A Tour of the Dynamic Universe

February 4, 2022


Casual observation of the night sky leads one to view the Universe as well-ordered and stable, changing only in minor ways and regularly, smoothly and predictably at that. Even intensive study with telescopes – starting with Galileo, and including William Herschel, Edwin Hubble and many others – only reinforced this vision of a Clockwork Universe. Space-based missions (including the Herschel and Hubble Observatories, named after the mentioned pioneers) opening up new wavelengths, as well as advances in technology enabling better ways of discovery, have led to a quite opposite view: the Dynamic Universe. This recording of a live talk (held on February 4th 2022) by Dr Jeffrey Scargle is a guided tour of some remarkable events in this ever-changing, highly active universe. It starts nearby with the Earth and our Sun, transits the Solar System, passes by exploding stars, active galaxies, gamma-ray bursts, ending with perhaps the most dramatic events of all: merging black holes, accessible through a completely new mode of observation in the form of gravitational radiation: “ripples in space-time.” Dr Jeffrey Scargle, NASA Ames Research Center, retired.

If you enjoyed this talk, you might like to explore more videos on Herschel & Astronomy.

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