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Telescopes, Liquid Mercury, and The Death of Black Holes - Cosmic Queries

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  • Telescopes, Liquid Mercury, and The Death of Black Holes - Cosmic Queries

    47:21

    Terraforming mars? How do black holes die? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice answer questions about the moon, periodic table of elements, light photons, black holes and more!

    Find out about the moon’s libration and orbit. How much of our moon do we actually see? We observe patterns from Neil’s time in front of the camera. What film franchise will he wreak havoc on next? Back to the non-human stars: have modern humans always lived under the same night sky? Will there be a day when we no longer recognize the constellations?

    Why is mercury– the element, not the planet– liquid? Why does one proton make such a big difference? Discover the states of the elements on other worlds and the meaning of a “triple point.” Is it possible to terraform Mars, even though it doesn’t have a magnetic field? We explore geoengineering and how to terraform to protect against solar wind.

    Next, we talk telescopes. How much does the moon disrupt observation time? How do we combat that? We discuss the James Webb Space Telescope, Hubble Deep Field, and how astronomers combat interference. How does a light photon experience time? Does it? Can a black hole’s mass get so low it can no longer trap light? What would it look like? How does a black hole die? All that, plus, Chuck tests out new joke material on another Cosmic Queries!

    Thanks to our Patrons John Turnham, Andrew Nelson, Honza Rek, Jason Pretzlaf, Jason Johst, Fernando Gomes, Thibaut van Thorenburg, Ava Spurr, Andrew Kodama, and CNASTY ! for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    “Black Swan” & “White Swan” limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit

    Support us on Patreon:

    FOLLOW or SUBSCRIBE to StarTalk:
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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

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  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Hubble Space Telescope, with Neil deGrasse Tyson

    53:05

    It was only supposed to last 3-5 years and it’s been orbiting for 30. Neil deGrasse Tyson celebrates the Hubble Space Telescopes 30th anniversary with comic co-host Chuck Nice and Hubble senior project scientist Jennifer Wiseman, PhD.

    You’ll learn how proposals are selected to receive telescope time. Jennifer tells us about “director discretionary time” which allows the director of the Space Telescope Science Institute to allot time for ideas and research for larger projects or projects that might not be otherwise considered in the general selection process. Jennifer tells us about an instance when director discretionary time allowed for Hubble to be pointed at “nowhere” – resulting in the Hubble Deep Field image, one of the most iconic images Hubble has ever taken. Jennifer also explains how long an idea can take from proposal to final publication.

    You’ll learn about the Hubble science team’s massive data archive that’s open for everyone. Explore some of Hubble’s most interesting discoveries. Discover more about Hubble’s work on finding supermassive black holes in the center of galaxies. We also explore the work researching the expansion of the universe.

    We ponder what the most important fields of discovery will be over the next decade. You’ll find out about Hubble’s collaborative work alongside the Juno probe to Jupiter and the New Horizons probe that went to, and past, Pluto. We also discuss the exciting world of exoplanets. Lastly, Jennifer reveals how long she thinks Hubble can stay in orbit and whether the telescope could ever be sold to a private company. All that, plus, Jennifer shares her favorite Hubble discovery over the past 30 years!
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    Original air date: April 13, 2020

    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson #NASA

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  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Black Hole Survival Guide

    50:13

    You’ve fallen into a black hole! Quick, what do you do? On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice investigate black holes with Janna Levin, PhD, astrophysicist and author of the new book Black Hole Survival Guide.

    Janna starts off by telling us about how her new book Black Hole Survival Guide is “dispelling misconceptions about black holes.” You’ll get a quick refresher from Neil and Janna about “spaghettification” and if there’s any way to prevent that from happening to you if you were to fall into a black hole. Janna gives us a detailed description of what happens when you fall into a black hole and why it’s “safer” to fall into a bigger black hole.

    Find out why you create a “storm” when you head into a black hole. Discover what it would be like to watch someone cross the event horizon from a distance. We discuss “time dilation.” You’ll learn what happens when there’s a “ring down” between two black holes.

    If the multiverse is true, can super massive black holes enter other universes? Can we jet between the multiverse using black hole portals? Can you stitch together a black hole and a white hole? You’ll find out what black holes have in common with Doctor Who’s TARDIS. We explore the Black hole information paradox, Hawking radiation, and whether black holes are actually an illusion made by quantum-entangled wormholes.

    Lastly, we discuss why we might have to look beyond general relativity to understand the singularity. We reflect on the Eddington experiment. All that, plus, we end by pondering the Big Rip.

    Thanks to our Patrons Ryan Bariteau, Dan Snider, Shelia Hutson, Austin Cope, Zachary Keirstead, Chris Goshorn, Cory Flanagin, Jacob Lackeym, Adam Albilya, and Russell Konicki for supporting us this week.

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • A Cosmic Crisis - Cosmic Queries

    53:28

    How do we know the age of stars? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Paul Mecurio answer fan questions about stars, black hole collisions, the speed of light, and the present crisis in cosmology.

    Nothing can travel faster than the speed of light. How does the universe do it? We explore the special theory of relativity, the speed of light, and travelling using wormholes and warp speed. Are there speed limits in the universe? Does the speed of light ever change? During this journey through the universe you also learn about Paul’s journey from lawyer to comedian.

    How do astronomers know the age of distant stars? We confront just how short our lifetimes are compared to stars. How do we figure out the lifecycle of a star when all we have is the equivalent of the snapshot in the star’s life? How would an insect learn about humans if it only lived for a day? What would they think about hospitals or brushing our teeth? Find out about stellar evolution and how theorists and observers combine forces to put together information on the stars.

    In a lightning round, we break down what’s going on with the crisis in cosmology, who Neil thinks is right, and whether this stalemate will usher in some new physics. What happens when two black holes collide? Find out about LIGO, gravitational ripples, and angular momentum. Why send a probe a great distance when we may invent something in the meantime that could beat the original probe? Can anything pull you at the speed of light? How much of earth’s resources could get used to colonize Mars? We discuss in-situ resource utilization, terraforming, and the advantages of colonizing Mars. All that, plus, why Jar Jar Binks is actually a good actor…

    Thanks to our Patrons Eric Ennis, Bill Savage, Matt Schafer, Lawrence McKay, Lowell Irvin, Chris & Michael Johnson, Steve Vera, Nicole Vorisek, Logan Shanks, and Karen Larios for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    “Black Swan” & “White Swan” limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit

    Support us on Patreon:

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

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  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Cosmic Grab Bag

    45:09

    Do black holes evaporate? What’s really happening at SpaceX? What is dark gravity? On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice are answering fan-submitted Cosmic Queries covering topics all across the universe.

    To kick things off, Neil and Chuck investigate dark gravity and dark energy. Could dark energy be leftover energy from an evaporated black hole? We explore how black holes eventually disappear. Neil enlightens us about the “five ages of the universe.” We ponder if dark matter or dark energy could predate the universe itself. Neil tells us why galaxies are found where dark matter has collected them.

    You’ll hear why radio waves are the preferred contact method to chat with aliens. We dive into conspiracy theories and why humans are susceptible to believing in them. Discover more about “dark-sky ordinances” and how light pollution impacts telescopes. Neil shares an example of a city and observatory working together to create less light pollution.

    Are the sizes of planets proportional to the distance between planets? We discuss the gravitational influences of planets on each other. We also discuss how many light years you would have to travel in order to see the Roman battles taking place on Earth. If time is a coordinate, why can’t we move back and forth in time? We take a look at predeterminism.

    Lastly, we explore the science of Superman. What would happen if something made the Earth rotate in the opposite direction like in Superman. Neil reminisces on his star-turn in a Superman comic. All that, plus, you’ll learn how Neil found an actual home for Krypton.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    Thanks to our Patrons Jennifer Sell-Knapp, Chris Reynolds, Adam Cook, Taylor Brandt, Carlene Goodbody, Kayla Moon, Daniel Sindi, and David Lankshear for supporting us this week.

    Thumbnail Image Credit: ESA/Hubble_NASA_J Kali

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    Black Swan” & White Swan limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver.

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    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Kitchen Sink Edition

    45:22

    What are your burning questions about the universe? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice answer Patrons’ flaming-hot questions about the universe covering stars, black holes, gravity, philosophy... everything but the kitchen sink!

    What is Neil’s favorite star? We dive into some of our galaxy's most interesting stars and the mysterious phenomena around them, constellations, and whether the star of Bethlehem was a supernova. You’ll learn about ancient global astronomy through history. Shifting to our own solar system, find out if there is a mysterious ninth planet in our solar system beyond the light of our sun.

    Discover the difference between how gas giants and stars form. We explore more black holes and explain how Hawking radiation works. How could black holes eject particles if nothing can escape the event horizon? Does a black hole have a memory? We talk Einstein, matter, and antimatter.

    Going deeper and deeper, we answer the question: If energy and matter are equivalent, do modern theorists believe that free will exists? We break down subjectivity and the role of science within humanity. You’ll learn about neuroscience and the inception of thoughts in the brain. How does the subconscious mind work? We explore the idea of free will, whether or not we are in a simulation, and a quantum approach to predetermination.

    Could we use stars as an alchemy table to forge elements we want? What other sci-fi concepts do our Patrons have cooked up? You’ll learn why gravity is such a weird force. Is there another paradigm to talk about gravity? Are there other dimensions or dark matter that work to impact gravity? The more we learn the more we know about our own universe. But above all, we thank the programmer of our simulation for free will and yet another episode of StarTalk!


    Thanks to our Patrons Sabrina Anderson, Adam Collins, Jason Pretzlaf, Victor Sanchez, Gino Arizmendi, Austin Douglas, Sara George, douglas robinson, Royal_ish, Anita Petty for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.
    Support us on Patreon:

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    Black Swan'' & White Swan'' limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver:


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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

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  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Fan Grab Bag

    52:22

    On this episode of StarTalk Radio, we’re celebrating you! The fans! Neil deGrasse Tyson and Chuck Nice are answering a special batch Cosmic Queries submitted by some of our most supportive fans.

    Before we dive into questions, Neil and Chuck reflect on IQ tests. What happens when the person taking the test is smarter than the person who wrote the test? You’ll learn what it was like for Neil to be a student. Then we dive into the questions. Why are there so many spirals in nature? Neil tells us about his experiences filming Cosmos in a redwood forest and seeing spirals along the trunks of trees. You’ll learn about spiral galaxies and “density waves.”

    Then, we investigate the rise and fall of the Arecibo Observatory. Neil gives us a history lesson on the significance of the telescope and it’s functionality. We discuss the slow demise and eventual shut down of the telescope. You’ll also learn about the Five hundred meter Aperture Spherical Telescope in China that’s currently the world’s largest filled-aperture radio telescope. Neil also explains why the plight of the Arecibo Observatory is a metaphor for science in America.

    We ponder if machines can ever truly make art. Neil gives us his definition of art and why he thinks the only way for a machine to make art is to be a genuine artificial intelligence. What’s the most fascinating thing we’ve discovered in the known universe? Neil tells us why you can’t beat black holes. You’ll hear how scientists first discovered signatures of a black hole. All that, plus, discover more about the expansion of the universe and if it will end with the annihilation of spacetime.

    In this episode, we’re spotlighting Cosmic Queries submitted by Patron Joel Cherrico. If you would like to have your questions featured in an episode through audio/video interaction with Neil, check out our Custom Queries reward on Patreon.

    Thanks to our Patrons Joel Cherrico, Cory Farnum, Patti Weber, Vegard Gjertsen, Christopher Ludwig, Maria Atienza, Darshan Parmar, Larry Streeter, Kaleb Saleeby, Gregory Newman, and Jeffrey Moore for supporting us this week.

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Space Volcanoes with Neil deGrasse Tyson and Natalie Starkey – Cosmic Queries

    55:41

    What’s a supervolcano? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Matt Kirshen discover all types of volcanoes in the solar system with cosmochemist and author of Fire and Ice: The Volcanoes of the Solar System, Natalie Starkey. Is there such a thing as an ice volcano?

    What types of volcanoes are present in our solar system? We discuss the volcanic activity on our neighbors, Mars and Venus. How did these planets end up so different from Earth? You’ll learn about probes being sent to Venus, cryovolcanoes, and the Voyager Mission. Are other planets’ moons cooler than ours? Are ice volcanoes actually more common than our own fiery ones?

    What even is a volcano? Find out how different volcanoes in the solar system work. Could there be fish getting spewed into the E Ring of Saturn? Is there life on Enceladus or Io? We break down the difference between magma and lava and what process it goes through to erupt. Should we be worried about supervolcanoes on our own planet? Is the volcanic caldera under Yellowstone really “due”? What determines the size of a volcano? How did Mars’s Olympus Mons get so big? Is there a reason we don’t have an Olympus Mons on Earth?

    Is there plate tectonics on Mars? Does volcanic activity cool the Earth’s interior? How is the Earth still warm? We discuss how the Earth’s molten interior created our magnetic field and how long it will continue to stay warm. Can asteroids generate volcanos? Can a volcano eruption send a rock to space? Could there be a planet made entirely of volcanoes? All that, plus, could we create an artificial volcano or cause an eruption ourselves?

    Thanks to our Patrons ILAN CAPONE, Ricardo Torres, Boiphamet, Sebastien Leroy, Parker, Katharine Hooper, and Alireza Sefat for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Cicada Invasion! With Jessica Ware - Cosmic Queries

    50:06

    Are you ready for the cicada invasion? In this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Negin Farsad sit down with evolutionary biologist and entomologist Jessica Ware to answer your questions about the millions of cicadas expected to emerge this summer after 17 years underground.

    To kick things off, we talk about how one even gets involved in entomology– the study of bugs– dragonflies, and the basics of what the heck is happening with cicadas this summer. Why do they stay underground for 17 years? Is there a strategy? How do they keep time to know when to come out? We explore what cicada broods are, what they eat for 17 years, and what cicada puberty looks like.

    Are there any positive consequences to the cicada invasion? How do cicadas impact the environment? How does our changing environment impact cicadas? And most importantly, what do cicadas even do? Discover why cicadas even emerge from the ground in the first place. You’ll also find out what cicadas taste like and whether they’d be a good source of protein.

    Will the skies be filled with swarms of cicadas? You’ll learn how many cicadas there will be, why their underground stage is not actually hibernation, and how long they will be joining us on the surface. In classic StarTalk fashion, we ask ourselves if there are any lessons from cicadas to be taken for human space travel. How have human settlement impacted cicadas? All that, plus, learn everything you need to know about this summer’s cicada takeover and above all: would Neil be willing to eat a cicada or two?

    Thanks to our Patrons Kaz Barnes, Philippe Dewindt, M. Tristan Moody, Dan Hadfield, Wavezzz, Tony Le, Kyle Marston, Colten Judd, Rafael Ignacio Aguilar Carrillo, Caleb Martin for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:

    “Black Swan” & “White Swan” limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit

    Support us on Patreon:

    FOLLOW or SUBSCRIBE to StarTalk:
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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

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  • Dark Matter, Spacetimes Expansion, & String Theory with Neil deGrasse Tyson - Cosmic Queries

    47:06

    What is string theory? What would traveling at the speed of light look like? Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Jordan Klepper answer fan questions about solar system formation, dark matter, and the expansion of spacetime.

    Support us on Patreon:

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Origins of the Universe with Janna Levin

    48:54

    How did the universe get to be this way? On this episode of StarTalk, Neil DeGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice unveil some of the subjects covered in the new StarTalk book named after our recurring segment Cosmic Queries. Theoretical cosmologist and Director of Sciences at Pioneer Works, Janna Levin, helps us break down the building blocks of the universe and how it started.

    To start things off, you’ll learn what the galaxy is made of, both objects we can see and things we cannot. We take a deep, dark dive into dark matter. How much dark matter is there? Are neutrinos a form of dark matter? Has there always been the same amount of matter and dark matter? Could there be a universe with dark matter that is parallel to ours? Find out why someday dark energy will win over the universe. We discuss why theorizing something undetectable and even unprovable may still be a scientific question.

    To kick-off questions from our patrons, we explore the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). What has it enabled us to discover? What has it not discovered yet? Could the LHC make a black hole? You’ll learn about the discovery of the Higgs particle and other elusive objects. We dive into the scientific method physicists use in predicting theories and what physicists really want.

    We also explain string theory and the harmonics of subatomic particles, and how there “can’t be nothing.” Learn why nothing isn’t as empty as you imagine and how spacetime is malleable. Is everything in the universe just a point on a string? Discover all that and more, including how quantum mechanics create spacetime, on another exciting episode!

    Thanks to our Patrons Sunny Day, Shain Dholakiya, Penny Joy, Ben Miller, Eric Lamont, Fernando Sepulveda, Caleb Nolan, Beverly Bellows, Pedro, and Chris Mank for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Jiggle Wiggle Waggle Walk with Charles Liu - Cosmic Queries

    36:10

    Do swimmers need less oxygen? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and co-hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice answer patron questions about athletics and science with Geek-in-Chief astrophysicist Charles Liu. Could Chuck be a gymnast?

    Is oxygen deprivation a thing in swimming? Or are good swimmers just better at operating with less? We discuss asthmatic swimmers, hemoglobin levels in blood, and The Great Oxygenation of earth’s atmosphere.

    Which sport involves the most hand-eye coordination? We explore the dizzying effects of watching Olympic ping pong and the rules of fencing. Should we replace fencing foils with lightsabers? What’s the weirdest sport at the Olympics games? Find out about Olympic tug-of-war, what Neil has against the triple jump, and the logistics of speed walking. What sort of things are scientists looking at in elite athletics?

    How much would you need to pay Chuck to compete at the Olympics? We break down what it would be like to have a regular control person present at the games, and what events would break Chuck if he even attempted them. What would a swimming race with floaties look like? How do gymnasts jump so high in their routines? Discover energy transfer in the springy floors of gymnastics events. Find out what fields physics majors can work in. What the heck do you do with a physics degree? Are all physics majors destined to become teachers? Is there a way to make javelins fly farther? Should the Paralympics allow swimmers to wear prostheses? All those questions, plus, Charles gives us an encouraging message for physics, sports, and disability.

    Thanks to our Patrons Courtney Miller, Victor Beaton, Charles Anglesey, Rudy Amaya, Tomek, Alex Ornelas, Bronwyn Allen-Kaeser, Jake, Andrew, Heather Turner, and Hector Flores for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    “Black Swan” & “White Swan” limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit

    Support us on Patreon:

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Seeing Earth From Space with Jordan Klepper & Nicole Stott – Cosmic Queries

    49:21

    What do you learn from going to space? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and guest co-host, comedian Jordan Klepper, answer patron questions about living in space with engineer and NASA astronaut, Nicole Stott. What’s the Overview Effect?

    Do we have all we need to send humans to Mars already? If not, what are the things we haven’t figured out? We explore the plane of the solar system versus the plane of the galaxy. Can a human safely feel gravitational waves? Is there a scientific reason for the shape of The Enterprise? Neil explains why he wants things to look cool and how he envisions the future. Will we evolve past a need for design?

    Next, we talk to Nicole Stott and she tells us all about going to space, astronaut hobbies, and why we should be living like space station crewmates on earth. Is it difficult to paint a watercolor in space? We discuss Nicole’s Space for Art Foundation and how she finds inspiration and power in the cosmos. Should we send more artists to space? What about satirical comedians? What does it feel like to look back on earth from space? Do you need different types of art materials in zero G? Nicole breaks down how she had to modify her painting for space and other lifestyle adjustments.

    We discuss the progress of female engineers within NASA and advice for any young women trying to become an astronaut or engineer. What goes on in the body when it goes into space and comes back to earth? Find out what it feels like to feel gravity again. Discover how art can help make science more accessible for the blind, and what programs exist to educate using the different senses. What part of space travel could be made better? We discuss air pressure and strange habits that you pick up from being in space. All that plus, find out about Jordan’s close– and super real– friendship with Buzz Aldrin.

    Thanks to our Patrons Elisa, terrell robinson, Adorak, Leo Azir Ra, Aaron Isaacson, Ian Konkle, and Josh Laurente & Emily McCadden for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Space Junk, StarLink and Falling Rockets with Moriba Jah – Cosmic Queries

    52:32

    What do we do with all this space junk? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice answer questions about the stuff we put into orbit with astrodynamicist and space environmentalist, Dr. Moriba Jah. How much stuff and how many satellites are really up there?

    Discover how Moriba discovered his field and his path to studying objects in orbit. What’s the magnitude of the problem with space junk? You’ll learn just how many objects are in low earth orbit and who is responsible for them. What do we do about parts that fall out of orbit toward earth? Is there any way to control it? Do we have any space junk laws?

    We talk about the space debris of different government space projects. Who’s responsible for falling debris? Is the U.S. guilty of this? Can we create a “great junkyard in the sky” in a Lagrange point? Are satellites at risk of colliding with each other? We break down regulations that should be made to manage objects in orbit as we enter a new era in space travel. Should there be space traffic laws?

    Are all these objects making the sky brighter? Find out about how space objects impact light pollution for hobby astronomers and researchers alike. Is all this stuff in the sky going to make stargazing difficult? Are there any solutions to limit how many satellites are in orbit? We discuss plans to remove space junk and how world governments need to coordinate on this. Is our orbit a new wild wild West? Are there any upsides to space junk? All that, plus, find out about eyesonthesky.org and space lasers!

    Thanks to our Patrons Louis Smith, Dana Fambro, David Johnston, Tracy Fox, Charlene Hale, Lucas Pires, and Paulina Banach-Mazur for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    Black Swan” & White Swan limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver.

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  • Neil DeGrasse Tyson discusses latest book about Cosmic Queries

    7:49

  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Multiverse Madness with Max Tegmark

    49:00

    Do we live in one of many universes? On this episode of StarTalk, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice investigate the theory of the multiverse with physicist and author, Prof. Max Tegmark.

    To start, we dive into the different theories and levels of the multiverse and how they differ from each other. What do people even mean when they say multiverse? Is it just more unidentifiable parts of space or whole parallel universes? You’ll learn about inflation theory and quantum multiverses. We ponder whether there may be an Evil Chuck out there lurking in some other universe?

    Discover the idea behind infinite infinities. What does it mean for one infinity to be bigger than another infinity? We explore Einstein’s theory of general relativity and how it relates to infinity. Can you have infinite infinities within a finite universe? Could parallel universes exist within a multiverse? We investigate our definition of the universe and if there could be more space beyond it.

    How does the multiverse affect our universe? Is there any observational evidence to suggest it actually exists? Does dark energy have anything to do with it? We get into how to test seemingly untestable theories and how exploring these holes in our knowledge gave us quantum mechanics. You’ll also learn how a multiverse would even begin and what might exist between universes. Find out about Hilbert space and decoherence. Would Evil Chuck know about our own Good Chuck? Many more questions answered on another episode of StarTalk!

    Thanks to our Patrons Eric Colombel, David Johnston, Tracy Fox, Jason Sills, Anderson Clark, Andrew Kranz, Kyle Marston, Alex Lopes, Zach Jerrells, and Rob Tadje for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:

    “Black Swan” & “White Swan” limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver.

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  • Climate Change Facts & Myths with Neil deGrasse Tyson - Cosmic Queries

    53:38

    How did we save the ozone layer? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice break down the successful campaign to save the ozone layer with professor and atmospheric chemist Susan Soloman and director of research for the Institute of Governance and Sustabaility Stephen Andersen. What lessons can we learn to apply to the ongoing climate crisis?

    How do you save the world? We discuss their winning the Future of Life Award this week (details here) for their contributions to the 1987 Montreal Protocol. What was it? Is it the most successful treaty of our day? How did the ozone layer get depleted? What is a Chlorofluorocarbon or CFC? How do you convince people to get rid of what they have if you don’t have something for them to replace it with? We explore how industries and media were able to create a movement to help the cause. How do we create a sustainable civilization?

    How does the ozone layer work to protect us? Discover the different forms of oxygen and how they interact with UV rays from the sun. How much UV actually reaches the Earth’s surface? What are the actual effects of refrigerants and CFCs on the atmosphere? What’s HCFC22? Or HFC410A? Are we at the point of no return with runaway climate change? Do we have any new technology to reverse the change? We break down whether geoengineering Earth is a good idea and how to fix our dire energy infrastructure problem.

    Do all heroes wear capes? We take a moment to appreciate the work of climate scientists and the tireless work they’ve been doing against the clock. Would reducing the cost of greener alternatives be enough? What’s the most life-changing adaptation we will be forced to make in the near future? Is it true that 75% of all greenhouse gas emissions are created by just 100 companies? What does it mean to go carbon-neutral? What is the most likely cause for Earth becoming uninhabitable? How do you convince climate change deniers? What lessons can we learn and apply from the Montreal Protocol? All that, plus, Chuck announces the release of his new hit country album “My Daddy was a Solar Panel Installer.”

    Thanks to our Patrons Ryan Ogle, David Matthews, Colleen Magee-Uhlik, Ryan Atashkar, Cameron Q Myhre, Jordan Sisinni, and Mien for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

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  • Science with the James Webb Space Telescope.mov

    1:1:09

    In this video astronomer Jason Kalirai describes the science that will be done with the James Webb Space Telescope. This video is part of the Space Telescope Science Institute Public Lecture Series.

  • Warp Drive and Aliens: Bryan Gaensler Public Lecture

    1:21:13

    In his live public lecture at Perimeter Institute on February 5, 2020, astronomer Bryan Gaensler (Dunlap Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Toronto) explored the latest thinking on interstellar travel and on the search for alien life – including why he believes the frontiers of current research may be more exciting and visionary than any fictional stories we can imagine.

    Perimeter Institute (charitable registration number 88981 4323 RR0001) is the world’s largest independent research hub devoted to theoretical physics, created to foster breakthroughs in the fundamental understanding of our universe, from the smallest particles to the entire cosmos. The Perimeter Institute Public Lecture Series is made possible in part by the support of donors like you. Be part of the equation:

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  • Magic Mushrooms, Fungi, and The Mysterious Kingdom with Merlin Sheldrake - Cosmic Queries

    54:17

    Can mushrooms take over your mind? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Matt Kirshen explore the weird world of fungi with fun-guy fungus expert and ecologist, Merlin Sheldrake. Could inactive spores survive space?

    Who discovered mushrooms can affect us psychologically? You’ll learn about the origins of the classification of the kingdom fungi and the use of psychedelic mushrooms. Can psilocybin be synthesized? We explore the world’s great mycelium network and how fungi connect ecosystems. How many spores are in the air at all times? What are the differences between plants and mushrooms? Which one evolved first? There are fungi that like to eat whiskey?

    Can fungi hijack animals? Will the zombie apocalypse be fungi-related? Could fungi potentially seed another planet? Find out how different fungi affect the people and animals who interact with them. What are telltale signs of a poisonous mushroom? Why will some mushrooms kill you and others not? You’ll learn about how some fungi create waves of electrical activity like neurons.

    Discover Matt’s accidental mushroom cultivation and how our world is not so different from the world of James Cameron’s Avatar. Are there still mushrooms being discovered? We explore existing theories about psilocybin’s impact on human evolution. Is it possible that psychedelic mushrooms gave humans the creativity to make fire? How can we use psychoactive mushrooms for depression? Are there ways mushrooms can help us combat climate change? All that, plus, where’s the weirdest place fungi have been found?

    Thanks to our Patrons Bradley Sheldrake, Marc Armstrong, The Warzone12, Luis Cruz, Ely, Andrea Sperini, and 1x4x9 for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free

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  • x
  • In Class With Brian Cox 2018

    42:09

    Join us for an exclusive In Class With session with world-renowned physicist, presenter and former rockstar Prof Brian Cox, as he fields questions from students around Australia.

    Do you want to know more about the formation of our universe? How the human brain is linked to the cosmos? What’s inside a black hole?

    With thanks to our friends at Lateral Events.

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    ABOUT
    The Royal Institution of Australia is an independent charity dedicated to connecting people with the world of science through news, videos, events and educational resources.

    Cosmos is all about aiming to inspire curiosity in “The Science of Everything” and make the world of science accessible to everyone.

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  • Q&A 76: Can You Come To A Dead Stop In Space? And More... Featuring Launch Pad Astronomy

    25:09

    In this week's QA, I answer if it's possible to come to a dead stop, will Mars be more habitable when the Sun expands as a red giant, is there a stellar mass black hole nearby, and more...

    Featuring a special guest answer from Christian Ready at Launch Pad Astronomy.

    Check out his channel here:


    Our Book is out!


    00:16 Can you come to a complete stop?
    02:03 Are there limits of optical telescope?
    04:07 Will Mars be in the habitable zone in the future?
    05:50 Can we get to Alpha Centauri sooner?
    07:56 Is there a black hole nearby?
    10:10 Is colonizing Mars for the rich?
    12:15 Why don't we have Voyager 3?
    13:47 Could we have magnetic boots for zero G?
    16:08 Why is the Sun so hard to get to?
    17:28 Did life on Mars come from Earth?
    19:26 Why not seed life across the Solar System?
    21:30 Can there be binary planets?

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  • Ask an Astronomer: James Webb Space Telescope

    53:10

    The James Webb Space Telescope launches in 2021 and will be the premier space observatory for astronomers worldwide. Expanding on discoveries of the Hubble Space Telescope, Webb will search for clues to the formation of the first galaxies, peer inside dust clouds where new stars and planetary systems are forming today, and explore other similar topics. Our guest speaker will reveal more of what Webb will study and the questions we’re trying to answer.

  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Cosmic Conundrums with Neil deGrasse Tyson

    41:55

    On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice are answering your fan-submitted questions on everything from discovering extraterrestrial life to traveling through dimensions. Anything that you’ve cosmically wondered about, we are ready to answer.

    To start, Neil and Chuck ponder where they would pilot the USS Enterprise if they were sitting in the Captain’s chair. You’ll learn why Neil would take a tour of his own “backyard” before setting off anywhere else. We investigate how time works as you move closer and further from the edge of the universe. Neil tells us how to kill a black hole, and the answer may surprise you.

    We discuss dark matter. You’ll hear why dark matter should really be called dark gravity. You’ll explore how we study dark matter even though it doesn’t interact electromagnetically. Then, we investigate the Higgs boson, the Higgs field, and the Large Hadron Collider. Neil shares a helpful metaphor to understand the Higgs boson that involves a Hollywood party, Chuck, and Beyoncé.

    Neil and Chuck debate which is more likely to happen – extraterrestrial contact or the ability to travel through the dimensions. You’ll learn more about higher dimensions and how they interact with the reality of other dimensions. We investigate the possibility of complex organisms existing in the liquid masses of our solar system, like on Enceladus or Europa. Neil gives us a lesson in thermodynamics in order to explain how life survives.

    Lastly, you’ll explore Low Earth orbit. Discover why people who live along the equator would weigh less than people living elsewhere. All that, plus, Neil explains how fast the Earth would have to be rotating for you to float.

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    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    Originally aired May 4, 2020

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains the Smallness of Molecules

    15:09

    How small is a molecule? In this StarTalk explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice are here to help you visualize a molecule’s actual size.

    To start, Neil gives his favorite thought experiment to help us understand the size of molecules. You’ll learn why this leads Chuck to say he’s never drinking water again. Discover more about “quantum construction” and building things on a molecular level. You’ll learn about Avogadro's number and measuring things in mole.

    We explore why it’s remarkable that we were even able to discover molecules at all. Neil explains how our five senses held us back from discovering things until we invented ways outside our senses to discover them. All that, plus, we discuss why there’s a philosophical issue in our own physiology when it comes to communicating things of extraordinary size in the universe.

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    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

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  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Lunar Geology

    57:11

    On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice are answering fan-submitted Cosmic Queries about lunar geology alongside planetary scientist Raquel Nuno. And as Raquel says, she’s here to change your mind about the Moon!

    As it turns out, we don’t know very much about the Moon. Raquel explains how the Moon has been a celestial witness to everything Earth has experienced. Learn about some surprising discoveries we’ve made from moon rocks and other samples. You’ll hear how our views on the Moon changed from it being a piece of primordial dust and rock to a place with an incredible geologic history. We also discuss why we currently can’t go back to the Moon.

    Next, we explore the Moon’s craters and why Earth has far fewer craters. What would we find if we extracted a core sample from the Moon? Raquel tells us about finding Moon samples on astronaut space suits. Are there still bacteria alive on the Moon left from the Apollo missions? We explore where the ice on the Moon comes from, and Raquel gives us details on creating “water out of thin space.”

    You’ll learn more about Theia and the “giant-impact” hypothesis. Explore the Moon’s magma ocean of the past. Uncover the “truth” about the dark side of the Moon. Ponder what would happen if the Moon broke apart. Lastly, we discuss the true color of the Moon, and, whether we can terraform the lunar surface. All that, plus, we ask, can a moon have a moon?

    Thanks to our Patrons David Frederick, Jennifer Aiken, Jamie Boneleye, Kyle Walker, Evan Blackburn, Jon Mack, Wyatt Smith, Cole Smart for supporting us this week.

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  • 25 Years of Hubble

    1:32:28

    25 Years of Hubble
    Dr. Frank Summers, Space Telescope Science Institute

    The year 2015 marks the 25th anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope, and the festivities have already begun. Join Dr. Summers for a forward-looking retrospective of the remarkable history and still-bright future of a telescope that transcends astronomy. Explore the trials and triumphs of NASA's first Great Observatory, and experience a compendium of some of the greatest imagery the universe has ever known. It's a celestial silver celebration!

    Recorded live on January 13, 2015 at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, MD, USA

    For more information:

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains the REAL Length of Day

    16:56

    A day is 24 hours, right? Right?!?! On this StarTalk explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice investigate the length of a day.

    To start, Neil explains why a “sidereal day” is 23 hours, 56 minutes, and 4 seconds and a “solar day” is, on average, 24 hours. You’ll learn why Earth’s orbit around the sun impacts how we measure the length of the day. Should we re-define the length of a second? Discover more about leap seconds and how we decide when to add them to the calendar.

    Find out more about atomic clocks and sun dials. Neil explains why the Earth is slowing down and why the Moon is spiraling away from us. We also discuss how tides serve as a counter-balance to the Earth’s rotation. All that, plus, we explore the many things that can impact Earth’s rotation including seasonal animal migrations, earthquakes, melting land glaciers, and more!

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    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains the Equinox

    11:54

    What’s going on with the equinox? In this explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice honor the equinox, breaking down why we have it and how it works.

    What makes the two equinoxes special days of the year? You’ll learn the difference between spring versus fall equinox and what they mean in context with the summer and winter solstices. How does the equinox differ for different parts of the world? Is the equinox the same in Alaska as it is in Brazil?

    Discover the reason why the equinox isn’t actually equal night and day. How does our own atmosphere impact our hours of sunlight? What is our definition of sunrise and sunset? Is there a real equinox we don’t celebrate? But most of all… where can we get that StarTalk sweatshirt???

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    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains Heat vs. Temperature

    11:14

    What’s the difference between heat and temperature? In this StarTalk explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice investigate the important difference between heat and temperature from an astrophysics standpoint and how that impacts our environment.

    We take a closer look at how atoms determine the temperature of an object. How does an atom’s vibration impact temperature? What about its mass? Can a single atom have both a temperature and a heat? Find out why this distinction is important when Neil dives into how temperature and heat interact with our environment. What has more heat, your morning cup of coffee or the ocean?

    You’ll also learn how climate change works with heat and temperature. What is the energy budget of a climate system? Is it how much you spend on air conditioning? How do air conditioners even work anyway? Discover where energy lurks all around us with your personal astrophysicist!

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    Black Swan” & White Swan limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver:

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    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Animal Outlaws & Rats A**es with Neil deGrasse Tyson and Mary Roach - Cosmic Queries

    47:49

    What happens when nature commits a crime? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Paul Mecurio discuss law-breaking animals with Mary Roach and her new book Fuzz: When Nature Breaks The Law. Can we hack nature?

    What animals in nature would break laws if they were a part of our society? We discuss the ways animals exist in human society, deer crossings, and when animals jaywalk. Can animals keep up with changing technology? Learn about FID, flight-initiation distance, and what Neil has against pigeons. Why are there no white pigeons? What strange alliances exist in the natural world? Are bears worried about farmed salmon?

    Is there a reason that humans hunt apex predators? Discover the story behind pigeons in New York City, how the 1918 pandemic impacted leopards, and what “rewilding” means. Can a parcel of undisturbed land become a beautiful forest or must it be managed? Discover the history of flightless birds and stoats in New Zealand. Can we ever stabilize an environment? Can we coexist with the natural world?

    In what ways have human contributions helped other animals? Find out about danger trees and how explosives can be good for wildlife. We beg the question: Do bald eagles have any dignity? How do wildfires impact wildlife? Are animals able to escape the blaze? You’ll learn about how cities are making animals larger and what repercussions that has on nature. How come rats aren’t bigger than they are? Are humans speciesist? Is it possible for advanced civilization to be more balanced? All that, plus, what’s the deal with a rat’s ass?

    Thanks to our Patrons Hunter Cutone, Roman Cain, Yoshi Wiklund, Tec MySelf, Jonathan Harries, Net Identification, and William Davis for supporting us this week.

    NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

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    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains the REAL Color of the Sun

    14:26

    Is the sun yellow? Like in those pictures you drew as a kid? The answer is no. On this StarTalk explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice investigate the true color of the Sun.

    Neil explains why the Sun’s true color is white. You’ll learn how the atmosphere takes the Sun’s white light and turns it into something else. You’ll also learn why the blue sky is stolen sunlight.

    Lastly, Neil gives us a photography lesson and tells us how photographers deal with different light. We investigate indoor vs. outdoor light. All that, plus, Neil explains why snow being white is evidence of the Sun’s white light.

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    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Greeks Out

    14:26

    This is all Greek to me! On this explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice explain the meaning of the Greek alphabet within science.

    Ever seen an equation with Greek letters all over the place? What does alpha mean? Delta? Lambda? Are they just letters for a frat? We break down what each letter means and the difference between the Greek alphabet and our own Roman alphabet. How do you spell the letter H? What words in science do we get from the greek alphabet? All that and more on another StarTalk explainer!

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    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:
    Black Swan” & White Swan limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver:

  • Telescopes: The Long Lens of History

    1:5:44

    For over 400 years, the telescope has been an indispensible tool of scientific discovery, wielded by amateurs and luminaries alike in their eager explorations of the heavens. The telescope revealed the existence of our solar system's outer planets and brought us crisp images of approaching comets. It also radically changed our understanding of the universe and its boundaries. As telescopes have increased in size and power, astronomers have answered old questions and raised new ones about dark matter, distant planets, and the existence of other life forms. Rocky Kolb, chair of the University of Chicago's Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, uses the history of the telescope to take us on a journey through time, the cosmos, and human discovery.

  • Is Water On Other Planets Evidence Of Alien Life? | Cosmic Vistas | Spark

    22:40

    They say the key ingredient to life in the universe is water. Until recently we thought Earth was the only place in the solar system to have any water at all. Now that probes are peering around nearby worlds we are finding that is just not the case.
    -
    Season Three of Cosmic Vistas zooms in to focus on some familiar solar bodies within our reach. How well do we really know our celestial neighbors such as Saturn and Mars? What do we have yet to learn? With the help of satellite technology and the incredible shuttles that put them into orbit, many questions about our solar system's past and future are finally being answered by science.

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    #Spark #CosmicVistas #Universe #BigBang

  • An Exoplanet Home to Metal Aliens? | NASAs Unexplained Files

    11:27

    Experts investigate if a nearby exoplanet could be the home to an alien civilization of strange, metallic monsters after a new discovery confirms that life can thrive on such a world.

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  • StarTalk Podcast: The Life and Death of Stars with Jackie Faherty

    49:34

    Are we really made of stardust? On this episode, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Negin Farsad explore questions from our patrons on the life – and death – of stars with astrophysicist Jackie Faherty, PhD.

    We start with questions from our patrons: how do we know how stars are born? What do we know – and don’t know – about the stars in our galaxy? Discover what happens to the planets in a solar system after a star dies. Which planets would survive in our solar system when our own sun starts its death sequence? We talk all things white dwarfs, brown dwarfs, and neutron stars. Are we really all stardust? We break down the astronomer’s periodic table and what all the elements on the periodic table really come from.

    Is a star becoming a black hole just star death or really star evolution? If Jupiter is considered a failed star, are stars just failed blackholes? You’ll learn about brown dwarfs and what it takes to be categorized as a star. How many stars eventually go supernova? How long does a star’s death sequence take? Are there such things as “zombie” stars? We discuss the death of our own star, the different phases of a star’s lifetime, and a scenario where one larger star might feed off another.

    You’ll also discover why previously uninhabitable planets may become inhabitable during a star’s death phase. What would happen if you could theoretically split a star in half? Or if one star hit another star? What would happen if the star nearest to our solar system went supernova? What would it look like? Are more distant stars bigger and do they have shorter lives? Plus, find out why we probably don’t want to live on a planet neighboring a supergiant star on another StarTalk Cosmic Queries!

    Thanks to our Patrons The Warzone12, 1x4x9, Michael Borger, Michael Meyn, Hieu Trinh, Vegard Gjertsen, Gavin Dhillon, Xavier Sims, Ram Kumar, and Rhys Smith for supporting us this week.

    About the prints that flank Neil in this video:

    “Black Swan” & “White Swan” limited edition serigraph prints by Coast Salish artist Jane Kwatleematt Marston. For more information about this artist and her work, visit Inuit Gallery of Vancouver:

    Support us on Patreon:

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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • StarTalk Podcast: Cosmic Queries – Life on Venus, with Neil deGrasse Tyson

    47:54

    Is there life on Venus? Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Paul Mecurio, and astrobiologist David Grinspoon investigate the recent discovery of phosphine gas in Venus’s atmosphere and answer your Cosmic Queries.

    We gathered up all your Cosmic Queries about the recent news and we start with the big question: Does this mean there’s life on Venus? Could there be a habitable zone? David tells us why the answer is…maybe. We explore the discovery of the phosphine gas and the possible explanations behind its existence in Venus’s atmosphere.

    You’ll explore what’s next after a discovery like this. Can we bring samples back to Earth? David gives details on the complexity of a mission to the Venusian atmosphere. We also explore Venus’s volcanoes and its geologically-active surface. David explains why, if we want to know what’s going on in the atmosphere, we have to know what’s happening on the surface.

    Then, we take a look at Earth: Can we use Earth to help us deduce what’s happening on Venus? We ponder the best way to search for life in the universe. We also ponder whether life needs water to thrive or if life just needs liquid. David gives us the top three gases that could be used to signify life elsewhere.

    Find out why Venus’s atmosphere is so thick. We discuss Venus’s runaway greenhouse effect and the viscous circle of its carbon cycle. We also wonder if a probe from Earth might have introduced microbes to Venus’s atmosphere. All that, plus, we ask the very important question: Is the Wicked Witch of the West actually from Venus?

    Support us on Patreon:

    Subscribe to StarTalk:

    Follow StarTalk:
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    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • Neil deGrasse Tyson Explains Wavelengths

    14:03

    What is wave-particle duality? On this explainer, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice explain wavelengths, wavicles, and the electromagnetic spectrum.

    What are the wavelength sizes on the electromagnetic spectrum? What’s a wavicle? Find out about wave-particle duality and how the human body detects different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. Can our bodies sense more than just visible light? Discover microwaves and radio waves. How do we pick up on these types of waves? How do antennae work? We discuss the holes in your kitchen microwave and how electron microscopes work. How can we possibly see something smaller than visible light?

    Support us on Patreon:

    FOLLOW or SUBSCRIBE to StarTalk:
    YouTube:
    Twitter:
    Facebook:
    Instagram:

    About StarTalk:
    Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

    #StarTalk #NeildeGrasseTyson

  • April 14th, 2020 Live Astronomy Q&A Session with Prof. Chris Impey

    58:34

    Thank you for joining us for a LIVE Astronomy question and answer session with Professor Chris Impey from Steward Observatory at the University of Arizona. We answer all of your astronomy questions, from comets to cosmology! #UA #astronomy #space

  • Cemetery of Dead Science | After Dark Online

    1:4:02

    Here lie deceased explanations
    Done in by controlled exploration.
    These theories, once bold,
    Can now be retold Without fearing their reincarnation.
    —co-written by Craig Anderson, Kevin Boyd, Hugh McDonald, and Megan Pruiett

    On the eve of the eve of All-Hallow’s Eve, we bring one of our favorite annual events, the Cemetery of Dead Science, online. While we look to science as a trusted source for understanding the world around us, knowledge is ever-evolving. Tonight, we’ll look at debunked science from pasts both distanced and recent. We’ll also dig into the scientific process to better understand how questionable concepts can gain legitimacy.

    This event features:

    FULL SPECTRUM SCIENCE–SHORTS! – THE STEADY STATE THEORY with Ron Hipschman (begins at 4:14)
    From our Cemetery of Dead Science, we’ve resurrected, if you will, a beautiful aesthetic idea purporting to tell us the history and future of the universe: the Steady State Theory. Unfortunately, in science, theories must withstand the scrutiny of experiment and evidence—which put the last nail in the coffin of the Steady State Theory and destined it for its final resting place: our graveyard.

    DECAY WITH ODD SALON
    Hosted by Kate O’Donnell (begins at 31:28)
    Throughout October, we're pleased to partner with Odd Salon for stories of entropy told through the annals of science, history, art, and adventure. This week, check out:

    LYSENKOISM: THE ONCE (AND FUTURE?) CRACKPOT SCIENCE with Marc Wilson (begins at 42:25)

    HORRIBLE LIZARDS: HOW DINOSAUR RECONSTRUCTIONS WENT SO WRONG with Kristin Hugo (begins at 54:01)

    This month’s After Dark Online is a get-together to fall apart. As autumn sets in, trees become bare, and the northern hemisphere begins to chill, we’re exploring processes of decay, entropy, and how things come apart, making way for revisions and new arrangements.

  • Recycle Your Used Pulsars: Explaining the Extra Gamma-Radiation from the Central Milky Way

    1:6:08

    Recycle Your Used Pulsars: Explaining the Extra Gamma-Radiation from the Central Milky Way
    Christopher Britt of the Space Telescope Science Institute

    Gamma rays, the highest energy light in the electromagnetic spectrum, generally arise from extreme events. For over a decade, NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has mapped these energetic cosmic emissions and helped characterize their sources. A particular conundrum is found in the center of our Milky Way galaxy, which emits significantly more gamma-ray light than can be easily explained. Join us to probe the possible origins of this mysterious gamma radiation, from dark matter to ancient remnants of old dead stars, and explore a method to potentially solve this powerful puzzle.

    Host: Dr. Frank Summers of the Space Telescope Science Institute

    Recorded live on Tuesday, June 4, 2019, at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.

    More information:

  • Black Holes and Other Dark Matters

    1:25:40

    Black Holes and Other Dark Matters
    Marc Kamionkowski of Johns Hopkins University

    In February 2016, the Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO) announced discovery of the merger of two black holes, each of which weighed around 30 times the mass of the Sun. In addition to being the first detection of gravitational waves, it was also the first observational evidence of stellar mass black holes above 25 solar masses. Shortly thereafter, it was speculated that these black holes might make up the dark matter that has long been known to exist in galaxies (like our own Milky Way). Dr. Kamionkowski will discuss this possibility and explain why this hypothesis may or may not work.

    Host: Dr. Frank Summers

    Recorded live on Tuesday, December 4, 2018 at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.

    More information:

  • The Importance of Small Objects: Exocomets

    1:25:37

    Isabel Rebollido, Space Telescope Science Institute

    Comets, asteroids, and other minor bodies in the solar system are thought to have played an important role in the formation of planets. They may even affect the appearance of life on Earth. Although we can't directly observe these small bodies in other planetary systems, we can infer their presence through various techniques. Studies into exocomets have been pursued for decades, with recent advances in the exoplanetary field bringing them into the limelight. In particular, comets trace chemical and dynamical information that could eventually be key to determine the habitability of new planetary systems.

    Host: Brandon Lawton, Space Telescope Science Institute
    Recorder live on Tuesday, August 3, 2021
    More information:

  • Physics 20B. Cosmology. Lec. 19: Albert Einstein and Black Holes

    48:31

    UCI Physics 20B: Cosmology (Winter 2015)
    Lec 19. Cosmology -- Albert Einstein and Black Holes
    View the complete course:
    Instructor: James Bullock, Ph.D.

    License: Creative Commons CC-BY-SA
    Terms of Use:
    More courses at

    Description: Cook's Tour of the universe. Ancient world models. Evidence for universal expansion; the size and age of the universe and how it all began. The long-range future and how to decide the right model. Anthropic principle.

    Recorded February 27, 2015

    Required attribution: Bullock, James. Physics 20B (UCI OpenCourseWare: University of California, Irvine), [Access date]. License: Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License. (

  • Juna Kollmeier - The Formation of Structure in the Cosmos

    52:29

    More details:

  • Astro @UCLA: The Next Generation

    1:8:44

    UCLA astronomers, among them recent Nobel prize winner Andrea Ghez, are leading the way with ground-breaking discoveries on a vast scale – from planets, to stars, to galaxies, to the entirety of the universe. This webinar – presented on Nov. 18, 2020 – gave viewers a glimpse into the future of astronomical discovery featuring UCLA Astronomy's newest faculty with remarks by 2020 Nobel Prize Winner Andrea Ghez.

    This is truly an amazing moment for astronomical discovery. New worlds are being uncovered around other stars. Einstein's Theory of General Relativity is facing new tests near the supermassive black hole at the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. Precise measurements of the expansion rate of the universe are challenging our notions of the standard model of cosmology. UCLA Astronomy's newest faculty members Tuan Do, Smadar Naoz, Erik Petigura, and Tommaso Treu highlighted the latest research results from their home department at UCLA.
    • Tuan Do, Assistant Professor: Find out about the discovery of a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy and how recent observations will reveal new insights into the nature of gravity and the growth of black holes.
    • Smadar Naoz, Associate Professor and Howard and Astrid Preston Term Chair in Astrophysics: Hear how recent detections of gravitational-wave signals have raised new questions about how black holes collide, which may transform our understanding of the universe.
    • Erik Petigura, Assistant Professor: Learn about efforts to unravel the origin, evolution, and fate of exoplanets (planets orbiting stars other than the sun), aided by powerful ground- and space-based telescopes.
    • Tommaso Treu, Professor: Explore the mysterious properties of dark matter and energy, invisible forms that make up 95% of our universe and create foundations upon which galaxies can be built.

  • Exploring the Universe with Gravitational Waves

    1:25:52

    It took over a thousand physicists to build a telescope capable of detecting vibrations in space and time that come from the merger of two black holes. MIT's Rainer Weiss, one of the leaders of that team, and its inspiration and guide, spoke about their triumph in this year's John N. Bahcall lecture.

    This program is part of the John N. Bahcall Lecture Series, which is organized and sponsored by the Space Telescope Science Institute and the Hubble Space Telescope Project/NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.

    See More: airandspace.si.edu/Live

  • Exploring Exoplanets, with Seth Shostak – StarTalk All-Stars

    48:51

    Seth Shostak, SETI Institute Senior Astronomer and StarTalk veteran, is back to host StarTalk All-Stars as he and his co-host Chuck Nice welcome Jason Wright, Associate Professor of Astronomy at Penn State, to explore the exoplanets. Jason, who is a member at the Center for Exoplanets and Habitable Worlds, offers his insights on the important discovery of Proxima b, the neighboring exoplanet to Earth, roughly 4 light years away. We get details on what makes Proxima b special, space transportation by light sails and laser beams, and information on star KIC8462852, or as Seth calls it “Bob”. You’ll learn how the Kepler Space Telescope uses the dimming of stars to find planets, which bio-signatures we look for on exoplanets, and how coronagraphic telescopes work. Discover what signals SETI scans for, how long it would take to confirm a possible alien transmission, and the protocol SETI takes if a possible transmission is received. You’ll also find out about alien astro-architecture, “super Earths”, and whether it’s possible for non carbon-based life to exist. Plus, get the answers to Cosmic Queries like how do we detect life on an exoplanet? How many exoplanets have we visually seen? Are there planet types that are theorized but haven’t been discovered? A fan even asks, “Once you go alien, can you ever go back?”

    This episode originally aired as a podcast on December 6, 2016.

  • Real Science Now! Cosmos

    56:03

    Title: Real Science Now! Cosmos: What's New in the Universe? The Universe: Black Holes, Gravitational Waves, and Why We Care, & The Higgs: Final Great Discovery of Particle Physics?
    Speaker: Glenn Starkman, PhD, Tom Giblin, PhD
    Date: 7/19/16

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