April 11, 2008 9:00am - 10:30am
J. Craig Wheeler will survey the hot topics in astronomy, why the media and the public should care, and the role of journalists in bringing astronomy to the public—the triumphs, the tragedies and the politics.
Dr. J. Craig Wheeler delves into "dark matter"
In this excerpt, Dr. J. Craig Wheeler, Professor of Astronomy at the University of Texas at Austin, tells Science Literacy Workshop participants that 96% of the universe is not like us at all. Dark matter seems to be the backbone of the stars and galaxies, not the protons and neutrons that make us who we are. Dark matter is as yet a mysterious quantity, but is critical to the evolution of the universe. Wheeler says there’s also evidence that the universe is accelerating, rather than slowing down as previously thought. Dark matter, dark energy, and anti-gravity are shaking up the roots of physics.