The aim of this fourth edition, as with its three predecessors, is to help physicists, chemists, engineers, biologists, and others with their investigations at low temperatures. The style is still that of a "lab handbook" while the text has been completely revised to reflect the increasing use of ready built commercial equipment and the dramatic increase in the number of individuals from a wide variety of disciplines who now fend themselves engaged in low-temperature experiments.
While the text stands alone as a practical guide for those without a detailed physics education, there are also sections on the history and fundamentals of cooling processes, temperature measurement, heat transfer, etc. for the postgraduate and undergraduate physicist. In addition the text provides an array of up-to-date data on metals, polymers, and ceramics. The recent progress in superconducting magnet design is reflected in advice on appropriate design parameters to consider when purchasing and integrating them in cryogenic apparatus.