In the recent article I wrote concerning the “Encyclopedia of Astrobiology” (link here), I explained the situation regarding the knowledge sources which are available to astrobiologists. There are quite a lot of them, but unfortunately the price is often too high. Moreover, these sources are frequently too advanced and broad for the common reader*. It would be unfair to only criticize, since I know there are many people who are doing their best to provide us with the most up-to-date knowledge in the field. Thus I am now sharing with you what are (in my belief) some of the best astrobiology-related works.
Please note that this is not meant as an advertisement. I had the pleasure of meeting several of the authors of these books, but still I recommend these works based solely on their qualities.
First of all I will start with the essential:
The Astrobiology Journal: http://www.liebertonline.com/ast
An excellent journal. Subscriptions are not that expensive and there are discounts for students. I absolutely love the “Pioneers of Astrobiology” series – some very inspiring stories shared there.
Of course, there are also numerous other journals (Icarus, Earth and Planetary Science etc.) and whole websites and blogs (http://paleblueblog.org/ for example) dedicated to astrobiology, but that would be the topic of another post. Now to some real textbooks:
|Encyclopedia of Astrobiology by Ricardo Amils
Well, you know already my opinion on the matter, but I still believe that this is the most comprehensive source of information on the subject. Full of great imagery, it is a great reference tool.
The first book I read on the subject. Very scientific and to the point. The best thing perhaps about this book is the description of the steps required to design an astrobiology mission, ExoMars is given as an example. A little bit too much physics for college-level biologists out there, but hey, understanding physics is essential. ;-)
|Fundamentals of Space Biology: Research on Cells, Animals, and Plants in Space (Space Technology Library) by Gilles Clément
A great source for anyone interested in space biology. The description of Low-Earth Orbit experiments would be interesting for astrobiologists too. Read the rest of this entry »