Date: 03 Sep 2014

Delporte, Eugène-Joseph

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BornGenappe, Brabant, Belgium, 17 January 1882

DiedUccle near Brussels, Belgium, 19 October 1955

The Belgian astronomer Eugène Delporte is credited with the discovery of at least 66 asteroids in modern catalogs, and was the final authority in establishing the boundaries of constellations officially adopted by the International Astronomical Union [IAU]. Delporte studied mathematics at the Free University of Brussels, and received a doctorate in mathematical and physical sciences in 1903. He was employed the same year at the Royal Belgian Observatory at Uccle, and appointed director of the Uccle Observatory in 1936. Even after his retirement in 1947, Delporte continued observational work at Uccle. He died from a heart attack while examining a photographic plate.

Initially put in charge of time and meridian measurements, Delporte eventually specialized in the search for minor planets through systematic photography of the sky. In doing so, Delporte established a tradition continued to this da ...