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The Hawking Paradox

   2005    Science
Stephen Hawking is the most famous scientist on the planet. But behind the public face lies an argument that has been raging for almost 30 years. Has he been wrong for the last 30 years? Hawking shot to fame in the world of physics when he provided a mathematical proof for the Big Bang theory. This theory showed that the entire universe exploded from a singularity, an infinitely small point with infinite density and infinite gravity. Hawking was able to come to his proof using mathematical techniques that had been developed by Roger Penrose. These techniques were however developed to deal not with the beginning of the Universe but with black holes". Science had long predicted that if a sufficiently large star collapsed at the end of its life, all the matter left in the star would be crushed into an infinitely small point with infinite gravity and infinite density – a singularity. Hawking realised that the Universe was, in effect, a black hole in reverse. Instead of matter being crushed into a singularity, the Universe began when a singularity expanded to form everything we see around us today, from stars to planets to people. Hawking realised that to come to a complete understanding of the Universe he would have to unravel the mysteries of the black hole and its paradoxes

Swallowed by a Black Hole

   2013    Science
The black hole at the centre of the Milky Way is getting ready to feast. A gas cloud three times the size of our planet has strayed within the gravitational reach of our nearest supermassive black hole. And across the globe, telescopes are being trained on the heart of our Milky Way galaxy, some 27,000 light years from Earth, in the expectation of observing this unique cosmic spectacle. For cosmic detectives across the Earth, it is a unique opportunity. For the first time in the history of science, they hope to observe in action the awesome spectacle of a feeding supermassive black hole.

Mission Pluto

   2015    Technology
Join top scientists at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in conjunction with NASA on a historic mission to the edge of our solar system with the goal of capturing the first clear images and data ever recorded of Pluto. Small, cold, and absurdly far away, Pluto has always been selfish with its secrets". Since its discovery in 1930, the dwarf planet has revolved beyond reach, its frosty surface a blurred mystery that even the most powerful telescopes can’t bring into focus. We know about Pluto. But we don’t really know it. That will change on July 14, when NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft is scheduled to fly within 8,000 miles of the frozen dwarf. It’s a risky maneuver, but if all goes well, the fleeting close encounter will unveil the last of the classical solar system’s unexplored worlds. We’ll finally get to meet the former ninth planet face-to-face—to really see its surface and that of its largest moon, Charon. Scientists have some guesses about what they might find, but the only thing they can say for sure is that Pluto promises to be a surprise.

Star

   2000    Science
Travel to heart of the Sun, our star, a cauldron of superheated gases that writhe and contort along immense magnetic field lines. Discover how even life itself is forged in the heart of stars. We are made of stardust.
Series: The Planets

Heaven and Hell

   1980    Science
Sagan discusses comets and asteroids as planetary impactors, giving recent examples of the Tunguska event and a lunar impact described by Canterbury monks in 1178. It moves to a description of the environment of Venus, from the previous fantastic theories of people such as Immanuel Velikovsky to the information gained by the Venera landers and its implications for Earth's greenhouse effect. The Cosmos Update highlights the connection to global warming.
Series: Cosmos
Invisible Worlds
Invisible Worlds

   2010    Science
Leaving Neverland
Leaving Neverland

   2019    Culture
Ancient Aliens
Ancient Aliens

   2014    Culture
Reel Rock
Reel Rock

   2014    Culture
It Was Fifty Years Ago Today
It Was Fifty Years Ago Today

   2017    Art
The Human Body
The Human Body

   1998    Medicine
The Hunt
The Hunt

   2015    Nature