Search engine giant Google Inc. is now celebrating the 335th birthday of Edmond Halley, a meteorologist, geophysicist, mathematician and astronomer who accurately predicted the return of a comet that was named after him.
The artists at Google have created a logo that depicts the planets, comets, stars and rockets to celebrate the birth of the man who first calculated the orbit of the Halley’s Comet.
Halley was born in Haggerston in Shoreditch in 1656. His father was a wealthy soap maker in London and came from a Derbyshire family.
He studied mathematics at St. Paul’s School, as he was very interested in studying mathematics since he was a child. While he was still an undergraduate, he has already published papers on sunspots and the Solar System. In 1676, he graduated from Queen’s College in Oxford.
Halley published ‘A Synopsis of the Astronomy of Comets’ in 1705. In the paper, he depicted the orbits of 24 comets that had been previously observed from 1337 to 1698.
He showed that the three comets of 1531, 1607 and 1682 were the same comet and predicted that it will come back in 1758. The comet is now known as the famous Halley’s Comet.
Halley also commanded the Paramour to the South Atlantic in 1698, aiming to investigate compass anomalies. The expedition was not successful, but when he returned, he set to work on measuring the distance of the Sun to the Earth, using Venus as a reference point.
He became the Astonomer Royal in Greenwich in 1720, a position he held until he died on January 14, 1742.
What do you think of today’s Google Doodle?