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The Hunt for Planet X

New Worlds and the Fate of Pluto


Ever since the serendipitous discovery of planet Uranus in 1871, astronomers have been hunting for new worlds in the outer regions of our solar system. This exciting and ongoing quest culminated recently in the discovery of hundreds of ice dwarfs in the Kuiper belt, robbed Pluto from its ‘planet’ status, and led to a better understanding of the origin of the solar system.

This timely book reads like a scientific ‘who done it’, going from the heights of discovery to the depths of disappointment in the hunt for ‘Planet X’. Based on many personal interviews with astronomers, the well-known science writer Govert Schilling introduces the heroes in the race to be the first in finding another world, bigger than Pluto.

Rezension
'From the reviews:" The Hunt for Planet X is a fascinating tale by one of the world's premier astronomy writers. Govert Schilling is not only scrupulously accurate, he writes beautifully as well." (Stephen P. Maran, Author of Astronomy for Dummies and Press Officer, American Astronomical Society)" The Hunt for Planet X is an adventure story or, more accurately, a series of adventure stories. Schilling tells them well, capturing both the science and the people involved. It starts with the classics: Uranus, Neptune and Pluto; and moves all over the solar system as ground-based astronomers and space scientists pour over measurements and observations to try to understand the worlds around us. Current debates about the Pioneer Anomaly and the definition of what is a planet make the book current as well as a good history." (Dr. Louis Friedman , Executive Director, The Planetary Society)"This exciting tale of the centuries-old search for new planets in the solar system reads like a thriller. It is an adventure packed with fierce competition, brilliant discoveries, dumb errors, lucky coincidences and artful intrigue - in short, the full spectrum of the human drama. The story reaches an exciting climax in 2006, when we lost Pluto as a planet but gained a number of ice dwarfs in return. This colorful account chock-full of fascinating details is an excellent metaphor for the great adventure of science." (Robbert Dijkgraaf, Professor of Mathematical Physics at the University of Amsterdam)"The story of the discovery of Pluto and its fellow Kuiper belt objects is told here by science writer and New Scientist contributor Govert Schilling. He travelled the world to interview all the surviving protagonists, including Venetia Burney - the 11-year-old who suggested the name Pluto - and the band of dogged planet hunters who have found such bodies as Eris, Easter Bunny, Buffy and Santa (with its moons Rudolph and Blixen). And the search for Planet X is still on... This is a wonderfully entertaining book which conveys the raw excitement of a fast-developing field. I can't wait to find what else is out there." (Marcus Chown , New Scientist, 28 January 2009)"Schilling's journey takes readers on a wild ride through teh solar system, skillfully shedding light on various fascinating subjects along the way. He handily explains techniques, planetary anomalies and discovery histories in a style that will be easily digestible for non-scientists... Schilling also presents fascinating insights into the characters of astronomers who have explored the solar system, from the prickly personalities of some of the brightest stars -- like Gerard Kuiper, for whom Pluto's neighborhood is named -- to the sweetness of now-famous astronomers as young children, who stared at the stars and dreamed of being astronauts... All in all, The Hunt for Planet X is a delightful detective story that presents the history of solar system research -- including the most recent, and explosive developments -- in a meaningful and colorful way..." (Anne Minard , author of Pluto and Beyond, Arizona Daily Sun, 08 February 2009)"In an interesting and understandable format, Schilling adeptly relays information that could conceivably sail as far over the average reader's head as the moon. Each chapter is a stand-alone essay; arranged along a chronological time frame, they combine to tell the story of celestial discoveries in short, entertaining bites... If you like astronomy, and people, and good story telling, this book hits the trifecta." (Ruth Douillette, The Internet Review of Books , March 2009)"This is one of the most detailed books about the Solar System, its history, and the neighborhood at and around our Sun. ... The book is very well illustrated throughout, with some wonderful pictures ... . anyone really interested in Pluto and in understanding our Solar System in general,
Portrait
Govert Schilling ist bekannt als Wissenschaftsjournalist und schreibt für Magazine wie 'Science', 'National Geographis' und 'Sky & Telescope'. Lange Jahre tätig beim Artis Planetarium in Amsteram. Zahlreiche Buchpublikationen zum Thema Astronomie. Der Autor lebt mit seiner Familie in Utrecht, Niederlande.
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Einband Taschenbuch
Seitenzahl 281
Erscheinungsdatum 06.12.2010
Sprache Englisch
ISBN 978-1-4419-2667-8
Verlag Springer
Maße (L/B/H) 234/156/17 mm
Gewicht 449
Auflage Softcover reprint of hardcover 1st ed. 2009
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
28,99
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