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Nuclear Physics and Astrophysics Books 58
  • 23 Mar 2012 17:34:10

This page lists selected books in nuclear physics and astrophysics, including bibtex information, brief reviews, and market value for out of print books.


The information here is not intended as a definitive resource on the topic of nuclear physics and/or astrophysics related texts. The most accurate description should just be a selection of my personal library of books and my opinions about them. As a bit of a bibliophile and otherwise hoarder of physics reference material, I was asked to make such a webpage independently by various friends, colleagues, and collaborators. In this sense, personally I did not think this sort of page would be useful to anyone, but please feel free to take a look.

I was also reluctant to undertake this project because the reviews I offer are certainly not authoritative. In particular, I cannot claim to have read almost any physics book from cover-to-cover (only Essays in Nuclear Astrophysics). There are reviews of various sorts likely for all of the below listed books. As such, the basic goal here is to simply collect in one place a list of reference texts.

Buying used books and building a personal library

Of course, you may like to borrow books from a local library, a colleague, or get a digital copy, and my references below are also useful for that.

However, if you are like me and want to have your own reference library, just buy books for a good price one-by-one. The benefit of owning your own books is they can be referenced immediately, highlighted and written in, and loaned out to others. Of course, I heard there is a Persian saying which says the person who loans a book is stupid, but the borrower who returns it is even dumber.

Many of the texts listed below, particularly for nuclear physics, are out of print. My personal recommendation for trying to obtain old books is the Used Books Webpage, which searches many different vendors; this works best when you enter your search simply as the ISBN of the book (but keep in mind this limits to a particular edition, as well as printing such as hardcover vs. paperback). For some more rare books, you may want to just search occasionally over a long time frame to find a suitable purchase (by condition, edition, price, etc). For example, collecting all eight volumes of the Treatise on Heavy Ion Science took me about three years, but I spent less than $500 including shipping, and from an order mix-up, I accidentally bought two copies of Volume 7; that may sound like a lot of money, but it’s nine hardcover books, some that sell for $200 each! However, for some other old books, one can easily find ex-lib copies very cheaply, and you can buy it as soon as you want or need the reference (ex-lib books are typically in great condition, but have lots of library markings and stickers). For newer books, you may be able to find remaindered books also for extremely low prices.

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