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"The Universe" Sort by
2018 Technology HD
Minerva B is a small rocky planet just like earth, where spacecraft Artemis has found water, organic molecules, and complex creatures. Is there something more to find?
'I am the mind of the spaceship, alone among the stars. 50 years ago, from a planet far away, the planet you call home, I launched. A journey of 28 trillion miles across the yawning time of space to the exoplanet, Minerva B: a small, rocky planet, much like Earth, but orbiting another sun. Here, I have found water, organic molecules, and microorganisms. When the news of my discovery reaches Earth years from now, some of you will be amazed. But others will remain unsatisfied, and you will ask, have I not found animals or birds? Have I not met intelligent life like us? And so, my search continues. I will find life of marvellous complexity, and the traces of a devastating loss.'
In episode 3, Artemis arrives on the exoplanet Minerva B, but will she find evidence of life? This is a vision of our future, the fateful day in a far-flung corner of the universe, when a probe from Earth initiates the first descent onto an alien world, looking for proof of life beyond our solar system.
There are no witnesses, no cheering crowds in the control room. A decade or more will pass before news finally reaches us, back across the dark oceans of space. But the seeds of this mission are already being sowed today by the first generation of scientists bold enough to believe it could be possible.
The Planet Hunters
2018 Technology HD
The next great voyage of human exploration has already begun: the search for life on planets orbiting distant stars. With extraordinary CGI, the world's most inspiring scientists, via extreme environments on Earth and around the solar system, the film takes viewers aboard the next generation of space ships, across the cosmos and beneath the clouds of the exo-planets to discover The Living Universe.
Part 1: 'The Planet Hunters' For as long as we’ve had eyes to see and minds to wonder we’ve marveled at the stars. Since the discovery of the first so-called exoplanet in 1994, the Planet Hunters have transformed the way we see the universe. It is the year 2157, and spacecraft Artemis enters the final phase of construction.
Weirder and Weirder
Dr Hannah Fry explores a paradox at the heart of modern maths, discovered by Bertrand Russell, which undermines the very foundations of logic that all of maths is built on. These flaws suggest that maths isn't a true part of the universe but might just be a human language - fallible and imprecise. However, Hannah argues that Einstein's theoretical equations, such as E=mc2 and his theory of general relativity, are so good at predicting the universe that they must be reflecting some basic structure in it. This idea is supported by Kurt Godel, who proved that there are parts of maths that we have to take on faith.
Hannah then explores what maths can reveal about the fundamental building blocks of the universe - the subatomic, quantum world. The maths tells us that particles can exist in two states at once, and yet quantum physics is at the core of photosynthesis and therefore fundamental to most of life on earth - more evidence of discovering mathematical rules in nature. But if we accept that maths is part of the structure of the universe, there are two main problems: firstly, the two main theories that predict and describe the universe - quantum physics and general relativity - are actually incompatible; and secondly, most of the maths behind them suggests the likelihood of something even stranger - multiple universes.
We may just have to accept that the world really is weirder than we thought, and Hannah concludes that while we have invented the language of maths, the structure behind it all is something we discover. And beyond that, it is the debate about the origins of maths that has had the most profound consequences: it has truly transformed the human experience, giving us powerful new number systems and an understanding that now underpins the modern world.
Numbers as God
Mathematician Dr Hannah Fry explores the mystery of maths. It underpins so much of our modern world that it's hard to imagine life without its technological advances, but where exactly does maths come from? Is it invented like a language or is it something discovered and part of the fabric of the universe? It's a question that some of the most eminent mathematical minds have been wrestling with. To investigate this question, Hannah goes head first down the fastest zip wire in the world to learn more about Newton's law of gravity, she paraglides to understand where the theory of maths and its practice application collide, and she travels to infinity and beyond to discover that some infinities are bigger than others.
In this episode, Hannah goes back to the time of the ancient Greeks to find out why they were so fascinated by the connection between beautiful music and maths. The patterns our ancestors found in music are all around us, from the way a sunflower stores its seeds to the number of petals in a flower. Even the shapes of some of the smallest structures in nature, such as viruses, seem to follow the rules of maths. All strong evidence for maths being discovered. But there are those who claim maths is all in our heads and something we invented. To find out if this is true, Hannah has her brain scanned. It turns out there is a place in all our brains where we do maths, but that doesn't prove its invented.
Experiments with infants, who have never had a maths lesson in their lives, suggests we all come hardwired to do maths. Far from being a creation of the human mind, this is evidence for maths being something we discover. Then along comes the invention of zero to help make counting more convenient and the creation of imaginary numbers, and the balance is tilted in the direction of maths being something we invented. The question of whether maths is invented or discovered just got a whole lot more difficult to answer
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