Lee Kanghwan, the Director of Seodaemun Museum of Natural History offers a guide to the solar system, universe, and aliens—something that children must know.
- Book Intro
We hear a flood of news about the discovery of liquid water on Mars in 2015 or the location of a “Second Earth”, or a “Twin Earth.” We are living in an era where film “Interstellar” could become real—humans leaving polluted Earth and finding an alien planet that people can settle on. Then at this point, what should children learn and imagine about the universe? This book invites children to a vast horizon toward the space where they can meet wondrous stories about the solar system, universe, the second Earth and possible existence of aliens on it.
The sun is a star. Across the universe, there are more than 100 billion galaxies, each containing 100 billion stars. These enormous number of stars, which has 22 zeros, each have several alien planets orbiting around them, like Earth orbiting the sun. This means that in space, there are more alien planets than stars, each of which has a possibility of life, just like Earth. The rapid development of astronomy and space telescope has found over 4,000 alien planets already as of June 2019, and Korea is one of the leaders in this field with the world-renowned KMTnet (Korea Microlensing Telescope Network).
However, the extent of knowledge about space among many children still stays in the realm of UFOs or alien bodies kept in secret places. This is why a distinguished astronomist and the Director of Seodaemun Museum of Natural History decided to lay a stepping stone for children move on from this unfortunate reality. What young readers will find in this book is not green aliens with big heads and wide eyes—they will get an opportunity to explore “exobiology.” Also known as Doctor K who teaches science in a fun and interesting way for the public, the author offers a friendly guide to help children dream of the universe based on facts and science, not on superstitions or prejudices, as they are sure to enter the new era of universe. Most importantly, readers will be able to deeply understand that looking for aliens ultimately boils down to finding an answer to who we Earthlings are.
- About the Author
Author Lee Kang-hwan is an astronomer who has studied astronomy and raised scientific awareness for many people for a long time. He gives lectures and writes books so that people can break away from the thought that science is a difficult and distant field and even enjoy learning about it. Through a variety of media, he’s been making effort to let science set its footing as a part of a hobby or liberal arts. He graduated from Seoul National University, and is working as the Director of Seodaemun Museum of Natural History.
I was a kid who liked to draw pictures, color things, or cut out and attach pieces of paper, lying down on my belly in my room. After majoring in Western painting and art education, I studied illustration in the U.K. To create unique drawings, I travel around with colors and lines of the world in my pocket.
Children’s Education Culture Research Center of Korea, 2019