playlist

Way, way out there

Travel across the universe (or is it universes?) to see stunning images of Saturn's rings, hear haunting sounds from distant black holes and catch an infectious sense of wonder about galaxies far, far away.

  1. 17:09
    Carolyn Porco This is Saturn

    Planetary scientist Carolyn Porco shows images from the Cassini voyage to Saturn, focusing on its largest moon, Titan, and on frozen Enceladus, which seems to shoot jets of ice.

  2. 18:22
    Chris Hadfield What I learned from going blind in space

    There's an astronaut saying: In space, “there is no problem so bad that you can’t make it worse.” So how do you deal with the complexity, the sheer pressure, of dealing with dangerous and scary situations? Retired Colonel Chris Hadfield paints a vivid portrait of how to be prepared for the worst in space (and life) — and it starts with walking into a spider’s web. Watch for a special space-y performance.

  3. 17:43
    Janna Levin The sound the universe makes

    We think of space as a silent place. But physicist Janna Levin says the universe has a soundtrack — a sonic composition that records some of the most dramatic events in outer space. (Black holes, for instance, bang on spacetime like a drum.) An accessible and mind-expanding soundwalk through the universe.

  4. 17:43
    Bill Stone I'm going to the moon. Who's with me?

    Bill Stone, a maverick cave explorer who has plumbed Earth’s deepest abysses, discusses his efforts to mine lunar ice for space fuel and to build an autonomous robot for studying Jupiter’s moon Europa.

  5. 10:12
    Stephen Hawking Questioning the universe

    In keeping with the theme of TED2008, professor Stephen Hawking asks some Big Questions about our universe — How did the universe begin? How did life begin? Are we alone? — and discusses how we might go about answering them.

  6. 16:29
    Brian Cox Why we need the explorers

    In tough economic times, our exploratory science programs — from space probes to the LHC — are first to suffer budget cuts. Brian Cox explains how curiosity-driven science pays for itself, powering innovation and a profound appreciation of our existence.

  7. 16:09
    Patricia Burchat Shedding light on dark matter

    Physicist Patricia Burchat sheds light on two basic ingredients of our universe: dark matter and dark energy. Comprising 96% of the universe between them, they can't be directly measured, but their influence is immense.

  8. 14:16
    Phil Plait How to defend Earth from asteroids

    What's six miles wide and can end civilization in an instant? An asteroid – and there are lots of them out there. With humor and great visuals, Phil Plait enthralls the TEDxBoulder audience with all the ways asteroids can kill, and what we must do to avoid them.

  9. 19:37
    Burt Rutan The real future of space exploration

    In this passionate talk, legendary spacecraft designer Burt Rutan lambasts the US government-funded space program for stagnating and asks entrepreneurs to pick up where NASA has left off.

  10. 16:26
    Andrea Ghez The hunt for a supermassive black hole

    With new data from the Keck telescopes, Andrea Ghez shows how state-of-the-art adaptive optics are helping astronomers understand our universe's most mysterious objects: black holes. She shares evidence that a supermassive black hole may be lurking at the center of the Milky Way.

  11. 15:54
    Sean Carroll Distant time and the hint of a multiverse

    At TEDxCaltech, cosmologist Sean Carroll attacks — in an entertaining and thought-provoking tour through the nature of time and the universe — a deceptively simple question: Why does time exist at all? The potential answers point to a surprising view of the nature of the universe, and our place in it.

  12. 21:47
    Brian Greene Is our universe the only universe?

    Is there more than one universe? In this visually rich, action-packed talk, Brian Greene shows how the unanswered questions of physics (starting with a big one: What caused the Big Bang?) have led to the theory that our own universe is just one of many in the "multiverse."

  13. 8:38
    George Dyson The story of Project Orion

    Author George Dyson spins the story of Project Orion, a massive, nuclear-powered spacecraft that could have taken us to Saturn in five years. His insiders perspective and a secret cache of documents bring an Atomic Age dream to life.

  14. 6:43
    Henry Lin What we can learn from galaxies far, far away

    In a fun, exciting talk, teenager Henry Lin looks at something unexpected in the sky: distant galaxy clusters. By studying the properties of the universe's largest pieces, says the Intel Science Fair award winner, we can learn quite a lot about scientific mysteries in our own world and galaxy.

  15. 5:20
    Sarah Parcak Archaeology from space

    In this short talk, TED Fellow Sarah Parcak introduces the field of "space archeology" — using satellite images to search for clues to the lost sites of past civilizations.

  16. 17:47
    Fred Jansen How to land on a comet

    As manager of the Rosetta mission, Fred Jansen was responsible for the successful 2014 landing of a probe on the comet known as 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. In this fascinating and funny talk, Jansen reveals some of the intricate calculations that went into landing the Philae probe on a comet 500 million kilometers from Earth — and shares some incredible photographs taken along the way.

  17. 21:23
    Jill Tarter Join the SETI search

    The SETI Institute's Jill Tarter makes her TED Prize wish: to accelerate our search for cosmic company. Using a growing array of radio telescopes, she and her team listen for patterns that may be a sign of intelligence elsewhere in the universe.