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This classic Big Bang neatly describes what happened after the bang. Yet, until recently, particle physicists and cosmologists were stuck on many questions that the Big Bang Theory still couldn't answer, primarily- If matter can neither be created nor destroyed, how could so much matter arise from nothing at all? Alan Guth's Inflationary Universe Theory answers these vexing questions. When NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer satellite measured the non-uniformities of the cosmic background radiation for the first time in 1992, the patterns agreed exquisitely with the theory's pre-dictions.
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The first-hand account of the paradigm-breaking discovery of the origins of the universe - 'mind-blowing stuff' Sunday Times

About the Author

Alan Guth, after receiving his doctorate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, held positions at Princeton University, Columbia, Cornell and the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. He is now the V. F. Weisskopf Professor of Physics at MIT. He has been elected to the US National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and has been awarded the Eddington Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in London.

Reviews

In late 1979, Guth developed concept of the "inflationary universe," proposing that, very soon after the Big Bang, the tightly packed mass that constituted the universe underwent an exceptionally rapid expansion for a limited amount of time before settling down to a more sedate growth pace. This resolved some major problems in the standard cosmological model. Here Guth relates the history of 20th-century cosmology before, during, and after his biggest contribution. Though he writes well and manages to skip most equations, this work will still be a stern test for general readers; some reading knowledge of related works for lay readers is almost a prerequisite for full understanding of the sophisticated scientific concepts expounded herein. Recommended chiefly for academic and the largest public libraries.‘Jack W. Weigel, Univ. of Michigan Lib., Ann Arbor

"Mind-blowing stuff" Sunday Times "[Alan Guth's] remarkably lucid account is set to become a seminal text in cosmology...helping us up the learning curve without ever making recourse to unfriendly mathematical equations" Literary Review "[Guth] conveys how science can be an intensely social and interactive activity, and the erratic and fitful way in which new ideas clarify" The Times "One of the most fascinating and fundamental fields of human enquiry...handsomely rewards study" Financial Times

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