Is it Wrong to Fly? – Glad You Asked S1

This is me in China in 1996, on a trip to see where my family came from.That trip was the first time that I rode in an airplane,and the first time that I got stuck in an airport.We’ve been waiting here for 9 hours now! Air travel is one of the great privileges of living […]

Will We Ever Cure Breast Cancer?

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer diagnosed in women in the United States, right behind skin cancer. While it largely affects women, it can also occur in men. Fortunately, thanks to awareness, early detection, and research, survival rates have increased but there’s still a lot we’re learning. So how far have we come […]

Artificial Leaf Technology Could One Day Power Our World

I’ve got some Big Green News for you: scientists at the University of Waterloo in Canada have come up with a new design for an artificial leaf. That means a whole new way of making cleaner burning fuels using a process that mimics photosynthesis! But…what’s an artificial leaf? And could it really help us move […]

Carbon Dioxide Is Not the Worst Greenhouse Gas, Meet SF6

If we’re going to stave off the worst impacts of climate change, we’re going to have to break our dependency on greenhouse gas emitting energy sources like fossil fuels. But could a switch to more renewable sources like wind and solar power actually emit more of the most potent greenhouse gas there is? The gas […]

A New Theory Reveals Why Tabby’s Star Looks So Bizarre

There’s an unsolved mystery out there in space. One of many, to be sure, but this is one that some people really want to blame on aliens because we haven’t had a stronger explanation. I’m talking about Boyajian’s star, or KIC 8462852 and some new observations that may have just given us the information we […]

Could Ultracapacitors Realize Their Full Potential…With Laxatives?

Supercapacitors present an amazing opportunity to move away from batteries and into a world where almost instant charging is the norm. But their drawbacks mean we can’t use them widely…yet. Experiments with a new class of materials that are related to soap and laxatives (yes, laxatives) could bring us one step closer to a world […]

NASA’s Challenge to 3D Print Future Habitats on Mars

Right now, you’re looking at renderings of human settlements on Mars. These designs were part of NASA’s 3D Printed Habitat Challenge, a 4-year long competition aimed at engineering homes for another planet. The brightest architects and engineers from across the globe put their skills to the test, culminating this year in a nail-biting finale. Two […]

This goofy bird vs. the fossil fuel industry

These people are on a pilgrimage. They’re in one of the most remote parts of the United States, to see something spectacular that happens every year. An icon of the American West. This is a sage grouse. And this is its mating dance. The sage grouse once numbered in the millions across this entire region. […]

This Fluoride Battery Could Mean Phone Batteries That Last a Week

Lithium ion batteries changed our world by delivering us hours of energy in a small lightweight package. But ya know what, my phone battery only lasts a day and THAT’S NOT ENOUGH! I NEED MORE!!! Luckily, scientists are already on it, and have been working for decades on a new battery design that could could […]

This invention could fix our unreliable power grid

This is Larry. He’s a squirrel. He likes nuts. In 2019, he went into an electric box in Kettering, Ohio. Is this a nut? It was not a nut. He broke the electric box. And caused a blackout for 20,000 people. Larry isn’t alone. Squirrels do this all the time. Here’s a map of their […]