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WOMBAT SCAT   Wombats are stout marsupials, native to Australia. They use their cubelike droppings to mark their territory.

Le Grand K

SPECIAL K  Carefully secured under bell jars, a metal cylinder known as Le Grand K defines the kilogram. Now, scientists are doing away with that benchmark, instead relying on a fundamental constant, the Planck constant, to define the kilogram.  

male flowers and bees

FEED THE BEES  Cannabis depends on wind for pollination, but it turns out bees are raiding male flowers (shown) in hemp fields to forage for pollen for babyfood.

illustration of two CubeSats

BOLDLY GOING  Two briefcase-sized satellites, shown side by side in this artist’s rendering, will become the first tiny spacecraft to fly by Mars and act as communications relays for a lander.

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