Galaxies: A Very Short Introduction

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Overview

In this fascinating Very Short Introduction, popular science writer John Gribben tells the story of our growing understanding of galaxies, from the days before Galileo to our present-day observations of our many hundreds of millions of galactic neighbors. Not only are galaxies fascinating astronomical structures in themselves, but their study has revealed much of what we know today about the cosmos, providing a window on the Big Bang and the origins of the Universe. Gribben looks at our own "Milky Way" Galaxy in ...

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Galaxies: A Very Short Introduction

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Overview

In this fascinating Very Short Introduction, popular science writer John Gribben tells the story of our growing understanding of galaxies, from the days before Galileo to our present-day observations of our many hundreds of millions of galactic neighbors. Not only are galaxies fascinating astronomical structures in themselves, but their study has revealed much of what we know today about the cosmos, providing a window on the Big Bang and the origins of the Universe. Gribben looks at our own "Milky Way" Galaxy in detail, from the different kinds of stars that are born within it, to the origins of its magnificent spiral structure. Perhaps most interesting, Gribben describes the many exciting discoveries have been made about our own galaxy and about those beyond: how a supermassive black hole lurks at the center of every galaxy, how enormous forces are released when galaxies collide, how distant galaxies provide a window on the early Universe, and how the formation of young galaxies shed needed light on the mysteries of Cold Dark Matter.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199234349
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 5/28/2008
  • Series: Very Short Introductions Series
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 1,361,375
  • Product dimensions: 4.20 (w) x 6.80 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

John Gribbin is one of the best-known current popular science writers. His many books include the acclaimed The Universe: A Biography, In Search of Schrodinger's Cat, and Science: A History. He has written for many newspapers and regularly contributes to radio and television documentaries and debates, and also writes science fiction novels. He formerly worked for Nature and New Scientist and is presently a Visiting Fellow in Astronomy at the University of Sussex.

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Table of Contents

1. A Very Short Introduction
2. The Great Debate
3. Our Island
4. The Expanding Universe
5. Across the Universe
6. The Origin of Galaxies
7. The Universe at Large References & Further Reading Index

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2014

    Athena

    K vde res 6

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 24, 2014

    Nick

    Sure

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  • Posted January 31, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A great first introduction to Galaxies

    Of all the astronomical objects that are visible to the human eye, perhaps the most fascinating ones are the galaxies. This is in large measure due to the most familiar elliptical galaxies, of which our own Milky Way is an example. Their twirling, irregular shapes are fascinating to the eye, for more or less the same reasons that the rings of Saturn attract attention. They are an exception to the universe that is filled with perfectly spherical or pointlike objects, with very little of internal structure. And just like Saturn, the fascinating shape of the galaxies has only been revealed with the advent of a telescope, and not until well into the 20th century did we realize that these "island universes" lay far outside out of the Milky Way.

    If you are interested in finding out more about galaxies, what they are, how did we come to know about them, how they develop, and what their ultimate destiny is, then John Gribbin's book is an excellent introduction to the subject. It is accessible to a non-expert, and very little scientific understanding is assumed. It is very readable and interesting, and it will take a reader on a fascinating intellectual journey across the universe. After reading this book, you will be looking at the universe with a whole new set of eyes, and would hopefully appreciate our own place in cosmos.

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