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SCIENCE SUNDAYS: Gamma Ray Bursts: A Brief History of the Most Powerful Explosions in the Universe

Gamma-ray bursts, discovered by accident with classified satellites, were for decades a leading mystery in astrophysics. John M. Horack explores the breakthroughs that followed from the Gamma Ray Observatory (1991) and subsequent experiments, which showed that these are the most powerful explosions in the universe. Very recently, gravitational waves have been detected from these still-mysterious explosions.

John M. Horack is the inaugural Neil Armstrong Chair in Aerospace Policy at The Ohio State University, with tenured, full-professor appointments in the College of Engineering’s Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and the John Glenn College of Public Affairs. He is a 30-year veteran of the spaceflight industry.


Science Sundays is a free public lecture series offered and supported by The Ohio State University College of Arts and Sciences and its sponsoring science centers. Speakers are leading experts in their fields dedicated to making their work interesting and accessible for audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Science Sundays brings leading-edge work directly to the public with lectures covering diverse topics in science, arts and technology that touch our everyday lives.

Each lecture is from 3-4 p.m. at the Ohio Union U.S. Bank Conference Theatre, followed by a free, informal reception from 4-5 p.m. at the Ohio Staters Traditions Room in the Ohio Union.

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