View the video
Zoom in on a soap bubble just before it bursts and brilliant, complex patterns emerge. Shimmery rainbows appear in thicker portions of the soap film, while clusters of dark spots appear in the thinnest regions.
The thickness of the soap film determines the color seen. Light rays that reflect off of the top and bottom of the film combine to amplify particular...
The Earth is always moving beneath our feet. What seems permanent, still and solid is in fact constantly creeping. It’s easy to forget that as we race through our busy days, measuring time with digital clocks rather than the achingly slow beat of rock.01/11/2017 - 12:18 Earth, Technology, Science & Society
In "Evidence falls into place for once and future supercontinents", contributing correspondent Alexandra Witze explores the long-...
Letters to the Editor
Prehistoric tweet01/11/2017 - 12:15 Paleontology, Particle Physics, Health
Researchers uncovered the fossilized voice box, called a syrinx, of an ancient bird that lived 68 million to 66 million years ago. The bird may have sounded like a honking duck, Meghan Rosen reported in “Ancient avian voice box unearthed” (SN: 11/12/16, p. 7).
Online reader David Spector wondered if researchers could 3-D print the syrinx to replicate the ancient...
Look at any map of the Atlantic Ocean, and you might feel the urge to slide South America and Africa together. The two continents just beg to nestle next to each other, with Brazil’s bulge locking into West Africa’s dimple. That visible clue, along with several others, prompted Alfred Wegener to propose over a century ago that the continents had once been joined in a single enormous landmass....
Everybody wants more juice from their batteries. Smartphones and laptops always need recharging. Electric car drivers must carefully plan their routes to avoid being stranded far from a charging station. Anyone who struggles with a tangle of chargers every night would prefer a battery that can last for weeks or months.
For researchers who specialize in batteries, though, the drive for a...