Skip Navigation


CIT can broadcast your seminar, conference or meeting live to a world-wide audience over the Internet as a real-time streaming video. The event can be recorded and made available for viewers to watch at their convenience as an on-demand video or a downloadable podcast. CIT can also broadcast NIH-only or HHS-only content.

From the Big Bang to the Nobel Prize and on to James Webb Space Telescope

Loading video...

 
   
Air date: Wednesday, November 28, 2007, 3:00:00 PM
Time displayed is Eastern Time, Washington DC Local
Views:
Category: Wednesday Afternoon Lectures
Runtime: 01:04:20
Description: The history of the universe in a nutshell, from the Big Bang to now, and on to the future - John Mather will tell the story of how we got here, how the Universe began with a Big Bang, how it could have produced an Earth where sentient beings can live, and how those beings are discovering their history. Mather was Project Scientist for NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) satellite, which measured the spectrum (the color) of the heat radiation from the Big Bang, discovered hot and cold spots in that radiation, and hunted for the first objects that formed after the great explosion. He will explain Einstein's biggest mistake, show how Edwin Hubble discovered the expansion of the universe, how the COBE mission was built, and how the COBE data support the Big Bang theory. He will also show NASA's plans for the next great telescope in space, the James Webb Space Telescope. It will look even farther back in time than the Hubble Space Telescope, and will look inside the dusty cocoons where stars and planets are being born today. Planned for launch in 2013, it may lead to another Nobel Prize for some lucky observer.

Dr. John C. Mather is a Senior Astrophysicist in the Observational Cosmology Laboratory at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. His research centers on infrared astronomy and cosmology. As an NRC postdoctoral fellow at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (New York City), he led the proposal efforts for the Cosmic Background Explorer (74-76), and came to GSFC to be the Study Scientist (76-88), Project Scientist (88-98), and the Principal Investigator for the Far IR Absolute Spectrophotometer (FIRAS) on COBE. He showed that the cosmic microwave background radiation has a blackbody spectrum within 50 parts per million, confirming the Big Bang theory to extraordinary accuracy. As Senior Project Scientist (95-present) for the James Webb Space Telescope, he leads the science team, and represents scientific interests within the project management. Dr. Mather is also Chief Scientist of the Science Mission Directorate (SMD) at NASA Headquarters, where he provides independent scientific advice on all aspects of the NASA science program. He is the recipient of many awards, including the Nobel Prize in Physics (2006) with George Smoot, for the COBE work.

For more information, visit
http://astrophysics.gsfc.nasa.gov/staff/CVs/John.Mather

The NIH Director's Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series includes weekly scientific talks by some of the top researchers in the biomedical sciences worldwide.
Debug: Show Debug
NLM Title: From the big bang to the Nobel prize and on to James Webb space telescope [electronic resource] / John Mather.
Series: NIH director's Wednesday afternoon lecture series
Author: Mather, John C.
National Institutes of Health (U.S.)
Publisher:
Other Title(s): NIH director's Wednesday afternoon lecture series
Abstract: (CIT): The history of the universe in a nutshell, from the Big Bang to now, and on to the future - John Mather will tell the story of how we got here, how the Universe began with a Big Bang, how it could have produced an Earth where sentient beings can live, and how those beings are discovering their history. Mather was Project Scientist for NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) satellite, which measured the spectrum (the color) of the heat radiation from the Big Bang, discovered hot and cold spots in that radiation, and hunted for the first objects that formed after the great explosion. He will explain Einstein's biggest mistake, show how Edwin Hubble discovered the expansion of the universe, how the COBE mission was built, and how the COBE data support the Big Bang theory. He will also show NASA's plans for the next great telescope in space, the James Webb Space Telescope. It will look even farther back in time than the Hubble Space Telescope, and will look inside the dusty cocoons where stars and planets are being born today. Planned for launch in 2013, it may lead to another Nobel Prize for some lucky observer. Dr. John C. Mather is a Senior Astrophysicist in the Observational Cosmology Laboratory at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. His research centers on infrared astronomy and cosmology. As an NRC postdoctoral fellow at the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (New York City), he led the proposal efforts for the Cosmic Background Explorer (74-76), and came to GSFC to be the Study Scientist (76-88), Project Scientist (88-98), and the Principal Investigator for the Far IR Absolute Spectrophotometer (FIRAS) on COBE. He showed that the cosmic microwave background radiation has a blackbody spectrum within 50 parts per million, confirming the Big Bang theory to extraordinary accuracy. As Senior Project Scientist (95-present) for the James Webb Space Telescope, he leads the science team, and represents scientific interests within the project management. Dr. Mather is also Chief Scientist of the Science Mission Directorate (SMD) at NASA Headquarters, where he provides independent scientific advice on all aspects of the NASA science program. He is the recipient of many awards, including the Nobel Prize in Physics (2006) with George Smoot, for the COBE work.
Subjects: Astronomy--instrumentation
Astronomy--trends
Extraterrestrial Environment
Publication Types: Lectures
Webcasts
Download: To download this event, select one of the available bitrates:
[384k]    How to download a Videocast
NLM Classification: WD 758
NLM ID: 101322977
CIT Live ID: 6201
Permanent link: http://videocast.nih.gov/launch.asp?14167

 

Podcast information
Audio Podcasts   Video Podcasts
  Description Runtime     Description Runtime
Listen to the podcast Enhanced Audio Podcast 1:04:20   Watch the podcast Enhanced Video Podcast 1:04:20