Gravity

Category archives for Gravity

“Einstein’s gravitational theory, which is said to be the greatest single achievement of theoretical physics, resulted in beautiful relations connecting gravitational phenomena with the geometry of space; this was an exciting idea.” -Richard P. Feynman When Einstein’s theory was first proposed as an alternative to Newtonian gravity, there were a number of subtle but important…

“The paradigm of physics — with its interplay of data, theory and prediction — is the most powerful in science.” –Geoffrey West Cosmic inflation, our earliest theory of the Universe and the phenomenon that sets up the Big Bang, didn’t just explain a number of puzzles, but made a slew of new predictions for the Universe. In the subsequent…

“Gravitational and electromagnetic interactions are long-range interactions, meaning they act on objects no matter how far they are separated from each other.” -Francois Englert One of the most spectacular predictions of Einstein’s General Relativity was the existence of gravitational lensing, whereby a large foreground mass could act as a lens, magnifying and distorting the background…

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning.” -Albert Einstein While it’s easy to look on Einstein’s general theory of relativity — which turns 100 today — as a revolutionary new way to interpret space and time, as well as their interplay with matter and energy,…

“This scenario implies that the giant planet instability is not the source of the Late Heavy Bombardment and that terrestrial planet formation finished with the giant planets in their modern configuration.” -Nathan A. Caib & John E. Chambers It’s a common but nonetheless spectacular occurrence when our leading scientific theories — the ones with the…

“Gravitational and electromagnetic interactions are long-range interactions, meaning they act on objects no matter how far they are separated from each other.” -Francois Englert Want a recipe for seeing as far into the distant Universe as you can? Because of how distance and brightness are inversely related, you need to make the most of every…

We live in a Universe full of galaxies, supermassive black holes, and violence. The violence is particularly relevant here, because every so often, these galaxies merge, and if they each contain a supermassive black hole, the gravitational wave “ripples” that get sent through space will literally shake and affect everything that’s in them. If you…

“To me there has never been a higher source of earthly honor or distinction than that connected with advances in science.” –Isaac Newton If Newton truly meant that sentiment, perhaps he would have been happy to find out that his theory of gravitation — which stood unchallenged for over 200 years — was superseded a…

“There is a fifth dimension, beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition.” –Rod Serling Of course, despite our best theoretical hopes, we know only of four dimensions — three…

“The slow philosophy is not about doing everything in tortoise mode. It’s less about the speed and more about investing the right amount of time and attention in the problem so you solve it.” –Carl Honore If you wanted to know how fast you were moving through space, you’d need to measure it all: the…