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The day we found the universe

Author: Marcia Bartusiak
Publisher: New York : Pantheon Books, ©2009.
Edition/Format:   Book : English : 1st edView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
From one of the most acclaimed science writers comes a dramatic narrative of the discovery of the true nature and startling size of the universe, delving into the decades of work--by a select group of scientists--that made it possible.
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Named Person: Albert Einstein; Edwin Hubble; Milton L Humason
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Marcia Bartusiak
ISBN: 9780375424298 0375424296
OCLC Number: 232129580
Description: xviii, 337 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.
Contents: Preface : January 1, 1925 --
Setting out. The little republic of science ; A rather remarkable number of nebulae ; Grander than the truth ; Such is the progress of astronomy in the wild and wooly West ; My regards to the squashes ; It is worthy of notice --
Exploration. Empire builder ; The solar system is off center and consequently man is too ; He surely looks like the fourth dimension! ; Go at each other "hammer and tongs" ; Adonis ; On the brink of a big discovery--
or maybe a big paradox --
Discovery. Countless whole worlds--
strewn all over the sky ; Using the 100-inch telescope the way it should be used ; Your calculations are correct, but your physical insight is abominable ; Started off with a bang --
Whatever happened to ...
Responsibility: Marcia Bartusiak.
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Abstract:

From one of the most acclaimed science writers comes a dramatic narrative of the discovery of the true nature and startling size of the universe, delving into the decades of work--by a select group of scientists--that made it possible.

On January 1, 1925, thirty-five-year-old Edwin Hubble announced the observation that ultimately established that our universe was a thousand trillion times larger than previously believed, filled with myriad galaxies like our own. This discovery dramatically reshaped how humans understood their place in the cosmos, and once and for all laid to rest the idea that the Milky Way galaxy was alone in the universe. Six years later, continuing research by Hubble and others forced Albert Einstein to renounce his own cosmic model and finally accept the astonishing fact that the universe was not immobile but instead expanding. The fascinating story of these interwoven discoveries includes battles of will, clever insights, and wrong turns made by the early investigators in this great twentieth-century pursuit. It is a story of science in the making that shows how these discoveries were not the work of a lone genius but the combined efforts of many talented scientists and researchers toiling away behind the scenes. The intriguing characters include Henrietta Leavitt, who discovered the means to measure the vast dimensions of the cosmos; Vesto Slipher, the first and unheralded discoverer of the universe's expansion; Georges Lema'tre, the Jesuit priest who correctly interpreted Einstein's theories in relation to the universe; Milton Humason, who, with only an eighth-grade education, became a world-renowned expert on galaxy motions; and Harlow Shapley, Hubble's nemesis, whose flawed vision of the universe delayed the discovery of its true nature and startling size for more than a decade. Here is a watershed moment in the history of astronomy, brought about by the exceptional combination of human curiosity, intelligence, and enterprise, and vividly told by acclaimed science writer Marcia Bartusiak. -- Book Jacket.

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