Powers of Ten

Posted: February 4, 2011 in Multi-Media
Tags: , , , ,

I recently posted a video called “Scale” which compared the size of planetary bodies in our solar system, as if they were the same distance from the Earth as the moon is.  Given that I love seeing things from new perspectives, I enjoyed the video as it helped to give me a sense of scale within our solar system.

Today, I wanted to share another similar video, except that this one gives the viewer a broader scope on the size of things.  By “zooming out” to the universal scale, and then “zooming in” to the atomic scale, the video does an excellent job at portraying what exactly an order of magnitude really means.

(via IEET)

How different does the universe look on small, medium, and large scales? The most famous short science film of its generation, Powers of Ten, originally created in the 1960s, answers that question by offering eye-opening comparisons.

From a picnic blanket near Chicago out past the Virgo Cluster of Galaxies, every ten seconds the film pans out to show a square a factor of ten times larger on each side. The video then reverses, panning back in a factor of ten every two seconds and ends up inside a single proton.


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