Walkabout the Galaxy
Einstein, theory of relativity, sodium atoms, ancient comets
Astrophysics and Astronomy | Physics
The astroquarks explain the physics behind Warp Drive and a new solution to Einstein's general theory of relativity. Closer to home, the Moon showers the Earth with sodium atoms, and ancient comets may have provided the carbon necessary for life. Plus, we have a brain-twisting math trivia that unites economics and cosmology. Only on Walkabout the Galaxy.
The Hairy Ball Theorem
It's a special night out on the town with your friends. You want to look your best but your hair won't cooperate, what to do? The hairy ball theorem is here to put your mind, and your locks, at ease, because it's mathematically impossible to get a non-vanishing, continuous tandem vector field on even-dimensional end spheres. And before you say "hey, my head is a three dimensional object and three is not even, remember that while your noggin may exist in three dimensions, it's surface just has two. So stop trying to train that last lock of hair, and instead go for a bit of flair. Because, as the saying goes, if F is a continuous funtion that assigns a vector to every point on a sphere, such that F is tangent to the sphere at that point, then there will be at least one pole. Or to put it more technically, you can't comb a hairy ball flat, without creating a cowlick. It's not about porn. The hairy ball theorem, ask the man who owns one (Packard).
© Joshua Colwell, All Rights Reserved
Length of Episode
Colwell, Joshua; Dove, Adrienne; and Cooney, James, "Warp Drive!" (2021). Walkabout the Galaxy Podcast. 153.