Earth

Pure Science Specials Magnetic Storm - BBC documentary 2014

Broadcast (2010) Earth teems with a staggering variety of animals, including 9,000 kinds of birds, 28,000 types of fish and more than 350,000 species of beetles. What explains this explosion of living creatures, 1.4 million different species discovered so far, with perhaps another 50 million to go? The source of life's endless forms was a mystery until Charles Darwin's revolutionary idea of natural selection, which he showed could help explain the gradual development of life on Earth. But Darwin's radical insights raised as many questions as they answered.

For two hours in July of 1969, the world stood still as man landed and walked on the moon. Tens of millions watched it happen, on blurry black and white television, beamed back a quarter million miles across the heavens. For the first time in human history, all mankind could observe a profound discovery as it happened.

Broadcast 2010. Famed for their ability to inflict Armageddon from outer space, asteroids are now revealing the secrets of how they are responsible for both life and death on our planet. Armed with an array of powerful telescopes, scientists are finding up to 3000 new asteroids every night. And some are heading our way. But astronomers have discovered that it's not the giant rocks that are the greatest danger - it's the small asteroids that pose a more immediate threat to Earth.

Broadcast (1998) Geologists who study the Earth seek to understand the processes that have shaped our planet throughout its history, creating the world we see around us. To do so they must reconstruct the Earth's past. How can we tell what happened in distant epochs when there were no witnesses to record events? Around 200 years ago scientists first began to realize that clues to the past lay all around them, in the rocks that make up the Earth's surface. As they learnt how to read these rocks, they began a journey back through time which geologists continue to this day. (www.youtube.com)

Broadcast (2002) As we go through our lives driving cars, exploring the Internet, studying the world around us it is hard to imagine that we're related to Earth's other animals. It's even a stretch to see what connects us with the rest of the chordates, a group of about 50,000 species including the vertebrates like fish, amphibians, reptiles and birds, mammals and ourselves. But indeed, all chordates, from the worm-like amphioxus to Homo sapiens have three common features.

Venture on an epic quest to discover the invisible forces and occurrences that sustain life on this planet and - for the first time - see these processes in action. (www.youtube.com)

Broadcast (1998) What drives the tectonic plates as they glide over the Earth's surface? Searching for an answer scientists have probed our planet to its core. In this realm of unimaginably high temperatures and pressures matter takes on new forms and solid rock can behave like a fluid. As vast masses of rock flow slowly within the Earth, so the surface moves and changes. Gigantic plumes of hot material can well up from the depths, triggering huge volcanic eruptions and causing the crust to bulge and break. The result may be the splitting of a continent. (www.youtube.com)

The events that led to the formation of our solar system have for centuries been shrouded in mystery. Advances in astronomical technology have allowed scientists to uncover the truth behind the birth of our mighty solar system. (www.youtube.com)

The moon is such a familiar presence in the sky that most of us take it for granted. But what if it wasn't where it is now? How would that affect life on earth?

Space scientist and lunar fanatic Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock explores our intimate relationship with the moon. Besides orchestrating the tides, the moon dictates the length of a day, the rhythm of the seasons and the very stability of our planet.

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