Astronomers' Universe Series is a new series aimed at active amateur astronomers but is appropriate to a wider audience of astronomically-informed readers. The book provides an up-to-date account of active galaxies. Lists of such objects and their visual and imaged appearance in commercially available telescopes are an important component of this book. The book makes sense of the chaotic and apparently innumerable types of violently active galaxies. It provides the data and teaches the skills needed for users of small telescopes to observe and image some of these "galaxies in turmoil" for themselves.
Each night, we are able to gaze up at the night sky and look at the thousands of stars that stretch to the end of our individual horizons. But the stars we see are only those that make up our own Milky Way galaxy--but one of hundreds of billions in the whole of the universe, each separated by inconceivably huge tracts of empty space. In this book, astronomer James Geach tells the rich stories of both the evolution of galaxies and our ability to observe them, offering a fascinating history of how we've come to realize humanity's tiny place in the vast universe. Taking us on a compelling tour of the state-of-the-art science involved in mapping the infinite, Geach offers a first-hand account of both the science itself and how it is done, describing what we currently know as well as that which we still do not. He goes back one hundred years to when scientists first proved the existence of other galaxies, tracking our continued improvement in the ability to collect and interpret the light that stars in faraway galaxies have emitted through space and time. He discusses examples of this rapidly accelerating research, from the initial discovery that the faint "spiral nebulae" were actually separate star systems located far beyond the Milky Way to the latest observations of the nature of galaxies and how they have evolved. He also delves into the theoretical framework and simulations that describe our current "world model" of the universe. With one hundred superb color illustrations, Galaxy is an illuminating guide to the choreography of the cosmos and how we came to know our place within it that will appeal to any stargazer who has wondered what was beyond their sight.
Accounting for the enormous and amazing development cosmology has made in the past ten years, this long awaited second edition of Malcolm Longairs highly appreciated textbook has been extensively and thoroughly updated. It tells the story of modern astrophysical cosmology from the perspective of one of its most important and fundamental problems how did the galaxies come about? Longair uses this approach to introduce the whole of what may be called "classical cosmology." Moreover he describes how the study of the origin of galaxies and larger-scale structures in the Universe has provided us with unique and direct information about the physics of the very early Universe. The material is presented in an informal pedagogical manner. This includes a comprehensive introduction to relativistic astrophysics needed for the clarification of cosmological ideas.
This book offers an intimate guide to the Milky Way, taking readers on a grand tour of our home Galaxy's structure, genesis, and evolution, based on the latest astronomical findings. In engaging language, it tells how the Milky Way congealed from blobs of gas and dark matter into a spinning starry abode brimming with diverse planetary systems--some of which may be hosting myriad life forms and perhaps even other technologically communicative species. William Waller vividly describes the Milky Way as it appears in the night sky, acquainting readers with its key components and telling the history of our changing galactic perceptions. The ancients believed the Milky Way was a home for the gods. Today we know it is but one galaxy among billions of others in the observable universe. Within the Milky Way, ground-based and space-borne telescopes have revealed that our Solar System is not alone. Hundreds of other planetary systems share our tiny part of the vast Galaxy. We reside within a galactic ecosystem that is driven by the theatrics of the most massive stars as they blaze through their brilliant lives and dramatic deaths. Similarly effervescent ecosystems of hot young stars and fluorescing nebulae delineate the graceful spiral arms in our Galaxy's swirling disk. Beyond the disk, the spheroidal halo hosts the ponderous--and still mysterious--dark matter that outweighs everything else. Another dark mystery lurks deep in the heart of the Milky Way, where a supermassive black hole has produced bizarre phenomena seen at multiple wavelengths. Waller makes the case that our very existence is inextricably linked to the Galaxy that spawned us. Through this book, readers can become well-informed galactic "insiders"--ready to imagine humanity's next steps as fully engaged citizens of the Milky Way.
Our Place in the Universe tells the story of our world, formation of the first galaxies and stars formed from great clouds containing the primordial elements made in the first few minutes; birth of stars, their lives and deaths in fiery supernova explosions; formation of the solar system, its planets and many moons; life on Earth, its needs and vicissitudes on land and in the seas; finally exoplanets, planets that surround distant stars. Interspersed in the text are short pieces on some of those who revealed these wonders to us. It is written in a very authoritative and readable form and contains more than 100 color prints of the marvelous galaxies, and nebula that have been taken from space-based and land-based telescopes carried by NASA missions, the European Space Agency, the European Southern Laboratory in Chile and many other sources.
Written in an informal and engaging style, this volume traces the discoveries that led to our understanding of the size and structure of the Milky Way, and the conclusive evidence for a massive black hole at its center. Robert H. Sanders, an astronomer who witnessed many of these developments, describes how we parted the veil of interstellar dust to probe the strange phenomena within. We now know that the most luminous objects in the Universe - quasars and radio galaxies - are powered by massive black holes at their hearts. But how did black holes emerge from being a mathematical peculiarity, a theoretical consequence of Einstein's theory of gravity, to become part of the modern paradigm that explains active galactic nuclei and galaxy evolution in normal galaxies such as the Milky Way? This story, aimed at non-specialist readers and students and historians of astronomy, will both inform and entertain.
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Royal Museums Greenwich comprises four sites: the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Observatory, the Queen's House and Cutty Sark. Together these constitute one museum working to illustrate for everyone the importance of the sea, ships, time and the stars and their relationship with people.