Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Pioneers in Astronomy and Space Exploration

Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Pioneers in Astronomy and Space Exploration

Article excerpt

Pioneers in Astronomy and Space Exploration By Michael Anderson. $32.90. 112 pp. Rosen Publishing Group, Inc. New York, NY. 2013. ISBN: 9781615306954.

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The author describes the achievements of 37 men and women who studied the mysteries of the universe over a time frame dating back to ancient Greece. Early explanations of astronomical phenomena were based on mathematical calculations and what could be seen with the naked eye. Readers will be surprised at how much information was amassed this way, including catalogs of stars, the size and movement of celestial bodies, and planets' distances from the Earth. These pioneers laid the foundation for future studies in astronomy. For many years, however, a geocentric view of the solar system thwarted advancements in astronomy. Then came the Sun-centered, or heliocentric, view.

The author provides a biography of each pioneer, describing his or her childhood, family relationships, obstacles to success, and education. The book reveals how tenacity, curiosity, and thirst for adventure and knowledge led to understanding of the universe. …

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