Science News

Science newspaper is a magazine specializing in Science topics.

Articles from Vol. 151, No. 9, March 1

51 Pegasi: A Star without a Planet?
In the hearts and minds of many astronomers, the universe teems with stars executing tiny pirouettes, pulled to and fro by unseen planets. That vision, buoyed by the indirect detection of at least eight planets orbiting sunlike stars, may prove correct,...
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A New World of Pollutant Effects
Over the past 4 years, a newly recognized environmental threat to health and reproduction has mushroomed into public prominence. Bearing the clumsy moniker "endocrine disrupters," these pollutants-including PCBs, DDT-breakdown products, dioxins, and...
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Biology's Periodic Table
A few years ago, as the pace of gene discovery quickened, scientists and journalists alike began to joke about gene-of-the-week stories. That notion seems almost quaint, now that whole genomes, the complete collection of an organism's genes, are being...
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Clockwork Sex of Coral Reef Algae
Birds and bees do it-and we know in fairly intimate detail how they do it-but sexual reproduction among algae is often a secretive, little-studied affair. Cryptogams, they have been called, because of their hidden sex lives. Now, a chance observation...
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Dr. Seekers' Future Imperfect: A Sneak Preview at What Science Will Really Look like in 25 Years
Hello, and welcome to my laboratory. I'm Dr. Seeker, but please call me Grant. Excuse the haze around here. You get used to it in this line of research. I'm a cryptoneuropodiolfactologist-I study the effects of foot odors on the brain. Want to grab some...
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Earths beyond Earth
Twenty years from now, a quartet of space-based telescopes may revolutionize the way people think about the universe and their place within it. From a vantage point just inside the orbit of Jupiter, the four telescopes, known as the Terrestrial Planet...
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Ewe Again? Cloning from Adult DNA
Udderly amazing. Scientists have for the first time used DNA from an adult mammal-specifically, genetic material from cells in the mammary glands of a 6-year-old ewe-to create a genetic duplicate. This clone, a healthy lamb named Dolly, was born last...
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Fractal Past, Fractal Future
On a clear, brisk morning, a child marvels at the frilled intricacy of frost splayed across a sunlit windowpane. In the laboratory, a scientist peers at the minutely branched structure of a cluster of gold particles. A character in Tom Stoppard's 1993...
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From News Wire to News Weekly: 75 Years of Science Service
Week in and week out for 75 years, Science Service has delivered news about scientific discoveries and happenings to subscribers' doors, first through Science News Letter and more recently via Science News. Its wide-ranging coverage provides an accurate...
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Future Health, Future Choices
The year: 2020. The setting: Chicago. A young associate named Susan steps into the conference room of a law firm. She faces a gauntlet of the firm's best attorneys. They tell Susan that she'll make partner if she measures up during the next year. They...
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Gene Cuisine on the Menu
If Charles Darwin and Gregor Mendel could tuck in their napkins, take up their forks, and enjoy a 21st-century dinner together, they might marvel at how much of their work went into the dishes arrayed before them. Over salad, they might praise the tomatoes,...
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Letter from the Editor
Man-eating trees? You won't read about them in Science News-or about the evil and beneficial influences of the numbers 7 and 13. These topics are on a list of stories that should be handled with care. It was prepared almost 50 years ago by Watson Davis,...
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Letter from the Publisher
Humankind has puzzled over the eternal questions of existence for millennia. Where did the universe come from? Where did we come from? How does the cycle of life from birth to death repeat itself? What is our relation to the other living creatures on...
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Minds Meet in Social Whirl
Auguste Rodin's famous sculpture "The Thinker" portrays a naked man hunched over in contemplation, perhaps wondering when the artist will turn on the heat in his studio. A thinker chiseled into solitary confinement by his creator finds the world a chilly...
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Mud Time Line Clarifies Dinosaurs' Demise
A 16-inch core of mud tells the clearest story yet of how life on Earth suffered after a comet or meteor slammed into the planet about 65 million years ago, reports a team of oceanographers. Scientists drilled the sample from the ocean bed about 320...
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Nanotech: Bigger Isn't Better
Over the years, scientists haven't settled for merely observing worlds existing on grains of sand, they've also created them. Once, all motors, engines, or pumps were noisy iron masses that could only be moved with great difficulty. Now, some are delicate...
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Potent Toxin Complicates Heart Repair
Each year, heart surgeons in the United States plunge their gloved hands into 350,000 chests to fix faulty plumbing by replacing bad heart valves or bypassing blocked coronary arteries. Although mortality from the surgery remains low, about 4 percent,...
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Quantum Mechanics Gets Real
Writing to Niels Bohr in 1935, physicist Erwin Schrodinger lamented his inability to understand a principle that Bohr deemed essential to the interpretation of quantum mechanics: "It must belong to your deepest conviction-and I cannot understand on what...
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Satellite Makes Solar Wind Count
Like water from a spinning lawn sprinkler, electrically charged particles in the solar wind spiral outward from the sun's corona in continuous streams. Hydrogen and helium make up about 99.9 percent of the wind, with a medley of heavy elements filling...
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The Call of Catastrophes
In the fall of 1973, a young geologist named Walter Alvarez explored a limestone gorge just outside the medieval walls of Gubbio, Italy. Chipping away at the layers of rock with his hammer, Alvarez stumbled onto something that would revolutionize how...
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Vitamin E Helps - but Don't Overdose
A host of pollutants and biological processes unleash free radicals. Indeed, the body generates these reactive agents to destroy unwanted cells and materials. With age, natural systems for protecting healthy cells from bombardment by these deleterious...
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