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No. 50: Mar-Apr 1987

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The Cosmological Atlantis

Current cosmological theory states that immediately after the Big Bang, the only elements existing in any significant quantities were hydrogen and helium. Yet, we observe stars today with various amounts of the heavier elements. How did the present stars, which are divided into Populations I and II, ever acquire their heavier elements? By thermonuclear synthesis, of course. The primordial hydrogen and helium condensed into primitive stars, now labelled Population III, where the first heavier elements were synthesized. The "ashes" of the Population-III stars provided the makings of the later stars with their heavier elements. However, no matter how hard astronomers have looked, no Population-III stars seem to be left anywhere -- not even far out in the universe, which we see in terms of light billions of years old. A vital "transititional form" is missing in astronomy's fossil record!

(Maran, Stephen P.; "Stellar Old- Timers," Natural History, 96:80, February 1987.)

From Science Frontiers #50, MAR-APR 1987. 1987-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987