In 1934 Bulgarian born Fritz Zwicky of the California Institute of Technology recogzined that there wasn’t nearly enough visible mass in the universe to hold galaxies together and that there must be some unknown gravitational force –what we now call dark matter (simulation left). It now appears that perhaps as much as 99% of the universe is composed of Fritz Zwicky’s “dark matter.”
In other words, we live in a universe that for the most part we can’t even see. However thanks to Hubble Space Telescope, it looks as though a breakthrough has been made in our understanding of the mystery.
These two NASA videos show the spectacular Rosette Nebula and ancient galactic fossils, globular clusters, that date back to the birth of our galaxy.
The Rosette movie (image above) begins by showing an optical image of the Rosette nebula, a turbulent star-forming region located 5,000 light-years away in the constellation Monoceros. The view then changes to show the same region as viewed by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
If you would like to spend an hour or so getting lost in the cosmos and the the rich intellectual legacy of our most famous astrophysicist take a quick click to the Carl Sagan portal, which underscores one of his most famous quotes: "We are a way for the Cosmos to know itself."
"Galaxies are the atoms of the Universe." So begins UK Astronomer Royal Sir Martin Rees, author of Our Final Century in a brilliant video presentation. Rees places the earth in its cosmic context, shedding light on the birth, and evolution of the universe with stunning imagery and simulations and discusses the possibly dark challanges facing the human species in the 21st century in the realms of bio-and-cyber technologies. Rees is an astrophysisict, and Master of Trinity College at Cambridge. Posted by Jason McManus.