Portrait of Giovanni Schiaparelli
Gioavanni Schiaparelli was an Italian astronomer who lived between 1835-1910. He observed patterned straight lines on the surface of Mars, and called them "canali", Italian for channels.
Unfortunately, "canali" was mistranslated into canals, which implied that artificial structures existed on the red planet. This caused a flood of study on Mars, with many scientists expecting to find life there.
Schiaparelli also studied comets and how they caused meteor showers.
Shop Windows to the Universe Science Store!
Our online store
includes fun classroom activities
for you and your students. Issues of NESTA's quarterly journal, The Earth Scientist
are also full of classroom activities on different topics in Earth and space science!
You might also be interested in:
How did life evolve on Earth? The answer to this question can help us understand our past and prepare for our future. Although evolution provides credible and reliable answers, polls show that many people turn away from science, seeking other explanations with which they are more comfortable....more
When we ask "Where might we find extraterrestrial life", the first place many scientists turn to, because of its similarity to the Earth, is Mars. Mars may have been like the Earth in its past. Although...more
Not long ago, many people thought that comets were a sign that something bad was about to happen to them. People didn't understand how objects in the sky moved, so the sight of a comet must have been...more
Charles Darwin was an English Naturalist who lived between 1809-1882. He laid the foundations for the modern science of biology, and changed how other scientists understood the appearance of life on Earth....more
Christian Doppler was an Austrian mathematician who lived between 1803-1853. He is known for the principle he first proposed in Concerning the coloured light of double stars in 1842. This principle is...more
Ben Franklin was an American scientist and statesman who lived between 1706-1790. At a time when little was known about electricity, he carried out many experiments to learn of its dangers and possible...more
Edmond Halley was an English astronomer who lived between 1656-1742. Using historical records, his own observations, and Newton's universal law of gravitation, he reasoned that the comets which had appeared...more
William Herschel was born in Germany and lived in England as he worked as an astronomer. He lived between 1738-1822. He built high magnification telescopes that let him observe the heavens with greater...more