Synopses & Reviews
With this newly revised 6th edition of ASTRONOMY: THE SOLAR SYSTEM AND BEYOND, Mike Seeds and Dana Backman's goal is to help students use astronomy to understand science and use science to understand what we are. Fascinating and engaging, this text illustrates the scientific method and guides students to these fundamental questions: "What are we?" and "How do we know?" In discussing the interplay between evidence and hypothesis, The authors provide not just facts, but a conceptual framework for understanding the logic of science. The book vividly conveys their love of astronomy, and illustrates how students can comprehend their place in the universe by grasping a small set of physical laws. Crafting a story about astronomy, The authors show students how to ask questions to gradually puzzle out the beautiful secrets of the physical world. With the use of mathematics set off in boxes, the book's presentation is flexible and allows instructors to teach to differing student levels. This is the only Seeds/Backman text to be written using a traditional planets-first approach. The revision addresses new developments in astrophysics and cosmology, plus the latest discoveries, from Mars' buried water to proto-galaxies at the limits of the observable universe.
With their best-selling astronomy textbook, UNIVERSE: SOLAR SYSTEM, STARS, AND GALAXIES, authors Mike Seeds and Dana Backman help you understand your place in the universe--not just your location in space but your role in the unfolding history of the physical universe. To achieve this goal, the authors focus on two central questions: "What Are We?" which highlights your place as a planet dweller in an evolving universe, guiding you to better understand where we came from and how we formed; and "How Do We Know?" which provides insights into how the process of science can teach us more about what we are.
About the Author
Michael A. Seeds has been Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Franklin and Marshall (F&M) College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, since 1970. In 1989, he received F&M College's Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching. Seeds' love for the history of astronomy led him to create upper-level courses on Archaeoastronomy and Changing Concepts of the Universe. His research interests focus on variable stars and the automation of astronomical telescopes. Mike is coauthor with Dana Backman and Michele Montgomery of HORIZONS HYBRID: EXPLORING THE UNIVERSE, Thirteenth Edition, and UNIVERSE HYBRID: SOLAR SYSTEM, STARS AND GALAXIES, Eighth Edition, both published by Cengage Learning. He was Senior Consultant in the creation of the twenty-six-episode telecourse accompanying the book HORIZONS: EXPLORING THE UNIVERSE, Twelfth Edition. Dana Backman works for the SETI Institute of Mountain View, California, as director of outreach for the SOFIA (Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy) mission at NASA's Ames Research Center. He also teaches introductory astronomy, astrobiology, and cosmology courses in Stanford University's Continuing Studies Program. From 1991 to 2003, he taught in the physics and astronomy department at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where he invented and taught a Life in the Universe course in the interdisciplinary Foundations program. Dr. Backman's research interests focus on infrared observations of planet formation, models of debris disks around nearby stars, and evolution of the solar system's Kuiper Belt. With Mike Seeds, he also coauthored HORIZONS: EXPLORING THE UNIVERSE, Twelfth Edition (2012); UNIVERSE: SOLAR SYSTEMS, STARS, AND GALAXIES, Seventh Edition (2012); and FOUNDATIONS OF ASTRONOMY (2013), all published by Cengage Learning. Dr. Backman earned his bachelor's degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his doctorate from the University of Hawai'i.
Table of Contents
PART I: EXPLORING THE SKY. 1. Here and Now. 2. User's Guide to the Sky. 3. Cycles of the Sun and Moon. 4. The Origin of Modern Astronomy. 5. Light and Telescopes. 6. Atoms and Spectra. PART II: THE SOLAR SYSTEM. 7. The Sun. 8. The Origin of the Solar System (H12 Ch 15). 9. Earth and Moon (H12 Ch 16). 10. Mercury, Venus, Mars (H12 Ch 17). 11. The Jovian Planets (H12 Ch 18). 12. Meteorites, Asteroids, Comets and the Kuiper Belt (H12 Ch 19). PART III: THE STARS. 13. The Family of Stars (H12 Ch 8). 14. The Formation and Structure of Stars (H12 Ch 9). 15. The Deaths of Stars (H12 Ch 10). 16. Neutron Stars and Black Holes (H12 Ch 11). PART IV: THE UNIVERSE OF GALAXIES. 17. The Milky Way Galaxy (H12 Ch 12). 18. A Universe of Galaxies (H12 Ch 13). 19. Modern Cosmology (H12 Ch 14). PART V: LIFE. 20. Life on Other Worlds.