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Secrets of Spanish Florida
Steve Jobs the Lost Interview
A Sky Full of Ghosts
An Inconvenient Sequel Truth to Power
Land Of The Mammoth
Kurt Cobain Montage of Heck
Side by Side
Nuremberg: Nazis on Trial. Albert Speer
David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet
Hunt for Alien Evidence
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Exploring The Universe
This remarkable science-history series investigates the blistering pace of human endeavour in space exploration, computing, energy, resources, Earth science and our understanding of the evolution of life itself. Across the last 50 years, humans have set a blistering pace and scientific discovery. We've crossed the boundaries of our solar system, made machines that can learn harnessed the power of the sun and built life from scratch. It's a period like no other in history, where human endeavour is changing everything: this is The Great Acceleration. As we race toward the future, we must examine the journey.
In the first episode, Dr Shalin Naik explores the ambitious space shuttle mission that began in the '70s plus the future colonization of Mars. Over the past 50 years, space has become central to everything, from communications to entertainment to climate modelling. And as private enterprise enters space exploration, our understanding of the universe will only continue to expand. We will know if we can survive on other objects - the moon, maybe Mars, maybe even some of the moons of Jupiter and Saturn. Deep space is the last and infinite frontier. That's what we do as human beings. We explore, we learn, we make discoveries, from the moment we're born to the moment we die.
The Great Acceleration
Genetic breakthroughs have shed light on how life evolves in real-time. From filling in the missing links to creating a new species, in the last 50 years scientists have solved some of the biggest mysteries of evolution. In this episode, we look at revolutionary discoveries that shook the world and may shape our future.
The Great Acceleration
Most planets we know of are so hellish, it seems impossible that anything could live. But it's amazing where life can take hold in the Earth. Astrobiologists look for simple single-celled microbes known as extremophiles in places as Danakil Depression, known in Ethiopia as 'The Gateway to Hell.'
In Episode 2, the fictional world is Janus, a planet in such a close orbit than its rotation is locked by the star's gravity and it always shows the same face to its sun. On one side of the planet, it's always daytime, a searing desert. On the other side, it's forever night, a frozen shadowland. Squeezed between the two, a sliver of perpetual twilight. Freezing meltwater flows from the cold side, carving canyons through the landscape. Deep in these canyons lives an extraordinary five-legged creature.
Planets beyond our solar system are known to astronomers as exoplanets. They are at trillions of miles from Earth and yet, it might be possible to detect a faint signature of life in them. From the light of the stars they orbit that passes through the atmosphere of an exoplanet, it is possible to capture the chemical fingerprint of the elements in that atmosphere.
The fictional world Eden is orbiting not one star, but two. The light from its twin stars powers photosynthesis, pumping more oxygen into the atmosphere than in Earth, allowing life to thrive. Grazers are constantly alert to danger, because the canopy is home to predators perfectly evolved to live among the trees. In Episode 3, another topic are fungi and the role they could play on exoplanets. Ecologist Thomas Crowther talks about the role mycelial networks play in the Rothiemurchus forest in Scotland.
What sort of alien civilizations might exist in the vastness of space? Terra is the fictional world imagined in Episode 4, a planet nine billion years old, twice as old as Earth. Old enough that a truly advanced intelligence could evolve. It was once a fertile world, now it is barren. But life can still thrive here in artificial domes. Over time, they've evolved not to need their bodies. They exist only as neural tissue. They never age, they never die. They're monitored and maintained by robots.
If alien civilizations are statistically so likely, why haven't astronomers found any sign of them? Where is everyone? Every time we look at an individual star, that's like dropping a bucket in the ocean. We're going to have to look at a lot of stars and to search through a lot of data until we find the clue that leads us to another civilization.
Secrets of the Dead
Nuremberg: Nazis on Trial
George Harrison Living in the Material World
Inside the Medieval Mind
Black Hole Apocalypse
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