This Video Has Consumed 146.7 Household-Days of Electricity!

You are currently watching an online video, which means your screen is shooting photons at your face in a pattern determined by pieces of data that have traveled around the world as electrical impulses. The motions of these electrons and photons are undeniable physical actions with real energy costs that even energy-conscious video-makers can’t avoid: […]

The Man Who Corrected Einstein

In the late 19-teens, Albert Einstein had a new hammer, and he was in search of nails to hit. He had just developed a new and more powerful mathematical description of gravity , and was using it to make predictions willy-nilly. First, Einstein checked that his new description matched up with the previous state-of-the-art description […]

Why Seasons Make No Sense

[INTRO MUSIC] Every year on February 2nd, the people of Punxsutawney, PA dress up like it’s 1886, pull a groundhog named Phil out of a box and ask him when winter will end. Not surprisingly, meteorologically-inclined marmots are not reliable predictors of spring. [INTRO MUSIC] But why divide the year into seasons in the first […]

Can We Launch Nuclear Waste Into the Sun? Why This is a Terrible Idea

When I look at the Sun, I don’t see a warm life-giving orb, nourishing all living creatures here on Earth. No, I see that fiery ball as a cosmic garbage compactor. A place I can dump all my household garbage, to make room for new impulse purchases. I mean, the Sun is right there, not […]

Why Are Leaves Green? Part 1

You’ve probably learned that leaves are green because they’re full of a green molecule called chlorophyll – it’s the reason for the greenness of plants, from moss-green moss to grass-green grass to ever-green evergreens. And the reason chlorophyll is so incredibly popular–showing up in nearly every plant on Earth–is that it’s good at soaking up […]

Quantum SHAPE-SHIFTING: Neutrino Oscillations

Most physical objects in everyday life maintain the same identity whether we’re interacting with them, or not. Like, a baseball is a baseball whether you’re holding it in your hand or it’s flying through the air. Even electrons are electrons whether they’re part of an atom or flying freely through interstellar space; they have the […]

Science, Religion, and the Big Bang

Physicists used to think that the universe had existed forever, unchangingly, because that’s what their observations of the night sky suggested. Needless to say, this view clashed with the “origin” or “creation” stories of most major religions, which hold that the universe had a beginning. So it’s not surprising that it was a Catholic priest, […]

Why the solar system can exist

Have you ever wondered how the earth stays in orbit around the sun? I mean, the pull of gravity is stronger the closer you are to the sun, so you’d think that if the earth got bumped slightly towards the sun (like, if you jumped, or something), then the sun would pull just a little […]

Legitimate Cold Fusion Exists | Muon-Catalyzed Fusion

Fusion of hydrogen or helium normally requires at least the conditions found in the the cores of stars . High temperatures and densities allow hydrogen and helium nuclei to get close enough to fuse together into bigger nuclei and release a TON of energy, powering even more fusion while releasing enough extra to power the […]

How to break the speed of light

You may have heard that Einstein’s theory of special relativity imposes a cosmic speed limit: nothing can travel faster than the speed of light. Well, that’s wrong. All that Einstein said was that light moves at the same speed in every reference frame – and while this implies that nothing with real mass can move […]