Kathy Sykes meets the designer of the world’s largest telescopes. Chris Riley visits New York to see a two-mile long machine that re-creates the Big Bang. Plus a look at asteroids, the earliest relics of our Solar System. They could easily obliterate all life on our planet, but what can we, here on Earth, do about it? Also, we meet the first British astronomer in over two hundred years to find a new planet.
Loyal readers of the monthly “Universe” essays in Natural History magazine have long recognized Neil deGrasse Tyson’s talent for guiding them through the mysteries of the cosmos with stunning clarity and almost childlike enthusiasm. Here, Tyson compiles his favorite essays across a myriad of cosmic topics. The title essay introduces readers to the physics of black holes by explaining the gory details of what would happen to your body if you fell into one. “Holy Wars” examines the needless friction between science and religion in the context of historical conflicts. “The Search for Life in the Universe” explores astral life from the frontiers of astrobiology. And “Hollywood Nights” assails the movie industry’s feeble efforts to get its night skies right.
Known for his ability to blend content, accessibility, and humor, Tyson is a natural teacher who simplifies some of the most complex concepts in astrophysics while simultaneously sharing his infectious excitement about our universe.