Why Not to Fear Black Holes with Astronomer Ian Morison

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  1. The Universal Attraction Of Black Holes

    Big discovery last week. Very big, in the black hole business. Astronomers have detected an extremely massive black hole. Wildly huge. With a mass equivalent to 12 billion of our suns. All the big galaxies, our own, the Milky Way included, have black holes at their core. Ours is only 4 million times the mass of the sun, versus 12 billion in this new discovery. And this giant black hole dates back to the very early era of the universe. And this: this black hole is super-luminous. 40,000 times as bright as our galaxy. This hour On Point: Black hole mania. And we will remember Leonard Nimoy, Mr. Spock.

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  2. Sir Roger Penrose | The Road to Reality: A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe

    Sir Roger Penrose is Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford and is the best-selling author of The Emperor’s New Mind. He is the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, most notably the Wolf Prize in physics, which he shared with Stephen Hawking for their "development of the theory of general relativity, in which they have shown the necessity for cosmological singularities and have elucidated the physics of black holes… enlarging our understanding of the origin and possible fate of the Universe." Penrose was knighted in 1994 and currently lives in Oxford, England.

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  3. Katie Bouman: How to take a picture of a black hole | TED Talk

    At the heart of the Milky Way, there’s a supermassive black hole that feeds off a spinning disk of hot gas, sucking up anything that ventures too close — even light. We can’t see it, but its event horizon casts a shadow, and an image of that shadow could help answer some important questions about the universe. Scientists used to think that making such an image would require a telescope the size of Earth — until Katie Bouman and a team of astronomers came up with a clever alternative. Bouman explains how we can take a picture of the ultimate dark using the Event Horizon Telescope.


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  4. Stuff You Should Know

    How Black Holes Work —It wasn’t too long ago when black holes were strictly predictions in theoretical math. Over decades, astronomy has gotten better at uncovering these cosmic phenomena. Learn about how black holes form and their ability to spaghettify you in this episode.

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  5. Allison-Levick Memorial Lecture: The accelerating universe

    Dark Energy is causing the expansion of the universe to speed up – and not to slow down as everyone expected. This discovery overturns astronomers’ ideas about the history and the fate of the universe. Professor Brian Schmidt describes the discovery that won him the Nobel Prize in Physics last year.

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  6. Black Holes Big and Small

    We’re finally ready to deal with the topic you’ve all been waiting for: Schwarzschild swirlers, Chandrasekhar crushers, ol’ matter manglers, sucking singularities… you might know them as black holes. Join as as we examine how black holes form, what they consume, and just how massive they can get.

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  7. Free Thinking Festival: Time, Space and Science

    Carlos Frenk, Eugenia Cheng, Jim Al-Khalili and Louisa Preston debate time and space.

    Carlos Frenk, Eugenia Cheng, Jim Al-Khalili and Louisa Preston debate time and space with presenter Rana Mitter and an audience at Radio 3’s Free Thinking Festival at Sage Gateshead.

    We can measure time passing but what actually is it? What do scientists mean when they suggest that time is an illusion. Can time exist in a black hole? Is everyone’s experience of time subjective? What is the connection between time and space? How does maths help us understand the universe?

    Professor Carlos Frenk is founding Director of the Institute for Computational Cosmology at Durham University and the winner of the Gold Medal of the Royal Astronomical Society in 2014.

    Dr Eugenia Cheng is Scientist in Residence at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and an Honorary Fellow of the University of Sheffield. She is trilingual, a concert-level classical pianist and the author of Beyond Infinity: An Expedition To The Outer Limits Of The Mathematical Universe.

    Jim Al-Khalili is Professor of Physics at the University of Surrey and presenter of BBC Radio 4’s The Life Scientific and TV documentaries. His books include Paradox: the Nine Greatest Enigmas in Science, Black Holes, Wormholes and Time Machines and Quantum: a Guide for the Perplexed.

    Dr Louisa Preston is a UK Space Agency Aurora Research Fellow. An astrobiologist, planetary geologist and author, she is based at Birkbeck, University of London. Her first book is Goldilocks and the Water Bears: the Search for Life in the Universe.


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  8. Astronomycast 145: Interstellar Travel

    In science fiction it’s easy to hop into your spaceship and blast off for other stars. But the true distances between stars, and the limits of relativity make interstellar travel almost impossible with our current technology. What would it really take to travel from star to star, exploring the galaxy?


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