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Ice Ages and Astronomical Causes: Data, spectral analysis and mechanisms (Springer Praxis Books) 1st Edition. Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1852336349
ISBN-10: 185233634X
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From the Back Cover

Ice Ages and Astronomical Causes is concerned with one of the most active interdisciplinary areas of the present day, with new discoveries and data emerging all the time. This information must be carefully and rigorously analysed using sophisticated mathematical techniques, and the authors successfuly explain both the data an the methods of analysis. This book combines a theoretical presentation of the methods with practical instructions and numerous Matlab recipes making it of the greatest use to the practising geologist and paleoclimatologist. This unique book provides a foundation for students and professionals alike who want answers to questions about the Earth's past, thus helping them to predict what is to come. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Richard A. Muller (PhD, Duke University) is senior fellow of the Junius Institute for Digital Reformation Research and P. J. Zondervan Professor of Historical Theology Emeritus at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He is the author of numerous books, including "The Unaccommodated Calvin", "After Calvin", and "Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics". He also serves as the editor for the Texts and Studies in Reformation and Post-Reformation Thought series. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Springer Praxis Books
  • Hardcover: 318 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 1st Edition. edition (September 15, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 185233634X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852336349
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,845,474 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Unfortunately this book is very expensive, which will limit its circulation. It is essentially a textbook for graduate students. and contains many graphs and significant mathematical equations. Very fortunately, the first chapter, "Brief Introductions to ... ", is available on the author's website. It contains facts about the past climate on the earth which are essential in order to put the proper perspective on the current global warming controversy.

As an example, how many articles on global warming have you read that point out that in the past 2500 years, it has been warmer than it is today -- not once, but six times! Our present warming is actually a rebound from the Little Ice Age that gripped the earth starting in 1200 and lasting to 1900. Today we still have not reached the warm temperatures during the days when the Greeks and Romans flourished. (See Fig. 1.2 of Chapter 1 in this book)

Even more jolting is the graph (Fig. 1.3) that shows the length of the current warm period the earth is experiencing -- called an interglacial. We have been warm for 10,000 years. But if you go back another 2000 years, the temperature was 10 to 15 F degrees colder than it is today. To find a period comparable to the present day, you must go back 100,000 years. Or, 200,000 years, or 300,000 years, or 400,000 years, or half a million years! And all but one (500,000 years ago) of these warm periods were significantly shorter than the 10,000 years of warmth the earth is currently experiencing.

Muller's main goal is to try to establish whether astronomical causes are the basis for the variation in the earth's temperature, and specifically, what features of the earth's orbit through space are involved.
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Format: Hardcover
I very much enjoyed reading this book. There were several reasons for that:

1. The book was free of jargon - for the most part - and what was there was necessary for understanding the argument

2. The mathematical preliminaries had been kept to a minimum (Calculus, Elementary Differential Equations, Fourier analysis, and Elementary statistics).

3. The main threads of the arguments were very clearly stated and careful attention was paid to the methodological issues of data analysis of pale-climate data.

4. The book carefully stipulated its data sources (and types) for the paleo-climate, the locations at which they were gathered, their reliability as proxies for various features of the paleo-climate, their time span and their overall validity.

5. I especially enjoyed learning about these records and how they had been used to analyze the paeo-climate. That is because, over the years, I had watched multiple documentaries that showed how they had been collected but had never seen the how they had been used and analyzed before.

6. Lastly, the book is very well written and quite accessible to people with technical maturity in Physics, Astronomy, Atmospheric Sciences, and Engineering.

The main thesis of the book is that the occurrence of the ice ages is a feature of climate of Earth that is forced (driven) by astronomical causes.
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Format: Hardcover
Great book for identifying climate change cycles over millions of years, and possible astronomical causes for climate change. Only one caution: Take dust cloud theory with a grain of salt. Theory of dust cloud is presented strongly, but when I asked author "Do you still hold to your interplanetary dust and accretion hypothesis?" He said "It is still a possibility, but I haven't found any good evidence that the dust exists."
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Format: Hardcover
It is not possible to understand the present or future climate unless scientists can account for the enormous and rapid cycles of glaciation that have taken place over the last million years, and which are expected to continue into the future. A great deal has happened in the theory of ice ages over the last decade, and now widely accepted that ice ages are driven by changes in the Earths orbit. The study of Ice Ages of ice ages is very inter-disciplinary.
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