The Universe - Season 2 (2008)

History Channel

Watch Part Number: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18
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Date Added: 10 years ago.

Documentary Description

In this epic documentary series, THE UNIVERSE takes you to the leading edge of our ever-expanding astronomical knowledge. A virtual collision of astronomy and history, these dense, enlightening episodes of unprecedented programming give unique insight - through recreations and animations - on the great "Eureka!" moments of celestial understanding and into the very latest discoveries. This insightful series gives serious, constructive consideration to the great human questions: Are we alone? Is Planet Earth as insignificant to the Cosmos as a drop of water? Is there anywhere else out there that that can support life? Or, is there truly no place like home?

In the second boundless season of THE UNIVERSE, THE HISTORY CHANNEL® takes you far beyond the comfort of our own solar system to discover the wonders of Deep Space. Venturing light-years from Earth, these programs guide you to the most fascinating phenomena and stunning events known to science.

Experience the Cosmos as no-one ever has - not peering at dots through a telescope or scanning pages of numbers - but firsthand. Strikingly realistic computer reconstructions give you a front-row seat at the hottest events in THE UNIVERSE, from colliding celestial bodies to collapsing suns, from distant, possibly viable planets to mysteries that defy explanation.
Source: History Channel

EPISODES

Part 01 - Alien Planets
Have planet hunters finally found proof of other Earthlike worlds? Astronomers have now discovered over two hundred alien worlds, beyond our solar system, that were unknown just a decade ago. Discover planets that rage with fiery hurricanes and bizarre planets covered by water so dense that it forms a kind of hot ice. Among these weird worlds, Earth actually seems like the oddball with the right conditions for life.

Part 02 - Cosmic Holes
Today, we know black holes exist, and now scientists are trying to confirm that other holes lurk in hyperspace. Our infinite cosmos could contain a variety of "holes" such as black, white, "mini" and wormholes. White holes are the reverse of black holes; instead of matter being sucked into it, matter is ejected out. Wormholes are gateways in the fabric of space and time. They are included in Einstein's field equations as possibilities for their existence. Neither white holes nor wormholes have ever been found. Learn about new discoveries including, colliding binary black holes, intermediate black holes and manufacturing mini black holes.

Part 03 - Mysteries of the Moon
For thousands of years, mankind has found comfort in its presence. It's been a lantern for nighttime travelers, a timekeeper for farmers, and a location finder for sailors at sea. For some cultures, it's even been a god. It's the only cosmic body ever visited by human beings. From afar, the Moon's luminance has captivated us since the beginning of time. And a closer look at the beacon in the dark sky reveals an ever-present source of myth, intrigue, controversy and unsolved mysteries. The field of science may cast an empirical light on some things about the Universe, but lunar experts are the first to admit they don't have all the answers when it comes to our Moon. This episode explores the theories behind Lunar Transient Phenomena that have left scientists stumped for centuries; takes to the Canadian waters to see how the Moon effects our planet through tides; and dusts off some age-old myths and weighs arguments that without our Moon, humanity may not even exist.

Part 04 - The Milky Way
We used to think that Earth was at the center of the universe, but now we know we're not even at the center of our own galaxy. Countless wonders exist between where earth is situated and the massive black hole at the galactic center of our solar system. Within the Milky Way can be found the debris of old, dying stars fueling the birth of new stars and at the galactic center hypervelocity stars get catapulted clear beyond the Milky Way's outer rim at unimaginable speeds. Come along for a guided tour of 100,000 light-year-wide family of stars and stellar phenomena we call The Milky Way.

Part 05 - Alien Moons
Travel from the inner solar system to the Kuiper Belt and explore the moons surrounding the planets of the solar system. Many of these moons that were once unknown are now on the cutting edge of astronomical study. Some burst with volcanic fury another spews icy geysers and others offer the possibility of alien life. Are these strange worlds simply hostile environments unfit for humans or do other possibilities exist? Cutting-edge computer graphics are used to bring the universe down to earth and to imagine what kind of life forms might evolve in alien atmospheres.

Part 06 - Dark Matter / Dark Energy
Scientists have no idea what it is, but Dark Matter and Dark Energy make up 96% of the Universe. Dark Matter is everywhere. It passes through everything we know on earth at billions of particles every second, yet no one has ever gotten a direct detection of this mysterious dark substance. An even more bewildering force is Dark Energy, which is rapidly pushing apart our Universe. Discovered only ten years ago, scientists are struggling to comprehend its unusual characteristics and answer the ultimate question; what is the fate of our Universe? Using cutting-edge computer graphics watch as the universe is brought down to earth.

Part 07 - Astrobiology
Scientists have no idea what it is, but Dark Matter and Dark Energy make up 96% of the Universe. Dark Matter is everywhere. It passes through everything we know on earth at billions of particles every second, yet no one has ever gotten a direct detection of this mysterious dark substance. An even more bewildering force is Dark Energy, which is rapidly pushing apart our Universe. Discovered only ten years ago, scientists are struggling to comprehend its unusual characteristics and answer the ultimate question; what is the fate of our Universe? Using cutting-edge computer graphics watch as the universe is brought down to earth.

Part 08 - Space Travel
When man finally broke free of the Earth's gravitational pull the dream of traveling to other planets became a reality. Today scientists are proposing a bizarre array of technologies in the hope of traveling faster through space: from space craft sporting sails that catch laser beams, to propulsion engines powered by a bizarre entity known as anti-matter. Finally explore the science behind the seemingly fanciful notion of warp-drive and a theoretical particle that can travel faster than light.

Part 09 - Supernovas
A stellar explosion, the supernova is the sensational death of a star. It can shine as bright as 100 billion Suns and radiate as much energy as the Sun would emit over 10 billion years. Jets of high-energy light and matter are propelled into space and can cause massive Gamma Ray Bursts and emit intense X-ray radiation for thousands of years. Astronomers believe that this process creates the very building blocks of planets, people and plants. Meet the world's leading Supernova hunters, and take a look at recorded supernovas throughout history.

Part 10 - Constellations
A constellation is a group of stars that are connected together to form a figure or picture. These star pictures help organize the night sky and provide a useful tool for astronomers even today. Explore some of the 88 official constellations and learn about some of the highlights of each--like the star that's due to go supernova in the constellation Orion. Discover the 13th zodiac sign that no one talks about, and find out why Polaris, the North Star, will one day have to surrender its title.

Part 11 - Unexplained Mysteries
Delve into the myths, misconceptions, truths and amazing mysteries of our unique universe. Could life exist on Mars? Is time travel possible and does Einstein's theory of relativity support it? Is there a companion dark star to our sun and could it pose a threat to earth? Learn about the spark that lit the big bang. Take a journey from science fiction that predicted all these things, to the scientific reality of what they mean to us in the ever-changing universe.

Part 12 - Cosmic Collisions

It's been said that our universe is a cosmic shooting gallery. Gravity is moving everything around and things are bound to collide. Astronomers are attempting to understand how these collisions occur in the dark recesses of space. Learn about collisional families, which are clusters of comets and asteroids; planetary collisions; mass extinction impacts involving asteroids and comets; stars collisions; and galaxy cluster collisions. Cutting-edge computer graphics are used to bring this series down to earth as the heavens yield their greatest secrets.

Part 13 - Colonizing Space

Space colonization is no longer the fodder of science fiction, it is becoming a reality. Examine the efforts underway to establish a human colony on Mars, including how they plan to grow food, recycle wastewater and introduce greenhouse gases to revive the red planet and make it more habitable for humans. Cutting-edge computer graphics are used to bring the universe down to earth to show what life would be like on Mars, and to imagine what kind of life forms might evolve in alien atmospheres.

Part 14 - Nebulas
Take a tour through the "Art Gallery of the Galaxy" and view what are considered the "crown jewels" of the heavens. Nebulas are mysterious clouds of gas that aren't classified as stars, planets, moons or asteroids. Astronomers use the most sophisticated techniques to view them since they are practically invisible to the naked eye. Nothing less than stunning, nebulas glow, reflect or obscure the galaxy's light with amazing swirls of color. Nebulas mark the regions where the nothingness of space first coalesces, where stars are born and where stars die. Cutting-edge computer graphics are used to bring the universe down to earth.

Part 15 - Wildest Weather in the Cosmos
Imagine a tornado so powerful, it can form a planet, or winds sweeping across a planet but blowing at 6,000 miles per hour! How about rain....made of iron? Sounds like science fiction, but this type of weather is occurring daily in our solar system. Scientists are just beginning to unlock the secrets of these planets and their atmospheres. Can this research help scientists solve long unanswered questions that we have about Earth? As our own planet churns with the effects of global warming, it's natural to look into the heavens and wonder about the rest of the real estate.

Part 16 - Biggest Things in Space

We can't compare anything on earth to the biggest things known in space. The Lymann Alpha blob is a bubble like structure containing countless galaxies--perhaps the biggest object in the entire universe. Regions of radio-emitting gas called "radio lobes" could be even bigger. Then there are super galaxy clusters which are hundreds of galaxies merged together due to cosmic collisions. Discover which is the largest planet, star, star cluster, constellation, black hole, volcano, galaxy, explosions, moon, storm, impact crater and "void" in space.

Part 17 - Gravity
Gravity is the most powerful and exacting force in the universe. It is pervasive and penetrating. Gravity binds us together, its reach hangs stars in the sky and its grip crushes light. Gravity holds planets together, and leashes them to their suns. Without gravity, stars, comets, moons, nebulae, and even the Earth itself would not exist. Explore how science and humanity discovered, overcame and utilized gravity. Learn what it takes to propel objects into the heavens, to ride a wave or to ski down a slope. Take a front row seat as an astronaut subjects himself to the weightless wonders of the specially modified aircraft used to train astronauts known as the "Vomit Comet."

Part 18 - Cosmic Apocalypse
The Universe as we know it is condemned to death. Space, matter and even time will one day cease to exist and there's nothing we can do about it. Harsh realities are revealed about the future of our Universe; it may collapse and burn or it might be gripped by a galactic ice age. Either of these scenarios might be a long way off. However, our Universe could suddenly be destroyed by a "random quantum fluctuation", a bubble of destruction that can obliterate the entire cosmos in the blink of an eye. No matter how it ends, life in our Universe is doomed.

Source: www.episodeworld.com

Review, from Amazon.com
With the DVD release (on five discs) of this, the complete second season of The Universe, the History Channel has now devoted a combined total of more than 25 hours, not including bonus material, to its documentary study of that combination of time, space, and matter that we call our universe. That’s a lot. But then you consider the mind-boggling age and size of the universe itself: 13.7 billion years old, and big beyond our comprehension; infinite, in fact, and expanding rapidly. By those measures, it’s apparent that this fascinating series could probably air for longer than The Simpsons and Gunsmoke (the two longest running shows in TV history) put together and still not run out of things to talk about.

The 18 episodes from Season Two cover an appropriately wide range of topics, from "Cosmic Holes" to "Cosmic Collisions," from supernovas to gravity. There are episodes about the weather in space, the largest objects in space (hint: they’re really, really big, like the so-called "cosmic web" of galaxies, which is a hundred million billion times bigger than Earth), and traveling to and colonizing space. The amount of information and data provided is enormous. Jargon abounds, including terms like "lunar transient phenomena," "pulsar planets," "hot Jupiters," "dark matter" and "dark energy," "collisional families," the "heavy bombardment period," and many, many more. And the numbers are mind-boggling: for instance, it’s estimated that the impact of the asteroid that landed on the Yucatan Peninsula some 65 million years ago, wiping out the dinosaurs, was equal to that of dropping a Hiroshima-sized atomic bomb every second for 140 years! Still, some may find the episodes that involve informed speculation more interesting than those that deal in facts. We know that the Moon affects ocean tides, but does it also have an effect on human behavior? If the Big Bang was the beginning of the universe, what came before it? Instead of using rockets to go to space, can scientists actually build a "space elevator" that will reach from an orbiting satellite some 60 thousand miles down to Earth? All of this is delivered by way of very convincing computer-generated imagery and other effects, along with dozens of interviews with astronomers and other experts, photos, film footage, and so on. Best of all, while it can get a bit dense, technically speaking, by and large The Universe will be readily accessible to most viewers. --Sam Graham

Product Description

We once considered ourselves to be at the center of the universe now we know that we are just a small spec in a giant cosmos. This season, HISTORY® ventures outsides of our solar system in another epic exploration of the universe and its mysteries. With strikingly realistic computer re-creations, you ll feel like you ve traveled to the edge of the unknown: visit strange and unfamiliar worlds in Exoplanets, prepare for the worst in Cosmic Collisions, and uncover the secrets of our own galaxy, the Milky Way. And that s just the beginning... learn exactly what Dark Matter is and how it takes up 95% of the universe; take a front-row seat for the ultimate light show with Supernovas; and while most people have heard of black holes (which swallow all matter that they come in contact with), find out more about White Holes which actually create matter.

Customer Review

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful:
5.0 out of 5 stars Great series!, November 4, 2008
By Lulu (Doh, Qat)
I ordered this series with the thought 'what more can they do?' I seen it all in season one, it cannot top that. Was I wrong! It was even better. To realize that the universe is about 13.7 billion years old, and so vast, that it's totally beyond our comprehension and still expanding. A truly unimaginable thought, that. There are so many amazing episodes, one of which shows the largest objects in space. They are seriously big, like the so-called "cosmic web" of galaxies, which is a hundred million billion times bigger than Earth. Then there's the fascinating Lunar transient phenomena, the pulsar planets, the hot Jupiters, the weather in space, dark matter, dark energy, and much more. Really mind-boggling stuff, this!
For instance it's estimated that the impact of the asteroid that landed on the Yucatan Peninsula about 65 million years ago, wiping out the dinosaurs, this was equal to that of dropping a Hiroshima-sized atomic bomb every second for 140 years! And another mind-boggling thought, where did we really come from...hmmn. Still, I'd like to go to heaven eventually:)

This series had me riveted to my screen. The computer-generated imagery and other effects is so realistic. It makes one feel as if one is truly there experiencing this phenomenal aspects. And it's explained so simply that anyone can understand it.
My favourite episodes are: Alien Planets, Dark Matter, Astrobiology, Space Travel,Unexplained Mysteries & Colonizing Space. A truly awesome series! Enjoyed every bit of it.

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