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What Are Gamma-Ray Bursts? by Joshua S. Bloom

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2

INTO THE BELLY OF THE BEAST

There are so many more questions yet to be answered . . . And so I wonder, . . . Are we alone in the universe? What causes gamma-ray bursts? What makes up the missing mass of the universe? What’s in those black holes, anyway? And maybe the biggest question of all: How in the wide world can you add $3 billion in market capitalization simply by adding .com to the end of a name?

—William Jefferson Clinton,

Science and Technology Policy Speech,

California Institute of Technology, 21 January 2000

(forty-nine days before the peak of the NASDAQ stock

exchange and the start of a ten-year bear market)

 

2.1 What Are Gamma-Ray Bursts?

Before the afterglow era, GRBs were essentially defined by observations of their high-energy ...

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