All Stories

  1. Satellite image of the Hunga-Tonga-Hunga-Ha'apai volcano eruption

    What the Tonga volcano’s past tells us about what to expect next

    The January 15 eruption of a Tongan volcano triggered atmospheric shock waves and a rare volcanic tsunami; its history suggests it may not be done.

  2. illustration of a Cow-like supernova with yellow hues

    An X-ray glow suggests black holes or neutron stars fuel weird cosmic ‘cows’

    With the brightest X-ray glow of a new class of exploding stars, cosmic oddity AT2020mrf boosts evidence of these mysterious blasts’ power source.

  3. a kayaker paddles down a street as it rains in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia

    Intense drought or flash floods can shock the global economy

    Rainfall extremes have powerful impacts on the global economy, affecting the manufacturing and services sectors more than agriculture.

  4. image of parents laying on either side of an infant and kissing the infant

    Babies may use saliva sharing to figure out relationships

    Actions like sharing bites of food or kissing may cue young children into close bonds, a new study suggests.

  5. aerial photo of a fin whale breaching the ocean surface with its mouth open

    A ‘trapdoor’ made of muscle and fat helps fin whales eat without choking

    An “oral plug” may explain how lunge-feeding fin whales don’t choke and drown as they fill their mouths with prey and water while eating.

  6. an illustration of ancient people gathered around a pot drinking from long straws

    Gold and silver tubes in a Russian museum are the oldest known drinking straws

    Long metal tubes enabled communal beer drinking more than 5,000 years ago, scientists say.

  7. black and white image of a Paratuposa placentis beetle

    These tiny beetles fly fast thanks to wing bristles and a weird, wide stroke

    Minuscule featherwing beetles have evolved a unique way of flying that lets them match the speed of beetles three times as big.

  8. sawdust

    A disinfectant made from sawdust mows down deadly microbes

    Antimicrobial molecules found in wood waste could be used to make more sustainable, greener disinfectants.

  9. A pyroclastic flow, or an avalanche of gas, ash and rock, flowing down a volcano

    Volcanic avalanches of rock and gas may be more destructive than previously thought

    Pressures within pyroclastic flows may be as much as three times as great as observations had suggested.

  10. a picture of an ancient Indian text

    Take an online journey through the history of math

    ‘History of Mathematics’ explores the origins of arithmetic, algebra, geometry and more.

  11. photo of Kristine Bohmann using a vacuum to collect air samples near a sloth hanging from a tree

    Scientists vacuumed animal DNA out of thin air for the first time

    The ability to sniff out animals’ airborne genetic material has been on researchers’ wish list for over a decade.

  12. image of a woman smelling an orange

    A genetic analysis hints at why COVID-19 can mess with smell

    People with some genetic variants close to smell-related genes had an 11 percent higher risk of losing their sense of taste or smell.