Three Ways to Destroy the Universe

Three Ways to Destroy the Universe

One day the universe will die. But why? And how? And will the universe be dead forever? And how do we know that? First of all, the universe is expanding. And not only that, the rate of its expansion is accelerating. The reason: dark energy. Dark energy is a strange phenomenon that scientists believe permeates…

The Black Hole Bomb and Black Hole Civilizations

The Black Hole Bomb and Black Hole Civilizations

Black holes are the largest collections of pure violent energy in the universe. If you come too close, they’ll devour you and add your energy to their collection. And so, the energy is lost to us forever. Or is it? It turns out there’s a universe cheat code. A way of powering civilizations until the…

Is Time Travel Really Possible?

Is Time Travel Really Possible?

Imagine you own a watch that let’s you travel through time. One day, you get the bright idea to travel back to the 1920’s to mess with your grandparents. You press a few buttons, and suddenly you’re standing beside old Pappy who is taking in the scenery at the precipice of the Grand Canyon. Since…

What if there was a black hole in your pocket?

What would happen to you if a black hole the size of a coin suddenly appeared near you? Short answer: you’d die. Long answer: it depends. Is it a black hole with the mass of a coin, or is it as wide as a coin? Suppose a US nickel with the mass of about 5…

The Absurdity of Detecting Gravitational Waves

The Absurdity of Detecting Gravitational Waves

1.3 billion years ago in a galaxy far, far away two black holes merged As they violently spiraled into each other They created traveling distortions in the fabric of space-time gravitational waves in the last tenth of a second the energy released in these waves was 50 times greater then the energy being released by…