How the Universe Works: Series 3
The universe is made up of wondrous statistics that detail the incredible range between large and small, near and far, and light and dark – but what any of these inexact terms really describe is still open to debate.
We are surrounded by laws that govern everything – determining the colour of the stars, the gravity controlling our solar system and the beginning and end of the universe itself. Want to know how the universe started and how it will end – and everything in between – with such luminaries as Stephen Hawking and Michio Kaku? Watch How The Universe Works.
Part 1: Sun
How does light escape from the sun? We take a journey from the center of the sun, following the path of light. We witness its fiery birth from in the core, its 430,000 mile battle against gravity and magnetism, and its escape from the solar surface.
Part 2: End of the Universe
How and when will the Universe end? Gravity and dark matter are poised to annihilate the Universe in a big crunch. Expansion and dark energy may tear it apart. Or, a phase transition could kill us tomorrow in a cosmic death bubble.
Part 3: Jupiter
Beneath Jupiter’s swirling clouds lie our solar system’s deepest secrets: from its violent youth, through the birth of life to the death of the sun. Now, scientists are unlocking these secrets and discovering that every living thing exists thanks to Jupiter.
Part 4: First Second
The first second of the Universe, the creation of everything when space, time, matter and energy burst into existence. It is the most important second in history, which seals the Universe’s fate and defines everything that comes after – including us.
Part 5: Saturn
Saturn’s secrets are out. The ferocious weather, the evolving ring system and the discovery of active geology on Saturn’s moons has rewritten the textbooks. Scientists are looking for life on Saturn’s moons and they may have found it on Titan.
Part 6: Extinction
Asteroids strike, planets collide, black holes blast out death rays, volcanoes erupt and ice engulfs the planet. These are the universe’s weapons of extinction. They’ve happened before – wiping out entire species, and they will happen again. Are we next?
Part 7: Milky Way
What built the Milky Way? New research might now have the answer, revealing an unlikely hero. At the heart of our galaxy sits a super massive black hole, one of the most destructive objects in the Universe. Could it be our creator?
Part 8: Starman
One day, a cosmic disaster will make life on Earth impossible. To survive, we must find a new home amongst the stars. Scientists are already developing new propulsion systems to take us to these distant worlds.
Part 9: The Search for a Second Earth
Is there another Earth out there with liquid oceans, rocky continents and life like us? Astronomers seek the answer with spectroscopy, direct imaging and telescopes. They hope to find evidence of atmospheres, magnetospheres and signs of life.