Heart of Darkness Unraveling the Mysteries of the Invisible Universe

ISBN-10: 0691134308

ISBN-13: 9780691134307

Edition: 2013

Authors: Jeremiah P. Ostriker, Simon Mitton

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Heart of Darknessdescribes the incredible saga of humankind's quest to unravel the deepest secrets of the universe. Over the past thirty years, scientists have learned that two little-understood components--dark matter and dark energy--comprise most of the known cosmos, explain the growth of all cosmic structure, and hold the key to the universe's fate. The story of how evidence for the so-called "Lambda-Cold Dark Matter" model of cosmology has been gathered by generations of scientists throughout the world is told here by one of the pioneers of the field, Jeremiah Ostriker, and his coauthor Simon Mitton.From humankind's early attempts to comprehend Earth's place in the solar system, to astronomers' exploration of the Milky Way galaxy and the realm of the nebulae beyond, to the detection of the primordial fluctuations of energy from which all subsequent structure developed, this book explains the physics and the history of how the current model of our universe arose and has passed every test hurled at it by the skeptics. Throughout this rich story, an essential theme is emphasized: how three aspects of rational inquiry--the application of direct measurement and observation, the introduction of mathematical modeling, and the requirement that hypotheses should be testable and verifiable--guide scientific progress and underpin our modern cosmological paradigm.The story is far from complete, however, as scientists confront the mysteries of the ultimate causes of cosmic structure formation and the real nature and origin of dark matter and dark energy.
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Book details

List price: $22.95
Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 1/22/2013
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 328
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.75" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.892

Cosmology Becomes Data-driven Science
Outline of the Journey We Will Take
Prologue From Myth to Reality
Astronomy: The Endless Frontier
Charting and Modeling the Heavens
Copernicus: "The Last of the Greek Cosmologists"
Galileo: A New Approach to Mechanics and Cosmology
The Impact of Copernicus: Kepler's Laws
Isaac Newton and Gravity
William Herschel Discovers the Universe
Understanding the Universe Becomes a New Kind of Science
Einstein's Toolkit, and How to Use It
Overconfidence among the Cognoscenti at the Dawn of the Twentieth Century
Revolution in Physics: The Inception of Quantum Theory and Relativity
Special Relativity
General Relativity
General Relativity Is Tested, Passes the Test, and Is a Sensation
Cosmological Solutions to Einstein's Equations
The Realm of the Nebulae
New Instruments in a Better Climate Unveil a New World
A Universe of Galaxies Is Confirmed
A Cosmological Model to Fit the New Data: Enter, Georges Lema�tre
Physical Cosmology and the Expanding Universe
Lema�tre's Synthesis Model Foretells the Contribution of Dark Energy
Hubble's Achievements
Big Science to Attack the Big Problem
The Steady State Model Universe and the Big Bang
Let's Do Cosmology!
The Big Bang: A Starting Point That Cannot Be Escaped
Observational Cosmology, the Biggest Puzzle to Be Solved with the Biggest Telescope
The Grand Project Was Initially Too Difficult
Discovering the Big Bang
Did Our Universe Have an Explosive Birth?
What Makes the Stars Shine?
Nuclear Astrophysics Moves to the Cosmos
The Fireball in Which the First Chemical Elements Were Made
Direct Radio Observations of the Big Bang Fireball
Understanding the Big Bang
The Origin of Structure in the Universe
"In the Beginning"-Why an Explanation Is Needed
Structure within the Expanding Universe
The Elusive Standard Candle: Beatrice Tinsley Changes the Game
Real Cosmic Structure Found and Cataloged by Fritz Zwicky
Understanding the Origin of Structure Becomes Serious Science
Cosmic Inflation
The Seeds of Cosmic Structure Are Discovered
Closing the Loop: How Do Seeds Grow to Galaxies?
Dark Matter-or Fritz Zwicky's Greatest Invention
How the Earth Was Weighed
Finding the Mass of the Andromeda Galaxy
Zwicky Finds Dark Matter in Clusters of Galaxies in the 1930s
The Rediscovery of Dark Matter in the 1970s
Rotation Curves Confirm the Case for Dark Matter
More Recent Multiple Lines of Evidence for Dark Matter
Dark Energy-or Einstein's Greatest Blunder
A Curious Situation
Will Gravity Lead to a Collapse of the Solar System?
Expected and Unexpected Motions of Thrown Stones and Hubble's Universe
The Invention of the Cosmological Constant or Dark Energy: 1915
The Revival of Dark Energy in the 1970s
New Arguments and New Evidence-Dark Energy Confirmed in the 1990s
Dark Energy Fills the Gap, Allowing the Flat, "Just Right" Universe
The Modern Paradigm and the Limits of Our Knowledge
We Have Come a Long Way
The Matter and Energy Content of the Universe
The Global Cosmological Solution and the Cosmic Triangle
In the Beginning
Structure in the Universe
The Supercomputer Approach
The Frontier: Major Mysteries That Remain
Dark Matter
Dark Energy
Giant Black Holes
Summing Up
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