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Energy the Subtle Concept by Jennifer Coopersmith
This amazing new book by Jennifer Coopersmith has been praised by Nobel Laureates, popular science writers and lay people. It deals comprehensively with a subject that is greatly misunderstood and yet incredibly exciting.
Energy is at the heart of physics (and of huge importance to society) and yet no book exists specifically to explain it, and in simple terms. In tracking the history of energy, this book is filled with the thrill of the chase, the mystery of smoke and mirrors, and presents a fascinating human-interest story. Following the history provides a crucial aid to understanding: this book explains the intellectual revolutions required to comprehend energy, revolutions as profound as those stemming from Relativity and Quantum Theory. Texts by Descartes, Leibniz, Bernoulli, d’Alembert, Lagrange, Hamilton, Boltzmann, Clausius, Carnot and others are made accessible, and the engines of Watt and Joule are explained.
About the Author
Jennifer Coopersmith took her PhD in nuclear physics from the University of London, and was later a research fellow at TRIUMF, University of British Columbia. She was for many years an associate lecturer for the Open University (London and Oxford). She currently does similar work on astrophysics courses for Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne while based at La Trobe University in Bendigo, Victoria.
Review of the book
“The work is full of surprises, and some illuminating apercus. It makes one think about the subject in a new way – the connections made with dynamics, Hamilton and Lagrange are germane, and one never sees these in books on thermodynamics.” —Sir Aaron Klug, Nobel laureate, President of the Royal Society 1995-2000