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  • illustration of dinosaur doomsday
  • Greenland shark
  • Rudi Mandl
Your search has returned 52 articles:
  • Editor's Note

    Launch your imagination with Science News stories

    Imagine for a moment that you lived on another planet. Not Tatooine, Trantor or another fictional orb, but a real-deal planet circling a star somewhere in our real-deal galaxy. What would your world look like? Would there be a rocky surface? An atmosphere? How long would a day last? How about a year? What special physiology might you need to survive there? There’s no single scenario, of course...

    06/14/2017 - 10:57 Science & Society
  • Editor's Note

    Some topics call for science reporting from many angles

    I’m warning you up front. There’s heartbreak in this issue. In two stories, Science News writers investigate new facets of the ongoing opioid epidemic in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 91 Americans die on average each day from opioid overdoses, quadruple the deaths from opioid overdoses in 1999. Today, nearly half of those deaths involve...

    05/31/2017 - 16:00 Health, Science & Society
  • Editor's Note

    March highlights questions about benefits of science

    On April 22, tens of thousands of scientists and science enthusiasts marched for science in Washington, D.C., and in other cities around the globe. Many participants expressed overtly political messages, but, as Science News reported live via Twitter from the National Mall, many marchers also focused on how much they value science. People gathered en masse in part to recognize science as a...

    05/03/2017 - 11:30 Science & Society
  • Editor's Note

    Scientists find amazement in what’s most familiar

    For her 7th birthday, my niece received a very special gift — a compound light microscope with a set of slides. As soon as we got it out of the package, she became a diligent young investigator, studying the leg of a fly, dog cardiac muscle and onion epidermal cells. But it wasn’t the prepared slides that captivated her most. She wanted to investigate more familiar things. We plucked hairs...

    04/19/2017 - 11:50 Particle Physics, Animals
  • Editor's Note

    If there are curious young minds, science will survive

    One evening last month at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C., 40 high school seniors dressed in formal wear and nibbling hors d’oeuvres showed off their scientific research to a crowd of more than 500 people. Positioned at their posters, the students enthusiastically described their efforts to improve quadcopter flight control, study implicit bias and gender stereotypes, and...

    04/05/2017 - 10:40 Science & Society
  • Editor's Note

    Science’s questions rarely have clear, easy answers

    There are few simple answers in science. Even seemingly straightforward questions, when probed by people in search of proof, lead to more questions. Those questions lead to nuances, layers of complexity and, more often than we might expect, conclusions that contradict initial intuition.

    In the 1990s, researchers asking “How do we fight oxygen-hungry cancer cells?” offered an obvious...

    02/22/2017 - 12:47 Science & Society
  • Editor's Note

    Supernova story continues, just like science journalism

    Some stories are just too good to let go. Ian Shelton first spotted supernova 1987A on the evening of Monday, February 23, 1987. A notice announcing the discovery appeared in the issue of Science News that went to the printer that Wednesday — and articles followed in each of the next three issues, with more than a dozen stories about the stellar explosion over the course of the year. “It’s...

    02/08/2017 - 12:45 Astronomy
  • Feature

    Devastation detectives try to solve dinosaur disappearance

    Below the shimmering turquoise waters of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula lies the scene of a prehistoric mass murder. In a geologic instant, most animal and plant species perished. Drilling through hundreds of meters of rock, investigators have finally reached the footprint left by the accused: Earth’s most notorious space rock impact, Chicxulub. The dinosaur killer.

    Sleuthing scientists are...

    01/25/2017 - 14:30 Earth, Paleontology
  • News

    Study ranks Greenland shark as longest-lived vertebrate

    The latest in birthday science proposes that the vertebrate with the longest life span yet measured is the mysterious Greenland shark.

    Dating based on forms of carbon found in sharks’ eye lenses suggests that a large female Somniosus microcephalus was about 392 years old (give or take 120 years) when she died, says marine biologist Julius Nielsen of University of Copenhagen. Even with...

    08/11/2016 - 14:00 Animals, Conservation
  • Context

    The amateur who helped Einstein see the light

    Generally speaking, general relativity is not the sort of physics that offers much fodder for amateurs. Its mathematical intricacies were too much even for Einstein at first. He struggled for years to find the equations that showed how general relativity could describe gravity, finally succeeding in 1915.

    But a couple of decades later, an eccentric amateur noticed a consequence of...

    10/01/2015 - 06:00 History of Science