Astrobiology for a General Reader: A Questions and Answers Approach
This book implements several outstanding features which are helpful to the general reader. It is organized in the form of a ‘Questions and Answers’ guide, an approach unique in the field of astrobiology. The questions and answers are linked in a conversation-like style, with each new question following from the previous answer. The book is organized into 20 chapters discussing broad and comprehensive topics, with over 250 questions answered.
While the book is written for general readers who are assumed to have an interest in science, though not necessarily an extensive background, it will also be helpful to the beginning student and those who wish to pursue further one or more aspects of the field. It provides the reader with a comprehensive set of ‘Further Readings.’ After each chapter, resource material is keyed to the individual answers to each question. At the end of the book, full references are given, as well as a guide for how to obtain them. A thorough Index is also provided.
The streamlined, condensed, and yet comprehensive approach provided here is well-suited for stimulating the appetite of many readers for delving more into the fascinating and multi-faceted field of astrobiology.
Vera M. Kolb obtained degrees in Chemical Engineering and Organic Chemistry from Belgrade University, and her PhD in Organic Chemistry from Southern Illinois University. Following a 30 year career, she is currently Professor Emerita of Chemistry at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. During a sabbatical leave with the NASA Specialized Center of Research and Training (NSCORT) in Astrobiology, she worked with Dr Leslie Orgel at the Salk Institute and Professor Stanley Miller at UC San Diego. She is the editor of, and a contributor to, Astrobiology, An Evolutionary Approach (2015) and Handbook of Astrobiology (2019).
Benton C. Clark III obtained degrees in Physics and Nuclear Engineering, and a PhD in Biophysics from Columbia University. In space exploration, he designed radiation monitors for the Gemini spacecraft and the instrument for Viking which first analyzed the composition of Martian soil. He has been a science team member for all rover missions to Mars, as well as sample return missions from comets and asteroids, and has also consulted with NASA for the NSCORT, Exo-biology and Astrobiology programs.
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