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12m 41s

Does Gravity Require Extra Dimensions?

It’s been 120 years since Henry Cavendish measured the gravitational constant with a pair of lead balls suspended by a wire. The fundamental nature of gravity still eludes our best minds - but those secrets may be revealed by turning back to the Cavendish experiment. That steampunk contraption may even reveal the existence of extra dimensions of space.

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14m 21s

Mapping the Multiverse

This is a map of the multiverse. Or in physics-ese, it’s the maximally extended Penrose diagram of a Kerr spacetime. And in english: when you solve Einstein’s equations of general relativity for a rotating black hole, the universe does not come to an abrupt halt at the bottom of the gravitational pit. Instead, a path can be traced out again but you don't end up in the universe that you started in.

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13m 52s

How Luminiferous Aether Led to Relativity

As the 19th century came to a close, physicists were feeling pretty satisfied with the state of their science. The great edifice of physical theory seemed complete. A few minor experiments remained to verify everything. Little did those physicists know that one of those experiments would bring the entire structure crashing down paving the way for the physics revolution of the 20th century.

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13m 38s

How We Know The Earth Is Ancient

In astronomy we talk about billions of years like it’s no big deal. But how can we be sure about timescales so far beyond the capacity for human intuition? Our discovery of what we now call deep time is very recent - as recent as our discovery of the true spatial vastness of our universe. And it came as scientists tried to measure the age of the Earth. What they found was shocking and humbling.

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11m 54s

What’s On The Other Side Of A Black Hole?

Normal maps are useless inside black holes. At the event horizon - the ultimate point of no return as you approach a black hole - time and space themselves change their character. We need new coordinate systems to trace paths into the black hole interior. But the maps we draw using those coordinates reveal something unexpected - they don’t simply end inside the black hole, but continue beyond.

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12m 9s

Are Axions Dark Matter?

What does the strong nuclear force, the fundamental symmetries of nature, and a laundry detergent have in common? They’re all important parts of the tale of the axion - a tale whose end may take us beyond the standard model and solve one of the most vexing mysteries in astrophysics.

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