n MNASSA : Monthly Notes of the Astronomical Society of South Africa - EC Slipher's Mars Expeditions to South Africa : history of astronomy

Volume 66, Issue 7_8
  • ISSN : 0024-8266



From 1939 to 1956, EC Slipher of Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona carried out three separate astronomical expeditions to South Africa. Each of these was specifically designed to make photographic and visual observations of the planet Mars during favourable oppositions. In total, Slipher captured more than 60 000 images on film, in addition to making countless visual observations. His important observations gave much new insight about the atmospheric and surficial features of the red planet, including atmospheric belts, dark markings, polar ice caps and the putative canals.

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