Synopses & Reviews
Co-authors David Morrison and Tobias Owen are leading researchers in planetary astronomy today, and The Planetary System, Third Edition reflects their expertise and excitement for the subject. Drawing on recent findings, this authoritative, up-to-date book gives a straightforward account of our solar system. Written in an informal style with minimal use of mathematics, this book is ideal for beginning non-science readers. Since publication of the previous edition, the pace of planetary exploration and new discoveries has accelerated. Also, the new multidisciplinary field of astrobiology has emerged and now provides a fruitful perspective for the study of the origin, evolution, and distribution of life within our solar system and other planetary systems. As scientists who have participated in the definition and development of astrobiology, Morrison and Owen have integrated these new perspectives, as well as many other discoveries, into this new edition to make it once again undisputedly the most authoritative, up-to-date, and exciting planetary book available.
About the Author
is the head of space science research at the NASA Ames Research Center. He participated in the Mariner mission to Mercury, the Voyager mission to the outer planets, and the Galileo mission to Jupiter, in addition to astronomical studies of the planetary system. He received the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal for his contributions to protection of the Earth from comet and asteroid impacts, and the Klumpke-Roberts award of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific for education and public service in astronomy. In additon to this book, Morrison is the author of seven other texts and popular books on space science.
Tobias Owen, Professor of Astronomy at the University of Hawaii, ranks among the world's leading experts on the solar system. Dr. Owen was a member of the Viking scientific team that studied the surface and atmosphere of Mars, and received NASA's medal for exceptional scientific achievement for this work in 1977. He led the group of Voyager scientists that discovered the rings of Jupiter in 1979 and is a member of the scientific teams for the Galileo, Comet-Rendezvous-Asteroid-Flyby, and Cassini-Huygens missions, while studying planets, satellites, and comets with the telescopes on Mauna Kea.
Table of Contents
1. Finding Our Place in Space.
2. The Sun: An Ordinary Star.
3. Getting to Know Our Neighbors.
4. Meteorites: Remnants of Creation.
5. Asteroids: Building Blocks of the Inner Planets.
6. Comets: Messengers from the Cold.
7. The Moon: Our Ancient Neighbor.
8. The Moon and Mercury: Strange Relatives.
9. The Earth: Our Home Planet.
10. Venus: Earth's Exotic Twin.
11. Mars: The Planet Most Like Earth.
12. Life, Planets, and Atmospheres.
13. Jupiter and Saturn: The Biggest Giants.
14. In Deep Freeze: Planets We Cannot See.
15. Worlds of Fire and Ice: The Large Satellites.
16. Small Satellites and Planetary Rings.
17. Other Planetary Systems: Are We Alone?
18. The Origin of Planetary Systems.