Luo Xiahong: famous astronomer in Western Han Dynasty
An astronomer of the Western Han Dynasty (206BC-24AD), Luo Xiahong is famous for his outstanding achievements in calendar computation and astronomy, and is seen as the earliest scholar in calendar computation.
statue of Luo Xiahong
For the purpose of calendar reform, Emperor Wudi of the Western Han Dynasty employed astronomers throughout the country. In the end, the calendar Luo worked out with others -- the Tai Chu Calendar -- was adopted by the emperor, due to its superiority over other calendars. As the first calendar that can be verified in historical records, the Tai Chu Calendar was used for 189 years.
Luo Xiahong was the initiator of the theory of sphere-heavens, and the equatorial armillary sphere he improved was in use for 2000 years. For the first time in astronomic history, Luo correctly inferred the cycle term of 11 months for solar and lunar eclipses, meaning that there were 23 solar eclipses within 11 years. Based on this cycle, people could conduct forecasts on solar and lunar eclipses.
On September 16, 2004, with the approval from the International Astronomical Union, an asteroid was named after Luo Xiahong in commemoration of the great Chinese astronomer.