How Was the Planet Mars Discovered?

how was the planet mars discovered

The planet mars has been studied and explored over a long period of time. It is the most heavily investigated planet in our solar system outside of Earth.

Astronomers have recorded Mars’s movement and its atmosphere over the centuries. They also discovered the albedo features, seasons, and polar ice caps of Mars.

Tycho Brahe

Tycho Brahe was an astronomer who made the most accurate measurements of stars and planets in history. He also invented and built many of the instruments used to make astronomical observations.

When he was only 15 years old, he became dissatisfied with the models of Ptolemy and Copernicus. His dissatisfaction was that they were based on crystal spheres which didn’t seem to hold the stars and planets in their orbits.

One night in November 1572, he noticed that there was an extra star in the sky that wasn’t there before. It was brighter than Venus, and it was in a place where the stars shouldn’t be. This discovery changed the way scientists thought about the night sky. It meant that the fixed, unchanging sky wasn’t the only thing in the universe that could change.

Johannes Kepler

Kepler was born in December 1571 in Weil der Stadt (now a part of the Stuttgart region in Germany). His parents were poor and he contracted smallpox when he was a baby.

He was a gifted mathematician who had been awarded a scholarship to study at the University of Tubingen, then a bastion of Lutheran orthodoxy. When he was in his twenties, Kepler had already made a name for himself with his mathematical contributions.

His religious convictions were also a powerful influence on his astronomical research. He believed that God revealed his plan of creation in the heavens.

Galileo Galilei

Galileo was an Italian astronomer, mathematician, physicist and philosopher. He was one of the pioneers in the field of physics and made several important discoveries.

His invention of a telescope allowed him to observe the planet Mars and discovered that it was a large sphere like the Earth. He also saw that it had a polar icecap, color patterns on its surface and clouds and hazes.

He was also the first to support the Copernican theory that the planets orbited the sun. The Catholic Church considered his beliefs to be heresy.

He was also the first to invent a microscope and a thermometer. His two new sciences are a significant part of modern science and helped establish the discipline.

Percival Lowell

Lowell was born into a wealthy family in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was a student at Harvard University and had an interest in astronomy.

He became an astronomer and built the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona. He was a strong supporter of the theory that canals on Mars were real and mapped hundreds of them.

He believed that the Martian “canals” were created by intelligent Martians and carried water from the polar caps to the equatorial regions. He also thought that he could see changes in the planet’s surface during different seasons.

Asaph Hall

On August 11, 1877, astronomer Asaph Hall identified Mars’ two moons: Phobos and Deimos. He named the inner moon Phobos, meaning “flight” in Greek, and the outer moon Deimos, meaning “fear.”

The discovery took astronomers by surprise and led to the discovery of other planets’ satellites. Hall also determined the orbits of double stars, asteroids and Saturn’s satellite Hyperion.

Born in Goshen, Connecticut, Hall was a carpenter at age 16 when he decided to pursue his interest in astronomy. He enrolled in a mathematics school and studied under Franz Brunnow in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He then took an assistant astronomer position at the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington, DC. He married Chloe Angeline Stickney, an American academic, suffragist and mathematician.

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