Black Holes and Time Warps: Einstein's Outrageous Legacy

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W. W. Norton & Company, 1994 - Science - 619 pages
16 Reviews
Ever since Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity burst upon the world in 1915 some of the most brilliant minds of our century have sought to decipher the mysteries bequeathed by that theory, a legacy so unthinkable in some respects that even Einstein himself rejected them. Which of these bizarre phenomena, if any, can really exist in our universe? Black holes, down which anything can fall but from which nothing can return; wormholes, short spacewarps connecting regions of the cosmos; singularities, where space and time are so violently warped that time ceases to exist and space becomes a kind of foam; gravitational waves, which carry symphonic accounts of collisions of black holes billions of years ago; and time machines, for traveling backward and forward in time. Kip Thorne, along with fellow theorists Stephen Hawking and Roger Penrose, a cadre of Russians, and earlier scientists such as Oppenheimer, Wheeler and Chandrasekhar, has been in the thick of the quest to secure answers. In this masterfully written and brilliantly informed work of scientific history and explanation, Dr. Thorne, the Feynman Professor of Theoretical Physics at Caltech, leads his readers through an elegant, always human, tapestry of interlocking themes, coming finally to a uniquely informed answer to the great question: what principles control our universe and why do physicists think they know the things they think they know? Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time has been one of the greatest best-sellers in publishing history. Anyone who struggled with that book will find here a more slowly paced but equally mind-stretching experience, with the added fascination of a rich historical and humancomponent.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - 4bonasa - LibraryThing

Found Prof. Thorne sitting, unread on a book shelf. Bought the volume 20 years ago at a R&D book sale, then forgot about it. Just finished tonight, so now I'm only 20 years behind the 'Times'! An easy read even if science wasn't your favorite subject. Read full review

BLACK HOLES AND TIME WARPS: Einstein's Outrageous Legacy

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

In what seems an attempt to join the ranks of bestselling science writers like Carl Sagan and Stephen Hawking, Thorne (Physics/Caltech) turns out a whopper covering everything from ``The Warping of ... Read full review

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Contents

Foreword by Stephen Hawking
11
The Relativity of Space and Time
59
The Warping of Space and Time
87
Black Holes Discovered and Rejected
121
The Mystery of the White Dwarfs
140
Implosion Is Compulsory
164
Implosion to What?
209
The Golden Age
258
What Is Reality?
397
Black Holes Evaporate
412
Inside Black Holes
449
Wormholes and Time Machines
483
Epilogue
523
Acknowledgments 329
529
Chronology
537
Notes
561

The Search
300
Serendipity
322
Ripples of Curvature
357
Bibliography
585
People Index
613
Copyright

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About the author (1994)

Stephen W. Hawking is a theoretical physicist and cosmologist. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a lifetime member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, and in 2009 was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States.

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