With this newly revised Twelfth Edition of FOUNDATIONS OF ASTRONOMY, the authors' goals are to help you use astronomy to understand science--and use science to understand what we are. Fascinating, engaging, and visually vibrant, this text will help you answer two fundamental questions: What are we? And how do we know?
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Mike Seeds was a professor of physics and astronomy at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, from 1970 until his retirement in 2001. In 1989 he received F&M College's Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching. Mike's love for the history of astronomy led him to create upper-level courses on archaeoastronomy and on the Copernican Revolution ("Changing Concepts of the Universe"). His research interests focused on variable stars and automation of astronomical telescopes. Mike is coauthor with Dana Backman of Horizons: Exploring the Universe, 12th edition (2012); Universe: Solar Systems, Stars, and Galaxies, 7th edition (2012); Stars and Galaxies, 8th edition (2013); The Solar System, 8th edition (2013); and ASTRO, 2nd edition (2013), all published by Cengage. He was senior consultant for creation of the 20-episode telecourse accompanying his book Horizons: Exploring the Universe.
Dana Backman taught in the physics and astronomy department at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, from 1991 until 2003. He invented and taught a course titled "Life in the Universe" in F&M's interdisciplinary Foundations program. Dana now teaches introductory Solar System astronomy at Santa Clara University and introductory astronomy, astrobiology, and cosmology courses in Stanford University's Continuing Studies Program. His research interests focus on infrared observations of planet formation, models of debris disks around nearby stars, and evolution of the solar system's Kuiper belt. Dana is employed by the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California, as director of education and public outreach for SOFIA (the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy) at NASA's Ames Research Center. Dana is coauthor with Mike Seeds of Horizons: Exploring the Universe, 14th edition (2018); Universe: Solar Systems, Stars, and Galaxies, 7th edition (2012); Stars and Galaxies, 8th edition (2013); The Solar System, 8th edition (2013); and ASTRO, 2nd edition (2013), all published by Cengage.
PART I: EXPLORING THE SKY. 1. Here and Now. Where Are You? When Is Now? Why Study Astronomy? 2. A User's Guide to the Sky. The Stars. The Sky and Celestial Motion. The Cycles of the Sun. Astronomical Influences on Earth's Climate. 3. Cycles of the Moon. The Changeable Moon. Lunar Eclipses. Solar Eclipses. Predicting Eclipses. 4. The Origin of Modern Astronomy. The Roots of Astronomy. The Copernican Revolution. Planetary Motion. Galileo Galilei. Modern Astronomy. 5. Gravity. Galileo and Newton. Orbital Motion and Tides. Einstein and Relativity. 6. Light and Telescopes. Radiation: Information from Space. Telescopes. Observations on Earth: Optical and Radio. Airborne and Space Observatories. Astronomical Instruments and Techniques. Nonelectromagnetic Astronomy. PART II: THE STARS. 7. Atoms and Spectra. Atoms. Interactions of Light and Matter. Understanding Spectra. 8. The Sun. The Solar Atmosphere. Solar Activity. Nuclear Fusion in the Sun. 9. The Family of Stars. Star Distances. Apparent Brightness, Intrinsic Brightness, and Luminosity. Stellar Spectra. Star Sizes. Star Masses--Binary Stars. A Census of the Stars. 10. The Interstellar Medium. Studying the Interstellar Medium. Components of the Interstellar Medium. The Gas-Stars-Gas Cycle. 11. The Formation and Structure of Stars. Making Stars from the Interstellar Medium. The Orion Nebula: Evidence of Star Formation. Young Stellar Objects and Protostellar Disks. Stellar Structure. The Source of Stellar Energy. 12. Stellar Evolution. Main-Sequence Stars. Post-Main-Sequence Evolution. Star Clusters: Evidence of Evolution. Variable Stars: Evidence of Evolution. 13. The Deaths of Stars. Lower-Main-Sequence Stars. The Evolution of Binary Stars. 14. Neutron Stars and Black Holes. Neutron Stars. Black Holes. Compact Objects with Disks and Jets. PART III: THE UNIVERSE. 15. The Milky Way Galaxy. Discovery of the Galaxy. Structure of the Galaxy. Spiral Arms and Star Formation. The Nucleus of the Galaxy. Origin and History of the Milky Way Galaxy. 16. Galaxies. The Family of Galaxies. Measuring the Properties of Galaxies. The Evolution of Galaxies. 17. Active Galaxies and Supermassive Black Holes. Active Galactic Nuclei. Supermassive Black Holes. 18. Modern Cosmology. Introduction to the Universe. The Big Bang Theory. Space & Time; Matter & Energy. Twenty-First-Century Cosmology. PART IV: THE SOLAR SYSTEM. 19. The Origin of the Solar System. The Great Chain of Origins. A Survey of the Solar System. The Story of Planet Building. Planets Orbiting Other Stars. 20. Earth: The Standard of Comparative Planetology. A Travel Guide to the Terrestrial Planets. Earth as a Planet. The Solid Earth. Earth's Atmosphere. 21. The Moon and Mercury: Comparing Airless Worlds. The Moon. Mercury. 22. Comparative Planetology of Venus and Mars. Venus. Mars. The Moons of Mars. 23. Jupiter and Saturn. A Travel Guide to the Outer Solar System. Jupiter. Jupiter's Moons and Rings. Saturn. Saturn's Moons and Rings. 24. Uranus, Neptune, and the Kuiper Belt. Uranus. Neptune. The Kuiper Belt. 25. Meteorites, Asteroids, and Comets. Meteoroids, Meteors, and Meteorites. Asteroids. Comets. Asteroid and Comet Impacts. PART V: LIFE. 26. Astrobiology: Life on Other Worlds. The Nature of Life. Life in the Universe. Intelligent Life in the Universe. Afterword. Appendix A: Units and Astronomical Data. Introduction. Fundamental and Derived SI Units. Appendix B. Observing the Sky.
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