The story of how Galileo’s telescope transformed the heavens—and contemporary astrophysics: A “lively history . . . ideal for armchair scientists and stargazers” (Publishers Weekly).
In the fall of 1609, Italian astronomer Galileo Galilei turned his modified spyglass toward the sky—and greatly expanded the scope of human understanding. The scientific, historical, and social implications of the telescope, as well as its modern-day significance, are brought into startling focus in this fascinating account co-written by NASA scientist Stephen P. Maran and physics professor Laurence A. Marschall.
Galileo could not have fathomed the profound changes his new instrument would bring about for civilization. With it, he made some of the most astonishing discoveries in scientific history: A seemingly flat moon magically transformed into a dynamic, crater-filled orb, and a large, black sky suddenly held millions of galaxies.
Reflecting on how Galileo’s world compares with contemporary society, Galileo’s New Universe deftly moves from the cutting-edge technology available in seventeenth-century Europe to the unbelievable phenomena discovered during the last fifty years, documenting important astronomical advances and the effects they have had over time.