Famous Scientists

You may have heard the names Nikola Tesla and Marie Curie before, but do you know what they contributed to science? Here you can learn about some of the most famous scientists in the world.

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Young, Charles Augustus

Young, Charles Augustus (1834-1908) was a United States astronomer noted for his spectroscopic studies of the sun.

Mason, Charles

Mason, Charles (1730-1787), an English astronomer and surveyor. In addition to surveying the boundary between Maryland and Pennsylvania, Jeremiah Dixon and he fixed the precise measure of a degree of latitude in America.

Charles Messier

Messier, Charles (1730-1817), a French astronomer, discovered or independently codiscovered some 20 comets, earning him the nickname the “ferret of comets” by King Louis XV.

Rittenhouse, David

Rittenhouse, David (1732-1796) was a United States astronomer and mathematician. Next to Benjamin Franklin, he was the most respected American man of science of his time.

Halley, Edmund

Halley, Edmund (1656-1743), was an English astronomer and scientist. He is best known for his studies of the comet that bears his name.

Hubble, Edwin P.

Hubble, Edwin P. (Powell) (18891953), a United States astronomer. Hubble revolutionized astronomy by showing that the universe is much larger than had been previously believed and by providing observational evidence for the theory of an expanding universe.

Eudoxus of Cnidus

Eudoxus of Cnidus (NY duhs or kuh NY duhs) (400 B.C.?-350 B.C.?) was a Greek astronomer who made important contributions to the field of geometry.

Hoyle, Sir Fred

Hoyle, Sir Fred (1915-2001), a British astronomer, noted for research on the development of stars.

Friedrich Wilhelm August Argelander

Argelander, Friedrich Wilhelm August (1799-1875) was a Finnish-German astronomer and professor of astronomy who compiled the Banner Durchmusterung, a catalog which recorded the positions and magnitudes of 324,198 stars of the northern celestial hemisphere.

Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel

Bessel, Friedrich Wilhelm (1784-1846), a German astronomer, was the first to measure stellar parallax, an apparent change in a star's position as a result of the earth orbiting the sun.

Schiaparelli, Giovanni Virginio

Schiaparelli, Giovanni Virginia (1835-1910), was an Italian astronomer. He is best known for his studies of Mars, begun in 1877, in which he described in detail the Martian canals.

James Bradley

Bradley, James (1693-1762), an English astronomer, discovered the aberration of starlight that provided the first direct proof that the earth revolves around the sun, and the nutation, or nodding motion, of the earth's axis.

Jocelyn Bell Burnell

Bell Burnell, Jocelyn (1943-), a Northern Irish astronomer, discovered the first four pulsars, neutron stars that emit pulses of radiation with a high degree of regularity.

Adams, John Couch

Adams, John Couch (1819-1892), was a British astronomer and one of the discoverers of the planet Neptune.

Flamsteed, John

Flamsteed, John (16461719), an English astronomer. Flamsteed was appointed the first astronomer royal, in 1675, and Greenwich Observatory was built for him in 1676.

Tsiolkovsky, Konstantin Eduardovich

Tsiolkovsky (or Ziolkovsky), Konstantin Eduardovich (1857-1935), a Russian rocket pioneer who is generally regarded as the father of space travel.

Nasir al-Din Al-Tusi

Al-Tusi, Nasir al-Din (1201-1274) was one of the greatest scholars of his time and one of the most influential figures in Islamic intellectual history.

Lowell, Percival

Lowell, Percival (1855-1916), a United States astronomer. In 1894 he established the Lowell Observatory at Flagstaff, Arizona.

Burnham, Sherburne Wesley

Burnham, Sherburne Wesley (1838-1921), a United States astronomer. His General Catalogue of Double Stars (1906) contains data on 13,665 double stars, more than a thousand of which he discovered.

Newcomb, Simon

Newcomb, Simon (1835-1909), a United States astronomer. He calculated the movements of the moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Uranus, and Neptune more precisely than had been achieved previously.

Lockyer, Sir Joseph Norman

Lockyer, Sir Joseph Norman (1836-1920), an English astronomer. He was one of the first to study the sun and stars with a spectroscope.

Theodore Von Krmn

Von Kármán, Theodore (1881-1963) was a Hungarian-born American physicist and engineer who made great contributions to the field of aerodynamics and rocket technology.

Sitter, Willem de

Sitter, Willem de (18721934), a Dutch astronomer. He was a pioneer in applying Albert Einstein's theory of relativity to astronomy and developed a model of an expanding, curved universe.

William Wallace Campbell

Campbell, William Wallace (1862-1938), an American astronomer, made important measurements of the motion of stars.

How Isaac Newton Worked

The man immortalized on the left was behind the three laws of motion and the universal law of gravitation. He was also competitive, temperamental and fascinated with alchemy. How well do you know Newton?