Manage episode 338731472 series 2941692
with Prof. Eliot Quataert (University of California, Berkeley)
In the previous decade, one third of the world's astronomers became involved in a single project -- observing a distant and violent event, when two "star corpses" called neutron stars collided and exploded. This represented the first time in the history of astronomy that a cosmic event was observed with both gravity waves (first predicted by Einstein) and light. We now call this event the birth of "multi-messenger astronomy." Dr. Quataert gives a non-technical history of how we are now able to find gravity waves, what happens during such a merger, and why we now believe that much of the gold, platinum, uranium and other heavy elements in the universe is assembled in such "star corpse" mergers. Recorded Jan. 24, 2018.