Lunar Crater

A Lunar Crater was named after the Muslim Astronomer and Mathematician

Al Biruni

Al-Biruni, was born in 973 in Khwarizm, Uzbekistan. Al-Biruni’s father, a distinguished mathematician and astronomer, introduced him to astronomy and geometry at a young age. Al-Biruni was the first to arrive at a simple formula for measuring the earth’s circumference, he thought it possible that the earth revolved around the sun, and developed the idea that geological eras succeed one another in cycles. The letters he wrote to Avicenna (Ibn Sina) in 977 reveal that they discussed the structure of the universe, the physical laws covering a free-falling object, and indivisible particles (atoms). Al-Biruni (973-1050) was considered the most original and profound scholar Islam produced in the field of natural science. His works discussed the then debatable theory of the earth’s rotation on its axis and made accurate determination of longitudes and latitudes.

A famed map maker, meteorologist, physicist, philosopher, and historian, Al-Biruni died in 1048 having written more than 150 works in various fields including astronomy. Al-Biruni had a vast impact on science in the East and was known as a symbol of learning in the 11th century. One of the moon’s craters was named after him. To view this crater, log on to http://planetarynames.wr.usgs.gov/index.html and follow the links.

Source: Philip K. Hitti, History of Arabs, tenth edition

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