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by James B. Kaler
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Astronomy & Space Science
  • Author:
    James B. Kaler
  • ISBN:
  • ISBN13:
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  • Publisher:
    W. H. Freeman (August 15, 1998)
  • Pages:
    273 pages
  • Subcategory:
    Astronomy & Space Science
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    1371 kb
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Series: A Scientific American Library Book (Book 39). Hardcover: 274 pages.

Series: A Scientific American Library Book (Book 39).

Book in the Scientific American Library Series Series).

Book in the Scientific American Library Series Series).

Scientific American is the essential guide to the most awe-inspiring advances in science and technology, explaining how they change .

Scientific American is the essential guide to the most awe-inspiring advances in science and technology, explaining how they change our understanding of the world and shape our lives.

by. Kaler, James B. Publication date. New York : Scientific American Library : Distributed by .

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Scientific American Library Series

Scientific American Library Series

ურადღებით გაეცანით ნივთის აღწერას, რათა მიიღოთ ინფორმაცია დაზიანებების შესახებ. ივთი დაემატა სურვილების სიაში.

James B. "Jim" Kaler (born December 29, 1938 in Albany, New York) is an American astronomer and science writer. After elementary and high-school education in Albany, Kaler earned his . at the University of Michigan in 1960. He attended graduate school at the University of Michigan (1960–61), at Universität zu Kiel (Germany, 1961–62), and UCLA (1962–64), where he also obtained his P. His thesis advisor was Lawrence H. Aller.

James E. Hartley offers some thoughtful observations sparked by the Algis Budrys novel collected in American Science Fiction: Five Classic Novels 1956-1958. Are We Not Men? (Altogether now: We are Devo eyes, R. A. Laffery) and even one of mine (Nova). org. -fiction-eight-cl.

In this fascinating Journey to the farther reaches of space, astronomer James Kaler explores the nature of stars, describing their origins, varieties, distributions, compositions, and distinctive histories. He demonstrates that stars are the key to our comprehension of how the universe evolved--and that the birth, development, and death of stars is intimately associated with our own origins.From the earliest folklore to recent theories about dark matter, Stars chronicles the science of stellar astronomy, concluding with the evolution of high mass stars, whose spectacular deaths generate supernovae, pulsars, neutron stars, and enigmatic black holes. Elegantly written and illustrated, Stars is a compelling portrait of the cosmos as a vast engine of regeneration where stars are born, live, and die.

So, I'm pretty biased toward this author. I have The Hundred Greatest Stars and Extreme Stars and The Little Book of Stars, and The Encyclopedia of Stars, which are all by Kaler but frankly, I'm impressed by how not redundant he is. I bought this book believing that I might be buying something I'd already read before, especially since it's one of his older works. It's wonderful. The book goes through in great detail how stars form, work, and some fundamentals of nucleosynthesis all in very easy to read language. I love this book, so it gets 5 stars.

Like many of Kaler's other books, he expounds on the history of discovery, the building blocks of our understanding of how stars work, the life cycle of stars, star death, but he does it with such clarity without compromising on scientific background, that I don't think anyone could read this book and not be impressed, and come away from it knowing a lot more about stars. The one aspect I don't like about this book is that it hasn't been updated. Kaler has written a good chunk of other things, and I highly recommend his newer books, but if you're looking for some more history on stars and how we know what we know about them that's a bit more current, I would recommend William Chaplin's "The Music of the Sun: The Story of Helioseismology" and Tassoul's "A Concise History of Solar and Stellar Physics".
Stars is an enthusiastically written guide to modern stellar theory, pared down to the basics for the educated layman. It was written in the early 1990s so it's quite up to date. Advances have been made since then (lots of extrasolar planets detected, age of universe determined, etc), but the theories regarding the internal workings of stars have not been significantly modified. Although few of these theories have actually been proven, the empirical foundation supporting them is voluminous and highly convincing.
The first couple chapters of Stars serve as a refresher course in basic astronomical theory and history. I think it would have been better to jump right into the stars themselves, as there are plenty of other books that do the general astronomy better and presumably the reader would have already learned the basics anyway before getting this book. Kaler spends a lot of worthwhile time on the HR diagram and on stellar spectra. It's simply amazing how much has been deduced from points of light that to the naked eye essentially vary only in color and luminosity. Other major topics include detailed discussions of the births and deaths of stars. Curiously, he chooses to discuss star birth *after* star death. But it helps get his point across that star birth is often triggered by pressure waves produced by dying stars.
The paperback version is in a somewhat unwieldy large format due to the huge margins, which are used for many of the illustrations. The quality of the illustrations is generally very good, especially the charts. Many of the photographs however don't come across too well, because a lot of resolution was lost when the editors shot them down to fit them into the margins.
Overall, recommended to all readers wanting to know how stars work!
Great, thanks!
Charley loves stars, comet, galaxies, etc.....so Thanks, MC
In the Belmont Society, we think it's a shame that most of us don't understand how a star works. We glance up at them every night, and look at them through binoculars and telescopes, but for the most part we have no real knowledge of what makes them tick. James B. Kaler has created a significant work of importance in that regard. This book is a manual of detail that describes the workings of stars that is thrilling to read and easy to understand.
To those absorbed in amateur astronomy, Carl Sagan's eloquent phrase, "We are all made of star-stuff", was arguably the most quintessential statement of the late 20th century. Over three decades later, James B. Kaler paraphrases the statement with equal facility by asserting that stars are "...the principal means for the conversion of matter into energy, and are the sources and sustainers of life itself." The book represents an exploration of the supreme stellar mystery - the origin of luminosity. Why do the sun and stars shine so brightly?
Kaler begins (quite logically) by taking us on a tour of the Sun. He presents in vivid detail, the complete solar assembly. We're shown everything from core to corona, discovering astonishing particulars, like the characteristics of granules and supergranules, and the tumultuous conditions at different stratta.
We are given understandable explanations of the chromosphere, photosphere, corona, solar flares, mass ejection, sunspots, prominence, etc. And we're "clued-in" to some as yet unsolved mysteries, such as the strange period from 1645 to 1715 known as the Maunder Minimum, when sunspot activity was virtually non-existent, nudging the Earth into a minor ice age. "To know the Earth and stars we must know the sun".
Kaler describes "How to Build a Sun", and describes the incredible conditions necessary for hydrogen fusion to take place, giving us a generous understanding of stellar dynamics, and their correlation to luminosity. We learn about the birth of stars, their life cycles, and their violent endings. And we come to realize that a star's mass is the controlling discipline that determines how long a star lives and how it will die. In addition, there are explanations of how a Cepheid Variable works, and what goes on inside RR Lyrae and Mira stars.
There are illustrations and graphs to augment the text. There are also some formulas. If you're a whiz at calculus and chemistry you'll be happily familiar with them. But that kind of background isn't required. Trust me - you'll still "get it". That's the merit of "Stars". Although not quite down to that level, Kaler has basically written us a manual for dummies.
The Belmont Society has selected Stars as the latest addition to its "Required Reading" list for the amateur astronomer. We feel it is written in a style that is easy to digest by all levels of interest. If you have any curiosity at all about the sun and the stars and how they work, this book will greatly ease your comprehension. Highly recommended.