Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun: The Evolution and Science of Ballistics [NOOK Book]

Overview

The science of ballistics has a long history and starts with one question: How does a projectile move through the air? Even before physicists worked that one out, military engineers had been tinkering with ballistic devices for centuries. The trebuchet of the Middle Ages has given way to rocket power, and the science of ballistics has evolved to match the technology. Mark Denny’s survey covers this dynamic subject from prehistory to the weapons of tomorrow.

Taking the ...

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Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun: The Evolution and Science of Ballistics

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Overview

The science of ballistics has a long history and starts with one question: How does a projectile move through the air? Even before physicists worked that one out, military engineers had been tinkering with ballistic devices for centuries. The trebuchet of the Middle Ages has given way to rocket power, and the science of ballistics has evolved to match the technology. Mark Denny’s survey covers this dynamic subject from prehistory to the weapons of tomorrow.

Taking the bang-whiz-thud approach, Denny first talks about internal ballistics—Bang!—from before gunpowder to the development of modern firearms. External ballistics—Whiz!—are next, with discussions about short- and long-range trajectories. Denny’s lesson ends with a Thud!—an explanation of terminal ballistics.

Throughout, Denny conveys applicable physics principles in a way that will appeal to technology buffs and ballistics enthusiasts alike. His fun and factual explanations are free of complicated equations; notes cover the key aspects of ballistics physics for the more technically inclined.

Denny has perfected this engaging balance of science and story. For study or hobby, Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun is an entertaining guide to the world of ballistics.

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Editorial Reviews

Choice

Denny is a physicist who has written several science-related books for general audiences... Much of the book is written in a chatty style, often in the first person.

The Age

For a scientist, Denny's approach is delightfully down to earth.

Bat Research News

Denny's writing is anything but dry and boring. He adeptly explains complex subject matter and does so with relatively simple language and minimal use of symbolic notation.

StrategyPage
Perhaps the most useful book on ballistics for the layman ever.

— A. A. Nofi

StrategyPage - A. A. Nofi

Perhaps the most useful book on ballistics for the layman ever.

Choice

Denny is a physicist who has written several science-related books for general audiences... Much of the book is written in a chatty style, often in the first person.

Library Journal
The field of ballistics appeals to physics readers and military history buffs alike. Physicist Denny makes this introduction comprehensible to readers with some science knowledge. (LJ 6/15/11)
Library Journal
Denny, who holds a Ph.D. in physics, is the author of several previous books (Ingenium: Five Machines That Changed the World), intended for nonspecialists, about various fields of science and technology. Here, he begins with a section on internal ballistics—the means by which a missile is brought to a desired velocity. The discussion is set within its historical context, beginning in classical Greece and Rome and extending to the post-World War II era. Illustrations and graphs augment the scientific narrative of advances in ballistics, but mathematical details are set aside in a "Technical Notes" section. The second section discusses the forces that act on a missile during its flight to the target. A short third section concerns efforts to magnify or lessen missile damage to targets (which include human bodies). VERDICT This is a well-written treatise for nonexpert readers who have interest in and some knowledge of ballistics. The likely audience includes hunters, target shooters, and those who read military history.—Jack W. Weigel, Ann Arbor, MI
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801899812
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 5/1/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 248
  • File size: 21 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

After earning a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from Edinburgh University, Mark Denny pursued research at Oxford University from 1981 to 1984, and then moved into a career in industry. He is the author of Ingenium: Five Machines That Changed the World; Blip, Ping, and Buzz: Making Sense of Radar and Sonar; Float Your Boat! The Evolution and Science of Sailing; Froth! The Science of Beer; and Super Structures: The Science of Bridges, Buildings, Dams, and Other Feats of Engineering, all published by Johns Hopkins. Denny is now semi-retired and lives on Vancouver Island.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Introduction 1

I Bang! Internal Ballistics

1 Before Gunpowder 7

2 Gunpowder Weapons 27

3 The Development of Modern Firearms: New Technical Challenges 51

II Whizz: External Ballistics

4 Short-Range Trajectories: Elementary Aerodynamics 77

5 Long-Range Trajectories: Advanced Aerodynamics 102

6 New Technology, New Ballistics 125

III Thud! Terminal Ballistics

7 Stopping the Target 151

Final Thoughts 171

Technical Notes 173

Glossary 207

Bibliography 221

Index 227

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 2, 2014

    Arrow

    Sits on te trone

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  • Posted June 23, 2012

    Dustcovers

    Received books without dustcovers as advertised. We have tried on several occassions to communicate only to have our emails bounce back. It is only four books involved, please help to allow us to sell many more.

    Kind regards,
    Michael
    Queensland Rifle Assoc.
    Australia

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