Beyond Pluto

Beyond Pluto

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Beyond Pluto

Author: Davies, John
 Royal Observatory, Edinburgh

Description: In the last ten years, the solar system has more than doubled in size. For the first time in almost two centuries an entirely new population of planetary objects has been found. This "Kuiper Belt" of minor planets beyond Neptune has revolutionised our understanding of how the solar system was formed and has finally explained the origin of the enigmatic outer planet Pluto. This is the fascinating story of how theoretical physicists decided that there must be a population of unknown bodies beyond Neptune and how a small band of astronomers set out to find them. What they discovered was a family of ancient planetesimals whose orbits and physical properties were far more complicated than anyone expected. We follow the story of this discovery, and see how astronomers, theoretical physicists and one incredibly dedicated amateur observer have come together to explore the frozen boundary of the solar system.

Contents: Prologue; 1. Towards the edge of the solar system; 2. The centaurs; 3. The mystery of the short period comets; 4. Shooting in the dark; 5. Deeper and deeper; 6. Sorting out the dynamics; 7. What are little planets made of?; 8. Numbers and sizes; 9. Things that go bump in the dark; 10. Dust and disks; 11. Where do we go from here?; 12. Will we ever get our names right? Appendix; Index.

Essential Information
First Author: Davies, John
Title: Beyond Pluto
ISBN-13 / EAN-Number: 9780521800198
ISBN-10: 521800196
Binding: Hardback
Pages: 246

astronomy, solar system science

general readers, undergraduate students

Bibliographic Details:
17 line figures 30 tones



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