Distant Wanderers: The Search for Planets Beyond the Solar by Bruce Dorminey

By Bruce Dorminey

Recent discoveries of planet-like gadgets circling different sun-like stars have stirred huge, immense curiosity in what different planets might exist within the universe, and whether or not they help clever lifestyles, or a minimum of might accomplish that. This booklet will take us into the thick of this look for extrasolar planets. not like different books, it's going to specialize in the folk at the back of the searches--many of whom the writer knows--and the intense know-how that's at the drawing forums and at the moment in use to discover far away wanderers and describe their features, hence bringing us to the innovative of data of the topic. the writer is an skilled, award-winning technology journalist who used to be expertise correspondent for the monetary occasions of London and is now operating as a journalist in France. He has written on many themes in astronomy and astrobiology, and has had items released in over 35 diverse newspapers and magazines worldwide.

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At the behest of Edward Pickering, director of the Harvard College Observatory at that time, she established the Henry Draper Memorial Fund in 1886. With the assistance of Williamina Fleming, a young Scottish astronomer working at Harvard, Pickering oversaw work on the compilation and cataloging of several thousand different stellar spectra at the Harvard College Observatory. By 1890, Fleming, Pickering, and their team of human "computers" (primarily women, who did the painstaking work of classifying reams of spectral data) had produced a first cata38 SPECTROSCOPIC NIGHTS CHAPTER 3 log of some 10,000 stars.

This merger may be one likely source of GRBs. The other source could come from energy released via a hypernova, or an extremely violent and unusually energetic form of a supernova. Hypernovae are thought to result from the collapse of a supermassive star in very dense star{orming regions. The cores of hypernovae may in fact collapse into black holes, and in the process, release GRBs. Heating Our Solar Nebula Brian McBreen, an astrophysicist at University College in Dublin, Ireland, is more interested in the effects of GRBs than their cause 4 He believes that the Solar System's nascent chondrules were made molten in a matter of seconds after a nearby GRB (within 100 parsecs) blasted our young Sun's circumstellar disk.

Chile. 2 Blum. Jiirgen. astrophysicist. University of Jena. Germany. Interviewed on November 25. 2000. 3 Gorkavyi. Nick. astrophysicist, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt. Maryland. Interviewed on August 10,2000. 4 McBreen, Brian, astrophysicist, University College, Dublin, Ireland. Interviewed on December 8, 1999. , astronomer, University of Arizona. Interviewed on November 28, 2000. 6 North, John 1994. The Fontana History oj Astronomy & Cosmology. London: Fontana Press: 430. Leverington, David 1995.

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