Sofie Bates

Science Writing Intern, Fall 2019

Sofie Bates is the Fall 2019 science writing intern at Science News. She holds a degree in genetics from the University of California, Davis, as well as a master’s in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Her writing has appeared in Science, Mongabay, Inside Science, and The Mercury News. As a science videographer, she has filmed and edited videos for Inside Science and The Mercury News.

All Stories by Sofie Bates

  1. supernova
    Space

    50 years ago, scientists didn’t know where heavy elements came from

    Five decades ago, scientists suspected ordinary supernovas created heavy elements. Now we know they don’t, but merging neutron stars do.

  2. chewed birch pitch
    Archaeology

    DNA from 5,700-year-old ‘gum’ shows what one ancient woman may have looked like

    From chewed birch pitch, scientists recovered DNA from an ancient woman and her mouth microbes and hazelnut and duck DNA from a meal she’d consumed.

  3. whimbrel
    Earth

    Climate change may be why birds are migrating earlier across the United States

    Birds are migrating earlier in recent decades in the United States, which could disrupt feeding or nesting cycles.

  4. Mesophithirus engeli
    Paleontology

    Licelike insects munched on dinosaur feathers around 100 million years ago

    Fossils in amber push the origin of feather-feeding insects back over 50 million years, a study finds.

  5. ocean glider
    Oceans

    Stealthy robots with microphones could improve maps of ocean noise

    Recordings from underwater microphones on stealthy robotic gliders could create a better “soundscape” of noises throughout the ocean, researchers say.

  6. Rembrandt self-portrait
    Science & Society

    Why Rembrandt and da Vinci may have painted themselves with skewed eyes

    A strongly dominant eye, not an eye disorder, may explain why some great artists painted themselves with one eye turned outward.

  7. devil worm
    Animals

    Devil worm genes hold clues for how some animals survive extreme heat

    Devil worms have many extra copies of genes tied to heat stress and cell death, which may help the critters survive deep underground, a study finds.

  8. brain lesions
    Health & Medicine

    A protein helps disease-causing immune cells invade MS patients’ brains

    Blocking the protein may hinder B cells invading the brain in multiple sclerosis, a study in mice and ‘stand-in’ human brain barriers finds.

  9. Caribou herd
    Life

    Caribou migrate farther than any other known land animal

    Caribou in Alaska and Canada migrate up to 1,350 kilometers round trip each year, a study reports.

  10. baking smells
    Neuroscience

    People who lack olfactory bulbs shouldn’t be able to smell. But some women can

    Some women who appear to lack the brain structures that relay scent messages still have an average sense of smell, and scientists have no idea how.

  11. SunBOT
    Tech

    The first artificial material that follows sunlight may upgrade solar panels

    Rows of tiny stemlike rods called SunBOTs orient themselves toward light, optimizing the solar energy that they can harvest.

  12. scandium molecule diagram
    Chemistry

    Molecular jiggling may explain why some solids shrink when heated

    Scientists may have figured out how scandium fluoride crystals shrink as temperature rises, possibly leading to new insights into superconductors.