Year in Review

  1. Hayabusa2 spacecraft shadow

    How 2019’s space missions explored distant worlds

    Planets and asteroids and Arrokoth, oh my. Space probes had a busy year.

  2. Neutron star merger illustration
    Science & Society

    These science claims from 2019 could be big deals — if true

    Some of this year’s most tantalizing scientific finds aren’t yet ready for a “best of” list.

  3. Spravato
    Health & Medicine

    In 2019, a ketamine-based antidepressant raised hopes and concerns

    Ketamine and related molecules might ease severe depression, but the drugs come with baggage.

  4. Science & Society

    Top 10 stories of 2019: A black hole picture, measles outbreaks, climate protests and more

    Science News' top stories for 2019 include the first picture of a black hole, a quantum computing milestone and CRISPR's first U.S. clinical trials.

  5. Amazon fires

    A year of big numbers startled the world into talking about nature

    One million species are at risk. Three billion birds have been lost. Plus surges in Amazon burning.

  6. Juul packages
    Health & Medicine

    Vaping’s dangers loom large amid more than 50 U.S. deaths this year

    Lung injuries and deaths linked to vaping in 2019 are a sobering indication of the dangers of e-cigarettes as teen use continues to rise.

  7. black hole M87 first image

    2019 brought us the first image of a black hole. A movie may be next

    The Event Horizon Telescope team is gearing up for more black hole discoveries.

  8. partial Denisovan jaw

    Mysterious Denisovans emerged from the shadows in 2019

    Denisovan fossil and DNA finds this year highlighted the enigmatic hominid’s complexity and our own hybrid roots.

  9. youth climate activists

    Record-breaking heat amplified waves of student climate protests in 2019

    While the world experienced record-breaking heat, Greta Thunberg and other activists pushed decision makers to take climate change seriously.

  10. baby with measles rash
    Health & Medicine

    Measles got a foothold in the United States this year and almost didn’t let go

    Areas of low vaccination are blamed for the United States' largest number of measles cases in more than 25 years.

  11. Cas9 protein

    The first U.S. trials in people put CRISPR to the test in 2019

    Trials of the gene editor in people began in the United States this year, a first step toward fulfilling the technology’s medical promise.

  12. Sycamore
    Quantum Physics

    Google claimed quantum supremacy in 2019 — and sparked controversy

    Google’s quantum computer outperformed the most powerful supercomputer on a task, the company reported. But some scientists aren’t fully convinced.