I became pretty obsessed with the idea of working at NASA after visiting the Kennedy Space Center as a kid and being treated to astronaut’s ice cream (like real ice cream but in small round balls). Then various dream-spoilers (parents, careers advisors and the like) dissuaded me by pointing out that it was all very science-y and quite serious and I was utterly unsuited to this kind of lifestyle, tiny-balled ice cream or not.
But a recent post on the NASA blogs suggest it’s not quite as uptight as I had been led to believe after a project to transform a gamma ray-burst into music (I know!). As the loveable boffins put it: "Thanks to the Fermi Large Area Telescope (LAT), we can extend our sense of sight to “see” the universe in gamma rays. But humans not only have a sense of sight, we also have a sense of sound. If we could listen to the high-energy universe, what would we hear? What does the universe sound like?"
A study of gamma-ray burst GRB 080916C (a massive one, trust me) was analysed and the high-energy photos converted into musical notes, with different photons assigned to different instruments – harp, cello, or piano – based on how likely it was they came from the burst. Visually this might not be the most arresting thing you see today but my word as a concept it’s pretty incredible.
Good work NASA chaps and chapesses, now where do I sign up?
- How can we connect young, diverse talent with the agencies who crave it?
- Ricky Leung’s illustrations capture the quiet moments of everyday life
- Photographer Chris Maggio palpably documents America’s current “emotional climate"
- Seoul-based Shrimp Chung’s dynamic designs are bright and full of impact
- Choreographer and director Holly Blakey on making work for everyone
- Elise By Olsen on stepping down as the world’s youngest editor-in-chief
- Peter Funch has photographed the same people on the same street for nine years
- North reveals full Science Museum rebrand, and reacts to online criticism
- GraphicDesign& outline three projects that successfully support and impact mental wellbeing
- Dove apologises and removes advert showing a black woman becoming a white woman
- Apple announces launch of gender neutral emojis
- “It needed to be functional, a workhorse”: Arket’s in-house team on its brand identity