Home is Where the Wind Blows: Chapters from a Cosmologist's Life

Fred Hoyle, Author, Margaret Burbidge, Foreword by
Fred Hoyle, Author, Margaret Burbidge, Foreword by University Science Books $34 (443p) ISBN 978-0-935702-27-9
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Twentieth-century winds have blown astrophysicist Sir Fred Hoyle from radar development projects in WW II England to modern cosmology, where his key contributions include naming the Big Bang theory. His memoirs of his early schooling and family life as the son of a Yorkshire wool merchant are as charming as James Herriot's recollections. Hoyle's career, spent mostly at Cambridge University, spans the watershed years of quantum theory in physics and radio astronomy. Ever the reserved English scientist, he raises no more than a bon mot about the exalted company he has kept--Paul Dirac, Sir Arthur Eddington, Werner Heisenberg, Wolfgang Pauli, among them--who comprise the first generation to work under the assumptions of relativity. Although this is mainly a memoir, Hoyle offers some model general science writing about his work on the synthesis of heavy elements in star formation. His modesty and quirky attraction to various anthropic theories have kept him in the background for much of his later career, but on these pages, seen against his own firmament, Hoyle blazes bright, as human being and scientist. Photos. $25,000 ad/promo. (June)
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