John Hadley, English inventor

John Hadley, English inventor

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This image is part of the feature 400 Years Of The Telescope

Credit: ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: John Hadley (1682-1744), English inventor. In the 1720s Hadley improved Newton's reflecting telescope of 1668. As a result of Hadley's work, this type of telescope subsequently dominated optical astronomy. In 1731 Hadley made a reflecting quadrant which could accurately measure the position of a star above the horizon. This forerunner of the sextant was used in conjunction with chronometers and astronomical tables to discover a ship's position. Hadley was voted a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1717 and became one of its vice-presidents in 1728.

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