Inexplicable Life

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The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries Series
What do scientists know about the universe? What still remains to be uncovered? What are some of the next avenues of exploration? Professor Neil deGrasse Tyson's course The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries is a marvelous journey to the frontiers of the known (and unknown) universe and introduces you to tantalizing…
Inexplicable Cosmology
Brace yourself for a fascinating trip through dimensions higher than our own. You'll discover how quantum physics and string theory have opened our eyes to the possibilities of quantum foam, the multiverse, and antimatter. Join Professor Tyson for a preview of the fate of the universe (including the collision of…
Super-Earths or Mini-Neptunes?
Learn how a sensitive new instrument led the way in finding planets smaller than the Jupiter-sized giants that dominated the earliest exoplanetary discoveries. Halfway in size between Earth and Neptune, these worlds have uncertain properties. For clues about their nature, consider how our solar system formed.
What Are Tides? Earth and Beyond
Trace the origin of tides to the simple fact that gravity varies from point to point in space. This leads not just to the rise and fall of the ocean, but to the gradual slowing of Earth's rotation, Saturn's spectacular ring system, volcanoes on Jupiter's moon Io, and many other…
Cosmic Antigravity—Inflation and Dark Energy
In this episode, investigate cosmic antigravity, starting with cosmic inflation, a phenomenon that exponentially increased the size of the universe during the big bang. Then, learn why dark matter cannot be made of ordinary protons and neutrons, and explore the recent discovery that the expansion of the universe is accelerating,…
Our Nearest Exoplanetary Neighbors
Pinpoint the location of the nearest exoplanetary systems to Earth. First, get the big picture on the layout of our Milky Way galaxy, its size, and the Sun's position. Also learn why the Kepler spacecraft focused on exoplanets much more distant than those targeted by the Doppler technique.
Stars in Their Courses—Orbital Mechanics
Newton was the first to realize that objects could, in theory, be sent into orbit around Earth. Explore how this works in practice, using the ideas of energy and angular momentum to study how satellites, moons, planets, and stars move through space.
Living with a Dwarf Star
The most common stars are class M dwarf stars, which are smaller and less luminous than the Sun (class G). Earth-sized planets are much easier to detect around M-dwarf stars, especially if the planets are within the relatively close-in habitable zone. Explore examples and the prospect for life on such…
Earthlike Planets
Begin your search for planets that may harbor life by studying the conditions that make Earth habitable, including its distance from the Sun, surface temperature, atmosphere, and oceans. Then examine strategies for finding earthlike planets and the progress to date.
The Crab Nebula: A Supernova's Aftermath
Episode 6 of Experiencing Hubble
Stars more than eight times as massive as the sun take a radically different path at the end of their lives, disintegrating in a colossal explosion known as a supernova. Hubble's image of the famous Crab Nebula shows the expanding cloud of material from a supernova that was witnessed on…
The Search for Life on Exoplanets
Join the quest for life on exoplanets, focusing on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI)--a hunt for signals from alien civilizations inspired by a landmark paper in 1959. See how the famous Drake equation points to factors that determine how many such civilizations may exist.
The Visit: An Alien Encounter
The Visit documents humanity's first encounter with intelligent life from another world. Filmmaker Michael Madsen interviews experts who work for little-known departments and agencies inside NASA, the United Nations, SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute, England's Ministry of Defense and others who are responsible for preparing for mankind's response to…