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Introduction to Astronomy and Cosmology Paperback – 24 Oct 2008


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Product details

  • Paperback: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 1 edition (24 Oct. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470033347
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470033340
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 1.6 x 24.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 180,571 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

Review

"The book is beautifully produced and illustrated, and notable for the care that has gone into the choice of appropriate and unusual illustrations. Recommended." ( SSR, December 2009)

"This is an up–to–date, well–written, first–year undergraduate textbook ... .Many people will enjoy reading it." (The Observatory Magazine, August 2009)

"A very well thought–out book that lucidly covers a comprehensive range of topics in an attractive format ... .Bang up–to–date, and all cut up into convenient, self–contained sections that can be read in a dip–in, dip–out sort of way." (Astronomy Now, January 2009)

From the Back Cover

Introduction to Astronomy & Cosmology is based on a successful course given by the author to give first year university students a thorough grounding in modern astronomy and to describe the techniques that have given rise to many exciting discoveries. The book also aims to show that astronomy is a wonderful showcase for fundamental physics and how it determines the fabric of the Universe.

The Chapters are Organised as Follows:

  • Astronomy, an observational science
  • Our Solar System I – the Sun
  • Our Solar System II – the Planets
  • Extra–solar Planets
  • Observing the Universe
  • The Properties of Stars
  • Stellar Evolution – the life and death of stars
  • Galaxies and the Large Scale Structure of the Universe
  • Cosmology – the origin and evolution of the universe

Every concept is accompanied by worked examples including problems at the end of each chapters. Complex mathematics are not required to use this book.

This highly illustrated textbook, including numerous colour images, though primarily written for undergraduates, will also be of interest to amateur astronomers and students studying astronomy in senior school.


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By WeatherNerd on 2 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback
There's a lot to understand about modern astronomy, and this handily-sized book has a good go at covering pretty much all of it in just 341 pages! It's not the first to embark on a complete introduction to astronomy and cosmology, but it's certainly one of the better offerings.

Morison's text, which originally formed a series of lectures, is printed on superb-quality paper, successfully supplemented with a rich picking of glossy photographs that provide added interest and explanation.

Occasionally sounding a little dry, the text generally runs smoothly, is bang up-to-date, and all cut up into convenient, self-contained sections that can be read in a dip-in, dip-out sort of way. Morison deals with everything from the Big Bang and dark energy, to the different designs of telescope. There are a few bloopers, though; the author claims the Sun would burn for about 1000 years were it made of coal; it's actually more like 5000 years. He then wags a finger at people who use the term 'The Theory of General Relativity', as we should be using 'The General Theory of Relativity'. Amusingly, on the very next page, he uses the wrong version!

What I felt Morison isn't so good at is making the maths, which makes regular and appropriate appearances in the text, as easy to understand as it could be. This is an introductory text, and I did think a gentler leading of hand into the equations might help many readers. Some of the explanatory diagrams are also a bit on the vague side. The diagram of the Sun's proton-proton nuclear reactions, for example, were difficult to grasp, even though I've studied them previously! On the plus side, he has a technicolor Hertzsprung-Russell diagram to be proud of!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Catherine Tryfona on 3 Nov. 2008
Format: Paperback
A FANTASTIC introductory text - perfect for first year undergraduates, especially those who do not come from a 'hard' science background. The subject is broken down into manageable chunks and each topic is explained clearly and concisely. The book is littered with colorful illustrations that are likely to be familiar to many students from their own lecturers' presentations.

I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this text to undergraduates and amateur astronomers with a keen interest in the subject.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mark Eaton on 31 Aug. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An excellent and well structured book covering all aspects of Astronomy and Cosmology. Well written and well presented with some excellent diagrams and some of the clearest explanations of the life-cycle of stars I have been able to find anywhere. The lack of maths will appeal to some but not to others but whatever 'maths camp' you fit in this will be a useful reference guide and explanatory text.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Interesting and a good read too! 19 April 2012
By Kori - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Honestly, I hardly ever read the textbooks assigned in classes. This is the one that I did read and enjoyed to read. I found it interesting and it really went along well with my lecture material. There are points in the text where the author gets into the math side of astronomy in detail, but if its something you don't understand, you can skim it or skip over it and still not be totally lost in the text.
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