Unlocking the Secrets of the Solar System

Book - 2008
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Random House, Inc.
In a stunning and completely new view of the solar system, an astronaut and a geologist team up to investigate, through parallel views made possible by cutting-edge space technology, how the earth itself can help science unravel the mysteries of the heavens.

Noted planetary geologist Ellen Stofan and veteran astronaut Tom Jones pair images of Earth—many captured by space shuttle and space station crewmembers—with astonishing scenes of alien surfaces beamed home by NASA’s far-ranging robotic probes. Vivid illustrations of searing lava plains, windswept deserts, and stark craters demonstrate how natural forces have shaped these varied landscapes. This comprehensive new portrait of the solar system brings to light an array of important features never seen until today—and it highlights, for the first time, the similarities and contrasts between Earth and its neighbors in space.

Anecdotal stories from space flights and exploratory missions make Planetology an absorbing read as well as an informative resource. The book’s unique concept draws intriguing comparisons across multiple physical processes, and its dynamic design offers a fresh approach to the study of space. With extensive media and science experience and contacts for both authors, Planetology is positioned for stellar success.

Baker & Taylor
Dramatic full-color photographs and illustrations, including those taken by NASA's distant robotic probes, explore the contrasts and similarities between Earth and its planetary neighbors, tracing the history of the solar system and the natural forces and processes that have shaped nearby planets and moons. 15,000 first printing.

Book News
Planetary scientists Jones (a former NASA astronaut) and Stofan (U. College London) collaborated on NASA projects including the Space Radar Lab aboard space shuttle Endeavor missions. Here they introduce the field of planetology and present commentary on stunning out-of-this world images of Earth and its celestial neighbors from recent space probes. They discuss formative forces including volcanism, water, ice, and atmosphere. The large format volume includes timelines of the formation of the solar system and of space exploration, and recommended further reading. Annotation ©2009 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Blackwell North Amer
In this new view of the planets, images from NASA and other space agencies reveal how volcanoes, wind, asteroids, and flowing fluids have shaped the entire solar system - and tell us about the history and future of our Earth. Planetology pairs dramatic images of Earth's terrain with the latest, astonishing views of alien surfaces - examining landforms never before seen and highlighting, for the first time, the similarities between Earth and its sister planets.
Using the very best and latest NASA images - including those from the Cassini mission to Saturn and the fleet of spacecraft on and around Mars - Planetology examines the forces that shape the solar system, comparing mountains, craters, volcanoes, glaciers, and other landscapes across its myriad planets and moons.

& Taylor

Explores the contrasts and similarities between Earth and its planetary neighbors, tracing the history of the solar system and the natural forces and processes that have shaped nearby planets and moons.

Publisher: Washington, D.C. : National Geographic, [2008]
Copyright Date: ©2008
ISBN: 9781426201219
Branch Call Number: 523.4 Jones 2008
Characteristics: 217 pages : color illustrations ; 27 cm
Additional Contributors: Stofan, Ellen Renee 1961-


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