Cover of Planets X and Pluto
Category: History
Publisher: University of Arizona Press
Pages: 302
ISBN: 9780816506842
Year: 1979

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Lent status: Available

Availability: 1/1

Review

THIS BOOK IS LOCATED IN THE HALIFAX CENTRE ARCHIVE CABINET and may be borrowed by submitting a "Borrow Request".

The book focuses on the long, frustrating search for a trans-Neptonian planet X that paved the way for the eventual discovery of Pluto. With much of the account drawn from previously unpublished documents of the Lowell Observatory archives, "Mr. Hoyt provides the clearest coverage yet available on the subject," say astronomer-author Bart Bok in his Foreword: and indeed, Hoyt both conveys the frustration of men having to rely on limited equipment and lucidly explains the mathematics involved. Woven around this story is a broader tale that begins with Galileos discovery of Jupiters four largest moons in 1610. The narrative leads the reader through the searches for Uranus and Neptune, and culminated with contemporary probes for plants beyond Pluto. In chronicling the scientific battles that raged over the discoveries of the outer planets, Hoyt skillfully blends fascination historical sidelights with fresh insights into personalities involved. Its highly readable style makes this an exciting book for layman as well as scholar: yet every pain has been taken to authoritatively document the study throughout. Mr. Hoyt has set the pace for a new genre of science history, ensuring for Planet X and Pluto a place among the classics of the literature.

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