Field of Science

A relatively close baby Black Hole

This evening NASA's CHANDRA team (the X-RAY telescope) have discovered something 50million light years away from earth.... A 30 year old black hole!

Still in it's infancy, the remains of a supernova SN1979C, not only is it's discovery great... we've also seen this baby black hole's birth.

When a large star dies it expands forming a supernova, all the gases are burnt up and the star forms either a dense neutron star, that is small but contains the star's mass - therefore very dense!
In some cases the mass of he star is so great that the star collapses in on it's self forming a black hole. Black holes are known as dark matter and basically engulf space matter, not even light can escape! (Hence the name!)

This baby black hole is exciting for physicists as it means they have a relatively close infant black hole which they can study. This means they can learn more about black holes and the way they're formed.

Exciting stuff! Let's hope they don't find any more too close for us to start panicking!


The future of Science

I was lucky enough to give a talk during health care week (15th - 19th November) to a bunch of year 9s at Moat Community College in Leicester.

I talked to them about the 'tiny world of microbiology' including what microorganisms are, diseases and career profiles. I was expecting a few cringes at some of the 'gross' pictures, however I wasn't expecting so many questions! I've never seen a group of school children so interested in a subject, that has only a little place in the national curriculum. 

I thought Science subjects were 'dying out' and none of the younger generation were taking it further than GCSEs. Well after visiting this school and seeing their enthusiasm to a subject I find fascinating was magical, perhaps Science isn't dead.

If a few deadly bacteria and a tiny virus can ignite such interest, then I'm sure the physicists with their large hadron colliders (LHC) and the Chemists and their explosions can do just that too!

These students are the future.. all it takes is to show them a 'little' something amazing.