Simon Mitton is a Fellow of St Edmund's College, Cambridge, and was the astronomy publisher at Cambridge University Press for twenty years. He is the author or editor of several books on astronomy and the history of science, including Cambridge Scientific Minds (Cambridge University Press, 2000). The International Astronomical Union designated an asteroid as Mitton 4027 in recognition of the achievements of Simon and his wife Dr Jacqueline Mitton in popularising astronomy through book writing.
The inspirational memoir of a former brickie who followed his passion for the stars and built his own observatory.
Perfect for readers of Robert Macfarlane, Helen Macdonald and James Rebanks - as well as fans of Brian Cox and the BBC’s Sky at Night
Gary Fildes left school at sixteen, got a trade like most of his mates and was soon married with four kids. His life seemed set. But he had a secret. Something he only practised late at night with a few like-minded friends. Then one day, middle age approaching alarmingly, he acted on his lifelong passion. He finally came out. As an astronomer.
Today, Gary is the founder and lead astronomer of Kielder Observatory, one of the top ten stargazing sites in the world, which he also helped to build. Situated in the beautiful forests of Kielder, Northumberland, within Europe’s largest protected dark sky park, it offers some of the UK's most spectacular views of stars, planets and galaxies.
An Astronomer’s Tale is Gary’s inspirational story: part memoir, part nature writing, part seasonal guide to the night sky. It is a book brimming with passion; and at a time when the world is captivated by space, it will leave you ready to get out there and explore the wonders of the skies for yourself.
William was in his forties when his amateur observations using a homemade telescope led to his discovery of Uranus, and an invitation to King George's court. He coined the term "asteroid," discovered infrared radiation, was the first to realize that our solar system is moving through space, discovered 2,500 nebulae that form the basis of the catalog astronomers use today, and was unrivalled as a telescope builder. Caroline shared William's passion for astronomy, recording his observations during night watches and organizing his papers for publication. She was the first salaried woman astronomer in history, a pioneer who herself discovered nine comets and became a role model for women in the sciences.
Written by the world's premier expert on the Herschels, Discoverers of the Universe traces William and Caroline's many extraordinary contributions to astronomy, shedding new light on their productive but complicated relationship, and setting their scientific achievements in the context of their personal struggles, larger-than-life ambitions, bitter disappointments, and astonishing triumphs.
This book takes a fascinating look at all aspects of the life of Carl Sagan: Sagan the working scientist, who was an inspired and creative participant in the forefront of the new and exciting era of astronomy opened up by the technological breakthroughs of the space age; Sagan the advocate for science, who could expound on the beauties and joys of science as well as point out the follies and foibles of pseudoscience; and Sagan the activist, who helped raise our awareness to the perils of the Nuclear Age that threatened all of us. Following the arc of Sagan's personal and professional life, this book examines both the man and the provocative ideas he brought to this new era, always seeking to capture the infectious enthusiasm and love of communication that infused Carl Sagan's life and work.
Soon making scientific discoveries in her own right, she swept to international scientific and popular fame. She was awarded a salary by George III in 1787 – the first woman in Britain to make her living from science.
From humankind's early attempts to comprehend Earth's place in the solar system, to astronomers' exploration of the Milky Way galaxy and the realm of the nebulae beyond, to the detection of the primordial fluctuations of energy from which all subsequent structure developed, this book explains the physics and the history of how the current model of our universe arose and has passed every test hurled at it by the skeptics. Throughout this rich story, an essential theme is emphasized: how three aspects of rational inquiry--the application of direct measurement and observation, the introduction of mathematical modeling, and the requirement that hypotheses should be testable and verifiable--guide scientific progress and underpin our modern cosmological paradigm.
This monumental puzzle is far from complete, however, as scientists confront the mysteries of the ultimate causes of cosmic structure formation and the real nature and origin of dark matter and dark energy.
This book offers the best account in English of Lemaître’s life and work. It will be appreciated by professionals and graduate students interested in the history of cosmology.