Asteroids: How Love, Fear, and Greed Will Determine Our Future in Space

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Product Details
Yale University Press
Publish Date
6.1 X 9.4 X 1.3 inches | 1.4 pounds
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About the Author
Martin Elvis is an astrophysicist at the Center for Astrophysics Harvard & Smithsonian. Previously he was a postdoctoral fellow with the UK Science Research Council. He has researched X-ray astronomy, black holes, and quasars--and now asteroids. In 2007, he won the Pirelli INTERNETional Award for multimedia science communication. Asteroid 9283 Martinelvis is named after him. He lives in Cambridge, MA.
"Elvis . . . discusses three possible motives for studying asteroids: love (of knowledge), fear (that they can strike the Earth), and greed (for the valuable raw materials that could potentially be mined). Each motive is discussed in authoritative detail in a text that includes an explanation of the author's original research and calculations. The discussion is up-to-date and is supported by 34 pages of endnotes. Yet, the writing style is breezy, clear, and at times humorous. . . . Should appeal to a wide audience, including not only astronomers but also engineers, entrepreneurs, and even lawyers (as space law is still quite literally a wide-open field). It is a strong candidate for acquisition by all libraries."--T. Barker, Choice

"A valuable . . . well-written read. . . . Martin Elvis has provided an important framework for assessing how humankind should look at the vast riches likely available via asteroids." --Leonard David, Inside Outer Space

CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title 2022

"Martin Elvis gives a fascinating survey of all the reasons why asteroids are interesting. He's not only an expert, but a fluent and entertaining writer."--Martin Rees, author of On the Future and Just Six Numbers

"A lively and engaging writer, Martin Elvis shows us why it will take much more than drilling equipment and spaceships to mine asteroids--and to do it the right way."--Frank White, author of The Overview Effect: Space Exploration and Human Evolution

"A delightful trip around the solar system's most dangerous and useful objects, leftovers from the beginning, causes of mass extinctions, and a chance for space trillionaires. Well done!"--John Mather, author of The Very First Light; Nobel Prize laureate (physics), 2006

"A lively, comprehensive vision of future knowledge, technologies and wealth creation in our solar system. A great read for lovers of astronomy and astronautics, long-term investors, and venture capitalists with nerves of steel."--Sir Philip Campbell, editor-in-chief, Springer Nature

"Asteroids is a unique and compelling read, exploring the science of asteroids, space travel, and astronomy, and providing a fascinating study of the practical and financial benefits of asteroid research."--Gregory J. Gbur, author of Falling Felines and Fundamental Physics