Mario Livio — Mathematics, Mystery, and the Universe

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The astrophysicist Mario Livio spent 24 years at the Space Telescope Science Institute working with the Hubble Telescope, which has revealed the reality and beauty of the Universe to scientists and citizens in whole new ways. The Hubble’s successor, the James Webb Telescope, will become fully operational in 2022, and will further some of the questions about the early formation of the Universe and the origins of life to which Mario Livio has been devoted. Krista spoke with him in 2010, and this conversation has become an On Being Classic, imparting a thrilling sense of all we are learning about the cosmos in this generation in time, our terrible earthly woes notwithstanding. Also: how scientific advance always meets recurrent mystery, from the emergence of life in the Universe to the very heart of mathematics and the puzzle of dark matter and dark energy.

Mario Livio is the author of seven books, including Galileo: And the Science Deniers, The Golden Ratio, and Is God a Mathematician? His current research centers on the emergence of life in the Universe.

Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org.

This show originally aired in May 2010.

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