The Cosmos: A Historical Perspective

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 2006 - 179 էջ

Everyone knows that the universe is extremely old and extremely large. But how did scientists determine just how old and how large? How do astronomers know that there are upwards of 100 billion galaxies in the universe if the nearest one is over 40,000 light-years away? How do we know what the stars are made of? The answer is that our current knowledge of the universe has arisen from the work and ideas of scientists and philosophers over hundreds of years. While it's only been during the last several decades that scientists have had the technology and theories to really understand how the universe works, humans have thought about such issues for millennia. And the scientists who today are attempting to understand the most complex issues of the universe build upon the work and thought of the thinkers of the last hundreds of years.

The Cosmos: A Historical Perspective provides an accessible introduction to the many ways humans have conceived of the universe throughout history and what ideas have led to our current understanding of the cosmos. The book examines: the Scientific Revolution and the new ideas of the Earth's place in the cosmos; the importance of nineteenth-century physics and chemistry in determining the compositions of stars; Einstein's Theory of Relativity and how it altered how scientists thought about gravity; and new, cutting-edge science that may alter, yet again, our conceptions of the cosmos, such as the inflationary universe and the possibility of dark energy. Jargon and mathematics is kept to a minimum, and the volume includes an annotated bibliography and a timeline. The Cosmos is an ideal introduction for students studying space science and the history and nature of the scientific understanding of the universe.

 

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1 Introduction
1
2 Babylonian and Chinese Astronomy and Cosmology
5
3 Greek Astronomy and Cosmology
13
Figure 31 Retrograde motion of a superior planet
15
Figure 32 Eudoxuss model for retrograde motion
16
Figure 33 Hipparchuss solar model
19
Figure 34 Ptolemys model for the planets
21
Figure 35 The equant
22
Figure 62 Leonard Diggess universe 1576
76
Figure 63 Herschels 20foot reflector completed in 1783
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a Modern photograph and b Herschels original sketch
81
The Triumph of the IslandUniverse Theory
87
Figure 71 Messier nebula M 51 the Whirlpool nebula a Lord Rosses sketch
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Figure 71 Messier nebula M 51 the Whirlpool nebulab Modern photo
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Figure 72 The Hooker 100inch telescope at Mount Wilson
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Figure 73 Andromeda nebula M 31
97

Figure 36 Model for solar motion using secondary epicycle
24
Figure 37 Equivalence of geocentric and heliocentric models for planetary motion
28
Figure 38 The Tychonic system
29
4 Cosmology from Islam to Copernicus
35
Figure 41 The alTusi couple
39
Figure 42 AlShatirs model of the motion of the Moon
40
Figure 43 Dantes universe
43
Figure 44 The Copernican system
48
5 Cosmology from Brahe to Newton
55
Figure 51 The Tychonic system
59
Figure 52 Figure from Schofield 1981 plate 16
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Figure 53 Keplers heliocentric system 1596
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The Universe Beyond the Solar System
73
Figure 61 A drawing of stars from Galileos Starry Messenger 1610
75
8 The Expansion of the Universe
101
Figure 81 Hubbles historic red shiftdistance graph 1929
115
Figure 82 Lemaîtres universe 1932
116
Figure 83 Eddingtons universe 1933
117
9 From Universal Expansion to the Big Bang
123
Figure 91 Wilson and and the Holmden microwave receiver
134
From 1965 to the TwentyFirst Century
137
Figure 101 The Hubble Space Telescope
138
Figure 102 Einsteins Cross a gravitationally lensed quasar
143
Timeline
155
Glossary
159
Bibliography
167
Index
173
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Հեղինակի մասին (2006)

CRAIG G. FRASER is a professor in the Institute for History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the University of Toronto. He is the editor-in-chief of the journal Historia Mathematica, and has written numerous articles on the history of modern cosmology.

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