Stardust from Meteorites: An Introduction to Presolar Grains

Front Cover
World Scientific, 2005 - Science - 209 pages
The study of presolar meteoritic grains is a new inter-disciplinary field that brings together topics from nuclear physics to astronomy and chemistry. Traditionally, most of the information about the cosmos has been gathered by observing light through telescopes. However, with the recent discovery that some dust grains extracted from primitive meteorites were produced in stellar environments, we now have the opportunity to gather information about stars and our Galaxy from the laboratory analysis of tiny pieces of stardust. Stellar grains represent a unique and fascinating subject of study. Their analysis is a breakthrough in research on stellar nucleosynthesis and the origin of the elements.While a number of specialized reviews exist on the topic, this book is the first work that brings together in a unified and accessible manner the background knowledge necessary for the study of presolar grains together with up-to-date discoveries in the field.The book includes exercise questions and answers, an extensive glossary for easy reference, and more than 40 figures and tables ? from schematic diagrams to electron microscope images and graphs of results from stellar grain measurements and theoretical stellar models.
 

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Contents

1 Meteoritic Presolar Grains and Their Significance
1
2 Basics of Stellar Nucleosynthesis
25
3 Laboratory Analysis of Presolar Grains
59
4 The Origin of Presolar Sic Grains
77
5 Heavy Elements in Presolar SiC Grains
113
6 Diamond Graphite and Oxide Grains
151
Appendix A Glossary
165
Appendix B Solutions to Exercises
173
Appendix C Selected Books and Reviews for Quick Reference
183
Bibliography
185
Index
207
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