The Evolving Universe and the Origin of Life: The Search for Our Cosmic Roots

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Springer Science & Business Media, Dec 29, 2008 - Science - 522 pages

Sir Isaac Newton famously said, regarding his discoveries, "If I have seen further it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants."

The Evolving Universe and the Origin of Life describes, complete with fascinating biographical details of the thinkers involved, the ascent to the metaphorical shoulders accomplished by the greatest minds in history. For the first time, a single book can take the reader on a journey through the history of the universe as interpreted by the expanding body of knowledge of humankind. From subatomic particles to the protein chains that form life, and expanding in scale to the entire universe, this book covers the science that explains how we came to be.

The Evolving Universe and the Origin of Life contains a great breadth of knowledge, from astronomy to physics, from chemistry to biology. It includes over 350 figures that enhance the comprehension of concepts both basic and advanced, and is a non-technical, easy-to-read text at an introductory college level that is ideal for anyone interested in science as well as its history.

 

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Contents

Science in Athens
13
Planetary Spheres and the Size of the Universe 23
22
Medieval Cosmology
37
The Roots of the Copernican Revolution 47
46
The True Laws of Planetary Motion Revealed
57
Galileo Galilei and His Successors
67
How Far Away Are the Stars?
79
The Scale of the Solar System 93
92
Cosmic Fusion Reactors
217
The Riddle of the Milky Way 235
234
Entering the Galaxy Universe
255
Largescale Structure of the Universe
281
Cosmological Models
291
Big Bang 309
308
The Dark Side of the Universe
325
Messages Through Radio Waves
335

Newton 103
101
Celestial Mechanics
111
Nature of Light 125
124
Electricity and Magnetism
135
Time and Space 147
146
Curved Space and Gravity
157
Atoms and Nuclei
171
Strange Microworld
185
Elementary Particles 199
198
Origin of Galaxies
353
The Nature of Life 367
366
The Origin of Earth and its Moon
393
Emergence and Evolution of Life 411
410
Life and our Solar System
433
Extrasolar Planetary Systems and Life in other Solar Systems
461
Humans Role in the Universe
479
Recommended Reading
489
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