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  • March for Science 2017
  • Cassini and Saturn
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  • Science & the Public

    We went to the March for Science in D.C. Here's what happened

    */ [View the story "The March for Science, Washington, D.C." on Storify]
    04/22/2017 - 19:02 Science & Society
  • Science Ticker

    In ‘grand finale,’ Cassini spacecraft sets off on collision course with Saturn

    View the animation

    Cassini is bravely going where no spacecraft has gone before — between Saturn and its rings.

    The probe, which launched in 1997 and has orbited Saturn since 2004, starts this daring expedition April 22. It will fly through the 2,400-kilometer-wide gap between Saturn and its rings 22 times before plunging into the planet’s atmosphere and burning up on Sept. 15....

    04/21/2017 - 07:00 Planetary Science
  • 50 Years Ago

    50 years ago, continental drift began to gain acceptance

    Drifting theories shake up geology

    Continental drift, a theory often considered amusing but rarely important, seems about to become the focus of a revolution in geology. At the least, it has already split the geological community into those who find the evidence for it “formidable” and those who think it is not yet formidable enough to constitute a proof. — Science News, April 29, 1967...

    04/20/2017 - 09:00 Earth
  • Science & the Public

    March for Science will take scientists’ activism to a new level

    Lab coats aren’t typical garb for mass demonstrations, but they may be on full display April 22. That’s when thousands of scientists, science advocates and science-friendly citizens are expected to flood the streets in the March for Science. Billed by organizers as both a celebration of science and part of a movement to defend science’s vital role in society, the event will include rallies and...

    04/19/2017 - 16:03 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
  • Letters to the Editor

    Readers bugged by wine-spoiling stinkbugs

    Eau de stinkbug

    Stinkbugs accidentally harvested with grapes and fermented during the wine­making process release a pungent stress compound. It takes only three stinkbugs per grape cluster to ruin red wine’s taste, Elizabeth S. Eaton reported in “Red wine has stinkbug threshold” (SN: 3/18/17, p. 5).

    “Does contamination of wine by the bugs’ stress compound pose any health risk to...

    04/19/2017 - 11:49 Animals
  • Feature

    Venomous fish have evolved many ways to inflict pain

    Biologist Leo Smith held an unusual job while an undergraduate student in San Diego. Twice a year, he tagged along on a chartered boat with elderly passengers. The group needed him to identify two particular species of rockfish, the chilipepper rockfish and the California shortspine thornyhead. Once he’d found the red-orange creatures, the passengers would stab themselves in the arms with the...

    04/19/2017 - 11:30 Animals, Evolution
  • Scicurious

    How the house mouse tamed itself

    Got a mouse in the house? Blame yourself. Not your housekeeping, but your species. Humans never intended to live a mouse-friendly life. But as we moved into a settled life, some animals — including a few unassuming mice — settled in, too. In the process, their species prospered — and took over the world.

    The rise and fall of the house mouse’s fortunes followed the stability and...

    04/19/2017 - 07:00 Archaeology, Animals
  • Feature

    There’s still a lot we don’t know about the proton

    Nuclear physicist Evangeline Downie hadn’t planned to study one of the thorniest puzzles of the proton.

    But when opportunity knocked, Downie couldn’t say no. “It’s the proton,” she exclaims. The mysteries that still swirl around this jewel of the subatomic realm were too tantalizing to resist. The plentiful particles make up much of the visible matter in the universe. “We’re made of them...

    04/18/2017 - 08:00 Physics, Particle Physics, Quantum Physics
  • The Science Life

    Early dinosaur relative sported odd mix of bird, crocodile-like traits

    While researching fossils in a museum in 2007, Sterling Nesbitt noticed one partial skeleton that was hard to place. Though the reptile — at the time, unofficially called Teleocrater rhadinus — was thought to be a dinosaur relative, it was an oddball. At about 2 meters long, it was larger than other close relatives, walked on four feet instead of two, and had an unusually long neck and tail....

    04/17/2017 - 14:22 Paleontology, Evolution, Animals