A guided journey through the inner workings of Earth, the cloaked mysteries of other planets in our solar system, and beyond.
Extreme heat. Extreme cold. Extreme pressure. Toxic gases. Scorching magma flows, and ice volcanoes. Interior tides. Asteroids filled with gold. In What's Hidden Inside Planets? planetary scientist Dr Sabine Stanley cracks the surface to reveal the beating heart of planets and what created them-from the building blocks of swirling cosmic dust, pebbles, and gas to coalesced planetesimal beginnings to the worlds we see today. We're only beginning to explore the secretive interiors of planets, where awe-inspiring wonders await.
Our home planet is no exception. Earth, from space, looks like a shimmering gem suspended in an inky, infinite expanse. But this serene image masks the magnificent and volatile interior forces that make life possible for millions of species on the surface. The placid appearances of our neighbouring planets similarly belie their powers – and science fiction-worthy features, like diamond rain. The daily machinations of Earth's deep interior make the planet a habitable, yet sometimes treacherous, place to live. Drill down thousands of miles through our built environments and soil, sand, water, rock, and minerals to the outer (mainly liquid iron with nickel) and inner core, encountering intense convection, roiling metals, hidden continents, and shifting tectonic plates. Discover the effects of magnetism, rotation, and seismic activity seen and sensed in the forms of auroras, hurricanes, volcanoes, and earthquakes, among other manifestations. Our neighbouring planets boast their own fierce forces, along with moons covered by frozen oceans that might someday reveal extraterrestrial life.
Join this exciting journey to far-flung interstellar locations and the centre of the Earth to learn what lies beneath our feet, and why it's the best real estate in our solar system.
1. Gazing Inward
2. Gazing Outward
3. Telltale Planetary Parcels
4. Fierce and Formative Forces
5. How We Peer Inside Planets
6. Curious Planetary Elements
7. The Future of Planetary Exploration
Sabine Stanley, PhD is a Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Planetary Physics at Johns Hopkins University focusing on magnetic fields and other geophysical elements as a means of studying the interiors of planets, moons, asteroids, and exoplanets. She is a 2011 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow, received the William Gilbert Award of the American Geophysical Union in 2010, and held a Canada Research Chair in Planetary Physics from 2012 to 2017. She's a participating scientist on the NASA Mars InSight mission investigating Mars's ancient magnetic field, and she leads the Magnetism & Planetary Interiors research group at Johns Hopkins. Her work has been featured in National Geographic Magazine, Bloomberg View, CBC Radio's Quirks and Quarks, and the Washington Post. She is the creator of The Great Courses lecture series "A Field Guide to the Planets".
John Wenz is a science writer and editor whose works have appeared in Scientific American, Discover Magazine, Popular Science, Smithsonian Magazine, New Scientist, and many other publications. He is the science editor at Inverse.