Echo of the Big Bang

Echo of the Big Bang

by Michael D. Lemonick
     
 

ISBN-10: 0691102783

ISBN-13: 9780691102788

Pub. Date: 03/17/2003

Publisher: Princeton University Press

"A tight-knit, high-powered group of scientists and engineers spent eight years building a satellite designed, in effect, to read the genome of the universe. Launched in 2001, the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) has finally reported in - and it's found things nobody expected." "For more than a year, the WMAP satellite hovered in the cold of deep space, a…  See more details below

Overview

"A tight-knit, high-powered group of scientists and engineers spent eight years building a satellite designed, in effect, to read the genome of the universe. Launched in 2001, the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP) has finally reported in - and it's found things nobody expected." "For more than a year, the WMAP satellite hovered in the cold of deep space, a million miles from Earth, in an effort to determine whether the science of cosmology - the study of the origin and evolution of the universe - has been on the right track for the past two decades. What WMAP was looking for was a barely perceptible pattern of hot and cold spots in the faint whisper of microwave radiation left over from the Big Bang, the event that gave birth to all of space, time, matter, and energy." "The pattern encoded in those microwaves holds the answers to some of the great unanswered questions of cosmology: What is the universe made of? What is its geometry? How much of it consists of this mysterious dark matter and dark energy that continues to baffle astronomers? How fast is it expanding? And did it undergo a period of inflationary hyper-expansion at the very beginning? WMAP has now given definitive answers to these mysteries." "On February 11, 2003, the team of researchers went public with the results. Just some of their extraordinary findings: The universe is 13.7 billion years old. The first stars "turned on" when the universe was only 200 million years old, five times earlier than anyone had thought. It is now certain that a mysterious dark energy dominates the universe." "Michael Lemonick, who had exclusive access to the researches as WMAP gathered its data, here tells the full story of WMAP and its surprising revelations." This book is both a personal and a scientific tale of discovery. In its pages, readers will come to know the science of cosmology and the people who have finally, seventy-four years after we first learned that the universe is expanding, deciphered it

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691102788
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
03/17/2003
Edition description:
With a New epilogue by the author
Pages:
240
Product dimensions:
6.36(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.85(d)

Table of Contents

CHAPTER 1
Is Something Amiss in the Universe? 1
CHAPTER 2
The Birth of Cosmology 15
CHAPTER 3
A Whisper of Microwaves 37
CHAPTER 4
Bad Blood 63
CHAPTER 5
Now What? 73
CHAPTER 6
Forming a Team 83
CHAPTER 7
How to Design a Satellite 100
CHAPTER 8
The Build 128
CHAPTER 9
Horse Race 142
CHAPTER 10
Launch 155
CHAPTER 11
Deepening Mystery 168
CHAPTER 12
The Answer 190
Glossary 203
Acknowledgments 207
Index 211

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