Our Worlds: The Magnetism and Thrill of Planetary Exploration

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The eight essays range across the breadth of planetary science, from the inner to the outer worlds, from telescopic to robotic exploration, and from computerized armchairs to diving below the Antarctic ice. The stories encompass tales of personal exploration and the fears of a scientist living at the edge of funding difficulties. You will learn about the mountains of the Moon, the craters of Venus, the volcanos of Io, the possibility of seas on Titan, and more. Within this book you will find both a lot of planetary science, and an insider's perspective about how planetary science is done. You will also see a good deal of what drives and interests planetary scientists and, on occasion, you will see their inner hopes and aspirations revealed.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Eight planetary scientists describe their personal inner worlds as well as the planets, moons, asteroids, and comets to which they have devoted their careers. Their work is plagued by countless setbacks including equipment failures, funding cuts, and cloudy skies and inconveniences frigid weather and monotonous diets in remote locations. They may wait years to collect a few precious hours of data from a space mission. But thanks to the support of colleagues and family--and timely good luck--they have successfully pursued educational and research opportunities and maintained their optimism and sense of wonder. The contributors write with varying degrees of formality, humor, and self-revelation, but all convey their enthusiasm for the celestial worlds they study as well as the world of professional astronomy. Recommended for public and academic libraries. Index and illustrations not seen.--Nancy Curtis, Univ. of Maine, Orono
From the Publisher
"...highlights the human story of planetary science...presents the life stories of nine planetary scientists...their research, their lives, and how they got involved in what they're doing." Astronomy

"...superb." Science Books & Films

"An unexpected plus is how much cutting-edge science gets conveyed so well in so few pages...anyone who has struggled to understand concepts like mineral spectroscopy, orbital dynamics, and cratering rates will appreciate how easily they can be grasped when presented with a little care..." Sky & Telescope

"The contributors write with varying degrees of formality, humor, and self-revelation, but all convey their enthusiasm for the celestial worlds they study as well as the world of professional astronomy. Recommended for public and academic libraries." Library Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521644402
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 172
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Welcome home 1
Inner Worlds 7
Exploring Mars 9
Venus: the way we might have been 31
Moonlighting 47
Small worlds, up close 65
Outer Worlds 93
Cruisin' with Comet Halley 95
Io and I 117
Titan: a world seen but darkly 135
Triton Is doomed 151
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