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Planetology: Unlocking the Secrets of the Solar System Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: National Geographic (November 18, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1426201214
  • ISBN-13: 978-1426201219
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 10 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #932,496 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ellen Stofan is a planetary geologist who has conducted research on the geology of volcanic and tectonic features on Venus, Mars, Titan, and Earth. She is currently a Senior Research Scientist of proxemy Research and an Honorary Professor of Earth Sciences at University College London.

Tom Jones is a scientist, author, pilot, and former NASA astronaut. He led three space walks to install the centerpiece of the International Space Station. He is the author of Sky Walking: An Astronaut’s Memoir (Harper Collins, 2006) and The Complete Idiots Guide to NASA (Alpha, 2002) as well as a contributing writer to Smithsonian Air and Space magazine.

More About the Author

www.AstronautTomJones.com

Thomas D. Jones, PhD is a veteran NASA astronaut, shuttle payload commander, scientist, speaker, author, and consultant. He holds a doctorate in planetary sciences, and in more than eleven years with NASA, flew on four space shuttle missions to Earth orbit. On his last flight, Dr. Jones led three spacewalks to install the centerpiece of the International Space Station, the American Destiny laboratory. He has spent fifty-three days working and living in space.

Tom is a Distinguished Graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy. He piloted B-52D strategic bombers, studied asteroids for NASA, engineered intelligence-gathering systems for the CIA, and helped develop advanced mission concepts to explore the solar system prior to joining NASA's astronaut corps.

Tom is the co-author of Planetology: Unlocking the Secrets of the Solar System (written with Ellen Stofan, PhD; National Geographic, 2008). His other 2008 book, Hell Hawks! (with Robert F. Dorr; Zenith Press), is an action-packed true story of an aerial band of brothers in WWII. The Wall Street Journal named his Sky Walking: An Astronaut's Memoir (Smithsonian-Collins, 2006) as one of its "Five Best" books about space. Tom writes frequently for Air & Space Smithsonian, Aerospace America, Popular Mechanics, and American Heritage magazines.

Dr. Jones' awards include the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, four NASA Space Flight Medals, the NASA Exceptional Service Award, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, the NASA Exceptional Public Service Award, Phi Beta Kappa, and the Air Force Commendation Medal. King's College of Wilkes-Barre, Penn. awarded him an honorary doctorate in 2007.

Tom served on the NASA Advisory Council and is a board member of the Association of Space Explorers and the Astronauts Memorial Foundation. A regular on-air contributor to television spaceflight and science coverage, he is currently active in the debate over our nation's space exploration policy.


Contact information:

www.AstronautTomJones.com

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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It is a work well worth reading and pondering.
Roger D. Launius
The book is absolutely stunning - the images are breathtaking, and the text is fascinating.
Linda Kendzierski
They have very clear pictures describing what is in the text.
Joshua Hale

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Roger D. Launius VINE VOICE on March 3, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Large format illustrated books about space exploration are always breathtaking, always because of the stunning imagery collected by NASA and other national space efforts. Sometimes the text is also illuminating. "Planetology: Unlocking the Secrets of the Solar System," by space scientist and former astronaut Tom Jones and planetary geologist Ellen Stofan, offers a unique perspective on this important episode in human history. It relates to a popular audience an overview of the origins and evolution of the solar system. But "Planetology" does so in a manner not seen previously, indeed the organization of this book is strikingly different from most others of its type.

Authors Jones and Stofan focus on the geological, climatological, biological, and planetary processes that have led to the solar system as we understand it today. Instead of discussions of individual planets, or even groups of planets, they discuss various processes--one example is volcanism, another is impacts and cratering--in the evolution of the various planetary bodies. Within that process, they then describe how this has affected various planetary bodies over time. They do the same for weather, atmospheres, other geological processes, and the like. It is a fascinating approach, but sometimes difficult to follow without single-minded devotion to analyzing the subject at hand. It is a process that planetary scientists will appreciate and it raises the bar in the explanation of the solar system above most other books on the subject. Of course, this book is as much about the Earth as a planet as it is the other planets of the Solar System. Comparisons across the planets is an illuminating way of looking at the forces that have shaped the Solar System.

As an added feature, "Planetology" also provides superb imagery to illustrate what has been taking place. It is a work well worth reading and pondering.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Dennis R. Maccaskie on July 17, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The title is somewhat misleading. I admit, of all the various sol-system bodies, damn near everything we know is about Earth. However, without actually counting pages, I estimate that about half the pages deal mainly with Earth, either in text or photo - planetology of Earth has its own name, it's called "Geology." Also, with a title like "Planetology," one might expect a little more theory somewhere inside; instead, it's pretty much all comparative geomorphology.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Linda Kendzierski on December 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
We've all seen the term "visually stunning" in various reviews for books and movies before, but rarely have I seen such a perfect example. For anyone who's looking for a last minute gift idea for a "science nut," I have the perfect answer. Whether you (or your intended recipient) are into volcanolgy, geology, space science, earth science, art, or natural history, "Planetology" by Tom Jones and Ellen Stofan is the perfect gift.

The book is absolutely stunning - the images are breathtaking, and the text is fascinating. It's written in a clear, concise, easy to understand format, and gives you a whole new look at our solar system. The authors have taken a new approach toward discussing the solar system. Rather than a "solar system by numbers" approach (i.e., Chapter One - The Sun; Chapter 2 - Mercury; etc.), they have taken different geologic processes (volcanoes, water erosion, etc.) and explored how these are manifested throughout the solar system. The book also includes some anecdotes from Tom's shuttle missions, which are an added bonus.

All in all, I can't say enough good about this book. Don't have anyone who's a science enthusiast on your list? Get it for yourself! Actually, trust me, and get it for yourself anyway!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joshua Hale on April 22, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This should be in every scientists collection if they are studying anything about Earth sciences, especially geology and planetology. They have very clear pictures describing what is in the text. Its easy to understand, for high school and college students. If you're interested in our solar system, you need to get this.
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