Recent Science books – Earth and Beyond
This month saw the last occurence of the Transit of Venus for 105 years, and due to inclement weather, we missed it. However, we do have a companion book to the transit, along with other books on our planet and Solar system to help pass a rainy day.
Transit of Venus : 1631 to the present / Nick Lomb.
“The transit of Venus across the sun in June 2012 will be the last chance in our lifetime to see this rare planetary alignment that has been so important in history. Rich in historical detail and cutting edge science, along with practical information on how and when to view the transit, Transit of Venus is the must-have companion to this extraordinary astronomical event. From Johannes Kepler’s first prediction of a transit of Venus in 1631, to Captain Cook’s 1769 transit expedition to Tahiti (which led to the European settlement of Australia), and on to our 21st-century quest to find distant Earth-like planets using the transit method, astronomer Nick Lomb takes us on a thrilling journey of exploration and adventure.” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Atlas of the southern night sky / Steve Massey, Steve Quirk.
“The book contains over 100 star charts and maps; hundreds of images, new map charts to navigate the primary features of the Moon with a comprehensive table of lunar targets of the Solar System. There are also instructions on how to observe the Sun and the planets with information on telescopes, binoculars and other accessories for getting the most out of a night under the Southern stars.” – (adapted from Publisher’s description)
Extraordinary weather : wonders of the atmosphere from dust storms to lightning strikes / Richard Hamblyn.
“Discover the amazing world of freak weather with this incredible collection of images. Richard Hamblyn offers a selection of truly breathtaking weather phenomena, from the beautiful snow rollers that form on icy rooftops to awe-inspiring displays of volcanic lightning. Each stunning photograph is accompanied by commentary by the award-winning science writer, whose intelligent and informative explanations make the science behind these extraordinary events accessible and entertaining. Selected images are taken from a variety of angles to emphasize phenomena considered unbelievable until you have seen them with your own eyes.” – (adapted from Amazon.co.uk summary)
Geology for dummies / by Alecia M. Spooner.
“Geology is the study of the earth′s history as well as the physical and chemical processes that continue to shape the earth today. Jobs in the geosciences are expected to increase over the next decade, which will increase geology–related jobs well above average projection for all occupations in the coming years. Geology For Dummies is the most accessible book on the market for anyone who needs to get a handle on the subject, whether you‘re looking to supplement classroom learning or are simply interested in earth sciences. Presented in a straightforward, trusted format, it features a thorough introduction to the study of the earth, its materials, and its processes.” – (adapted from Amazon.co.uk summary)
Moon : a tribute to earth’s nearest neighbour / Scott L. Montgomery.
“A spectacular tribute to Earth’s nearest neighbour… The view of the heavens has fascinated humankind for as long as we have looked up with a sense of curiosity. And while the life-giving Sun dazzles, and the stars draw constellations in the sky, it is the ever-changing, enigmatic Moon that has captured our imagination. Through history, the Moon has been a deity to worship, a repository for fantastical creatures, a lucky charm, and a bringer of madness. Moon traces the story of how we came to understand and appreciate our neighbour’s true nature.” – (adapted from Google books summary)
The solar system : a visual exploration of the planets, moons, and other heavenly bodies that orbit our sun / written by Marcus Chown.
“Bestselling author Marcus Chown leads us on a grand tour through the incredible diversity of planets, moons, asteroids, comets, and spacecraft that surround the Sun in our cosmic backyard. Illuminating his insightful and surprising text are a wealth of beautiful images and diagrams, printed in full colour, richly detailed and accurately based on real scientific data.” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Hubble : imaging space and time / [David DeVorkin & Robert W. Smith].
“In the spirit of National Geographic’s top-selling Orbit, this large-format, full-color volume stands alone in revealing more than 200 of the most spectacular images from the Hubble Space Telescope during its lifetime, to the very eve of the 2008 final shuttle mission to the telescope. Written by two of the world’s foremost authorities on space history, Hubble: Imaging Space and Time illuminates the solar system’s workings, the expansion of the universe, the birth and death of stars, the formation of planetary nebulae, the dynamics of galaxies, and the mysterious force known as “dark energy.” The potential impact of this book cannot be overstressed: The 2008 servicing mission to install new high-powered scientific instruments is especially high profile because the cancellation of the previous mission, in 2004, caused widespread controversy. The authors reveal the inside story of Hubble’s beginnings, its controversial early days, the drama of its first servicing missions, and the creation of the dynamic images that reach into the deepest regions of visible space, close to the time when the universe began.” – (adapted from Amazon.com summary)