Fire in the sky: cosmic collisions, killer asteroids, and the race to defend the Earth

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Average Rating
Publisher:
Scribner,
Pub. Date:
2019.
Edition:
First Scribner hardcover edition.
Language:
English
Description
Combining history, pop science, and in-depth reporting, a fascinating account of asteroids that hit Earth long ago, and those streaming toward us now, as well as how we are preparing against asteroid-caused catastrophe. One of these days, warns Gordon Dillow, the Earth will be hit by a comet or asteroid of potentially catastrophic size. The only question is when . In the meantime, we need to get much better at finding objects hurtling our way, and if they're large enough to penetrate the atmosphere without burning up, figure out what to do about them. We owe many of science's most important discoveries to the famed Meteor Crater, a mile-wide dimple on the Colorado Plateau created by an asteroid hit 50,000 years ago. In his masterfully researched Fire in the Sky , Dillow unpacks what the Crater has to tell us. Prior to the early 1900s, the world believed that all craters--on the Earth and Moon--were formed by volcanic activity. Not so. The revelation that Meteor Crater and others like it were formed by impacts with space objects has led to a now accepted theory about what killed off the dinosaurs, and it has opened up a new field of asteroid observation, which has recently brimmed with urgency. Dillow looks at great asteroid hits of the past and spends time with modern-day asteroid hunters and defense planning experts, including America's first Planetary Defense Officer. Satellite sensors confirm that a Hiroshima-scale blast occurs in the atmosphere every year, and a smaller, one-kiloton blast every month. While Dillow makes clear that the objects above can be deadly, he consistently inspires awe with his descriptions of their size, makeup, and origins. At once a riveting work of popular science and a warning to not take for granted the space objects hurtling overhead, Fire in the Sky is, above all, a testament to our universe's celestial wonders.
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ISBN:
9781501187742
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID2e2cd8e1-9c54-8e1d-0024-8175d4db0342
Grouping Titlefire in the sky cosmic collisions killer asteroids and the race to defend the earth
Grouping Authordillow gordon
Grouping Categorybook
Last Grouping Update2019-11-16 04:12:38AM
Last Indexed2019-11-22 04:18:41AM

Solr Details

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Severna Park Library - Nonfiction
display_description"An historical survey about asteroid hits sustained by Earth and the defenses being prepared against future asteroid-caused catastrophe"-- "Combining history, popular science, and in-depth reporting, here is a fascinating account of asteroids and other space objects that hit Earth long ago and those streaming toward us even now--as well as a look at the preparations humanity is making against asteroid-caused catastrophe. Journalist Gordon L. Dillow examines what a small but dedicated group of astronomers have long known--that someday Earth will be hit by an asteroid or comet of potentially catastrophic size. It has happened many times before, and it will happen again. Earth shares the Solar System with millions upon millions of asteroids large and small, and inevitably our world will collide with theirs. It's not a question of if, but rather, when. To save ourselves and future generations, we must improve our ability to identify dangerous space objects hurtling our way, and, just as critically, figure out how to deflect or destroy them--if we can. Rich in detail and vast in scope, [this book] is a scientific adventure story that takes us from scenes of ancient asteroid impacts, like the one that wiped out the dinosaurs, to mountaintop observatories where professional asteroid hunters seek their prey, to international conferences where experts play out "asteroid war games," to sightings of asteroids that sometimes explode in our atmosphere with the force of large nuclear bombs. Despite the grave dangers asteroids pose, Dillow finds in them awe-inspiring beauty, writing with infectious enthusiasm about their dramatic origins, their intricate journeys, and their odd shapes. More than just a call to action, Fire in the Sky is a testament to the wonders of the universe."--Dust jacket.
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ils:a1615028BookBooksFirst Scribner hardcover edition.EnglishScribner, 2019.ix, 277 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 24 cm
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subject_facetAsteroids -- Collisions with Earth
Collisions (Astrophysics)
Earth (Planet) -- Surface
Impact craters
Near-Earth objects
title_displayFire in the sky : cosmic collisions, killer asteroids, and the race to defend the Earth
title_fullFire in the sky : cosmic collisions, killer asteroids, and the race to defend the Earth / Gordon L. Dillow
title_shortFire in the sky
title_subcosmic collisions, killer asteroids, and the race to defend the Earth
topic_facetAsteroids
Collisions (Astrophysics)
Collisions with Earth
Impact craters
Near-Earth objects
Surface