Artist's impression of the exoplanet Proxima Centauri b. Credit: ESO

Escape from Proxima b

April 18, 2018

Avi Loeb's lated Scientific American blog post explores the idea that, "A civilization in the habitable zone of a dwarf star like Proxima Centauri might find it hard to get into interstellar space with conventional rockets."

Read More: https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/escape-from-proxima-b/

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Photo of a Professor standing in front of a chalkboard and students

Making Academia Matter Again

April 17, 2018

Avi Loeb offers his perspective on opening up academia. "Academic freedom is a precious commodity, critical to ensure that discovery of the truth is not encumbered by political or ideological forces. But this does not mean that intellectuals should hide in academic bunkers that, by protecting us from criticism by “non-experts,” allow ego to flourish and enable a focus on questions that are not actually relevant to anyone else. We experts should have to explain ourselves."

Read More: ...

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Stephen Hawking speaking at the launch of the Black Hole Initiative at Sanders Theater, Harvard University

It is a sad day for the world of physics and humanity

March 14, 2018

Dear Colleagues,

It is a sad day for the world of physics and humanity.

Stephen embodied the superiority of mind over matter. He demonstrated that the human spirit can overcome all physical limitations and that the human mind can comprehend the deepest secrets of nature. With his optimistic mindset, he discovered that even black hole can shine brightly. His work on black holes and the early universe had a great impact our current research in these fields. 

Stephen visited us for a few weeks in April 2016 for the inauguration of the Black Hole...

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Artist's impression of an explosion in space. Credit: kyoshino Getty Images

For E.T. Civilizations, Location Could Be Everything

March 13, 2018

Avi Loeb has written another great essay,  "Astronomers have recently determined that rare elements such as gold and uranium are produced as a result of rapid capture of free neutrons during the merger of two neutron stars. Neutron stars are the densest stars known, having the size of a city (12 kilometers) and up to twice the mass of the sun, with the density of an atomic nucleus. A teaspoon of neutron star material weighs a trillion kilograms, as much as a tall mountain on Earth."


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The first stars in the universe cartoon

Cosmic dawn: astronomers detect signals from first stars in the universe

February 28, 2018

"An experiment to estimate when stars began to form in the Universe suggests that gas temperatures just before stars appeared had fallen well below predicted limits, and that dark matter is not as shadowy as was thought."

"For the first time, scientists may have detected hints of the universe’s primordial sunrise, when the first twinkles of starlight appeared in the cosmos."  

"Stars began illuminating the heavens by about 180 million years after the universe was...

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Aerial photo of students on campus

Renewing the Contract between Academia and Society

February 14, 2018

"It is easy for professors to hide deep inside the trenches of their expertise—bunkers that protect them from criticism by “non-experts” and allow them to promote their egos without supervision. True, academic freedom is a precious commodity that should be held sacred in order to enable discovery of the truth in the face of sociological forces and ideological dogma."

Read More: https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/renewing-the-contract-between-academia-and-society/

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