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Astronomers' Universe

Under a Crimson Sun

Prospects for Life in a Red Dwarf System

Authors: Stevenson, David

  • Explores possible habitats for life on a tidally locked super-Earth called Gliese 581 d and other similar planets with red dwarf companion stars
  • Considers the impact of the diminutive parent star and the unusual orbit on the development of life on Gliese
  • Offers a summary of the factors that can account for life in a red dwarf system
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eBook 29,74 €
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  • ISBN 978-1-4614-8133-1
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  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover 36,39 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-4614-8132-4
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About this book

Gliese 581 is a red dwarf star some 20.3 light years from Earth. Red dwarfs are among the most numerous stars in the galaxy, and they sport diverse planetary systems. At magnitude 10, Gliese 581 is visible to amateur observers but does not stand out. So what makes this star so important? It is that professional observers have confirmed that it has at least four planets orbiting it, and in 2009, Planet d was described in the letters of The Astrophysical Journal as “the first confirmed exoplanet that could support Earth-like life.”

 

Under a Crimson Sun looks at the nature of red dwarf systems such as Gliese as potential homes for life.

 

Realistically, what are prospects for life on these distant worlds? Could life evolve and survive there? How do these planetary surfaces and geology evolve? How would life on a red dwarf planet differ from life on Earth? And what are the implications for finding further habitable worlds in our galaxy?

 

Stevenson provides readers with insight into the habitability of planets and how this changes as time progresses and the central star evolves. Explore with him in this engaging, fascinating book the possibilities for finding life, from bacteria to more complex and even intelligent organisms, on red dwarf system planets.

About the authors

David S. Stevenson studied molecular biology at Glasgow and Cambridge Universities. He has a BSc Honours 1st Class Glasgow University; a Ph.D. in Molecular Genetics from Cambridge University; Open University – Astronomy and Planetary Sciences (distinction), and Open University, Geophysics and Geochemistry. His peer-reviewed biological research articles from 1999 to 2003 include a paper on the early development of life, “The Origin of Translation,” published in the Journal of Theoretical Biology.

 

David’s interest in astronomy was encouraged from an early age by his father. This (combined with an interest in explosions!) has led David to research and write about the life and death of stars.

 

After a stint in academia David became a teacher but continued to write science articles for various publications. He has published numerous articles on the Blackwell Plant Sciences website (2002-2007). “Turning Out the Lights” (an article about red dwarfs) was published in Popular Astronomy in 2003, “A Bigger Bang” (about Type Ia Supernovae) in Sky & Telescope last July, with “Exceptional Explosions” (also for Sky & Telescope) currently in production. He is currently writing another book for Springer on what he terms “ultranovas,” which are a type of supernova.

 

David lives in Nottingham in the UK with his wife and family.

Reviews

From the book reviews:

“It is a thought-provoking book, that provides information about modern research into exoplanets and super-Earths in particular, as well as entertaining science-writing, making this book an excellent choice for some additional reading for students and also showing how life might be totally different somewhere else and not similar at all to what we know here on Earth.” (Kadri Tinn, AstroMadness.com, August, 2014)


Table of contents (10 chapters)

  • The Discovery of Extraterrestrial Worlds

    Stevenson, David S.

    Pages 3-38

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,19 €
  • The Formation of Stars and Planets

    Stevenson, David S.

    Pages 39-61

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,19 €
  • Stellar Evolution Near the Bottom of the Main Sequence

    Stevenson, David S.

    Pages 63-103

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,19 €
  • The Living Planet

    Stevenson, David S.

    Pages 105-135

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,19 €
  • The Carbon Dioxide Connection

    Stevenson, David S.

    Pages 137-153

    Preview Buy Chapter 30,19 €

Buy this book

eBook 29,74 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-4614-8133-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover 36,39 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-4614-8132-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
  • The final prices may differ from the prices shown due to specifics of VAT rules
Rent the ebook  
  • Rental duration: 1 or 6 month
  • low-cost access
  • online reader with highlighting and note-making option
  • can be used across all devices
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Under a Crimson Sun
Book Subtitle
Prospects for Life in a Red Dwarf System
Authors
Series Title
Astronomers' Universe
Copyright
2013
Publisher
Springer-Verlag New York
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media New York
eBook ISBN
978-1-4614-8133-1
DOI
10.1007/978-1-4614-8133-1
Softcover ISBN
978-1-4614-8132-4
Series ISSN
1614-659X
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIV, 324
Number of Illustrations and Tables
60 illustrations in colour
Topics