November 21, 2019 9:00 pm

Neil deGrasse Tyson and Jackie Faherty Explore the Worlds Between Stars

What lies between stars? What lurks in the void of space? What secrets are hidden in the murky hallways of the Cosmos? How many ways can you pose the same question? The answer? More than you thought.

NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Telescope’s image of Eta Carinae, with processing and license by Judy Schmidt.

Eta Carinae. Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble; Processing & License: Judy Schmidt.

On this week’s episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice are answering your questions on the space between stars. This is exactly the type of place that Brown Dwarfs like to hang out. So, why not bring in a brown dwarf expert? We are joined this week by another astrophysicist from the American Museum of Natural History, Jackie Faherty, PhD, who knows all there is to know about brown dwarfs. And what better way to address the topic than by answering Cosmic Queries?

To start, we first establish what makes a celestial body a brown dwarf. Jackie gives us a quick lesson in Brown Dwarfs 101. We discuss how brown dwarfs are formed and how they interact with their surroundings. We explore if certain formation mechanisms can occur at the same time.

Discover more about how we detect brown dwarfs. We ask, “Do brown dwarfs have surfaces?” Jackie tells us whether the tools used for detecting brown dwarfs can be used to detect exoplanets. You’ll also learn why brown dwarfs are at the center of some of the biggest discussion in astronomy today.

Next, we dive into other Cosmic Queries. You’ll hear if the Sun is the biggest star in our galaxy. Jackie tells us about her favorite star system, Eta Carinae. Our trio discusses the pseudoscience of zodiac signs. Find out if Jupiter is a failed star. Lastly, you’ll hear about the interstellar object ʻOumuamua and its path through our solar system. All that, plus, we ponder the Nemesis star hypothesis and what it means for the past, present, and future safety of Earth…

Please join us tomorrow night for Cosmic Queries – Between Planets and Stars, with Jackie Faherty at 7pm ET right here on our website, as well as on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. If you’re a StarTalk+ Patron or an All-Access subscriber, you can watch or listen to this episode ad-free at 7pm, too.

That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!
-Ian Mullen


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