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Covering everything about science and technology -- from the outer reaches of space to the tiniest microbes in our bodies -- Science Friday is your source for entertaining and educational stories and activities. Each week, host Ira Flatow interviews scientists and inventors like Sylvia Earle, Elon Musk, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and more.
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Some food has a larger carbon footprint when grown in urban settings than on commercial farms, while for other foods the reverse is true. Also, what’s the difference between wildflowers blooming in the desert each spring, and the rare phenomenon of a “superbloom”? The Carbon Cost Of Urban Gardens And Commercial Farms If you have a home garden, you …
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Some food has a larger carbon footprint when grown in urban settings than on commercial farms, while for other foods the reverse is true. Also, what’s the difference between wildflowers blooming in the desert each spring, and the rare phenomenon of a “superbloom”? The Carbon Cost Of Urban Gardens And Commercial Farms If you have a home garden, you …
  continue reading
 
Last year, almost half of the honeybee colonies in the U.S. died, making it the second deadliest year for honeybees on record. The main culprit wasn’t climate change, starvation, or even pesticides, but a parasite: Varroa destructor. “The name for this parasite is a very Transformer-y sounding name, but … these Varroa destructor mites have earned t…
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Last year, almost half of the honeybee colonies in the U.S. died, making it the second deadliest year for honeybees on record. The main culprit wasn’t climate change, starvation, or even pesticides, but a parasite: Varroa destructor. “The name for this parasite is a very Transformer-y sounding name, but … these Varroa destructor mites have earned t…
  continue reading
 
Half of the cells in the brain are neurons, the other half are glial cells. When scientists first discovered glia over a century ago, they thought that they simply held the neurons together. Their name derives from a Greek word that means glue. In the past decade, researchers have come to understand that glial cells do so much more: They communicat…
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Half of the cells in the brain are neurons, the other half are glial cells. When scientists first discovered glia over a century ago, they thought that they simply held the neurons together. Their name derives from a Greek word that means glue. In the past decade, researchers have come to understand that glial cells do so much more: They communicat…
  continue reading
 
A long-awaited rule from the EPA limits the amounts of six PFAS chemicals allowed in public drinking water supplies. Also, some spiders, beetles, and centipedes spend winter under snow in a layer called the subnivium. Plus, a drumroll for the total solar eclipse. EPA Sets Limits On ‘Forever Chemicals’ In Drinking Water This week, the EPA finalized …
  continue reading
 
A long-awaited rule from the EPA limits the amounts of six PFAS chemicals allowed in public drinking water supplies. Also, some spiders, beetles, and centipedes spend winter under snow in a layer called the subnivium. Plus, a drumroll for the total solar eclipse. EPA Sets Limits On ‘Forever Chemicals’ In Drinking Water This week, the EPA finalized …
  continue reading
 
When a critter meets its end at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, it ends up on a necropsy table—where one of the zoo’s veterinary pathologists will take a very close look at it, in what is the animal version of an autopsy. They’ll poke and prod, searching for clues about the animal’s health. What they do—or don’t—find can be used to improve the care…
  continue reading
 
When a critter meets its end at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, it ends up on a necropsy table—where one of the zoo’s veterinary pathologists will take a very close look at it, in what is the animal version of an autopsy. They’ll poke and prod, searching for clues about the animal’s health. What they do—or don’t—find can be used to improve the care…
  continue reading
 
The Chesapeake Bay produces around 500 million pounds of seafood every year, providing delicious blue crabs, striped bass, oysters, and more to folks up and down the coast. It’s one of the most productive bodies of water in the world, but the bay is constantly in flux due to stressors like overfishing, pollution, and climate change. But scientists …
  continue reading
 
The Chesapeake Bay produces around 500 million pounds of seafood every year, providing delicious blue crabs, striped bass, oysters, and more to folks up and down the coast. It’s one of the most productive bodies of water in the world, but the bay is constantly in flux due to stressors like overfishing, pollution, and climate change. But scientists …
  continue reading
 
Springtime is a great reminder of just how beautiful trees can be. Cherry blossoms and magnolias put on a gorgeous show, but trees aren’t just there to look good. They play an important role in absorbing heat, sequestering carbon dioxide, and preventing soil erosion. Dr. Mike Alonzo, assistant professor of environmental science at American Universi…
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Springtime is a great reminder of just how beautiful trees can be. Cherry blossoms and magnolias put on a gorgeous show, but trees aren’t just there to look good. They play an important role in absorbing heat, sequestering carbon dioxide, and preventing soil erosion. Dr. Mike Alonzo, assistant professor of environmental science at American Universi…
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Dr. Eric Topol discusses the promise of “opportunistic” AI, using medical scans for unintended diagnostic purposes. Also, a study in mice found that the brain tags new memories through a “sharp wave ripple” mechanism that then repeats during sleep. How AI Could Predict Heart Disease From Chest X-Rays Research on medical uses for artificial intellig…
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Dr. Eric Topol discusses the promise of “opportunistic” AI, using medical scans for unintended diagnostic purposes. Also, a study in mice found that the brain tags new memories through a “sharp wave ripple” mechanism that then repeats during sleep. How AI Could Predict Heart Disease From Chest X-Rays Research on medical uses for artificial intellig…
  continue reading
 
A Massachusetts man who received a kidney from a genetically modified pig is recovering well. Also, on April 8, a total solar eclipse will plunge parts of North America into darkness. Scientists answer the questions you asked. Recipient Of Pig Kidney Transplant Leaves The Hospital Last month, Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston announced that …
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A Massachusetts man who received a kidney from a genetically modified pig is recovering well. Also, on April 8, a total solar eclipse will plunge parts of North America into darkness. Scientists answer the questions you asked. Recipient Of Pig Kidney Transplant Leaves The Hospital Last month, Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston announced that …
  continue reading
 
When it comes to the eventual end of our universe, cosmologists have a few classic theories: the Big Crunch, where the universe reverses its expansion and contracts again, setting the stars themselves on fire in the process. Or the Big Rip, where the universe expands forever—but in a fundamentally unstable way that tears matter itself apart. Or it …
  continue reading
 
When it comes to the eventual end of our universe, cosmologists have a few classic theories: the Big Crunch, where the universe reverses its expansion and contracts again, setting the stars themselves on fire in the process. Or the Big Rip, where the universe expands forever—but in a fundamentally unstable way that tears matter itself apart. Or it …
  continue reading
 
By the time researchers found the dead whale on a Martha’s Vineyard beach, her jet-black skin was pockmarked by hungry seagulls, her baleen had been dislodged from her mouth, and thin rope was wrapped tightly—as it had been for 17 months—around the most narrow part of her tail. Researchers quickly learned this was a 12-ton, 3-year-old female known …
  continue reading
 
By the time researchers found the dead whale on a Martha’s Vineyard beach, her jet-black skin was pockmarked by hungry seagulls, her baleen had been dislodged from her mouth, and thin rope was wrapped tightly—as it had been for 17 months—around the most narrow part of her tail. Researchers quickly learned this was a 12-ton, 3-year-old female known …
  continue reading
 
In the past few years pharmaceutical companies have developed a string of new Alzheimer’s drugs called anti-amyloids, which target amyloid plaques in patients’ brains. These plaques are one of the key biomarkers of the disease. The first of these drugs, Aduhelm, was approved by the FDA in 2021 amid enormous controversy. The FDA approved the drug de…
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In the past few years pharmaceutical companies have developed a string of new Alzheimer’s drugs called anti-amyloids, which target amyloid plaques in patients’ brains. These plaques are one of the key biomarkers of the disease. The first of these drugs, Aduhelm, was approved by the FDA in 2021 amid enormous controversy. The FDA approved the drug de…
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Particle accelerators, nanofibers, and solar physics: The science advisor for the Netflix adaptation breaks down the physics in the show. Also, in her new book, Jessica J. Lee looks at how humans have moved plants around the globe–and how our migrations are intertwined with theirs. How ‘3 Body Problem’ Explores The Laws Of Physics Last week, Netfli…
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