Science and Nature

PBS Space Time

PBS Space Time explores the outer reaches of space, the craziness of astrophysics, the possibilities of sci-fi, and anything else you can think of beyond Planet Earth. Host Matt O'Dowd breaks down both the basic and incredibly complex sides of space and time.

What’s The Universe’s Strongest Particle Accelerator?

12m 51s

Cern's Large Hadron Collider routinely collides particles at energies equivalent to a fraction of a second after the Big Bang, but a particle with the energy of an LHC collision hits every square kilometer of the Earth every single second. And we only relatively recently figured out where these cosmic rays are coming from.

Episodes

  • What’s The Universe’s Strongest Particle Accelerator?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What’s The Universe’s Strongest Particle Accelerator?

    S10 E11 - 12m 51s

    Cern's Large Hadron Collider routinely collides particles at energies equivalent to a fraction of a second after the Big Bang, but a particle with the energy of an LHC collision hits every square kilometer of the Earth every single second. And we only relatively recently figured out where these cosmic rays are coming from.

  • Can Black Holes Unify General Relativity & Quantum Mechanics?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Can Black Holes Unify General Relativity & Quantum Mechanics?

    S10 E10 - 13m 28s

    Black holes clash in multiple ways with quantum mechanics. One such clash is the black hole information paradox—and a proposed solution—black hole complementarity—may forced us to radically rethink what it even means to say that something to exists.

  • Interstellar Expansion WITHOUT Faster Than Light Travel: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Interstellar Expansion WITHOUT Faster Than Light Travel

    S10 E9 - 20m 15s

    In the far future we may have advanced propulsion technologies, but what if those technologies never materialize? Are we imprisoned by the vastness of space—doomed to remain in the solar system of our origin? Perhaps not. A possible path to a contemporary cosmic dream may just be to build a ship which can support human life for several generations; a so-called generation ship.

  • What Happens If You Jump Into A Black Hole?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What Happens If You Jump Into A Black Hole?

    S10 E8 - 16m 19s

    Today we are jumping into a black hole. Again. Why? Well, to determine the fundamental structure of spacetime and its connection to quantum entanglement of course.

  • Why Is The World Rushing Back To The Moon?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Why Is The World Rushing Back To The Moon?

    S10 E7 - 15m 36s

    The Moon has been one of the most important theoretical stepping stones to our understanding of the universe. We’ve long understood that it could also be our literal stepping stone: humanity’s first destination beyond our atmosphere.

  • How Eclipses Revealed Our Solar System: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    How Eclipses Revealed Our Solar System

    S10 E6 - 15m 7s

    Of all the astronomical phenomena you can witness, the total solar eclipse has to be the most visceral--the most in-your-face reminder that our reality consists of giant balls of rock spinning around stars. It's also the eclipse and phenomena like it that set us on the path to understanding that reality in the first place.

  • What If Gravity is Not A Fundamental Force?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What If Gravity is Not A Fundamental Force?

    S10 E5 - 15m 2s

    Gravity might not be a more fundamental than the force of a stretched elastic band. Maybe gravity is just an entropic byproduct—an emergent effect of the universe’s tendency to disorder. If you allow entropy to keep you in your seat for a bit, I’ll tell you all about it.

  • Does Space Emerge From A Holographic Boundary?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Does Space Emerge From A Holographic Boundary?

    S10 E4 - 14m 28s

    Space seems fundamental. Many physicists now think that the fabric of space emerges from something deeper. And the most existentially disturbing such proposal is that our 3-D universe is just the inward projection of an infinitely distant boundary. A hologram, or sorts. Let’s see how that can actually work, and what the holographic principle really says about the “realness” of this universe.

  • Dark Forest: Should We Not Contact Aliens?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Dark Forest: Should We Not Contact Aliens?

    S10 E3 - 14m 12s

    In 1974 we sent the Arecibo radio message towards Messier 13. The message was mostly symbolic; we weren’t really expecting a reply. Yet surely other civilisations out there are doing the same thing. So, why haven’t we heard anything? What if the silence from the stars is a hint that we shouldn’t be so outgoing? What if aliens are deliberately keeping quiet for fear that they might be destroyed?

  • What Happens If We Nuke Space?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What Happens If We Nuke Space?

    S10 E2 - 15m 13s

    EMPs aren’t science fiction. Real militaries are experimenting on real EMP generators, and as Starfish Prime showed us, space nukes can send powerful EMPs to the surface. So what exactly is an EMP, and how dangerous are they?

  • What if Singularities DO NOT Exist?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What if Singularities DO NOT Exist?

    S10 E1 - 14m 44s

    It's not too often that a giant of physics threatens to overturn an idea held to be self-evident by generations of physicists. Well, that may be the fate of the famous Penrose Singularity Theorem if we're to believe a recent paper by Roy Kerr. Long story short, the terrible singularity at the heart of the black hole may be no more.

Extras + Features

  • Quantum Physics in a Mirror Universe: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Quantum Physics in a Mirror Universe

    S5 - 12m 19s

    When you look in mirror, and see what you think is a perfect reflection, you might be looking at universe whose laws are fundamentally different.

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