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Great for science geeks, but it's VERY heavy on the science
on January 3, 2011
"The Science of Battlestar Galactica" was written by a Wired editor and the science consultant for the reimagined Battlestar Galactica series that aired on SciFi from 2003 to 2008.
I've read a lot of these "science of . . ." books, and this one is by far the deepest, most science-heavy one that I've come across. It's really more of an astrophysics book with references to BSG. The authors explain how stars coalesce, how black holes develop, how electronic warfare takes place, how GPS works and how it would apply in a galactic setting, and more. Nor do the authors pull any punches in terms of explaining the relevant physics -- the section on the Special Theory of Relativity, for example, goes into Lorentz contraction, which is something I didn't learn until taking physics at Caltech(!).
I should also add that there are math equations in this book. Some explain the rate at which a spaceship would have to spin to simulate gravity through centrifugal force; others explain the aforementioned Lorentz contraction (a consequence of approaching the speed of light). Other equations explain why BSG's kinetic weapons (bullets, high explosive ordnance) are actually more efficient and effective than laser or other energy beams would be.
This book would be great for anyone who liked BSG and who is interested in learning some serious science, but those who are interested more in episode guides with just a touch of science will probably find it overwhelming. On the other hand, it does explain how the Galactica was able to withstand a direct hit by a nuclear warhead and not be vaporized . . . .