The Story of Our Solar System
Firefly Books, 2019, 128 pp., Paperback, $24.95. www.fireflybooks.com
Leading experts in the field provide a compelling introduction to the space rocks that enter Earth’s atmosphere at speeds ranging from 25,000 mph to 160,000 mph. Scientists estimate that about 48.5 tons of meteoritic material falls on the Earth each day. These messengers from space give us a unique insight into the nature of the material that was present when our solar system formed. Many of the specimen meteorites in this second edition were re-photographed to improve quality, and the optical microscopy shots were updated. There is also new information on discoveries and developments in the study of meteorites, including meteorite falls and craters, and new information on ones previously covered; use of weather radar to detect and analyse meteorites, such as the 28,000 mph January 18, 2018, Michigan “fireball”; how astrophysicists determine if a meteorite comes from Mars, and information about the Martian meteorites found to date; and updated information on the results of the European Space Agency’s Rosetta Mission in which a controlled impact was successfully completed into Comet 67P after investigating it with a probe for more than two years. Co-author Sara Russell, who is part of NASA’s Mars program, provides the latest news about NASA’s Mars programs, including the Mars Rover, which landed in 2016.