This fully revised and updated text is a comprehensive introduction to astronomical objects and phenomena. By applying some basic physical principles to a variety of situations, students will learn how to relate everyday physics to the astronomical world. Starting with the simplest objects, the text contains thorough explanations of how and why astronomical phenomena occur, and how astronomers collect and interpret information about stars, galaxies and the Solar System. The text looks at the properties of stars, star formation and evolution; neutron stars and black holes; the nature of galaxies; and the structure of the universe. It examines the past, present and future states of the universe; and final chapters use the concepts that have been developed to study the Solar System and its formation; the possibility of finding other planetary systems; and the search for extraterrestrial life. This comprehensive text contains useful equations, chapter summaries, worked examples and end-of-chapter problem sets. It is suitable for undergraduate students taking a first course in astronomy, and assumes a basic knowledge of physics with calculus.
Marc L. Kutner obtained his doctorate in physics from Columbia University in 1972. He has been a Visiting Scientist in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Texas at Austin since 1998, prior to which he was Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, New York, and Visiting Scientist at the National Radio Observatory, Tucson, Arizona. His main area of research involves the use of radio astronomy to study of star formation in the Milky Way and other galaxies. He has also done some research in cosmology. Professor Kutner has published three successful textbooks and over one hundred research papers.
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