NASA illustration showing Andromeda galaxy approaching the Milky Way, in 3.75 billion years. Illustration Credit: NASA; ESA; Z. Levay and R. van der Marel, STScI; T. Hallas; and A. Mellinger.
NASA illustration showing Andromeda galaxy approaching the Milky Way, in 3.75 billion years. Illustration Credit: NASA; ESA; Z. Levay and R. van der Marel, STScI; T. Hallas; and A. Mellinger.

Cosmic Queries – Out There

Andromeda galaxy approaching the Milky Way, in 3.75 billion years. Image Credit: NASA; ESA; Z. Levay and R. van der Marel, STScI; T. Hallas; and A. Mellinger

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About This Episode

Are you ready to get trippy? On this episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson, comic co-host Harrison Greenbaum, and astrophysicist and StarTalk All-Stars host Janna Levin answer fan-submitted questions about the most far away and most far out ideas, concepts, and theories about our universe. 

Explore the idea of a holographic universe. Find out what it is and why it might exist. What would it mean for our universe to be holographic? Can two-dimensional objects give off the illusion that they are three-dimensional? Discover more about the behavior of the “time dimension” and how it relates to this concept. And, if we’re in a holographic universe, should that change our behavior? 

Investigate white holes, which are the opposite of black holes. You’ll learn about where the idea of white holes originally came from, and where the idea currently stands in modern-day astrophysics. We also ponder negative mass and its place in theoretical physics. Get the story on dark matter and dark energy and why the mystery surrounding them might be due to a lack of human comprehension. You’ll also hear more about our sun and its properties. 

Discover more about black holes and if there can be black holes within black holes. We calculate how many black holes there might be in our universe. You’ll also find out how close, and small, a black hole could be. Get details on what awaits us inside a black hole. Explore how time gets wibbly-wobbly when you fall into a black hole. 

Janna tells us about the long journey to detecting gravitational waves by LIGO and how it served as the subject of her book, Black Hole Blues and Other Songs From Outer Space. She also shares why the book almost had a very disappointing ending that transformed into a world-changing discovery. Lastly, Neil and Janna explain how the universe can be expanding at the same time that our own Milky Way galaxy is on a collision course with the Andromeda galaxy. All that, plus, we try and imagine what’s beyond the observable universe, if anything at all. 

NOTE: All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free here: Cosmic Queries – Out There.

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