HISTORY: The Universe - Light Speed

History Channel

by History Channel

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Airs Nov. 25, 2008 at 9pm/8c - The laws of physics say we can never travel faster than Light Speed – or can we? This episode explores it all, including the ways scientists envision breaking the "light barrier" needed for the star travel of our imaginations. Light speed is the ultimate constant in the universe. Though incredibly fast from a human perspective, in the scales of space it’s agonizingly slow. Light speed lets us see things instantly here on Earth, and shows the history of the universe going back nearly 14 billion years. Traveling at close to light speed, our surroundings become distorted and misshapen as space and time bend over backward to maintain the speed of light as a rock-solid constant. In the vacuum of space, the speed of light may not change; but in other media, it slows down and bends – allowing glass lenses to do their work (and the invention of telescopes), and without which what our eyes see would be a featureless blur. For more info, please visit http://www.history.com/universe