×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

The Universe and Beyond
  • Alternative view 1 of The Universe and Beyond
  • Alternative view 2 of The Universe and Beyond
  • Alternative view 3 of The Universe and Beyond
<Previous >Next
     

The Universe and Beyond

4.0 1
by Terence Dickinson
 

See All Formats & Editions

From the foreword of the fourth edition:

"The Universe and Beyond is a celebration of the human spirit of exploration. It is a majestic voyage to the most distant realms we can imagine. Prepare yourself for a great adventure."
— Edward G. Gibson, Astronaut, Skylab 4

The Universe and Beyond is a fact-packed, up-to-date guide to the

Overview

From the foreword of the fourth edition:

"The Universe and Beyond is a celebration of the human spirit of exploration. It is a majestic voyage to the most distant realms we can imagine. Prepare yourself for a great adventure."
— Edward G. Gibson, Astronaut, Skylab 4

The Universe and Beyond is a fact-packed, up-to-date guide to the universe written by best-selling astronomy author Terence Dickinson. This new edition includes all the most recent astronomical discoveries and events and features imaginative astronomical illustrations and dramatic photography from the Hubble Space Telescope, space probes and the largest observatories on Earth.

This fifth edition has been carefully revised and updated:

  • The section on nearby stars has been significantly expanded to include new information about the planets of other stars, emphasizing the probability that, by 2020, several Earth-like planets will be discovered orbiting stars similar to our Sun.
  • The controlversial decision to drop Pluto from the solar system's roster of planets is fully explained.
  • Newly discovered black holes and galaxy collisions are discussed.
  • There are more than 50 new photographs of planets, moons, nebulas, galaxies and galaxy clusters.

Every major aspect of modern astronomy technology is described in clear, non-mathematical language, and a special resource section lists books, associations and websites.

The Universe and Beyond addresses the most common queries from those fascinated by the mystery and majesty of the cosmos. Brimming with color illustrations, this book is a one-stop guide to understanding the universe.

Editorial Reviews

Science Books and Films
[Review of earlier edition:] Chosen as one of the "Best Books for Junior High and Young Adult 2005" by Science Books and Films.
Washington Post
[Review of earlier edition:] Astronomer Terence Dickinson presents the state of current knowledge and theory about the universe in accessible form. ... Packed with information, its photographic images augmented with explanatory graphics and artistic renderings.
Astronomy
[Review of earlier edition:] The 'beyond' subjects include cosmology, dark matter, extra-terrestrial life, UFO's, and the ultimate fate of the universe ... Lavishly illustrated with astrophotos, artworks and diagrams.
Sky and Telescope
[Review of earlier edition:] The latest update... continues to provide an accessible and wonderfully illustrated tour.
Science Books and Films - Thomas A. Lesser
[Review of earlier edition:] The Universe and Beyond is an excellent overview of the cosmos... Lavishly illustrated with both full-color photographs and artist's paintings, the book is comprehensive (no small feat when discussing the universe) and well organized... The explanations that help the average person comprehend the scale of the universe, combined with the wonderful illustrations, make this book a must-have for anyone interested in astronomy.
American Reference Book Annual - Robert A. Seal
[Review of earlier edition:] This impressive volume provides an excellent overview of the heavens for the general reader. What sets it apart from a multitude of other books of its type is a lively, informative text and dozens of stunning photographs and illustrations. It is a delight to read and a delight for the eye.
E-Streams - Peggy Dominy
[Review of earlier edition:] Terence Dickinson has produced another gem in Universe and Beyond, now in its fourth and expanded edition... Every page is full of visual impact both photographically and graphically. Each illustration is complemented with an in-depth caption.
Science Books and Films - Gary W. Finiol
[Review of earlier edition:] Excellent book... exceedingly well written and filled with stunning photos and illustrations, the book is one of the best I have seen so far for use by general audiences of astronomically curious readers.
publisher
With an enormous amount of new scientific information, coupled with more than 100 new photographs and illustrations, Terence Dickinson takes the reader on an up-to-date tour of the universe. With our expert guide, we stroll the sands of Mars, float among Saturn's rings, observe how one star is born and another dies, venture to planets with two suns, and to "realms where black holes consume nearby stars or swallow whole galaxies." The author journeys back in time to the very origin of the universe and also discusses scientific possibilities that other life forms in the universe could "share our compulsion to know."

Other features included in this new, expanded edition of an astronomy classic include:

  • The discovery of icy bodies near the orbit of Pluto during the 1990s.
  • Recent images from the Hubble Space Telescope, and from those on mountains in Hawaii and Chile.
  • New pictures from the Galileo spacecraft, and other NASA space probes.
  • An expanded section on galaxies, with new illustrations of the internal structure of the Milky Way.
  • Updated section on the size and age of the universe.
  • Extensively updated information about Mars and Jupiter.
  • New section on comets including Hale-Bopp and Haykutake.
  • Expanded data tables with increased accuracy in distance determination due to the Hipparchos satellite.
Award winning astronomy writer Terence Dickinson shares the wonders of the universe with the reader. Part of that "wonder" is the immensity—the sheer vastness of time, space, and age measurement involved in talking about the cosmos. Dickinson puts this into perspective using a model. For example, if the Sun is reduced to the size of a ping pong ball, Earth becomes a mote of dust 2.5 meters away from it while the nearest star is another ping pong ball 700 km away. Related to the mysteries of the cosmos is its destiny and the author unveils an outline of the inevitable fate of our ever-expanding universe.

About the Author:

Terence Dickinson is the author of fourteen books on astronomy, including NightWatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe, Exploring the Night Sky, Summer Stargazing, and Splendors of the Universe (with Jack Newton). More than a million copies of his books are in print in three languages. A former editor of Astronomy Magazine and staff astronomer at two major planetariums, Dickinson is currently editor of SkyNews Magazine and astronomy columnist for the Toronto Star and the Discovery Channel Canada. He teaches astronomy part-time at St. Lawrence College in Kingston, Ontario and his articles have appeared in many publications including Reader's Digest and Popular Mechanics.

Robert A. Seal
This impressive volume provides an excellent overview of the heavens for the general reader. What sets it apart from a multitude of other books of its type is a lively, informative text and dozens of stunning photographs and illustrations. It is a delight to read and a delight for the eye.
American Reference Book Annual 2000
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
The intrigue of exploring beyond the earth will draw readers to this excellent book by astro-science expert Terence Dickinson. In language that is accessible and quite engaging, readers are given an introductory course in modern astronomy. Stunning full-color photographs and computer-enhanced images reveal the vastness of space and the beauty of the stars, planets, and galaxies that occupy it. The amount of information here is considerable and it will satisfy most student report writers and fascinate armchair scientists and explorers. We are just beginning to find out about planets circling other nearby stars, regarding which Dickinson observes that "Compared with a star, a planet is like a firefly next to a searchlight...too dim to be detected by direct telescopic viewing." He then describes how scientists have detected planets and also speculates on interstellar travel and the quest for alien signals. As the introduction says, "The Universe and Beyond is a celebration of the human spirit of exploration." It is book that deserves a place in every science and public library.
Library Journal
Authors of introductory astronomy books strive to cover, in a single volume, an ancient yet dynamic discipline whose scope literally spans the universe. Dickinson (Nightwatch: A Practical Guide to Viewing the Universe) and Nicolson (Heavenly Bodies) succeed in meeting this challenge. Both provide brief overviews of the universe and organize their work in traditional fashion, progressing from study of Earth and the moon to examination of more remote objects and thence to cosmology. Each book includes data obtained as recently as 1998. Both authors examine the likelihood of finding living organisms elsewhere in the solar system and the possibility of intelligent life existing in another part of the universe. Dickinson, however, devotes considerably more space to (highly speculative) discussion of extraterrestrial life. His upbeat book, displaying an abundance of stunning photographs and space art, is by far the more appealing. Nicolson's work, on the other hand, is more inclusive and covers topics in considerably more detail. It could easily serve as a college-level text (although it lacks the exercises and review questions found in many introductory textbooks). Dickinson's book is recommended for all libraries; Nicolson's for academic and larger public collections.--Nancy Curtis, Fogler Lib., Univ. of Maine, Orono Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
The Universe and Beyond is an excellent overview of the cosmos from our local neighborhood, through our city and the stars, and on to the grand universe beyond. Lavishly illustrated with both fullcolor photographs and artists' paintings, the books is comprehensive (no small feat when discussing the universe) and well organized. Perhaps most valuable to the science educator are the author's examples of the scope of the solar system and the universe. The example of the solar system given on page 18, which shrinks the Sun to the size of a PingPong TM ball and then scales the planets accordingly (both in size and distance), could easily be recreated by any class of students. The Milky Way galaxy is shrunk to a size such that one could hold it in one's hand, with the Andromeda galaxy just out of reach. On page 111, a train of hopper cars carries sand, with each grain representing a star in the universe, The train passes by at the rate of one car per second. To carry all the sand grains representing all the stars in the universe would take three years at that rate. The data tables appended to the book provide a quick and easytouse source for the facts one usually wants at one's fingertips. The explanations that help the average person comprehend the scale of the universe, combined with the wonderful illustrations, make this book a musthave for anyone interested in astronomy. Highly Recommended, Grades 7College, Teaching Professional, General Audience. REVIEWER: Thomas A. Lesser (Iona College) ISBN: 1552093778
Nancy Curtis
His upbeat book, displaying an abundance of stunning photographs, is by far the more appealing [in comparison to a second book] ... Dickinson's book is recommended for all libraries.
—Nancy Curtis, Library Journal
American Reference Book Annual
A lively, informative text and dozens of stunning photographs and illustrations. It is a delight to read.
— Robert A. Seal
E-Streams
Another gem... full of visual impact both photographically and graphically. Each illustration is complemented with an in-depth caption.
— Peggy Dominy

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781554077489
Publisher:
Firefly Books, Limited
Publication date:
10/31/2010
Edition description:
Fifth Edition Revised and Expanded
Pages:
204
Sales rank:
868,898
Product dimensions:
10.80(w) x 11.80(h) x 0.60(d)

Read an Excerpt

Preface

About this book

If you are looking for a factual, up-to-date guide to the universe, written in an accessible language and illustrated with the latest images from space probes and the largest observatories on Earth, then this is the book for you. At least, that's my not so humble opinion! But it's backed up by the fact that this is the Third Edition, a rare honor for most books.

I have attempted to cover all major topics in modern astronomy without delving into them at textbook depth. But I didn't skimp on detail either. Rather, I made many hard decisions about what to put in, and especially, what to leave out. In doing so, I tried to focus on areas that people most often ask questions about. In my astronomy classes and when I am a "guest expert" on radio call-in shows and even in everyday conversation, I have noticed the same questions coming up again and again. I have included answers to as many of them as possible. But beyond that, this book is a celebration of our majestic and, in many ways, still, mysterious cosmos.

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but astronomical pictures often require some explanation before they mean much to the observer. Therefore, many of the photograph and illustration captions in this book are full descriptive -- long and meaty to provide proper background and to augment the main text, rather than merely extract tidbits from it. Peruse the captions either as appetizers or during the reading of the main text.

The first edition of The Universe and Beyond was published in 1986, midway through what many regard as the golden age of astronomy -- roughly the last third of the 20th century -- a period when our knowledge of the universe, both nearby and at its farthest reaches, expanded enormously. Although no one expects the pace of discovery to slow anytime soon, the beginning of the 21st century is an ideal time to take an inventory of what we know and would like to learn about nature on its largest scale.

This completely revised Third Edition has been totally redesigned and contains 25 percent more information and 50 percent more images than the previous editions. Even so, in a book of this size, there are inevitably some topics that we can only wave at on the way by. For those who are inspired to dig deeper a guide to further reading is offered on page 164. But I hope you will find The Universe and Beyond on its own a worthy celestial feast for both eye and mind.

Terence Dickinson

NightWatch Observatory

June 1999

What People are Saying About This

Thomas A. Lesser
The explanations that help the average person comprehend the scale of the universe, combined with the wonderful illustrations, make this book a must-have for anyone interested in astronomy.
—(Thomas A. Lesser, Science Books and Film, January/February 2000)

Meet the Author

Terence Dickinson is the award-winning author of 14 astronomy titles, including NightWatch and The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, and more than one million copies of his books are in print. He is the editor of SkyNews magazine.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews

The Universe and Beyond 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago