He visited London in 1665 and was made a member of the Royal Society. On invitation of the French King Louis XIV, he came to Paris in 1666 and became a founding member of the Academie Royale des Sciences (Royal Academy of Sciences) where he worked with G.D. Cassini.
In 1684, he undertook new studies of the Orion Nebula and independently discovered the fourth Trapezium star which had been originally discovered in the meantime by Picard in 1673.
Huygens also contributed significantly to physics: In 1656, he derived the conservation of momentum law, in 1659, he established the idea of centrifugal forces, and in 1678 in Paris, he developed his famous wave theory of light.
Huygens left France in about 1686 for religious reasons, fearing persecution as he was a protestant, visited England in 1689 and then retired to The Hague, where he died in 1695 at age 66.
He was honored by naming a Lunar mountain range, Mons Huygens (20.0N, 2.9W, 40 km diameter, in 1961) and a Mars Crater after him (14.3S, 304.6W, 470.0 km diameter, named 1973), as well as the Huygens Probe spacecraft which is to land on Saturn's moon Titan. Asteroid (2801) Huygens has been discovered on September 28, 1935 by H. van Gent at Johannesburg, provisionally named 1935 SU1 as well as 1968 UG, 1976 JP5, 1977 TT1, 1980 FF11, and 1982 UZ on the occasion of later independent findings.