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Archive for the ‘Book reviews’ Category

High Resolution Imaging: Detectors and Applications

Swapan K. Saha Saha

Pan Stanford – 2015 – 600 pages

9789814613279

Reviews: The Observatory_Dec_2015

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Waves and Oscillations in Nature:

An Introduction Satya

By A Satya Narayanan, Swapan K Saha

CRC Press – 2015 – 544 pages

About this Book:

Waves and oscillations are found in large scales (galactic) and microscopic scales (neutrino) in nature. Their dynamics and behavior heavily depend on the type of medium through which they propagate.

Waves and Oscillations in Nature: An Introduction clearly elucidates the dynamics and behavior of waves and oscillations in various mediums. It presents different types of waves and oscillations that can be observed and studied from macroscopic to microscopic scales. The book provides a thorough introduction for researchers and graduate students in assorted areas of physics, such as fluid dynamics, plasma physics, optics, and astrophysics.

The authors first explain introductory aspects of waves and electromagnetism, including characteristics of waves, the basics of electrostatics and magnetostatics, and Maxwell’s equations. They then explore waves in a uniform media, waves and oscillations in hydrodynamics, and waves in a magnetized medium for homogeneous and nonhomogeneous media. The book also describes types of shock waves, such as normal and oblique shocks, and discusses important details pertaining to waves in optics, including polarization from experimental and observational points of view. The book concludes with a focus on plasmas, covering different plasma parameters, quasilinear and nonlinear aspects of plasma waves, and various instabilities in hydrodynamics and plasmas.

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Book: High Resolution Imaging

High Resolution Imaging: Detectors and Applications

Swapan K. Saha Saha

Pan Stanford – 2015 – 600 pages

9789814613279

About this Book:

Interferometric observations need snapshots of very high time resolution of the order of (i) frame integration of about 100 Hz or (ii) photon-recording rates of several megahertz (MHz). Detectors play a key role in astronomical observations, and since the explanation of the photoelectric effect by Albert Einstein, the technology has evolved rather fast. The present-day technology has made it possible to develop large-format complementary metal oxide–semiconductor (CMOS) and charge-coupled device (CCD) array mosaics, orthogonal transfer CCDs, electron-multiplication CCDs, electron-avalanche photodiode arrays, and quantum-well infrared (IR) photon detectors. The requirements to develop artifact-free photon shot noise-limited images are higher sensitivity and quantum efficiency, reduced noise that includes dark current, read-out and amplifier noise, smaller point-spread functions, and higher spectral bandwidth. This book aims to address such systems, technologies and design, evaluation and calibration, control electronics, scientific applications, and results.

One of the fastest growing applications is signal sensing, especially wavefront sensing for adaptive optics and fringe tracking for interferometry, which is important for long-baseline optical interferometry. The coherence time of the atmosphere is a highly variable parameter. Depending upon the high velocity wind, it varies from <1 ms to 0.1 s. The exposure times are to be selected accordingly, to maximize the signal-to-noise ratio, as well as to freeze the fringe pattern. A large-format photon-counting system, which is an essential tool in the application of optical interferometric imaging, allows accurate photon centroiding and provides the dynamic range needed for measurements of source characteristics. The advent of high-quantum efficiency photon-counting systems vastly increases the sensitivity of high-resolution imaging techniques. Such systems raise the hope of making diffraction-limited images of objects as faint as ~15–16 m_v (visual magnitude).

This book deals with the fundamentals of the important aspects of high-resolution imaging, such as electromagnetic radiations, particularly, optical wavelengths and their distortions due to optical elements and Earth’s atmosphere while passing through a detector; semiconductor physics; lasers; fiber optics; photon-detection process; photodetectors; charge-transfer devices; photon-counting devices in visible wavelength; radiation detectors in infrared wavelengths; and detecting systems for high energies.

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Book: Worlds Beyond Our Own

Worlds Beyond Our Own: The Search for Habitable Planets                  Sujan

Series: Astronomers’ Universe

Sengupta, Sujan

2015, XVI, 154 p. 29 illus., 24 illus. in color.

ISBN 978-3-319-09894-4

 

About this book

  • Presents the essential conditions required for the formation and evolution of life and on which planets these may be met
  • Provides an understanding of how rare the solar system, planet Earth and all life on it actually are
  • Teaches you about the different planets, stars and brown dwarfs
  • Entertaining and at the same time informative and thought provocative for curious minds

This is a book on planets: Solar system planets and dwarf planets. And planets outside our solar system – exoplanets. How did they form? What types of planets are there and what do they have in common? How do they differ? What do we know about their atmospheres – if they have one? What are the conditions for life and on which planets may they be met? And what’s the origin of life on Earth and how did it form? You will understand how rare the solar system, the Earth and hence life is.
This is also a book on stars. The first and second generation of stars in the Universe. But in particular also on the link between planets and stars – brown dwarfs. Their atmospheric properties and similarities with giant exoplanets.
All these fascinating questions will be answered in a non-technical manner. But those of you who want to know a bit more may look up the relevant mathematical relationships in appendices.

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A World Class Scientist and His Work

A World Class Scientist and His Work

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Shobhit Mahajan

KARIAMANIKKAM SRINIVASA KRISHNAN: HIS LIFE AND WORK
By D.C.V. Mallik & S. Chatterjee
University Press, Hyderabad, 2012, pp. 461, Rs. 895.00

One of the curious paradoxes of the sociology of science concerns the flowering of world class science in India in the early decades of the 20th century. With very little government support, working with improvised, in some cases discarded equipment, without much access to international journals, Indian scientists did some very high quality science—C.V. Raman and his eponymous scattering which not only got him the Nobel Prize but also remains an essential tool for unravelling molecular structure, J.C. Bose and his experiments with radio waves, M.N. Saha who propounded his famous equation which still forms a bedrock of stellar astrophysics or S.N. Bose whose work on quantum statistics is celebrated in a class of subatomic particles named Bosons. The paradox is essentially in trying to understand what was it about that time which led to such intense, very high quality scientific research, albeit localized in a few centers. Kariamanikkam Srinivasa Krishnan or K.S. Krishnan was very much center stage in this unfolding. Though possibly not a household name like some of the luminaries mentioned above, he was not only an outstanding scientist but also one of the builders of science and technology infrastructure in Independent India. Born in 1898 in what was then the Madras Presidency, Krishnan had his early education in the neighbouring town of Srivilli-puttur and did his undergraduate degree at the American College in Madurai and Madras Christian College at Madras.   In 1920, Krishnan came to Calcutta to work with the already well known C.V. Raman at the curiously named Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science, a voluntary body founded by the legendary M.L. Sircar. With the help of generous donations from the wealthy, the Science Association had set up laboratory facilities where Raman worked, first in his spare time while his day job was at the Accountant General’s office and then full time after quitting his coveted government job. Besides the Science Association, the University of Calcutta, the Presidency College and J.C. Bose’s Institute were the sites of vigorous intellectual activity. Malik and Chatterjee describe well the intellectual atmosphere in Calcutta in the book.   Working with Raman over the next few years, Krishnan became a first rate experimental physicist with an equally keen interest in the theoretical underpinnings of the experiments on scattering of light that he and Raman were carrying out. On 28…

Source: The Book Review Literary Trust, VOLUME XXXVII NUMBER 8 August 2013.

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Dear Professor Roy,

 

My dear friend, Atri Mukhopadhyay, sent me your email address since I could not get it from any other source. I wanted to get in touch with you after Mr Devanath of Universities Press, Hyderabad told me that you were kind enough to review our (Chatterjee’s and mine) book on K S Krishnan in Science and Culture. The review Published in July-August, 2012, of Science and Culture. Devanath then sent a pdf file of the review and I read it with great interest. I take this opportunity to thank you for the nice words you penned down on our effort….

 

Source: SCIENCE AND CULTURE, MARCH-APRIL, 2013, VOL. 79, NOS. 3-4, pp.144-145Science & Culture0001

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IIA, Library

Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Library

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