Cover image for Babylon to Voyager and beyond : a history of planetary astronomy
Title:
Babylon to Voyager and beyond : a history of planetary astronomy
Author:
Leverington, David, 1941-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, [2003]

©2003
Physical Description:
x, 558 pages : illustrations, maps ; 26 cm
Language:
English
Contents:
Introduction -- The ancients -- Copernicus and the new cosmology -- Kepler and Galileo: the fall of epicycles and the start of telescopic astronomy -- The mid and late seventeenth century -- Consolidation -- The solar system expands -- The inner solar system in the nineteenth century -- The outer solar system in the nineteenth century -- Quiet interlude - the twentieth century prior to the space age -- The space age - terrestrial planets -- The space age - the outer planets.
Subject Term:
ISBN:
9780521808408

9780521004619
Format :
Book

Available:*

Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Item Holds
Searching...
QB601 .L59 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
Searching...

On Order

Summary

Summary

Babylon to Voyager and Beyond covers planetary research from the time of the Babylonians and Ancient Greeks through those of Kepler, Galileo and Newton to the modern era of space exploration. It outlines the key observational discoveries and theoretical developments in their historical context, covering not only the numerous successes but also the main failures. Planetary astronomy has come a long way since the Babylonians used their extensive numerical skills to predict the positions of the moon and planets. That progress is the story of this book, ending, as it does, with the considerable discoveries of the space age, and the discoveries of planets around other stars. This account will appeal to both amateur and professional astronomers, as well as those with an interest in the history of science.


Reviews 1

Choice Review

Physicist Leverington's goal is to cover the entire history of exploration of the solar system, starting with the Babylonians in 2000 BCE and ending with the Voyager planetary probes and the recent discoveries of planets beyond the sun. This is a tall order, but the author manages to achieve depth as well as breadth, including a considerable amount of quantitative information. The chapter titles ("The Ancients," "Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo," "The Mid and Late Seventeenth Century," "Consolidation," "The Solar System Expands," "The Inner Solar System in the Nineteenth Century," "The Twentieth Century Prior to the Space Age," "The Space Age--Terrestrial Planets," "The Space Age--The Outer Planets") indicate both the breadth of the coverage and the thoughtfulness with which Leverington has organized the material. Explanations are clear and thorough, conveying a sense of the challenges that astronomers have faced and the ingenious methods they have used to overcome them. The writing style is somewhat dry, and the author might have conveyed a better sense of the role that personalities and politics played in the discovery process. On balance, however, this is an unusually complete and authoritative overview and a valuable library resource. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. General readers; lower-division undergraduates through professionals. T. Barker Wheaton College (MA)


Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction
1 The ancients
2 Copernicus and the new cosmology
3 Kepler and Galileo - the fall of epicycles and the start of telescopic astronomy
4 The mid and late seventeenth century
5 Consolidation
6 The solar system expands
7 The inner solar system in the nineteenth century
8 The outer solar system in the nineteenth century
9 Quiet interlude - the twentieth century prior to the space age
10 The space age - terrestrial planets
11 The space age - the outer planets
Glossary
Bibliography
Units
Name index
Subject index