Vader’s Little Princess
Awesome GIFs of Scientific Experiments
1. Hydrogen Peroxide Mixed With Potassium Iodide
2. Explosive Polymerization of p Nitro Aniline
3. Dissolving a tablet in weightlessness
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Well Wookie here… a Star Wars Chewbacca Costume Vest Dress from Mighty Fine! xoxo
Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.
Neil deGrasse Tyson, MA ’83, is the public face of science. But he says his success has nothing to do with UT.
“Hey, aren’t you the scientist?”
The voice calls out on a bustling Manhattan sidewalk. Neil deGrasse Tyson—celebrity astrophysicist and director of New York City’s Hayden Planetarium—whirls around, looking for its source. He sees a disheveled homeless man with a piercing stare.
“Yes, I guess I am,” says Tyson, MA ’83. “What can I do for you?”
“I’ve seen you on TV,” the man replies. “I just want to know—how exactly would a black hole kill a person?”
So Tyson launches into a quick account of spaghettification, or the way extreme gravitational forces near a black hole would stretch a human body from head to toe—like a skinny pasta noodle—until its very atoms would be wrenched apart. “A black hole is a one-way trip,” he is fond of saying. “You ain’t coming out.”
Perhaps no other scientist in the world is so famous that even someone lacking basic shelter stops him on the street to ask a technical question. But Neil deGrasse Tyson, 53, is like no other scientist. More than anyone else living today, he is the public face of his entire field.
You may not know his name, but you’ve seen him on CNN, ABC, The Colbert Report, The Tonight Show, Jeopardy!, or even Stargate Atlantis. TIME named him one of the 100 most influential Americans; People gave him the inimitable title of “Sexiest Astrophysicist Alive.” And when his new show debuts on FOX next year, Tyson will be exposed to his widest audience yet.
“People stop me on the street all the time,” Tyson says. “Taxi drivers, janitors, businessmen. It doesn’t matter who you are—it’s human nature to ask deep questions about the universe. To look up and wonder what’s out there. And I’m happy to talk about it.”
Connecting with such a prominent alumnus could be huge for The University of Texas. This is even truer because Tyson is African-American, and UT has long had a troubled relationship with the black community. But Tyson is not exactly UT’s biggest fan. That’s because he and the University had a bad break-up—one that prompts tricky questions about how academia defines success. As we’ll see, his time at UT is the one thing Tyson doesn’t like to talk about.
read more about Neil’s journey and struggles
No matter how you SLICE it, this NASA experiment is definitely reaching for the stars. On April 21, after being delayed from its original December 2012 launch date, the Sub-orbital Local Interstellar Cloud Experiment (SLICE) was successfully launched from the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
SLICE will use an 8-inch diameter telescope and spectrograph, covering the far-ultraviolet wavelength range, to study the interstellar medium. Scientists will use data from SLICE to learn more about the different phases of the interstellar medium as well as its composition, temperature, and ionization state.
So, why do scientists care about the interstellar medium? It turns out that the immediate interstellar environment determines the structure of the heliosphere, and the structure of the heliosphere determines the way that the planets of a star system interact with stellar winds. This all has a profound effect on a planet’s atmospheric conditions, which is important in determining the potential habitability of exoplanets. In short, studying the interstellar medium with SLICE could aid in the search for extraterrestrial life and give us a better understanding of star systems.
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