Take a first look at Star Trek The Official Guide to Our Universe: The True Science Behind the Starship Voyages published by National Geographic.

The book, released to coincide with Star Trek’s 50th Anniversary, reveals the real science behind Star Trek, and invites readers to step outside, gaze up at the night sky, and observe some of the destinations Starfleet has visited.

Many of the galactic destinations featured in episodes across the decades are scientifically valid, so much so that you can step out and view them in the night sky.

Astronomy educator Andrew Fazekas, known as “The Night Sky Guy,” takes you on that journey, starting with specific Star Trek voyages, explaining the science behind them, and guiding you in observing and learning more about the real-universe corollaries of planets and places in the Star Trek universe.

The Foreword is written by none other than William Shatner and the book is lavishly illustrated with 100s of full-colour images. These are a mix of artist’s interpretations and the latest imagery from space-borne telescopes. There are also stills of Star Trek characters and scenes.

The book has astronomy at its heart and uses Star Trek to teach readers about our universe. From Altair to Vega (yes, they’re reals stars), from white dwarfs to red giants, from our solar system to the hundreds of planets that have now been discovered orbiting other stars, the book takes you to dozens of celestial destinations. It spotlights 20 objects in rigorous scientific detail and provides simple, easy-to-follow instructions on how to find them in the night sky.

Carl Sagan once talked about a “spaceship of the imagination” in his seminal Cosmos series. You don’t even need that idea. All you need is a clear night as most of these objects can be seen with the naked eye.

This book will be a delight for any Star Trek fan and would be a great introduction to astronomy for anyone thinking about what’s “up there”. It’s an inventive blend of science and fiction that makes learning fun and hey, if it happens to be cloudy at night, you can always “research” an object by watching the appropriate Star Trek episode! 🙂

The book is available for pre-order on Amazon and will be released on June 7th.

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