Science/Nature

A look inside Mars

Image copyright James Tuttle Keane (Caltech) The InSight mission, launched today from California’s Vandenburg Air Force Base, is now on a six month cruise to Mars. It is expected to arrive in November, but what will it find? Mars may appear to be getting crowded, thanks to its growing robotic population, so why send another […]

Science/Nature

Extreme weather ‘potentially catastrophic’ for bats

Image copyright Francisco AmorimImage caption Bats at a roost in Portugal Extreme weather appears to be disrupting the life cycle of Europe’s bats. Scientists were alarmed to find that some bats in Portugal skipped winter hibernation altogether this year while others gave birth early. The findings add to growing fears that rising temperatures are having […]

Science/Nature

Making the desert sand bloom

Norwegian scientists have developed a treatment that can turn desert sand into farmland. During a trial in United Arab Emirates the “nanoclay” halved the amount of water needed to grow crops. Part of our series Taking the Temperature, which focuses on the battle against climate change and the people and ideas making a difference. Video […]

Science/Nature

Ancestral remains ‘people not objects’

Image copyright Science Photo Library Anthropology needs to take a more humanising approach to its examination of ancestral remains. This is the recommendation of a North American collective of scientists. Currently, some palaeogenomic (ancient DNA) research is conducted using human remains that are held in museum collections. In certain cases, these are the disinterred ancestors […]

Science/Nature

Kew Gardens: World’s largest glasshouse reopens

Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionKew Gardens will reopen the world’s largest Victorian glasshouse London’s Kew Gardens is to reopen its Temperate House – the world’s largest Victorian glasshouse – after a five-year restoration. For the first time in its history, the Grade I-listed structure was “stripped back to bare metal” and […]

Science/Nature

How birds got their beaks – new fossil evidence

Image copyright Michael Hanson/Bhart-Anjan Bhullar Scientists have pieced together the skull of a strange ancient bird, revealing a primitive beak lined with teeth. The “transitional” bird sheds light on a pivotal point in the pathway from dinosaurs to modern birds. Ichthyornis dispar lived in North America about 86 million years ago. The seagull-sized bird had […]

Science/Nature

Prof Stephen Hawking’s multiverse finale

Prof Stephen Hawking’s final research paper suggests that our Universe may be one of many similar to our own. The theory resolves a cosmic paradox of the late physicist’s own making. It also points a way forward for astronomers to find evidence of the existence of parallel universes. The study was submitted to the Journal […]