All Stories

  1. An image of a rainbow tie dye background with two frogs, ants, fish and coral overlays.

    The Sonoran Desert toad can alter your mind — it’s not the only animal

    Their psychedelic and other potentially mind-bending compounds didn't evolve to give people a trip.

  2. A photo of a man at an electric vehicle charging station with a black car parked next to him.

    There’s good and bad news with California’s electric vehicle program

    The electric vehicle program is reducing carbon dioxide emissions but also shifting the pollution burden to the state’s most disadvantaged communities.

  3. Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin on the moon in a spacesuit

    50 years ago, cosmic rays may have caused Apollo astronauts to see lights

    Apollo astronauts reported seeing flashes of light where there were none. Fifty years later, the flashes still mess with modern astronauts’ vision.

  4. A photo looking into a drill hole in West Antarctica. White ice is seen on the edges of the frame which turns into a gradient of light blue to dark blue in the center circle of the image.

    In one lake deep under Antarctica’s ice, microbes feast on ancient carbon

    Microorganisms living in a lake beneath the ice sheet in West Antarctica feed on ocean carbon that was deposited 6,000 years ago.

  5. illustration of Megacerops kuwagatarhinus with small, striped mammals in the foreground and background

    ‘Thunder beast’ fossils show how some mammals might have gotten big

    Rhinolike mammals called brontotheres repeatedly evolved into bigger and smaller species, a fossil analysis shows. The bigger ones won out over time.

  6. A shiver of scalloped hammerhead sharks swim near the surface, in this underwater photograph. These endotherms may thermoregulate by closing their gills as they go deeper.

    Why some hammerhead sharks seem to ‘hold their breath’ during dives

    Scalloped hammerhead sharks in Hawaii seem to limit the use of their gills during deep dives to prevent losing heat to their surroundings.

  7. An image showing multiple galaxies and stars in deep space. An inset closeup shows the supernova Refsdal as a bright smudge

    A reappearing supernova offers a new measure of the universe’s expansion

    Supernova Refsdal blew up once but burst into view at least five times. The timing of its appearances provides clues to how fast the universe is growing.

  8. A photo of someone in a blue jacket with their upper body through the sunroof of a car. There is a ring of several small microphones surrounding them.

    Science explains why shouting into the wind seems futile

    Sending a sound upwind, against the flow of air, makes the sound louder due to an acoustical effect called convective amplification. Sound sent downwind is quieter.

  9. photo of a brain sensor

    A flower-shaped soft robot could make brain monitoring less invasive

    Once inserted in the skull, the device unfurls flexible sensors that can monitor the brain's electrical activity less invasively than current methods.

  10. Illustration of an overhead view of people walking in lines that form the shape of the human DNA double-helix, to represent a single "pangenome".

    The new human pangenome could help unveil the biology of everyone

    The deciphered DNA includes never-before-explored parts of the genome and better represents the genetic diversity of all humans.

  11. A lightning bolt piercing smoke and lava from a volcanic eruption

    Ancient giant eruptions may have seeded nitrogen needed for life

    A new study bolsters the idea that on the young Earth volcanic lightning may have provided some materials that made it possible for life to emerge.

  12. A wide shot photo of San Francisco International Airport with planes at several gates and runways visible in the distance.
    Health & Medicine

    San Francisco airport will monitor plane waste for COVID-19 variants

    The airport, working with the CDC and a biotech company, will be the first in the United States to regularly test plane sewage.