Monday, November 23, 2015

BOOK SPOTLIGHT: Searching for the Oldest Stars

Searching for the Oldest Stars: Ancient Relics from the Early Universe

by Anna Frebel 

Astronomers study the oldest observable stars in the universe in much the same way that archaeologists study ancient artifacts on Earth. Here, Anna Frebel, who is credited with discovering several of the oldest and most primitive stars using the world's largest telescopes, takes readers into the far-flung depths of space and time to provide a gripping firsthand account of the cutting-edge science of stellar archaeology. 

Weaving the latest findings in astronomy with her own compelling insights as one of the world's leading researchers in the field, Frebel explains how sections of the night sky are "excavated" in the hunt for these extremely rare relic stars, some of which have been shining for more than 13 billion years.  

This astonishing quest to find the oldest stars is revealing tantalizing new details about the earliest times in the universe. Frebel vividly describes how the very first stars formed soon after the big bang and then exploded as supernovae, leaving behind chemical fingerprints that were incorporated into the ancient stars we can still observe today. She shows how these fingerprints provide clues to the cosmic origin of the elements, early star and galaxy formation, and the assembly process of the Milky Way. 

Along the way, Frebel recounts her own stories of discovery, offering an insider's perspective on this exciting frontier of science. Packed with great diagrams this book sheds vital new light on the origins and evolution of the cosmos while providing a unique look into scientific discovery and life as an astronomer. 

Anna Frebel about the oldest star yet discovered. (Youtube)


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