Astrophysicist Wang Jianmin offers new way to measure universe

A Nasa picture of a black hole outburst. Photo: AFP

Astrophysicist Wang Jianmin knew the odds as he scrutinised the radiation from the vicinity of black holes. Black holes are so gravitationally hungry that not even photons can escape their grip at the speed of light, but the glare from their accompanying quasars can be so bright, so stable and so long-lived that astronomers hope one day to use them as candles to measure the size of the universe.

Tuesday, 2 April, 2013, 4:42am

You are here: a little perspective for a Monday morning

via I f**king love science

A dose of space, and Carl Sagan to cure your Monday morning blues.

18 Feb 2013 - 10:39pm 2 comments

2013 will be a bumper year for space science: European Space Agency

A photo taken by the European Space Agency shows nearly 200 000 light-years from Earth, the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of the Milky Way, floats in space. Photo: AFP

European probes this year will return a treasure trove of data from explorations into the Big Bang, water on Mars and climate change, European Space Agency chief Jean-Jacques Dordain said.

27 Jan 2013 - 5:29am

Channel hop

We were going to start this column by talk-ing about how the host of Wonders of the Universe (BBC Knowledge, today at 8.55pm) looks more like a rock star than a particle physicist. And then we looked more closely at the press materials. He is a rock star.

8 Jul 2012 - 12:00am

Nobel winners predict chilly end for humanity

Would you rather burn or freeze to death? In the long run, humanity won't have a choice: we'll freeze, if we last that long, according to the three astronomers who will receive this year's Nobel Prize in physics in Sweden on Thursday.

4 Dec 2011 - 12:00am

An alien view of our humble place in space

Fifteen years ago, when scientists postulated that a Martian meteorite named Allan Hills might contain evidence of microscopic fossils of bacteria, the news was received with a mixture of astonishment and scepticism. Last week, Nasa researchers supported that theory by finding evidence that suggests nucleobases - the building blocks of genetic material - do exist in certain meteorites.

16 Aug 2011 - 12:00am

People making their mark on the universe

If we study the universe, we will discover significant facts about what's happening beyond our planet.

There are a lot of mysteries in the universe. It's important that we have a good understanding of the universe because Earth is polluted and we might need to move to another planet.

1 Mar 2007 - 12:00am

New theory on how it all started

While we were rolling out the red carpet, Stephen Hawking apparently didn't see fit to share with us his latest and even more intriguing theory about how it all started. Apparently, Hawking and his colleague, Thomas Hertog, of the European Laboratory for Particle Physics, have a startling new proposal about how the universe was created.

24 Jun 2006 - 12:00am

A brief history of wonder

The picture of Stephen Hawking, immobilised in a wheelchair with his head tilted to one side, has become an iconic image of our time. There has been a lively debate in my office and on the South China Morning Post's editorial page about whether the local media is focusing too much attention on Professor Hawking's disability rather than his phenomenal scientific achievements.

15 Jun 2006 - 12:00am

Parallel Worlds - The Science of Alternative Universes and Our Future in the Cosmos

Parallel Worlds - The Science of Alternative Universes and Our Future in the Cosmos

by Michio Kaku

Penguin, $128

19 Feb 2006 - 12:00am

Cosmic puzzle

The Planets series has finished. But in case viewers have not had enough of space, the story is taken further by a documentary posing the biggest question of all: what fate awaits not just our planet, but the universe?

14 Apr 2000 - 12:00am

I much prefer a bar without the bells

I HAVE joined a gym. There is nothing wrong with my body, just that my weight needs a bit of redistribution - from my midriff to my chest and shoulders.

13 Sep 1998 - 12:00am

Splendid chance to cash in

SPLENDID Chance (Nap) could surprise at decent odds in today's final event.

He was a good winner course and distance last season and was noted going really well in a recent trial.

He has also slipped down to a very handy weight at the bottom of Class Three and has a decent barrier draw in gate four, relatively close to the inside fence.

16 Jan 1994 - 12:00am