It was cold, once

What caused the largest glaciation event in Earth’s history, known as ‘snowball Earth’? Geologists and climate scientists have been searching for the answer for years but the root cause of the phenomenon remains elusive. Now,…


ALMA back to our roots

Astronomers have used ALMA to detect a huge mass of glowing stardust in a galaxy seen when the Universe was only four percent of its present age. This galaxy was observed shortly after its formation…


Pan is a weird one

These raw, unprocessed images of Saturn’s tiny moon, Pan, were taken on March 7, 2017, by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. The flyby had a close-approach distance of 24,572 kilometers (15,268 miles). These images are the closest…


Straight from Sentinel

You can follow the Sentinel satellites with the ESA app here. The Sentinel-3A satellite takes us over the Sea of Okhotsk in the Russian Far East on 15 February, where clouds blend with the ice…


Cells in Space

Mammalian cells are optimally adapted to gravity. But what happens in the microgravity environment of space if the earth’s pull disappears? Previously, many experiments exhibited cell changes — after hours or even days in zero…


A heated and expanding debate

It was the early 1990s, and the Carnegie Observatories in Pasadena, California, had emptied out for the Christmas holiday. Wendy Freedman was toiling alone in the library on an immense and thorny problem: the expansion…


Get self-consistent!

In the 1960s, the charismatic physicist Geoffrey Chew espoused a radical vision of the universe, and with it, a new way of doing physics. Theorists of the era were struggling to find order in an…