Origins of Life : Musings from Nuclear Physics, Astrophysics and Astrobiology book cover
1st Edition

Origins of Life
Musings from Nuclear Physics, Astrophysics and Astrobiology




ISBN 9781032010571
Published November 10, 2021 by CRC Press
422 Pages 29 Color & 90 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

The primary purpose of this book is to prepare the ground for coordinated efforts aiming to answer the question: where and when life originated. The appearance of life involves three successive stages: i) the formation of chemical elements and their combination to simple molecules, which is the concern of physicists; ii) the evolution of organized complexity in biomolecules and their reactions, which falls within the field of chemistry; iii) the onset of Darwinian evolution after the appearance of the first cell-like structure, which is studied by biologists. This book focuses on the first two steps of this process with chapters exploring topics such as chemical element abundances; galaxies, galactic magnetic fields and cosmic rays; galactic chemical evolution.

Key Features:

  • Contains extensive lists of reference and additional reading.
  • Includes new hypotheses concerning the origin of life.
  • Combines consideration from nuclear physics, astrophysics, astro- and geochemistry.

Despite its interdisciplinary nature, this book remains accessible to nonexperts, and would be a valuable companion for both experts and laypeople.

Table of Contents

Contents

Preface...................................................................................................xi

Introduction....................................................................................... xiii

Author..................................................................................................xxi

1 Chemical Elements Abundances

2 Galaxies, Galactic Magnetic Fields and Cosmic Rays

3 Galactic Chemical Evolution

4 Living Matter

5 Time and Place of the Origin of Life

6 Multiverse Cosmological Models and Anthropic Principle

7 Open Problems ・ Laboratory Experiments

Index................................................................................................... 389

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Author(s)

Biography

Dr. Vladivoj (Vlado) Valkovic, a retired professor of physics, is a fellow of the American

Physical Society and Institute of Physics (London). He has authored 22 books (from Trace

Elements (Taylor & Francis, Ltd., 1975) to Radioactivity in the Environment (Elsevier, 1st

Edition 2001, 2nd Edition, 2019)) and more than 400 scientific and technical papers in the

research areas of nuclear physics and applications of nuclear techniques to trace element

analysis in biology, medicine and environmental research. He has lifelong experience in

the study of nuclear reactions induced by 14 MeV neutrons. This research has been done

through coordination and works on many national and international projects, including

US–Croatia bilateral, NATO, IAEA, EU-FP5, EU-FP6 and EU-FP7 projects.

He had worked as a professor of physics at Rice University, Houston, Texas; as a Head

of Physics-Chemistry-Instrumentation Laboratory at IAEA, Vienna, Austria; and as

Laboratory head and scientific advisor at the Ruđer Bošković Institute, Zagreb, Croatia.