The Bean Pot

Dr. Govind Menon: Black Holes, Plastics, and STEM

February 27, 2020 Adam Drinkwater Season 1 Episode 7
The Bean Pot
Dr. Govind Menon: Black Holes, Plastics, and STEM
Chapters
The Bean Pot
Dr. Govind Menon: Black Holes, Plastics, and STEM
Feb 27, 2020 Season 1 Episode 7
Adam Drinkwater

It’s hard for me to imagine a world where everyone believes the earth is basically shaped like a snow globe. That water is trapped above a dome, and it rains when windows open in the sky to let water in. That the lights in the sky rotate like a wheel. That the earth is flat and has corners. These ideas seem absurd to us modern humans thanks in part to civilizations like the Babylonians, Egyptians, Greeks, and Chinese who developed the early ideas that led to Astronomy.

New ideas are continually changing the way we understand our role on this planet and our place in the universe. Take for instance the speed of light. Light travels at about 186,000 mi/s. That means we can measure how far light will travel in a minute, a month, or a year. It also means that if a star is 55 million light years away, it has taken 55 million years for the light from that star to reach us. Which also means anyone from that solar system would be seeing the light from our sun just how it appeared 55 million years ago. Think about that for a minute.

I bring up that specific number because that’s the distance to the first black hole ever imaged. My friend Dr Govind Menon is an expert in Black Hole Astrophysics. He is the Director of the School of Science and Technology, at TROY University, and he chairs the department of chemistry and physics . In this interview We talk about his path into math and physics. He helps me work through big concepts about black holes and galaxies. We talk about how our solar system was formed, and why scientists think our sun is a second generation star. We talk about some of the exciting plans the university has for plastics research. We wrap up with some very helpful suggestions for parents who are interested STEM resources for their own kids.

I owe much of my own interest in science and space to a teacher who was much like Govind. He was the coolest teacher I ever had, who made learning science fun and interesting. This podcast is dedicated to the memory of John Eliason, Jr., or Mr. “E” who died in 2004. He was an inspiration to me, and I’m thankful I had the opportunity to learn from him.

I hope you learn something from this interview, and I hope you enjoy my conversation with Dr. Govind Menon.

Find more about Dr. Govind Menon http://spectrum.troy.edu/gmenon/
Troy University receives $3.2 million grant for Center for Materials and Manufacturing Sciences
Testimony before US House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
Other Helpful Links: click here

Visit me at adamdrinkwater.comInstagramTwitterPatreon

Show Notes

It’s hard for me to imagine a world where everyone believes the earth is basically shaped like a snow globe. That water is trapped above a dome, and it rains when windows open in the sky to let water in. That the lights in the sky rotate like a wheel. That the earth is flat and has corners. These ideas seem absurd to us modern humans thanks in part to civilizations like the Babylonians, Egyptians, Greeks, and Chinese who developed the early ideas that led to Astronomy.

New ideas are continually changing the way we understand our role on this planet and our place in the universe. Take for instance the speed of light. Light travels at about 186,000 mi/s. That means we can measure how far light will travel in a minute, a month, or a year. It also means that if a star is 55 million light years away, it has taken 55 million years for the light from that star to reach us. Which also means anyone from that solar system would be seeing the light from our sun just how it appeared 55 million years ago. Think about that for a minute.

I bring up that specific number because that’s the distance to the first black hole ever imaged. My friend Dr Govind Menon is an expert in Black Hole Astrophysics. He is the Director of the School of Science and Technology, at TROY University, and he chairs the department of chemistry and physics . In this interview We talk about his path into math and physics. He helps me work through big concepts about black holes and galaxies. We talk about how our solar system was formed, and why scientists think our sun is a second generation star. We talk about some of the exciting plans the university has for plastics research. We wrap up with some very helpful suggestions for parents who are interested STEM resources for their own kids.

I owe much of my own interest in science and space to a teacher who was much like Govind. He was the coolest teacher I ever had, who made learning science fun and interesting. This podcast is dedicated to the memory of John Eliason, Jr., or Mr. “E” who died in 2004. He was an inspiration to me, and I’m thankful I had the opportunity to learn from him.

I hope you learn something from this interview, and I hope you enjoy my conversation with Dr. Govind Menon.

Find more about Dr. Govind Menon http://spectrum.troy.edu/gmenon/
Troy University receives $3.2 million grant for Center for Materials and Manufacturing Sciences
Testimony before US House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
Other Helpful Links: click here

Visit me at adamdrinkwater.comInstagramTwitterPatreon

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/adamdrinkwater)