In Cosmic Numbers, mathematics professor James Stein traces the discovery, evolution, and interrelationships of the great numbers that define our world. Some numbers, like the speed of light and absolute zero, are well known to the general public. Others, such as Boltzmann's constant and the Chandrasekhar limit, are known only to those with a deep knowledge of science. But these numbers do far more than the average person might dare to imagine: they tell us how this world began, the way we were and the way we are, and what the future holds. Stein reveals the manner in which certain cosmic numbers came to light, the dramatis personae involved, and cutting-edge developments associated with these numbers. Many are the cornerstones of grand discoveries and theories. They represent landmarks in the history of intellectual achievement. And the stories of these numbers offer a novel understanding of physics, chemistry, and astronomy.
Much more than a gee-whiz collection, Cosmic Numbers illuminates why particular numbers are so important--both to scientists and to the rest of us.
Stargazing is among the most peaceful and inspiring outdoor activities. Night Sky, the award-winning book by Jonathan Poppele, makes it even better Take a simple approach to finding 64 constellations by focusing on one constellation at a time, instead of attempting to study dizzying charts.
- Start with the easy-to-find constellations during each season and work toward the more difficult ones.
- Learn how to locate any constellation in relation to the Big Dipper, the North Star, and the top of the sky.
- With multiple ways to locate each constellation, you'll know where in the sky to look and what to look for
- Along the way, you'll be introduced to mythology, facts, and tidbits, as well as details about the planets, solar system, and more.
This revised and expanded edition includes new photographs, new discoveries, and more constellations, including a section that introduces the 44 constellations of the Southern Hemisphere.
A half century ago, a shocking Washington Post headline claimed that the world began in five cataclysmic minutes rather than having existed for all time; a skeptical scientist dubbed the maverick theory the Big Bang. In this amazingly comprehensible history of the universe, Simon Singh decodes the mystery behind the Big Bang theory, lading us through the development of one of the most extraordinary, important, and awe-inspiring theories in science.
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography, this is Lindbergh's own account of his historic transatlantic flight in 1927. Chosen as one of the "100 Greatest Adventure Books" of all time by National Geographic Adventure magazine.
Illustrations by Tullio Pericoli. A lively collection of classic zingers from the mouths and pens of authors. "Who's better at being nasty than writers on other writers?"--The New York Times Magazine. A BOOK-OF-THE-MONTH CLUB and WRITER'S DIGEST BOOK CLUB selection. Illustrations by Tullio Pericoli
Mike Lynch is Minnesota's most popular amateur astronomer and instructor. He has been leading stargazing classes for more than 30 years as well as writing a weekly astronomy column for the "St. Paul Pioneer Press." In his other life, Mike has been a meteorologist and popular radio personality at WCCO Radio for 23 years. Now with "Mike Lynch's Minnesota StarWatch" you can easily pick up what thousands of Minnesotans, ages 12 and up, have learned in his popular stargazing classes. You won't find a more enthusiastic guide to the night sky than Mike Lynch and you won't find a better guidebook to our night sky than "Mike Lynch's Minnesota Star Watch."
At last, a book presenting the fantastic scientific results of the first five years of Hubble Space Telescope observations While a number of books for the general public emphasize the technological accomplishments of this multi-billion dollar project or deal with the well-publicized flaw in the telescope's optics, The Hubble: A New Window to the Universe concentrates on its astromonical achievements. The authors use new and ground-breaking Hubble results to illustrate a wide range of astronomical topics, from the great questions about the universe as a whole to quasars and black holes, and from the life and death of stars to our planetary neighbors in the solar system. The first part of this book presents a brief historical overview, "From Babylon to Cape Canaveral," concentrating on progress in astromony from the instrumentation point of view and on the Hubble project itself. The central and largest portion presents the wealth of exciting astronomical results obtained with the Hubble. The last part describes the Hubble operations, as well as the plans for the future of the telescope itself and beyond. The text contains a large number of spectacular images, mainly taken with the Hubble, as well as self-contained portraits of astronomers and explanations of astronomical topics and instruments. Written in a style appealing to both the interested public and to individuals familiar with the field, this compendium serves as a testament to the significant role the Hubble has played in astronomical accomplishment and discovery the past five years.
From renowned physicist Fred Alan Wolf comes his enthralling and accessible exploration of parallel universes and the various theories surrounding them.In this enthralling read (Publishers Weekly), travel through the frontiers of space as physicist Fred Alan Wolf guides you through the complex yet intruging concept of parallel universes. Challenge your preceptions of the universe and explore ideas as varied as superspace theater and zero-time ghosts and even explore a future where time travel is real and black holes are gateways rather than endings.
Our sun is one star among 50 billion in the galaxy. Our galaxy is only one among 50 billion in the universe. With a vastness this incomprehensible, it is easy to feel like we are mere specks of sand on an endless shore. But our sun is special. Though roughly 150 million kilometers separate us, we could not be more connected. Literally, everything you see comes from the sun. The words you are reading now are really photons that left the sun about 8 minutes ago only to bounce off this page and into your eyes. We owe our very existence to our sun. It provides just enough heat to keep our fragile bodies from freezing to ice or burning to a crisp. Every bite of food we eat we owe to the sun, whose energy is converted into plants that provide sustenance for everything up the food chain.
We have understood the sun's importance for millennia. The earliest humans, awestruck by its blazing splendor, left drawings of the sun on cave walls. Nearly every civilization, no matter where it sprang up on the planet, has revered the sun. Myths about the sun were the basis of the earliest deities of ancient Sumerian, Hindu, Egyptian, Chinese, and Meso-American cultures. Before Apollo, the ancient Greeks worshiped the sun-god Helios. Before Zeus, the ancient Romans worshiped Sol.
Throughout our history, the sun has been central to humanity's quest for meaning in the universe. But our history has been a brief moment in our sun's 4.5 billion year life. Only recently, through advances in science and technology, have we begun to understand our sun - where it came from, how it functions, how it affects our lives and how it eventually will destroy our planet.
Our Sun is a comprehensive, easy-to-understand guide to everything we know about our closest star. Illustrated with stunning pictures from NASA's newly-launched Solar Dynamics Observatory, Our Sun will reveal the science behind the sun, trace its impact on human history, and reveal its growing importance to our future way of life.