Gravity And Me: The Force That Shapes Our Lives

Confirmed for BBC Four on 28 March at 9pm to 10.30pm

Ep 1/1

Tuesday 28 March

9.00pm-10.30pm

BBC FOUR

NEW
In this BBC Four 90-minute special, physics professor Jim Al-Khalili investigates the amazing science of gravity.

A fundamental force of nature, gravity shapes our entire universe. It sculpts galaxies and warps space and time. But gravity’s strange powers also affect our daily lives in the most unexpected ways. This is a story with surprises in store for Jim himself. In telling the story of gravity, his own understanding of the nature of reality comes to be challenged.

The science of gravity includes the greatest advances in physics, and in this BBC Four film Jim recreates groundbreaking experiments, including the moment when the Italian genius Galileo first worked out how to measure gravity.  He investigates the latest breakthrough - 'gravity waves' - ripples in the vast emptiness of space, and finds out from astronauts what it’s like to live without gravity.

But gravity also directly affects all of us very personally, making a difference to our weight, height, posture and even the rate at which we age. With the help of volunteers and scientists, Jim sets out to find where in Britain gravity is weakest and so where we weigh the least. He also helps design a smartphone app that volunteers use to demonstrate how gravity affects time and makes us age at slightly different rates.

Finally, Jim discovers that, despite incredible progress, gravity still has many secrets to unveil.

Charlotte.Turner@bbc.co.uk