Latest Blog Entries

Meet The Candidates

Get all the info on the positions and candidates here and find out what happens when we get them on our elections show!

Question the Candidates

We're giving you the opportunity to pose the questions you want to ask to the candidates here.

The Pulse

Tune in to The Pulse weekdays at 5pm for the latest elections news. Listen to the Pulse Elections Podcast to keep up to date with all the key developments in campaigning.

Latest Episode

The Pulse Elections Podcast

Thursday Week 2: Activities!

added 10.03.11

See all episodes Subscribe

The Elections Show

Tune in to The Elections Show weekdays form 6pm to get to know all about the people behind the candidates.

Latest Episode

The Elections Show Podcast

The Elections Show 5 - Activit...

added 14.03.11

See all episodes Subscribe

Our Elections Tweets

Supermassive Black Holes - Omar Almaini - 21/11/11

posted 21.11.11 at 4:09pm

On the 21st November, we spoke to Dr Omar Almaini from the astronomy department about Supermassive Black Holes.

No. This does not mean an analysis of the underlying rhythm and structure of the Muse song.

We discussed:
- How do black holes form?
- What happens as you get closer to a black hole?
- What are quasars and active galaxies?
- Why don't black holes keep 'sucking stuff in'?

This is an artist's impression of a black hole:

Supermassive Black HoleSupermassive Black Hole

And here are some black holes (or Active Galactic Nuclei - AGN) for real:

AGNAGN

To see a movie of the black hole at the centre of our galaxy (made with photos of real astronomical observations), please follow the link below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QOW-NYPEp84&feature=relmfu

We talked about spaghettification earlier, here's a artists impression to make you smile!
SpaghettificationSpaghettification

So how big is a black hole in comparison to an everyday place?

Black hole size comparisonBlack hole size comparison

If the Sun was replaced with a black hole that had the same mass as the Sun, the radius would be 3 km (compared to the Sun's radius of nearly 700,000 km). Hence the Earth would have to get very close to get sucked into a black hole at the center of our Solar System.

Science in the news:

- Everyone's favourite Big-Bang/Doomsday/Particle-Colliding device is going to get some fancy new shoes by 2020. Apparently this might allow us to probe the nature of time itself?
http://uk.reuters.com/article/2011/11/17/us-science-collider-idUKTRE7AF2...

- Neutrinos DO go faster than light!
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-15791236

- Oh no they don't!
http://uk.reuters.com/article/2011/11/20/us-science-neutrinos-idUKTRE7AJ...

Seems the other lab at Gran Sasso disagree, that must be a tense tea room.

- Men of average height have more children apparently:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15779275
http://www.springerlink.com/content/k45351223q403p42/

Dave, Omar and EmmaDave, Omar and Emma