In the Dec. 23 & Jan. 6 SN: Our top stories of 2017, grounded pterosaur hatchlings, protectors of the Dead Sea Scrolls, a counterintuitive metamaterial, neutron star sizing, arrow of time reversed, E. coli in flour and more.
CRASH AND WAVE In a galaxy 130 million light-years away, two neutron stars collided. This year, in the first detection of its kind, observatories caught the resulting gravitational waves and light show (illustrated).
NSF, LIGO, Sonoma State Univ., A. Simonnet
SPACING OUT Quantum communication through space is possible thanks to a Chinese satellite that beams particles of light down to telescopes like this one in Xinglong, China (shown here tracking the satellite’s location with a laser).
VORTEX FOUND Newly observed swirls of electric current in a high-temperature superconductor (shown in an artist’s conception) may indicate that the unusual material fits within the standard theoretical picture.