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Edmond Halley was popularly known for predicting the pattern of the appearance of a comet named after him, now known as Halley’s Comet. Halley was an English astronomer, mathematician, geophysicist, meteorologist, and physicist. He was also an Astronomer Royal in Great Britain.
See the fact file below for more information on the Edmond Halley or alternatively, you can download our 24-page Edmond Halley worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
- Edmond Halley was born in Haggerston, Shoreditch, London, on November 8, 1656.
- His father, Edmond Halley, Sr., was a wealthy soap-maker and a property owner in London.
- Edmond was privately tutored at home before attending St. Paul’s school, where he excelled in astronomy and mathematics
In 1673, he entered the Queen’s College in Oxford. He brought with him his fine collection of astronomical instruments.
- The Astronomer Royal, John Flamsteed, mentored him.
- As a teenager, he already had papers published on the solar system and sunspots.
- HALLEY’S COMET
- Halley’s Comet is a periodic or short-period comet that is visible from Earth every seventy-five years.
- Edmond Halley correctly identified that the three comets that appeared in 1531, 1607, and 1682 were the same.
- He correctly predicted that the same comet would appear in 1758 and would continue to show itself every 75 years.
- The prediction came true, although Halley did not live to see it, as he died in 1742. Its appearance, as it was predicted, made a number of astronomical theories credible.
- One of them is Newton’s Theory of Gravity.
- Nicolas-Louis de Lacaille, a French astronomer, named the comet in Halley’s honor.
- HALLEY’S STAR CATALOG (Catalogus Stellarum Australium)
- Halley was the first to determine the locations of southern stars telescopically.
- He started working on his catalog in 1676. He travelled to St. Helena, which was the most convenient spot for him to observe from.
- It was nearing the time when there would be eclipses on both the sun and the moon. He did not want to miss the opportunity, so he left Oxford without completing his degree.
- There are a total of 341 entries in this catalog across 24 constellations.
- Halley included all of Keyser’s and de Houtman’s 12 new southern constellations, but one did not appear due to poor visibility.
- Halley added it in his southern sky chart.
- The other 11 remaining constellations are Ptolemaic, and one is Columba.
OTHER MAJOR CONTRIBUTIONS
- In 1686, Halley published a paper and chart on trade winds and monsoons.
- He declared that atmospheric motion was caused by solar heating and established the relationship between barometric pressure and height above sea level.
- Both of these are part of his second publication of the results of his Helenian expedition.
- In 1716, he proposed a method of calculating the distance between the Earth and the sun by observing the transits of Venus across the disk of the sun.
- The transit of Venus was bound to happen in 1761, but Halley died before realizing his method.
- In 1718, he compared his astrometric measurements with those of Ptolemy’ Almagest and discovered the proper motion of the “fixed stars”.
HALLEY AND NEWTON
- Halley, due to his belief in Newton’s work, helped Newton publish his work.
- In 1684, Halley paid a visit to Newton after Christopher Wren and Robert Hooke told him that Newton had proved Kepler’s law of planetary motion many years ago.
- He recognized the significance of Newton’s work and encouraged him to publish it.
- Halley first sought the Royal Society’s help to fund the publication. He later declared that he would support it on his own. Doubtful of his work, Newton adheres to Halley’s suggestions and arranged his work for publication.
- Halley offered to edit Newton’s work, and Newton graciously accepted.
- The Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica became the most influential research in the development of modern physics and astronomy.
HALLEY AND THE ROYAL SOCIETY
- Edmond Halley was elected a fellow of the Royal Society after publishing his star catalog.
- His star catalog established his reputation as an astronomer.
- At the age of 22, he was the youngest fellow in the Royal Society.
- The Royal Society, with the help of his father, provided funding for his exploration in St. Helena and provided for the East India Company to take him there.
- Under the Royal Society, he became editor of Philosophical Transactions from 1685 to 1693, and he published important results through their publication.
- In 1720, he became the Royal Society’s Astronomer Royal, a position he held until his death.
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT EDMOND HALLEY
- He suggested that Noah’s flood might be related to a comet impact, but the Royal Society censured him.
- He was accused of being an atheist because of his views against religion.
- His application for a professorship in astronomy was opposed by the Archbishop of Canterbury because of this.
- His former mentor, Flamsteed, became one of his enemies after he published his star catalog.
- In 1682, Halley married Mary Tooke. They settled in Islington and had three children.
- He died on January 4, 1741, at the age of 85.
Edmond Halley Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Edmond Halley across 24 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Edmond Halley worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about Edmond Halley who was popularly known for predicting the pattern of the appearance of a comet named after him, now known as Halley’s Comet. Halley was an English astronomer, mathematician, geophysicist, meteorologist, and physicist. He was also an Astronomer Royal in Great Britain.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Edmond Halley Facts
- Halley’s Life
- Friends to Enemies
- Halley’s Comet
- Star Locator
- Three Roles of Halley
- Halley’s Encounters
- Halley’s Contributions
- Life in Details
- Halley and Newton
- Science and/or Religion
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Link will appear as Edmond Halley Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, April 4, 2020
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