Download A Journey through the Universe: Gresham Lectures on by Ian Morison PDF

By Ian Morison

Supplying an in-depth knowing either for basic readers and astronomy lovers, this hugely accomplished e-book presents an up to date survey of our wisdom of the Universe past Earth. The e-book explores our sunlight approach, its planets and different our bodies; examines the solar and the way it and different stars evolve via their lifetimes; discusses the hunt for planets past our sun approach and the way we'd notice existence on them; and highlights attention-grabbing items came across inside our galaxy, the Milky method. It additionally appears at our present figuring out of the foundation and evolution of the Universe, in addition to many different fascinating issues, reminiscent of time, black holes and Einstein's theories, darkish subject, darkish strength and the Cosmic Microwave history. The e-book is uniquely supported by means of video lectures given by means of the writer, on hand on-line. it is usually the very most up-to-date astronomical observations, comparable to these made by means of the Planck and Kepler spacecraft.

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Additional info for A Journey through the Universe: Gresham Lectures on Astronomy

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Our Sun The Sun’s magnetic field and the sunspot cycle A photograph of Sun’s surface will usually show some darker regions on the surface. These are called sunspots and often appear in pairs or groups – a sunspot group. Each spot has a central ‘umbra’ surrounded by a lighter ‘penumbra’. They appear dark because they are cooler than the surface in general. The umbra has a typical temperature 1,000 K less than its surroundings. Around the outside of a sunspot group may be seen an area that is brighter than the normal surface.

In the ~535 million years since then, there have been five ‘mass extinctions’ when many species died out. The last of these was 65 million years ago when a large asteroid or comet at least 10 km in diameter formed the Chicxulub crater on (and offshore of) the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. The dust produced would have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching the ground and hence the growth of vegetation. This may have been one of the causes of the demise of the dinosaurs at about this time along with ~70% of all species then living on the Earth.

However, movements of the oceanic plates of the Earth’s crust bring the plates up against the continental plates. As the oceanic plates are denser, they pass under the continental plates – a process known as subduction – and volcanic activity releases the carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere. Over the long term, a process that now gives rise to many problems for mankind, such as earthquakes and tsunamis, has been partly responsible for our presence here on Earth. Aspects of our Solar System More on the Solar System: An Introduction to the Solar System edited by David A.

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