The Story of Earth: The First 4.5 Billion Years, from Stardust to Living Planet

The Story of Earth: The First 4.5 Billion Years, from Stardust to Living Planet

Robert M. Hazen


Earth evolves. From first atom to molecule, mineral to magma, granite crust to unmarried mobilephone to verdant residing panorama, ours is a planet always in flux. during this radical new method of Earth’s biography, senior Carnegie establishment researcher and nationwide bestselling writer Robert M. Hazen finds how the co-evolution of the geosphere and biosphere—of rocks and dwelling matter—has formed our planet into the single one among its type within the sunlight process, if now not the complete cosmos.

With an astrobiologist’s mind's eye, a historian’s viewpoint, and a naturalist’s ardour for the floor underneath our toes, Hazen explains how adjustments on an atomic point translate into dramatic shifts in Earth’s make-up over its 4.567 billion yr life. He calls upon a flurry of modern discoveries to painting our planet’s many iterations in bright detail—from its fast-rotating infancy while the solar rose each 5 hours and the Moon crammed 250 occasions extra sky than it does now, to its sea-bathed early life ahead of the 1st continents arose; from the nice Oxidation occasion that became the land crimson, to the globe-altering volcanism that can were the genuine killer of the dinosaurs. via Hazen’s concept of “co-evolution,” we find out how reactions among natural molecules and rock crystals can have generated Earth’s first organisms, which in flip are liable for greater than two-thirds of the mineral types at the planet—thousands of alternative types of crystals that may no longer exist in a nonliving world.

The tale of Earth is usually the tale of the pioneering women and men at the back of the sciences. Readers will meet black-market meteorite hawkers of the Sahara desolate tract, the gun-toting Feds who guarded the Apollo missions’ lunar airborne dirt and dust, and the realm battle II army officer whose super-pressurized “bomb”—recycled from army hardware—first simulated the molten rock of Earth’s mantle. As a mentor to a brand new iteration of scientists, Hazen introduces the intrepid younger explorers whose dispatches from Earth’s cruelest landscapes will revolutionize geology.

Celebrated by means of the hot York occasions for writing “with magnificent readability approximately technology . . . that without difficulty teaches because it zips along,” Hazen proves a super and wonderful advisor in this grand travel of our planet inside and outside. Lucid, debatable, and intellectually bracing, The tale of Earth is renowned technology of the top order.

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