Our Cosmic Origins: From the Big Bang to the Emergence of Life and Intelligence

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Our Cosmic Origins traces the remarkable story of the emergence of life and intelligence right through the complex evolutionary history of the Universe.Armand Delsemme deftly weaves together cosmology, astronomy, geology, biochemistry and biology in this wide-ranging book. He shows us how the first elements formed in the early Universe, how stars and planets were born, how the first bacteria evolved, and how the coupling of the eye and brain led to the development of self-awareness and, ultimately, intelligence. He concludes with the tantalising suggestion that the existence of alien life and intelligence is likely, and examines our chances of contacting it.This provocative book provides the general reader with an accessible and wide-ranging account of how life evolved on Earth and how likely it is to exist elsewhere in the Universe.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I know of no other book that covers in such detail for a popular audience the grand sweep of cosmic evolution from the Big Bang to homo sapiens. Readers will find here an answer to the age-old question of our place in the universe as understood by modern science." Steven J. Dick, US Naval Observatory

"Our Cosmic Origins is an exception. Delsemme, an expert in comets, has put together an impressive overview of the story of life from the start of the universe onward...Everything is clearly explained." Meteoritics & Planetary Science Nov 2001

"A thrilling book, a masterpiece..." Audouin Dollfus, former president of the Socie^D'te^D' Astronomique de France

"Delsemme offers a concise chronicle of the universe according to the big bang model." Booklist

"Thos book is highly recommended and once you start reading, it grips you like a good detective novel." Astrenautical Soc. of WA vol 24-No.5 Feb 99

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521620383
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 10/28/2012
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 322
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.83 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Locating humans in the Universe 1
2 The race toward complexity 19
3 The stellar alchemy of metals 43
4 The formation of the planets 69
5 The emergence of life 113
6 The history of life 155
7 The awakening of intelligence 195
8 The other worlds 209
9 Perspectives 245
App. A The standard model of the physics of elementary particles 277
App. B Symmetry in physics 279
App. C The strange role of time in relativity 281
App. D The measurement of long time spans and the age of the Universe 285
App. E The standard model of the Big Bang 289
App. F The cause of the Big Bang and inflation 293
App. G Chirality 295
Glossary 297
Bibliography 309
Figure index 313
Table index 315
Name index 316
Subject index 319
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