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The Ascent of Gravity: The Quest to Understand the Force that Explains Everything - Marcus Chown

05-04-2018

Paperback / softback

Publisher: Orion Publishing Co

The Ascent of Gravity: The Quest to Understand the Force that Explains Everything

The Ascent of Gravity: The Quest to Understand the Force that Explains Everything
Why the force that keeps our feet on the ground holds the key to understanding time and the origin of the universe

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Award-winning writer Marcus Chown takes us on an unforgettable journey from the recognition of the 'force' of gravity in 1666 to the discovery of gravitational waves in the twenty-first century. And, as we stand on the brink of a seismic revolution in our worldview, he brings us up to speed on the greatest challenge ever to confront physics.

publisher
Orion Publishing Co

Specs

Books
Number of Pages 288

Reviews

Press
* 'An accessible history of the most well known but least understood force' * Big Issue North * 'A readable romp through the history of cosmology and its possible future, all tied together through the story of how we have understood gravity . . . Chown is excellent on bringing out the temporary nature of theories, as well as the messy business of refining them' * thebookbag.co.uk * 'Compact and accessible while remaining comprehensive. A welcome addition to anyone's popular science library, written in a relaxed style and full of relevant quotations' * BBC Sky at Night Magazine * '"Everyone thinks it sucks but in most of the Universe it blows." That aphoristic introduction hints at the genial wit and scientific flair that await in Marcus Chown's primer on gravity, which traces the historic arc of our understanding of the force. He shows how Isaac Newton's 1687 Principia - which distilled fundamental laws from the complexity of the cosmos - helps to explain phenomena such as tides. He analyses Albert Einstein's reformulation of gravity as warped space-time. And he gazes into the weird realm of quantum theory - and the "undiscovered country" of the next big questions' -- Barbara Kiser * Nature * 'Marcus Chown is one of the UK's best writers on physics and astronomy - it's excellent to see him back on what he does best . . . no one has covered the topic with such a light touch and joie de vivre as Chown . . . It gives what I think is the best introduction to string theory at this basic descriptive level I've ever seen . . . a very readable exploration of humanity's gradual realisation of what gravity was about with all of Chown's usual sparkle . . . a delight' -- Brian Clegg * popularscience.co.uk * 'Chown is good company. He tells his story clearly and sets out the key ideas without recourse to jargon and intimidating mathematics . . . "There has never been a better time to study gravity," Arkani-Hamed insists, and Chown's eminently readable book helps us understand why' -- Graham Farmelo * Guardian * 'Entertaining and at times mind-boggling guide to the weakest of nature's fundamental forces, which also controls the fate of the universe' -- Manjit Kumar * The Times *
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