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Science

79 STASHED IDEAS

The Original Discovery

Perepelitsa and his colleagues are dubious that a massless photon could pack a powerful enough punch to melt part of a lead nucleus, which contains 82 protons and 126 neutrons. “It would be like throwing a needle into a bowling ball,” he says.

Instead, he thinks that just before impact, these photons are undergoing a transformation predicted by Paul Dirac.

In 1931, Dirac published a paper predicting a new type of particle. The particle would share the mass of the electron but have the opposite charge. If it collides with an electron, the two will have a chance of annihilating one another.

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The Basic Idea

Although it’s too late to find dino-DNA, scientists recently found something almost as intriguing.

They discovered DNA fragments in the fossils of Neanderthals and other ancient mammals, such as woolly mammoths .

Now that makes sense; those fragments are less than 2 million years old, well before all of the DNA would decay.

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The Chandrashekhar Limit

He applied Einstein's theory to solve a famous astronomy problem and provided an explanation for why dwarf stars, upon running out of hydrogen, become unstable and explode inside. This work came to be known as The Chandrasekhar Limit. Further, it led to the concept of supernovas, neutron stars, and black holes, as well as the idea of massive stars going through evolutionary stages.

"Science is a perception of the world around us. Science is a place where what you find in nature pleases you." - Subrahmanyan Chandrashekhar

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