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Supernovae [Hardcover]

Paul Murdin , Lesley Murdin


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Book Description

7 Nov 1985
Supernovae are gigantic stellar explosions. The effects of these rare events pervade astronomy, creating and spreading the chemical elements, triggering the formation of new stars, creating black holes and pulsars. Originally published in 1978 and first published by Cambridge as this revised edition in 1985, is the story of supernovae. It captures the flavour of ancient astronomy and lays out the accidents, coincidences, false leads and flashes of inspiration that followed as astronomers grasped the implications behind the rare appearance of supernovae. Two supernovae, seen in 1572 and 1604, made scientists aware that the stars changed and could be studied like everything else. Eventually, modern astronomers came to link supernovae with black holes, pulsars, and even with the creation of the chemical elements. The whole entertaining story is told clearly, in non-technical language, showing the triumph of human imagination as we discovered our place in the universe.

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More About the Author

Paul Murdin has worked as an astronomer in the USA, Australia, England, Scotland and Spain, where he led the operation of the Anglo-Dutch Isaac Newton Group of telescopes. He has been a research scientist (studying supernovae, black holes and neutron stars) and a science administrator for the UK Government and the Royal Astronomical Society. He works at the Institute of Astronomy at the University of Cambridge, England, and is Visiting Professor at John Moores University, Liverpool. He has had a secondary career as a broadcaster and commentator, and is a talented lecturer and writer on astronomy. He has been honoured in the UK by the Queen for his services to astronomy.

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Book Description

This revised 1985 edition captures the flavour of ancient astronomy and lays out the accidents, coincidences, false leads and flashes of inspiration that followed as astronomers grasped the implications behind the rare appearance of supernovae. Two supernovae made scientists aware that the stars changed and could be studied like everything else.

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First Sentence
From time to time bright new stars called supernovae flare briefly in the sky. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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