An exciting introduction to astronomy, the fourth edition of this book uses recent discoveries and stunning photography to inspire non-science majors about the Universe. Written by two highly experienced and engaging instructors, each chapter has been fully updated, with more than 200 new images throughout, including recent images from space missions and the world's best observatories. The newly redesigned text is organized as a series of stories, each presenting the history of the field, the observations made and how they fit within the process of science, our current understanding and what future observations are planned. Math is provided in boxes and easily read around, making the book suitable for courses taking either mathematical or qualitative approaches. New discussion questions encourage students to think widely about astronomy and the role science plays in our everyday lives and podcasts for each chapter aid studying and comprehension.
Preface; About the authors; 1. A grand tour of the heavens; 2. Light, matter and energy: powering the Universe; 3. Light and telescopes: extending our senses; 4. Observing the stars and planets: clockwork of the Universe; 5. Gravitation and motion: the early history of astronomy; 6. The terrestrial planets: Earth, Moon, and their relatives; 7. The Jovian planets: windswept giants; 8. Pluto, comets, and space debris; 9. Our Solar System and others; 10. Our star: the Sun; 11. Stars: distant suns; 12. How the stars shine: cosmic furnaces; 13. The death of stars: recycling; 14. Black holes: the end of space and time; 15. The Milky Way: our home in the Universe; 16. A Universe of galaxies; 17. Quasars and active galaxies; 18. Cosmology: the birth and life of the cosmos; 19. In the beginning; 20. Life in the Universe; Epilogue; Appendices; Selected readings; Glossary; Index.