In astronomy, Hénon is well known for his contributions to stellar dynamics. In the late 1960s and early 1970s he made important contributions on the dynamical evolution of star clusters, in particular globular clusters. He developed a numerical technique using Monte Carlo methods to follow the dynamical evolution of a spherical star cluster much faster than the so-called n-body methods.
He published a two-volume work on the restricted three-body problem.
In 1978 he was awarded the Prix Jean Ricard.
- "[Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur] Décès de Michel Hénon, Astronome à l'Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur". Oca.eu. 18 March 2011. Archived from the original on 6 April 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2013.