Using the Web

Go to the “Through Einstein’s Eyes” website (, click on “Start Here,” and take the tour. Take the ride on the “relativistic rollercoaster,” and click on “Movie explained.” Why do colors look different on the relativistic rollercoaster? Click on “Continue tour” a couple times until Doppler is set to “ON” and ride the rollercoaster again. How do things look different? Continue the tour. Why do you get rainbow when driving down the desert at high gamma? What do you see when you approach the Sun or a planet at a relativistic speed?
NASA missions:

Go to NASA’s Swift Gamma-Ray Burst Mission website ( Locate a recent result related to supernovae, gamma-ray bursts, or stellar black holes. Why would two merging neutron stars likely form a black hole?
NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope ( and is exploring the gamma-ray universe. What objectives of this mission relate to the study of black holes? What is a recent news story related to black holes?
Go to the LIGO website ( and read about gravitational waves. Click on “Sources of Gravitational Waves” and listen to the example. What are the differences among the four listed sources of gravitational waves? Click on “Advanced LIGO.” What’s new with the project?
The newest NASA mission to study black holes, gamma-ray bursts, and neutron stars is named NuSTAR (Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescopic Array). Go to the NuSTAR website ( What wavelengths and energies will this telescope observe? What has been observed? What new science has been learned?
Go to the “Inside Black Holes” website (, enter, and click on “Schwarzschild.” Work your way down the page, watching the videos. What does it look like when you go into a black hole? Why is there gravitational lensing when Earth is in orbit? What happens when you fall through the horizon; is everything black? Click on “Reissner-Nordström” to see an electrically charged black hole. What is a wormhole? Why is there a warning at the top of the page? Click on “4D perspective.” What does it look like if you move toward the Sun at the speed of light?

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