Observer's Guide to Stellar Evolution: The Birth, Life and Death of Stars / Edition 1

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Stellar evolution-the birth, development and death of stars-is central to our current understanding of astronomy. But surprisingly the majority of amateur astronomers lack a full understanding of the physics of stars. Current books on the market tend to be highly theoretical and not reader-friendly. Observer's Guide to Stellar Evolution brings this subject to life in a unique way. By combining a step-by-step introduction with suggestions for practical observations of stars at different stages in their evolution, Mike Inglis has written a book that amateur astronomers will find fascinating and informative, regardless of their current level of knowledge. *Accessible to every amateur astronomer, regardless of background knowledge *Step-by-step introduction to the theory of stellar evolution *Includes many examples of stars at different stages in their evolution, so that readers can observe for themselves *Mathematics is made accessible by being presented in boxes that readers can skip over if they prefer

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781852334659
  • Publisher: Springer London
  • Publication date: 1/17/2003
  • Series: Patrick Moore Practical Astronomy Series
  • Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 2003
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 238
  • Product dimensions: 6.28 (w) x 9.24 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Table of Contents

A Brief Introduction.- 1 Stellar Evolution — The Basics.- 1.1 Distance to the Stars.- 1.2 The Nearest Stars.- 1.3 The Brightness and Luminosity of Stars.- 1.4 The Magnitudes of Stars.- 1.5 The Brightest Stars.- 1.6 The Colour of Stars.- 1.7 The Size and Mass of Stars.- 1.8 The Biggest Stars.- 1.9 The Constituents of Stars.- 1.10 The Spectra of Stars.- 1.11 Stellar Classification.- 1.12 The Hertzsprung—Russell Diagram.- 1.13 The H—R Diagram and a Star’s Radius.- 1.14 The H—R Diagram and a Star’s Luminosity.- 1.15 The H—R Diagram and a Star’s Mass.- 2 Beginnings — Star Birth.- 2.1 Introduction.- 2.2 The Interstellar Medium.- 2.3 Nebulae.- 2.4 Molecular Clouds.- 2.5 Protostars.- 2.6 Pre-Main Sequence Evolution.- 2.7 Mass Loss and Mass Gain.- 2.8 Star Clusters.- 2.9 Stellar Associations and Streams.- 2.10 Star Formation Triggers.- 3 The Main Sequence and Beyond.- 3.1 Introduction.- 3.2 Our Nearest Star — The Sun.- 3.3 From the Surface to the Core.- 3.4 The Proton—Proton Chain.- 3.5 The Flow of Energy from the Core to the Surface.- 3.6 Main Sequence Lifetimes.- 3.7 Towards the Red Giant.- 3.8 Helium Burning and the Helium Flash.- 3.9 Red Giants, Star Clusters and the H—R Diagram.- 3.10 Post-Main Sequence Star Clusters: The Globular Clusters.- 3.11 Stars That Pulsate.- 3.12 Cepheid Variables and the Period—Luminosity Relationship.- 3.13 Cepheid Variables: Temperature and Mass.- 3.14 RR Lyrae and Long-Period Variable Stars.- 4 The End Point — Star Death.- 4.1 Introduction.- 4.2 The Asymptotic Giant Branch.- 4.3 Dredge-Ups.- 4.4 Mass Loss and Stellar Winds.- 4.5 Infrared Stars.- 4.6 The End of an AGB Star’s Life.- 4.7 Planetary Nebulae.- 4.8 White Dwarf Stars.- 4.9 Electron Degeneracy and White Dwarfs.- 4.10 The Chandrasekhar Limit.- 4.11 White Dwarf Evolution.- 4.12 White Dwarf Origins.- 4.13 High-Mass Stars: Nuclear Burning and an Onion.- 4.14 Iron, Supernovae and the Formation of the Elements.- 4.15 The Supernova Remnant.- 4.16 A Final Note on Supernovae.- 4.17 Neutron Stars, Pulsars and Black Holes.- 4.18 From Beginning to End.- Appendix 1 Degeneracy.- Appendix 2 Books, Magazines and Organizations.- Appendix 3 The Greek Alphabet.- Appendix 4 Colour Photographs.- Object Index.

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