Astronomers' Universe

The Music of the Big Bang

The Cosmic Microwave Background and the New Cosmology

Authors: Balbi, Amedeo

Free Preview
  • Explains in simple terms the discovery and significance of the cosmic background radiation
  • Makes this vital window onto the early universe accessible to general readers
see more benefits

Buy this book

eBook 23,79 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-540-78728-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 34,31 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-540-78726-6
  • 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
Softcover 29,11 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-642-09749-2
  • 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
About this book

The cosmic microwave background radiation is the afterglow of the big bang: a tenuous signal, more than 13 billion years old, which carries the answers to many of the questions about the nature of our Universe. It was serendipitously discovered in 1964, and thoroughly investigated in the last four decades by a large number of experiments. Two Nobel Prizes in Physics have already been awarded for research on the cosmic background radiation: one in 1978 to Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson, who first discovered it, the other in 2006, to George Smoot and John Mather, for the results of the COBE satellite. 

Most cosmological information is encoded in the cosmic background radiation by acoustic oscillations in the dense plasma that filled the primordial Universe: a "music" of the big bang, which cosmologists have long been trying to reconstruct and analyze, in order to distinguish different cosmological models, much like one can distinguish different musical instruments by their timbre and overtones. Only lately, this amazing cosmic sound has been unveiled by such experiments as BOOMERANG and MAXIMA and, more recently, by the WMAP satellite. This led to a giant leap in our understanding of the Universe, but the investigation is not ended yet.

The book focuses on how the exploration of the cosmic background radiation has shaped our picture of the Universe, leading even the non-specialized readers towards the frontier of cosmological research, helping them to understand, using a simple language and captivating metaphors, the mechanisms behind the Universe in which we live. 

 

"This non-technical tour of the discovery and significance of the whispers of creation, the fossil radiation from the Big Bang, is a delight to read." Prof. Joe Silk, University of Oxford, a pioneering contributor to understanding the structure of the cosmic background radiation.

About the authors

Amedeo Balbi is a researcher in cosmology at the Department of Physics of the University of Rome Tor Vergata. In the past, he worked at the University of California at Berkeley with George Smoot (Nobel Prize 2006 in Physics). Currently, he is involved in the preparation of ESA's forthcoming Planck satellite mission.

Reviews

From the reviews:

"Balbi … is currently working on a satellite experiment to further study the CMB. His well-written book follows the ways in which the CMB has been used to understand the universe. … he gives a very readable account of current cosmological thought, especially for general readers. Summing Up: Recommended. All undergraduate and public libraries." (A. Spero, Choice, Vol. 46 (9), May, 2009)


Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)
  • The Scenery

    Pages 1-23

    Balbi, Amedeo

  • Ancient Light

    Pages 25-48

    Balbi, Amedeo

  • Cosmic Seeds

    Pages 49-80

    Balbi, Amedeo

  • Music of the Spheres

    Pages 81-103

    Balbi, Amedeo

  • Finding Harmony

    Pages 105-129

    Balbi, Amedeo

Buy this book

eBook 23,79 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-540-78728-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 34,31 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-540-78726-6
  • 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
Softcover 29,11 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-642-09749-2
  • 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
Loading...

Recommended for you

Loading...

Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Music of the Big Bang
Book Subtitle
The Cosmic Microwave Background and the New Cosmology
Authors
Series Title
Astronomers' Universe
Copyright
2008
Publisher
Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
Copyright Holder
Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
eBook ISBN
978-3-540-78728-0
DOI
10.1007/978-3-540-78728-0
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-540-78726-6
Softcover ISBN
978-3-642-09749-2
Series ISSN
1614-659X
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XVI, 160
Number of Illustrations
41 b/w illustrations
Additional Information
Original Italian edition published in the series: Le Stelle, Springer Milano, 2007
Topics