Topic: science

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Postcards from Saturn: The incredible images that Cassini sent home

For over a decade, Cassini has orbited around Saturn 294 times, collected more than 600 GB of data, visited over a dozen moons and discovered at least seven new ones. It has sent over 400,000 images back home. Skun...

Cassini Burns Into Saturn, a grand finale to a 20 year mission

After two decades in space, NASA's Cassini spacecraft is nearing the end of its remarkable journey of exploration. Having expended almost every bit of the rocket propellant it carried to Saturn, operators are delibera...

Secrets of Schooling: Investigating the collective behavior of fish

Collective behavior is embodied in swarms of insects, flocks of birds, herds of antelope, and schools of fish. In each of these cases, individuals move through their environment and respond to threats and opportunitie...

Where do new words come from? – TED Ed

There are over 170,000 words currently in use in the English language. Yet every year, about a thousand new words are added to the Oxford English Dictionary. Where do they come from, and how do they make it into our e...

Why are museum collections so important? Sir David Attenborough explains

Museums like the American Museum of Natural History may, at first, seem to be sharing their entire scientific collections in the public displays of their grand halls, but when scientists need specimens for research, t...

Nautilus Live surprises a Translucent Cockatoo Squid

During an August 2017 exploration of Quinault Canyon off the coast of Washington State, Exploration Vessel (E/V) Nautilus explorers witnessed a translucent cockatoo squid for just over a minute. Watch video of the enc...

The Kresling-Pattern and our origami world

Biruta Kresling is a Paris-based architect and independant researcher on folded structures—specifically how nature folds and unfolds tree leaves, tortoise shell bamboo, turbinate mollusk shells, the air sac of the h...

UCLA’s Hummingbird Whisperer

Meet UCLA assistant researcher Melanie Barboni, who has become well known for the tiny birds that visit her feeders outside of a Department of Earth, Planetary and Space Sciences window. She's known on campus as The H...

Why America still uses Fahrenheit

Since I've moved to the US in 2010, there's one thing that I still don't fully understand: the imperial system. Virtually every country on earth uses Celsius but America has yet to follow. Although it might not seem l...

What does the word ‘theory’ mean in science?

There’s an important difference between a scientific theory and the fanciful theories of an imaginative raconteur, and this quirk of semantics can lead to an all-too-common misconception. In general conversation, a ‘t...

Three quarters of deep-sea animals are bioluminescent

Thanks to advancing camera technology and diligent scientific research, scientists have learned that bioluminescence is not the unusual attribute that we thought it was. Researchers Séverine Martini and Steven H. D. H...

Demonstrations of the Coanda Effect

Fluids flowing near a surface tend to follow the shape of the surface. Using Schlieren optics, we can see this behavior. It is known as the Coanda Effect and its explanation depends on viscosity, the frictional forces...

Catching fog to help combat Peru’s water shortage

Along the foggy coasts of Peru, where millions of people don't have access to clean water, Abel Cruz Gutiérrez helps catch 200 to 350 liters (around 50 to 100 gallons) of water per day with each 'fog catcher' he sets ...

Eclipses Throughout Our Universe – Out There

An exercise in cosmic geometry. A reminder that we live on one sphere among many, all moving to the laws of Kepler, Newton and Einstein. The moon’s orbit around the Earth is slightly tilted, so the shadow of the new m...

Why Is The Very Hungry Caterpillar So Dang Hungry?

Monarchs are ravenous for milkweed. California pipevine swallowtail caterpillars want lots of pipevine. Why are these very hungry caterpillars so hungry? “Caterpillars have to store up incredible reserves of prote...

How to watch a total or partial solar eclipse

On Monday, August 21st, 2017, sky gazers can witness a total or partial solar eclipse—weather-permitting and depending on their location on the planet—as it traverses North America. There's been a lot of excitement in...

What counts as a mountain?

Mountains: super tall, rocky landforms that rise high above the surrounding environment, much higher than hills. We might draw one as a single peak like Mount Fuji, or as a zig zag line of peaks representing a mountai...

Humphry Davy’s Potassium Volcano

Humphry Davy is one of the best know men of science of the nineteenth century. He isolated nine different chemical elements, was the first person to inhale nitrous oxide and invented the miner's safety lamp known as t...

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