Einstein's Telescope: The Hunt for Dark Matter and Dark Energy in the Universeby Evalyn Gates
In 1936, Albert Einstein predicted that gravitational distortions would allow space itself to act as a telescope far more powerful than humans could ever build. Now, cosmologists at the forefront of their field are using this radical technique (“Einsteins's Telescope”) to detect the invisible. In fresh, engaging prose, astrophysicist Evalyn Gates
In 1936, Albert Einstein predicted that gravitational distortions would allow space itself to act as a telescope far more powerful than humans could ever build. Now, cosmologists at the forefront of their field are using this radical technique (“Einsteins's Telescope”) to detect the invisible. In fresh, engaging prose, astrophysicist Evalyn Gates explains how this tool is enabling scientists to uncover planets as big as the Earth, discover black holes that whirl through space, and trace the evolution of cosmic architecture over billions of years. Powerful and accessible, Einstein's Telescope takes us to the brink of revolution in our understanding of the deepest mysteries of the Universe.
The Washington Post
There is far more to the universe than meets the eye: invisible dark matter and dark energy constitute the vast bulk of the cosmos and are responsible for its accelerating expansion. Gates, assistant director of the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, explores the science of these invisible phenomena and the questions they raise about the universe's origins, its present and its future. Gates explains how scientists discovered the existence of dark matter and their theories about the nature of the particles (with named like WIMPs) that form it. Astrophysicists have found tools to measure the invisible mass: the stars themselves. Drawing on Einstein's theory of general relativity, scientists can "see" dark matter using "gravitational lensing"-by measuring the deflection of light around a cosmic object, they can measure the object's mass. Presenting complicated topics concisely and clearly, Gates explains what we know about the universe, what scientists wish they knew, and what's at stake-the fate of the universe itself. 8 pages of color and 40 b&w illus. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Gravity should be slowing the expansion of the universe, but, instead, the expansion is accelerating owing to a force astronomers believe is even stronger than gravity-dark energy. It is the aim of University of Chicago astrophysicist Gates to make accessible to all readers the fascinating discoveries made possible through a new tool based on Einstein's theory of general real, gravitational lensing, or "Einstein's Telescope." In her preface, the author asserts that the cosmos, like music, can be appreciated many ways and at many different levels. She succeeds in presenting mind-boggling ideas with an engaging, readable style that will appeal to nonscientists and scientists alike. Readers are encouraged to appreciate the sheer beauty of the book's astronomical images as they learn how the images were obtained and what they represent. Gates writes with a freshness and clarity that make complex ideas such as relativity, lensing, black holes, and the cosmic web understandable. Highly recommended for public and academic libraries of all sizes.
- Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
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Meet the Author
Evalyn Gates is the assistant director of the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, a senior research associate at the University of Chicago, and the former astronomy director of the Adler Planetarium. Her writing has appeared in Physics Today and the Chicago Tribune.
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Found beneath the cover of Einstein's Telescope is a book that manages to explain the complex theories behind gravitational lensing in a way that appeals to the layman without dumbing anything down. Assuredly it will appeal to any lover of the cosmic and easily captivates a curiosity of it. Regardless of knowledge of the subject of relativity, author Gates provides an ample exploration into the history of the theories upon which this book is based. It is upon this foundation that the rest of the book (especially the latter chapters) rest upon. 40 illustrations and diagrams dot the pages of the book and are effective tools in understanding many of the basic theories that Gates brings up. Through the course of the book, Gates manages to paint a modern comprehension of what the Universe is made of and where it is going. Gates (Ph.D. in Theoretical Particle Physics) remarks on the works of modern and past scientists and their efforts to explain why the universe is expanding and what that means to our current theories. Many questions are brought up and many are left unanswered. From this we're given a sense that perhaps the more we delve into the mechanics of the universe, the less we will truly know - a fact that is just about as frightening as it is intriguing. One thing is certain, however, that the impact of Einstein on the scientific community will most definitely continue through the use of gravitational lensing (Einstein's Telescope). Overall, this book is a beautiful introduction to something seemingly unreachable by any non-scientist. It flows in a very chronological manner which makes following only that much easier. From 1917 to the 2000's we see a progression in human comprehension that is bound to enthrall all the curious, science-loving people out there.
Great writing, good basic science, and the best skinny on a really useful development in cosmological and astronomical science one could ask for!