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Twenty Worlds: The Extraordinary Story of Planets Around Other Stars

Twenty Worlds: The Extraordinary Story of Planets Around Other Stars

by Niall Deacon

Hardcover(New edition)

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Thirty years ago, the only planets we knew were the ones orbiting our own sun; we now know of thousands of other worlds orbiting distant stars. In this book, astronomer Niall Deacon journeys to twenty of these globes: from giant, blisteringly hot planets orbiting close to their parent stars to planets that float through the cold wilderness of space alone, and from dead stars shredding asteroids to worlds made of diamond—and even planets that may be similar to the Earth. Deacon also takes in the latest exoplanet discoveries and explains how astronomers have come to learn so much about these strange and distant worlds. Twenty Worlds tells a sweeping story, of real planets around other stars, and it will fascinate a universe of fans of popular science and astronomy.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781789143386
Publisher: Reaktion Books, Limited
Publication date: 09/17/2020
Series: Universe
Edition description: New edition
Pages: 216
Sales rank: 689,627
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Niall Deacon is an astronomy researcher and writer and lives in Heidelberg, Germany. His research focuses on failed stars called brown dwarfs and giant planets orbiting other stars.

Table of Contents

Preface 7

Introduction: An Ordered Family Portrait 9

Alien Worlds

1 A World beyond Expectation 18

2 A World Obscuring 26

3 A Tempestuous World 34

4 A Glimmer of Atmosphere 40

5 A World in Reverse 47

Towards Earth

6 A Flash from Darkness 56

7 A World You Can't Set Your Watch By 64

8 A Contrasting Sibling 73

9 A World Like Ours? 82


10 An Unseen Embryo 92

11 A World through the Blur 99

12 An Ember Spat from a Fire 108

13 A Lonely Planet 116

14 A Dreich World? 124


15 A Cursed World 132

16 A World that's Just Right? 141

17 A World Bombarded 149


18 A Dark Cloak of Death 158

19 A World Torn Asunder 163

20 A Diamond Born from Death 171

Epilogue: Yet More Worlds 180

Appendix: The Twenty Worlds 186

References 191

Acknowledgements 203

Photo Acknowledgements 204

Index 205

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