements contributes to understanding the paths of celestial bodies tracked at Stonehenge.

Sector Area and Astronomical Events: While sector area (the area enclosed by a circular sector) is not directly related to Stonehenge, the concept of dividing the sky into sectors is used in some astronomical contexts. For instance, astronomers divide the celestial sphere into constellations, each occupying a specific sector of the sky. Stonehenge’s alignments might have involved similar divisions to track celestial events.

Given the precision and the mathematical concepts that lie behind the construction of the archaeological achievement, one would wonder, how were such large rocks brought to the site?

Over the years several theories regarding how the stones were transported and erected at Stonehenge vary, but several hypotheses involve engineering and mathematical principles:

1. Roller and Sled Method: One theory suggests that the builders used cylindrical wooden rollers and sledges to transport the stones over land. This method would have required a keen understanding of friction, weight distribution, and the mathematics of leverage.
1. A-Frame Method: Another hypothesis involves using A-frame structures to lift and maneuver the stones into position. Mathematical calculations would have been essential to determine the size and strength of the A-frames needed to handle the massive stones.
1. Water Transport: Some researchers propose that the stones were transported at least part of the way by water along the River Avon. This would have required knowledge of buoyancy, weight distribution, and navigational mathematics.
1. Ramp Systems: Various ramp systems have been proposed to aid in lifting the stones to their upright positions. These ramps could have involved complex calculations regarding the angle, length, and stability required.

UFO and Stonehenge

But if all these explanations fail to pique your interest, maybe some otherworldly theories might entertain you! Here are a few whimsical UFO-related theories about how the Stonehenge stones were moved:

1. Telekinesis by Aliens: This theory suggests that advanced extraterrestrial beings with telekinetic abilities used their mental powers to lift and transport the massive stones effortlessly, defying the laws of physics.
1. Antigravity Technology: According to this theory, aliens possessed antigravity technology, which allowed them to neutralize the weight of the stones, making them easy to transport and position.
1. Tractor Beam Hoisting: Some imaginative thinkers propose that UFOs equipped with powerful tractor beams beamed down and lifted the stones into position, much like the way spaceships in science fiction movies capture objects.
1. Stonehenge as an Alien Landing Site: This theory goes a step further, suggesting that Stonehenge was intentionally constructed by ancient humans as a landing site for alien spacecraft, and the stones were placed strategically to guide UFOs.
1. Stones as Energy Sources: Another whimsical idea posits that the Stonehenge stones were actually advanced energy sources left behind by aliens. These stones would have had the power to levitate and move on their own, explaining their mysterious positioning over time.

Do note that these are purely speculative and not supported by scientific evidence or historical research!