The Last Stargazers: The Enduring Story of Astronomy's Vanishing Explorers

The Last Stargazers: The Enduring Story of Astronomy's Vanishing Explorers

by Emily Levesque


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The story of the people who see beyond the stars—an astronomy book for adults still spellbound by the night sky.

Humans from the earliest civilizations through today have craned their necks each night, using the stars to orient themselves in the large, strange world around them. Stargazing is a pursuit that continues to fascinate us: from Copernicus to Carl Sagan, astronomers throughout history have spent their lives trying to answer the biggest questions in the universe. Now, award-winning astronomer Emily Levesque shares the stories of modern-day stargazers in this new nonfiction release, the people willing to adventure across high mountaintops and to some of the most remote corners of the planet, all in the name of science.

From the lonely quiet of midnight stargazing to tall tales of wild bears loose in the observatory, The Last Stargazers is a love letter to astronomy and an affirmation of the crucial role that humans can and must play in the future of scientific discovery.

In this sweeping work of narrative science, Levesque shows how astronomers in this scrappy and evolving field are going beyond the machines to infuse creativity and passion into the stars and space and inspires us all to peer skyward in pursuit of the universe's secrets.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781492681076
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 08/04/2020
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 25,934
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range: 3 Months

Table of Contents

Introduction xi

Chapter 1 First Light 1

Chapter 2 Prime Focus 27

Chapter 3 Has Anybody Seen the Condors? 53

Chapter 4 Hours Lost: Six. Reason: Volcano. 81

Chapter 5 The Harm from the Bullets Was Extraordinarily Small 97

Chapter 6 A Mountain of One's Own 117

Chapter 7 Hayrides and Hurricanes 143

Chapter 8 Flying with the Stratonauts 159

Chapter 9 Three Seconds in Argentina 189

Chapter 10 Test Mass 205

Chapter 11 Target of Opportunity 229

Chapter 12 The Supernova in Your Inbox 249

Chapter 13 Synoptic Future 265

Reading Group Guide 287

Interviews 289

Notes 293

Index 297

Acknowledgments 311

About the Author 315

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