Big Picture Science – Catch a Wave

by Gary Niederhoff on September 2, 2013


Big Picture Science – Catch a Wave

Let there be light. Otherwise we couldn’t watch a sunset or YouTube. Yet what your eye sees is but a narrow band in the electromagnetic spectrum. Shorten those light waves and you get invisible gamma radiation. Lengthen them and tune into a radio broadcast.

Discover what’s revealed about our universe as you travel along the electromagnetic spectrum. There’s the long of it: an ambitious goal to construct the world’s largest radio telescope array … and the short: a telescope that images high-energy gamma rays from black holes.

Also, the structure of the universe as seen through X-ray eyes and a physicist sings the praises of infrared light. Literally.

And, while gravity waves are not in the electromagnetic club, these ripples in spacetime could explain some of the biggest mysteries of the cosmos. But first, we have to catch them!

Listen to individual segments here:
Part 1: The Allen Telescope Array
Part 2: The Square Kilometre Array
Part 3: The Chandra X-Ray Telescope
Part 4: Gamma-ray Blazars
Part 5: LIGO

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