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Cover image of Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun
Cover image of Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun
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Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun

The Evolution and Science of Ballistics

Mark Denny

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The science of ballistics has a long history and starts with one question: How does a projectile move through the air? Even before physicists worked that one out, military engineers had been tinkering with ballistic devices for centuries. The trebuchet of the Middle Ages has given way to rocket power, and the science of ballistics has evolved to match the technology. Mark Denny’s survey covers this dynamic subject from prehistory to the weapons of tomorrow.

Taking the bang-whiz-thud approach, Denny first talks about internal ballistics—Bang!—from before gunpowder to the development of modern…

The science of ballistics has a long history and starts with one question: How does a projectile move through the air? Even before physicists worked that one out, military engineers had been tinkering with ballistic devices for centuries. The trebuchet of the Middle Ages has given way to rocket power, and the science of ballistics has evolved to match the technology. Mark Denny’s survey covers this dynamic subject from prehistory to the weapons of tomorrow.

Taking the bang-whiz-thud approach, Denny first talks about internal ballistics—Bang!—from before gunpowder to the development of modern firearms. External ballistics—Whiz!—are next, with discussions about short- and long-range trajectories. Denny’s lesson ends with a Thud!—an explanation of terminal ballistics.

Throughout, Denny conveys applicable physics principles in a way that will appeal to technology buffs and ballistics enthusiasts alike. His fun and factual explanations are free of complicated equations; notes cover the key aspects of ballistics physics for the more technically inclined.

Denny has perfected this engaging balance of science and story. For study or hobby, Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun is an entertaining guide to the world of ballistics.

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Their Arrows Will Darken the Sun

Mark Denny

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Reviews

Denny is a physicist who has written several science-related books for general audiences... Much of the book is written in a chatty style, often in the first person.

Perhaps the most useful book on ballistics for the layman ever.

For a scientist, Denny's approach is delightfully down to earth.

Denny's writing is anything but dry and boring. He adeptly explains complex subject matter and does so with relatively simple language and minimal use of symbolic notation.

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Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
248
ISBN
9780801898570
Illustration Description
36 halftones, 54 line drawings
Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
I. BANG! Internal Ballistics
1. Before Gunpowder
2. Gunpowder Weapons
3. The Development of Modern Firearms: New Technical Challenges
II. WHIZZ! External Ballistics
4. Short

Acknowledgments
Introduction
I. BANG! Internal Ballistics
1. Before Gunpowder
2. Gunpowder Weapons
3. The Development of Modern Firearms: New Technical Challenges
II. WHIZZ! External Ballistics
4. Short-Range Trajectories: Elementary Aerodynamics
5. Long-Range Trajectories: Advanced Aerodynamics
6. New Technology, New Ballistics
III. THUD! Terminal Ballistics
7. Stopping the Target
Final Thoughts
Technical Notes
Glossary
Bibliography
Index

Author Bio
Featured Contributor

Mark Denny, Ph.D.

Mark Denny is a theoretical physicist who has worked in academia and industry. He is the author of numerous books, including Lights On! The Science of Power Generation, Making Sense of Weather and Climate: The Science behind the Forecasts, and Making the Most of the Anthropocene: Facing the Future.
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