Public Release: 

Our explosive sun

A visual feast of our source of light and life



IMAGE: In this image-filled book Pål Brekke provides a detailed introduction to the dynamics of the sun and how it affects Earth. view more

Credit: Springer

The center of our Solar System is a star, just one of billions of stars. As seen with the naked eye, it appears as a static and quiet yellow disk in the sky. However, it is in fact stormy and variable and contributes much more than only light and heat.

Over the next few years more solar storms will occur as the Sun approaches maximum activity in 2013. Solar storms and space weather affect our technology-based infrastructure, including satellites, GPS navigation, radio communication and power grids, all of which are vulnerable to space weather effects.

In the image-filled book, Our Explosive Sun - A Visual Feast of Our Source of Light and Life, Pål Brekke provides a detailed introduction to the dynamics of the Sun and how it affects Earth, both scientifically and culturally. The book examines the many ways that the Sun impacts our world, including the beautiful northern and southern lights, and how greatly the Sun affects our technology-based society.

Our Explosive Sun includes over 200 color illustrations and photos of the Sun, several of which were made especially for the book and have never been published before. Additional material, available via Springer Extras, includes a large number of animations and video material. A PowerPoint presentation of the book is a useful resource for teachers.

Commenting on the book, Dr. Bernhard Fleck, ESA Project Scientist for the SOHO mission, said, "I find it to be the most beautiful and informative popular science book dedicated to our star: spectacular imagery, interspersed with clear and very informative graphics and illustrations, all presented in a very clean, fresh and modern design. Stunning! 5 out of 5 stars!"

About the Author:

Pål Brekke is a Norwegian solar physicist with a doctorate from the University of Oslo in astrophysics and is now a senior advisor for the Norwegian Space Centre. He has worked with state-of-the-art space-based solar telescopes since 1985 and has published over 40 peer-reviewed articles, 70 proceeding papers, and more than 30 popular science articles. He was the ESA Deputy Project Scientist for the SOHO spacecraft. He is the recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship, ESA's Exceptional Achievement Award, and the Laurels for Team Achievements from the International Academy for Astronautics.


Pål Brekke
Our Explosive Sun - A Visual Feast of Our Source of Light and Life
2012, X, 158 p. 203 illustrations. With online files/update.
Hardcover €29.95, $29.95, £26.99
ISBN 978-1-4614-0570-2

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