Category: PGK

The Edge of Physics

A scientific and globetrotting exploration of the physics experiments changing the ways we understand our universe.

Why is the universe expanding? What is the nature of dark matter? Do other universes exist? In this timely and original book, science writer Anil Ananthaswamy embarks on a global journey to some of the world’s most inhospitable and dramatic research sites to witness first-hand the audacious physics experiments conducted to answer profound questions about the nature of the universe.

From the Atacama Desert in the Chilean Andes to the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope on Mount Paranal to deep inside an abandoned iron mine in Minnesota and to the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, Ananthaswamy weaves together stories about the people and places at the heart of this cosmological research.

While explaining the immense questions that scientists are trying to answer, Ananthaswamy provides an accessible and unique portrait of the universe and our quest to understand it. An atmospheric, engaging and illuminating read, The Edge of Physics depicts science as a human process and brings cosmology with all its rarefied concepts down to earth.

***PRAISE FOR THE EDGE OF PHYSICS***

‘A travelogue that celebrates the blood, sweat and tears that drive our understanding of the universe.’ Guardian

‘An excellent book. The author has a great knack of making difficult subjects comprehensible. I thoroughly enjoyed it.’ Sir Patrick Moore

‘A remarkable narrative that combines fundamental physics with high adventure.’ New Scientist

‘The ultimate physics-adventure travelogue… brilliant.’ Physics World

‘A grand tour of modern day cosmology’s sacred places… evocative… engaging… refreshing… a taste of science in the heroic mode.’ BBC Sky at Night

‘Clean, elegant prose, humming with interest.’ Robert MacFarlene

‘An accomplished and timely overview of modern cosmology and particle astrophysics.’ Nature

Cosmosapiens

Daily Telegraph and TLS Book of the Year

‘An audacious tour of all that science can teach us’ Edward O. Wilson

Specialist scientific fields are developing at incredibly swift speeds, but what can they really tell us about how the universe began and how humans evolved to play such a dominant role on Earth? John Hands’s extraordinarily ambitious quest brings together our scientific knowledge and evaluates the theories and evidence about the origin and evolution of matter, life, consciousness, and humankind.

Cosmosapiens provides the most comprehensive account yet of current ideas such as cosmic inflation, dark energy, the selfish gene, and neurogenetic determinism. In clear and accessible language, Hands differentiates the firmly established from the speculative and examines the claims of various fields such as string theory to approach a unified theory of everything. In doing so he challenges the orthodox consensus in those branches of cosmology, biology, and neuroscience that have ossified into dogma. His striking analysis reveals underlying patterns of cooperation, complexification, and convergence that lead to the unique emergence in humans of a self-reflective consciousness that enables us to determine our future evolution. This groundbreaking book is destined to become a classic of scientific thinking.