Absolute Zero and the Conquest of Cold / Edition 1

Absolute Zero and the Conquest of Cold / Edition 1

by Tom Shachtman
4.6 3
Pub. Date:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Select a Purchase Option (New Edition)
  • purchase options

    Temporarily Out of Stock Online

    Note: Access code and/or supplemental material are not guaranteed to be included with textbook rental or used textbook.
  • purchase options
    $9.97 $17.95 Save 44% Current price is $9.97, Original price is $17.95. You Save 44%.
    Note: Access code and/or supplemental material are not guaranteed to be included with textbook rental or used textbook.


Absolute Zero and the Conquest of Cold / Edition 1

In a sweeping yet marvelously concise history, Tom Shachtman ushers us into a world in which scientists tease apart the all-important secrets of cold. Readers take an extraordinary trip, starting in the 1600s with an alchemist's air conditioning of Westminster Abbey and scientists' creation of thermometers. Later, while entrepreneurs sold Walden Pond ice to tropical countries -- packed in "high-tech" sawdust -- researchers pursued absolute zero and interpreted their work as romantically as did adventurers to remote regions. Today, playing with ultracold temperatures is one of the hottest frontiers in physics, with scientists creating useful particles Einstein only dreamed of.
Tom Shachtman shares a great scientific adventure story and its characters' rich lives in a book that has won a grant from the prestigious Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Absolute Zero is for everyone who loves history and science history stories, who's eager to explore Nobel Prize-winning physics today, or who has ever sighed with pleasure on encountering air conditioning.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 2900618082390
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 12/12/2000
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)

Table of Contents

1.Winter in Summer1
2.Exploring the Frontiers16
3.Battle of the Thermometers36
4.Adventures in the Ice Trade56
5.The Confraternity of the Overlooked78
6.Through Heat to Cold95
7.Of Explosions and Mysterious Mists109
8.Painting the Map of Frigor125
9.Rare and Common Gases153
10.The Fifth Step167
11.A Sudden and Profound Disappearance183
12.Three Puzzles and a Solution200
13.Mastery of the Cold219

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Absolute Zero: And the Conquest of Cold 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Adam-Neuert More than 1 year ago
Absolute Zero is a great summary of scientific exploration into the regions of ultracold. Tom Shachtman does a wonderful job of putting the many pieces of this complex puzzle into a reasonably simple to understand storyline. He also does a good job of explaining some pretty difficult subjects, such as superconductivity and superfluidity among many other theories and procedures. The ways in which the author describes the many scientists involved in the events of the novel is very descriptive and characterizes the scientists as individuals. Me being a highschool student, I found this book difficult at some points but as I read more I was able to understand what was happening. I also felt that use of diagrams or some sort of images would have made explaining subjects simpler, but the novel prevails as an informative and exciting narrative of one of the greatest mysteries of science.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Absolute Zero and the Conquest of Cold is a superb book. It brings to life the stories of the scientists who grappled with the realms of cold temperatures. I actually tried one of the experiments after reading the book because I was enthralled by the stories. I added nitric acid to ice and was able to lower the temperature of the mixture to -19 Celsius. The book describes theory, experiments, and practical devises of cold temperature materials. It is very entertaining and readable for all levels. I have always wanted to learn what was behind the stories of the scientists (Onnes, Boyle, Dewar,...) who did research in thermodynamics. Here is a book which answers my call.