Thursday, August 07, 2008

So What Is Space Made Out Of?

Here is the Hubble Ultra Deep Field image.

There are an estimated 10,000 galaxies in this picture. Each galaxy, like our own, may contain millions to trillions of stars. Our own star, what we collectively refer to as "the sun" is this much bigger than the Earth.

Notice in each picture you see a lot of black stuff. That black stuff has a gravitational pull on everything in each picture, and for lack of a better term we have called it Dark Matter and dark energy, which put together make up 96% of the universe that is visible to us.

Now we are trying to recreate the conditions that allow us to observe dark matter/energy in the lab. It takes a big science experiment to make this happen.

Say hello to the Large Hadron Collider, a particle accelerator complex intended to collide opposing beams of protons at a rate which will allow us to test theories about particle physics in ways that we haven't been able to try before.

Here's a picture timeline of the 25 some year history of the LHC. And here is the main page of the site complete with countdown to flipping of the switch and everything.

I'm fascinated to find out which theories about quantum mechanics are supported, and how they relate to the rest of the universe. Can you imagine if Newton were alive to see this today? It would be the equivalent of Darwin observing our completion of the human genome.

Neat time to be alive folks, that's all I'm sayin.

Oh, and ah TITANS!!!!!!!!

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