The Astronomy, Technology and Space Science News Podcast.
SpaceTime with Stuart Gary Series 24 Episode 40
*Confirmation of how the universe evolved
Astronomers have discovered that much of the universe’s missing normal matter has been hiding in plain sight in the cosmic web.
*OSIRIS-REx's final asteroid observation run
NASA's OSIRIS-REx spacecraft has undertaken its final flyover the half kilometre wide asteroid Bennu passing just 3.7 kilometres above the alien world’s rugged rock strewn surface.
*Jupiter’s Great Red Spot still raging
Jupiter’s great red spot continues to shrink but it’s not giving up yet.
*The Science Report
Australia recommending people under 50 be given the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine rather than AstraZeneca.
Autism to be far more common than previously thought.
Nature's strongest material now has some stiff man made competition.
Just in time for Passover and Easter comes a new study looking at Australian spiritual beliefs.
Skeptic's guide to the irony of a coronavirus skeptic dying from Corona virus.
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SpaceTime 20210412 Series 24 Episode 40 Transcript
[00:00:00] This is time series 24 episode 44 broadcast on the 12th of April, 2021. Coming up on space, time, confirmation of how the universe evolved the Osiris-Rex spacecraft undertakes its final asteroid observation run, and Jupiter's great red spots still there and raging all that and more coming up. Um, space time.
Welcome to space time with Stuart, Gary
Astronomers have discovered that much of the universe has so-called missing normal matter has been hiding in plain sight in the cosmic web. The findings reported in the journal, astronomy and astrophysics matches previous computer models of the [00:01:00] evolution of the universe. The large scale structure of the observable universe has a web like appearance with massive empty voids, surrounded by thin filaments and connecting nodes made up of gas stars, galaxies, galaxy clusters, and superclusters our own galaxy.
The Milky way together with all the neighboring galaxies around us in the local group are located on one of these thread like filaments right next to, and maybe even just inside a giant void. When the universe exploded into existence, 13.82 billion years ago in what today's commonly referred to as the big bang matter, expanded out from a single point in space, time, spurting out almost evenly in all directions, almost evenly, but not completely.
So in some places, Matt, who is just a little bit more dense than in others. And these denser regions exerted slightly higher gravitational forces during more and more gas and material from their [00:02:00] surroundings. That's how the giant voids were created with the increased concentration of gas, eventually condensing into the filaments of galaxy stars and planets, which make up the universe today.
But when it's drawn them as did their calculations, they discovered that at least half of all the universe is so-called ordinary matter. Technically what astronomers referred to as baryonic matter, remained hidden over recent years, there've been tantalizing clues and we've discussed that both here on space, time out on its predecessor star stuff that this missing matter is spread out within the filaments between galaxies.
Now a new evidence based on large scale observations, combining data from the Australian square kilometer array, Pathfinder radio telescope, and the earth orbiting German era Zita x-ray space telescope have confirmed it. The two telescopes, a large fields of view, allow them to observe relatively massive part of the sky and a single measurement.
And it very high resolution. They examined a system of three galaxy clusters that [00:03:00] is able 33 91 95, located some 700 million light years away. The observations looked at not only the cost is and the numerous individual galaxies within them, but also at the guests filaments connecting these structures.
Astronomists identified x-ray emissions, emanating from gigantic gossamer, thin sheets of gas LS, 50 million light years long that possibly matched largers. That was the maximum extent of the field of view. One of the studies authors, professor Ray Norris from the university of Western Sydney says calculation suggests that more than half of all baryonic matter in the universe is contained in such filaments.
It suggests that the widely accepted standard model for the evolution of the universe is correct. That muddled called Lambda cold dark matter uses the combination of a mysterious invisible type of magical dark matter. And an equally mysterious force appears to work opposite to gravity called dark energy.
To explain the way structures in the universe [00:04:00] should appear. Norris says the observations reveal the striking richness of structure and activity in the merging cluster system. I'm understanding that the universe is the off, the big bang. All the hydrogen gas is formed off big bang
by the forces and over time, the web like structure, which called the cosmic web. So what we expect from these models. It's the, all the galaxies we see, it should be a strong along filament sheets with great voids in the three. So that's what I say based on our understanding of darkness and on. And when we look at the gala and see, see these shapes looks like across the web, we've never tested the gaps in the film, which we expect.
So. What we found in this fuse that we've published is we've actually detected these filaments, [00:05:00] joining the galaxies. And so this is, uh, another confirmed, uh, model with maps and Dawkins is correct. It also explains where all the missing baryonic matter is because this has been one of the big puzzle is not just the missing dark matter.
That's very trendy to talk about or. Yeah. What the dark matter even is, but the big head scratch has been where's all the normal matter or most of it, a lot of it's missing. Yeah. That's absolutely right. So, yeah. So when we count the pool, the maps that we see from stars and got it is still not enough. We still expect to see more.
And what we've discovered in this oldest, Massive strung out between the galaxies, which very nicely explain the missing mass up
these two instruments, which are both so bang the sky and one of them, which is built by the Germans, looking at x-rays and the other one as [00:06:00] cap Australia. Is looking in radio waves. So it boasting the Vizsla thing, but very different wavelength. And in this collaboration becomes scattered. We realize one of the things that's, our collaboration is open.
And so in this result, we've got to use both telescopes, ELC, and ASCAP. Uh, larger as the sky and look around and see what you're saying. So he Rose, he detected the bridge, they detected the hot gaps. We didn't see it without the captain. That's interesting because that tells you, we expected to say by turbulence in the Scouts, and we would see the radio missions and these electrodes and we don't, but that tells you that the electrons are not being quite smooth.
And I mean, w what we do see in the right there, we see galaxies along the filament, falling down into the clusters clusters, where that sort of joined each other, and we've got it. It's just [00:07:00] falling down smoothly. Uh, not being set by a turbulent. We had something that's 700 million light years away. We think of that as being a long way away, but I guess on the cosmic scale of things, yeah.
So we look at things by the way. So, and of course we got further away because I can find, because if we look at something like 10 billion light is white, that means it's taken the light or radio waves. And that's something it's taken 10 billion years to travel. That's subject to telescopes. And so we are actually seeing it.
As it was 10 billion years ago when the lights were radio. So when we look out further than universe, start looking back in time when, excuse me, very early universe. And so it's really good for this stuff because we can see early. When you see the trust is like the other joint. I mean, it goes further back in time by look the objects further away, and we can see the prospect [00:08:00] clusters when the trust is the first forming when the web is first pulling together.
And so we can see all the stages of the formation on the customer web. Trying to see the forest for all the trees. Is that a difficult job to be able to place ourselves in the universe on that scale? Well, it about the post and the trees. I mean, one of the problems is that we've had. He's fantastic telescopes from the past, which are able to see exquisite detail in these things.
But what we really need is we need telescopes at the sea lodge areas. I missed the sport foci Rosita, and they're really good at looking at large areas, the sky. So telescope, it can see as deep in the universe. Does that mean it's real magic. Is it concede large areas at once? And so we're seeing things that people have never seen before, just because they have to stand back [00:09:00] looking, studying the trees where I see the precedence as well.
Putting into Monde modified return or shouldn't we go there?
This provides further support for Lander cold dark matter. That's a really good question. So, um, we've known for a while that mobile stock method. So we know there's master that we don't see, we see stars and galaxies and it's as if it's a whole other. Missing math, which we call dark matter is an idea that maintenance talking about.
Maybe it's just the mom's has modified you sign in dynamic. Maybe our laws grab slightly wrong is a good idea, but the trouble is mum problems piecemeal. It doesn't actually give you an alternative to saving and it doesn't predict stuff that we're saying. So for example, this discovery of the cosmic web [00:10:00] we've now found.
Totally protected by our ideas. This is not by month. So I would say this is what fuels Sunday, Monday has been, um, kind of a toast and the prognosis is not good for Saray Norris from the university of Western Sydney. And this is space time. I'm Stuart Gary, still the com nurses as Cyrus wrecks, spacecraft undertakes its final fly by of the asteroid.
Benu. And Jupiter's great. Red spot may be shrinking, but it's still raging bull that in more, still to come on space time.
NASA's Osiris-Rex spacecraft is undertaken. It's final flyover of [00:11:00] the half kilometer wide asteroid Benu passing just 3.7 kilometers above this alien worlds. Rugged rock strewn surface. The flight path took a Cyrus Ricks directly over the sample collection site with a spacecraft touchdown last year, giving mission managers a chance to see how the operation altered the asteroid surface.
The spacecraft saddling head sunk almost half a meter in the asteroid surface and simultaneously fired a pressurized charge of nitrogen gas. After collecting some 60 grams of regular spacecraft fired its thrusters during the back of way, bird in the process, disturbing a substantial amount of surface material.
Because Ben is gravity. So weak. These various forces had a dramatic effect on the sample side, disturbing and launching away. Many of the regions rocks, and a lot of dust in the process. The final flyby of Bonnaroo thereby provided scientists with an opportunity to learn how the spacecraft's contact with the maneuver and surface altered [00:12:00] the sample site and the region surrounding it.
The Cyrus Rex image Bonnaroo on its final fly by for 5.9 hours, just over the asteroids full rotational period within this timeframe, spacecraft Polycomm images obtained, high resolution images of burners, Northern and Southern hemispheres. As well as its liquid story or region scientists will be able to compare these new images with a previous high resolution imagery of the asteroid obtained during 2019.
Most of the spacecraft's other science instruments were also on collecting data during this final fly over, including the map cam imager, the thermal emission, spectrometer, the visible and infrared spectrometer and the lays out timid her exercising. These instruments is also giving mission managers a chance to assess the current state of each science package of board.
The spacecraft that's important as dust would have coded many of the instruments during the sample collection event. Understanding the health of the instruments is also part of NASA's [00:13:00] evaluation process for a possible extended mission. Once the samples delivered to earth, the Sarah's Rex will remain in Bennet space until May 10th.
At which point, the mission will begin its return cruise phase at two year journey, taking it back to planet earth as it approaches the earth or Sarah's Rex will jettison it. Sample return capsule containing the rocks and DAS collected from Bonnaroo. The capsule parachute down under the Utah desert on September the 24th, 2023.
Once recovered, it will be transported to NASA Johnson space flight center in Houston, Texas with samples will be carefully removed and then sorted for distribution to laboratories around the world for detailed analysis. The 2,110 kilogram Osiris-Rex spacecraft was launched the board and Atlas five rocket from the Cape Canaveral air force station in Florida.
On September the eighth, 2016 on a 2 billion kilometers, seven years sample return mission to the near-Earth asteroid. The new, [00:14:00] the new is listed as a potentially hazardous object with a one in 2,700 chance of impacting the earth sometime between 2175 and 2199. An accurate assessment of Benares probability of earth impact requires an accurate and detailed understanding of the asteroid shape its composition and its rotational parameters in order to determine the magnitude and direction of what's known.
And as the COVID ski effect, the UCAR ski effect is caused by sunlight warming, the dayside surface of a rotating body, such as an asteroid. As the asteroid turns the night side, cools and releases this heat, which acts as a small degree of thrust, exerting a force, which actually can be strong. And I have to change in asteroids direction over time.
Astronomists calculate that if the new to impact the earth, the expected kinetic energy associated with such a collision would be equivalent to 1200 mega tons of TNT. The new will pass within 750,000 kilometers of the earth [00:15:00] on September the 23rd, 2060. That close approach will cause of divergence in venues.
Next close approach to the earth on September the 25th, 2135, which will be somewhere between a hundred thousand and 300,000 kilometers. Now there's no chance of an earth impact in 2135, but it will be close. However that 2135 approach could position Benu to pass through a 55 kilometer wide gravitational keyhole, which could then create an impact scenario at a featuring counter.
So the more we know about Bonneau, the better. This is space time still, the calm Jupiter's great red spot continues to shrink, but he's still raging. And later in the science report, Australian medical experts recommending people under 50. Be given the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine rather than the AstraZeneca jab.
Oh, that and much more still to come on. Space time.
[00:16:00] Over the last few decades, astronomers have noticed that Jupiter's most iconic feature. It's great red spot, which has raged across the surface of the solar system's largest planet. For more than 300 years has been slowly shrinking and fading. Observations by an SS Hubble space telescope. And from that, the rate at which the massive anti-cyclone is shrinking has slowed down in recent years, although it's still some 240 kilometers smaller now than what it was as recently as 2014, the Jovian great red spot had been measured as far back as the late 18 hundreds.
At which time it was some 41,000 kilometers wide, big enough for planet earth to fit inside at three times. But by the time this is twin Voyager spacecraft flew past the gas giant 1979. The great red spot had shrunk to about 23,300 [00:17:00] kilometers across. And it's continued to shrink with time hobble image taken in 1995, measured the spot at 21,000 kilometers wide.
And by 2009, it had trunk to just 18,000 kilometers across. Observations in 2012, revealed a noticeable increase in the rate of which the spot was shrinking by some 933 kilometers a year. And it was also changing shape from an oval to a circle. However, the most recent measurements show the radish shrinkage has slowed down some art with the great red spot.
Now around 15,000 kilometers across and decidedly pale orange instead of red. My junior, the storm swirling winds still pack a punch, reaching more than 540 kilometers an hour around its periphery cyclones, including their regionally named counterpart hurricanes and typhoons usually spin around a center of low atmospheric pressure and a planet's rotation induces a Coriolis effect, which causes a cyclo and [00:18:00] spring.
Likewise, in the Southern hemisphere and counterclockwise in the Northern hemisphere. But the great red spot is an anti cycler. They spin in the opposite direction because they're centered it around an area of high atmospheric pressure. Over the past few years, astronomists have observed and interacting series of smaller vorticies, which have causing chunks to the great red spots.
Clouds, the flake off, further shrinking the storm in the process before 2019, it was only being hit by these smaller storms. A couple of times a year. But more recently it's being pummeled by as many as two dozen a year. The great red spot is still some six to seven times as big as the smaller anticyclones that have been colliding with it.
Mind you to put all that in perspective, even the smaller storms, there's still some 10 times bigger than earth. Biggest hurricanes. Some are even bigger than the planet. Mars. Now, and you study reported in the journal of geophysical research. Planets claims these interactions are only superficial and the great red spots actually [00:19:00] gaining power from these smaller storms at the expense of their rotational energy, new images of the storms, they can buy an SS Juno spacecraft in orbit around Jupiter showed that the smaller Atty cyclones pass through the high-speed peripheral rail of the great red spot before circling around it.
These smaller storms create chaos in an already turbulent and dynamic situation temporarily changing the great red spots, 90 day oscillation in longitude and tearing streams of red clouds from the main oval. But scientists say this is only affecting a few kilometers at the surface and doesn't have any significant impact on the overall 200 kilometer depth of the great red spot as a whole.
Scientists still, aren't sure what's causing the great red spot to shrink or for that matter how it formed in the first place, but they believe that these smaller anticyclones may actually be maintaining the great red Tempest, at least for now.
[00:20:00] take a brief look at some of the other stories making, using science this week with a science report. Australian medical authorities are recommending that people under the age of 50 are given the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine rather than the AstraZeneca jab, because of concerns of patients getting a rare type of potentially fatal blood clot.
The move is based on recommendations by the Australian technical advisory group on immunization and Australia's therapeutic goods administration. It comes in the wake of research by the European medicines agency in Amsterdam, which found a clear association between the AstraZeneca viral vector vaccine and a rare type of brain blood clot associated with lower platelet counts and as cerebral venous sinus thrombosis.
The agency found a one in 250,000 chance of people who take the AstraZeneca. Jab will wind up suffering from the clotting with at least 79 known instances from a first dose [00:21:00] resulting in 19 deaths, including three under the age, 30 in Australia, 44 year old Melbourne man was hospitalized with the thrombosis, following an AstraZeneca inoculation.
Around the world, a growing number of nations, and now either banning or restricting use of the AstraZeneca vaccine in the wake of the latest findings. The key side effects to look out for include headaches, blurred, vision, breathing problems, chest pain, leg swelling, abdominal pain, skin, bruising, and spots beyond the injection site.
Almost 3 million people have now died from the COVID-19 virus. And another 135 million have been infected since the deadly disease. First emerged from warhead, China and spread around the world. The most comprehensive study ever undertaken as found autism to be far more common than previously thought.
The findings reported in the journal of the American medical association, show that one in 57 children in the United Kingdom. That's [00:22:00] 1.7, 6% were on the autistic spectrum. That's significantly higher than the 1% previously estimated the study is based on data and over 7 million kids from the UK national pupil database.
Researchers found boys showed a prevalence of autism of 2.8%. And girls showed a prevalence of 0.65% resulting in a boy to girl autistic ratio of 4.3 to one. Prevalence was highest among peoples of black ethnicity at 2.1% and lowest in Roma populations at 0.85%. Well, it seems nature's strongest known material now has some Steph man-made competition.
Researchers have reduced artificial hexagonal diamonds, which are harder than common cubic diamonds fan in nature, and often used in jewelry named for their six sided crystalline structure. Exactly. The diamonds have been found naturally at some meteorite impact sites and others had, they made briefly in labs, [00:23:00] but they were either too small or too short in existence to be measured.
Now a report in the journal, physical review, be claims scientists have finally produced hexagonal diamonds, large enough to measure for their stiffness using shock compression experiments. They found them to be significantly stiffer and stronger than regular gem diamonds. The authors say hexagonal diamonds could be a superior alternative for machining drilling or any type of application or a cubic diamond is normally used.
Well, just in time for Passover and Easter comes a new survey, looking at Australia in religious and spiritual beliefs, the survey of a thousand people by McCrindle research for the center of public Christianity and published on the ABC, found that around two thirds of people either believe in, or at least unwilling to dismiss the existence of ghosts, angels, miracles, a higher power that people have souls or that there's life after death.
Researchers found that younger people and females, or more likely to believe [00:24:00] in, or at least be open to the idea while males and older people tended to be more skeptical. The survey also found that some 43% of people either believe in the resurrection or think that it was at least possible around 41% hedge their bets saying that either didn't know or think it's unlikely and just under 16% say it didn't happen.
One of those iconic twists of the figured finger of fate. One of the world's leading Corona virus skeptics has died and we think it was from Corona virus. As Tim minim from Australian skeptics reports, the president of Tanzania who had denied the impact of COVID-19 and claimed his country's been saved from the disease by prayer has suddenly died aged 61.
It was because he was sick for a few weeks. It was described as the heart complications, the quote that the, not a lot of real detail that, but he was pretty sudden cause he was 61. Not particularly age. And some people are suggesting that he [00:25:00] might've died of coronavirus as he was a strong anti coronavirus, conspiracy theorist, who reckon that people of Pennsylvania were protected from COVID by having gone through three days of prayer in the last year.
And also at that time, it can be treated with steam. In other words, Put a blanket idea, hidden really upstream from her ball of hot water or something like that. Anyway, but yeah. So when he died, even when I was thinking, Oh, what did he tell you off? And that's your shot with the coronavirus? And isn't that ironic.
But, uh, actually at the time, Motiva was spreading rumors about why he might've died. And unfortunately the police arresting people for springing rabbits. So not even allowed to suggest that it might've been COVID the issue was that no one knew how widespread was COVID in Tanzania because they just didn't bother.
They'd stopped taking numbers back in may last year. Hadn't they? That's right. Yeah. So, you know, when they say we've conquered this disease and we have done any cases, that's easy enough to say when you don't test anybody. And so anyone who dies, you just sort of profit [00:26:00] off of something else. So they had no idea what sort of percent he took.
People are testing positive, how many people are dying at all. So it's, unfortunately, if it wasn't so serious, it would be a bit of a drive. The local health people, but the president, John Michael Foley was, uh, basically contradicting them the whole time. So the health people, they weren't having a great experience with like what's happening in Brazil.
They get the president who suggesting that to the health people. There are struggling mightily to try and solve things. And Brazil is going through a terrible time. From Australian skeptics
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