How Objects Which Don't Exist Fooled Astronomers Jeff Schmitz Object Computing, Inc. @iamtheschmitzer
About Astronomy <ul><li>Study celestial objects </li></ul><ul><li>Observe electro-magnetic spectrum </li></ul>
Ancient Astronomy
Plato and Aristotle An ancient view of the universe
Unchangeable <ul><li>Beyond the planets, the universe is constant </li></ul>
Perfection <ul><li>Planets were perfect spheres moving in perfect circles </li></ul>
Comprised of Five Elements <ul><li>Moon, stars, and planets were made of a fifth element, named aether </li></ul><ul><li>T...
Geocentric <ul><li>Earth in center of universe </li></ul><ul><li>Questioned, but  PROVEN  repeatedly </li></ul><ul><ul><li...
<ul><ul><li>Early Modern Astronomy </li></ul></ul>
Copernicus <ul><li>Observed retrograde planetary motion </li></ul>
Retrograde Motion
Copernican Theory <ul><li>Earth moves around the sun </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Explain retrograde motion </li></ul></ul><ul><l...
Copernican Model <ul><li>Sun at center of universe </li></ul><ul><li>Wrong </li></ul><ul><li>Planets moving in perfect cir...
(and later) Copernican Principle <ul><li>The Earth is at no place special in universe </li></ul><ul><li>There is no place ...
Modern Astronomy
Observing Galaxies <ul><li>Emissions are sum of emissions from member stars </li></ul>
Active Galaxies <ul><li>Has emissions which can't be accounted for by stars in galaxy </li></ul><ul><li>Emit radio waves (...
One Anomaly <ul><li>Some active galaxies did not fit the model </li></ul><ul><li>Emitting enormous amounts of energy </li>...
Powerful, “Small” Energy Sources <ul><li>1/1,000,000 th  size of host galaxy </li></ul><ul><li>Emits energy of thousands o...
Quasars <ul><li>Named quasi-stellar radio sources </li></ul><ul><li>~200,000 identified </li></ul>
Quasars: Extreme Objects <ul><li>Extremely Bright </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Luminosity of > 2 trillion suns </li></ul></ul>
Quasars: Extreme Objects <ul><li>Extremely massive </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mass of 1 billion suns </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li...
Quasars: Extreme Objects <ul><li>Extremely far away </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3+ billion light years away </li></ul></ul><ul><...
Exciting, But Troubling <ul><li>There are no quasars near earth </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Just a shell around it </li></ul></u...
Except <ul><li>Quasars don't exist anymore </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Remnants of the early universe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The...
So Quasars DID Exist <ul><li>A long Time Ago </li></ul><ul><li>In a galaxy far, far away </li></ul>
@iamtheschmitzer
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How Objects Which Don't Exist Fooled Astronomers

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How Objects Which Don't Exist Fooled Astronomers

  1. 1. How Objects Which Don't Exist Fooled Astronomers Jeff Schmitz Object Computing, Inc. @iamtheschmitzer
  2. 2. About Astronomy <ul><li>Study celestial objects </li></ul><ul><li>Observe electro-magnetic spectrum </li></ul>
  3. 3. Ancient Astronomy
  4. 4. Plato and Aristotle An ancient view of the universe
  5. 5. Unchangeable <ul><li>Beyond the planets, the universe is constant </li></ul>
  6. 6. Perfection <ul><li>Planets were perfect spheres moving in perfect circles </li></ul>
  7. 7. Comprised of Five Elements <ul><li>Moon, stars, and planets were made of a fifth element, named aether </li></ul><ul><li>The other four were corruptible </li></ul>
  8. 8. Geocentric <ul><li>Earth in center of universe </li></ul><ul><li>Questioned, but PROVEN repeatedly </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Parallax </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><ul><li>Early Modern Astronomy </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Copernicus <ul><li>Observed retrograde planetary motion </li></ul>
  11. 11. Retrograde Motion
  12. 12. Copernican Theory <ul><li>Earth moves around the sun </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Explain retrograde motion </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Correct </li></ul>
  13. 13. Copernican Model <ul><li>Sun at center of universe </li></ul><ul><li>Wrong </li></ul><ul><li>Planets moving in perfect circles </li></ul><ul><li>Wrong </li></ul>
  14. 14. (and later) Copernican Principle <ul><li>The Earth is at no place special in universe </li></ul><ul><li>There is no place special </li></ul><ul><li>Maybe </li></ul>
  15. 15. Modern Astronomy
  16. 16. Observing Galaxies <ul><li>Emissions are sum of emissions from member stars </li></ul>
  17. 17. Active Galaxies <ul><li>Has emissions which can't be accounted for by stars in galaxy </li></ul><ul><li>Emit radio waves (and other wavelengths)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>Take several forms </li></ul>
  18. 18. One Anomaly <ul><li>Some active galaxies did not fit the model </li></ul><ul><li>Emitting enormous amounts of energy </li></ul><ul><li>Looked like an ordinary star through a telescope </li></ul>
  19. 19. Powerful, “Small” Energy Sources <ul><li>1/1,000,000 th size of host galaxy </li></ul><ul><li>Emits energy of thousands of galaxies </li></ul><ul><li>Equivalent to </li></ul>lighting Los Angeles A flashlight
  20. 20. Quasars <ul><li>Named quasi-stellar radio sources </li></ul><ul><li>~200,000 identified </li></ul>
  21. 21. Quasars: Extreme Objects <ul><li>Extremely Bright </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Luminosity of > 2 trillion suns </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Quasars: Extreme Objects <ul><li>Extremely massive </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Mass of 1 billion suns </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1,989,100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 kg </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Quasars: Extreme Objects <ul><li>Extremely far away </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3+ billion light years away </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Among the furthest objects ever detected </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. Exciting, But Troubling <ul><li>There are no quasars near earth </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Just a shell around it </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Violates Copernican Principle </li></ul>
  25. 25. Except <ul><li>Quasars don't exist anymore </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Remnants of the early universe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The shell in which they appear represents their lifetime </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Concept known as Event horizon </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Earlier quasars would have to be further away for us to be in their event horizon </li></ul><ul><ul><li>> age of universe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Later quasars would have been closer </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Not observed – must be after age of quasars </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. So Quasars DID Exist <ul><li>A long Time Ago </li></ul><ul><li>In a galaxy far, far away </li></ul>
  27. 27. @iamtheschmitzer

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