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This Author: Walter Lewin
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The Birth and Death of Stars by Walter Lewin

The Birth and Death of Stars

by Walter Lewin

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1 Hr. 13 Min.
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As the life of a human being, once initiated, hurdles on to an inevitable end, so too do the lives of stars. Professor Lewin, in his lecture on "The Birth and Death of Stars", provides such a synopsis. In some respects, one may be so inclined to state that stars are the very embodiments of death for, the life, or light, of a star body is produced by virtue of a number of nuclear reactions deep within its interior. That is to say, a star survives only insofar as it burns itself up. It is the emanation like movement of energy from a center that provides a structure of pressures which prevent a star from collapsing. Once a star has fully consumed or burned up its energy stores, this emanation like movement seizes up opening up the star to nuclear reactions from without, the predecessor to its ultimate demise and eventual transformation. The fate of the stars depends upon their mass, which, if large enough, could very well produce a black hole, in which case its previous emanation like movement of energy is reversed, and thereby produces a gravitational warp in space. Professor Lewin traces the birth and death of different kinds of star bodies, citing empirical evidence for support, and personally arguing for Bell’s discoveries and the theories they support.


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  • Published: 2002
  • LearnOutLoud.com Product ID: T015554