Science Behind the Photo #45

Taken from Issue 22. Although seemingly beautiful and serene, this fiery image shows the hundreds of millions of stars at the turbulent heart of the Milky Way, all cocooned in cosmic gas and dust. The life of such a star is visible in its entirety, from the dusty regions of star birth, populations of young […]

Did Humans Emerge “Out of Asia”?

The phrase ‘out of Africa’ has become synonymous with the concept of early primate – and by extension, human – evolution. However, recent research challenges this view, instead indicating that primates left Asia some tens of millions of years ago and colonised Africa, where they continued their evolution. The new findings, produced by an international […]

A New Particle – But is it Higgs?

CERN announces discovery of new particle – but is it Higgs? Earlier this morning, physicists working at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva announced that they had discovered a new particle. At this stage, the characteristics of this particle appear to be in-keeping with what we would expect to observe if it were the […]

Reviewed: UK Conference of Science Journalists

UK Conference of Science Journalists 25 June 2012 The Royal Society, London “I think every writer, every journalist, every scholar, should tell you where he’s coming from before he tells you what he knows.” This is how Jay Rosen, associate professor of journalism at NYU, began his keynote speech. He went on to detail what […]

Are You a Social Network Junkie?

Things are all atwitter in the social networking sphere after Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg took the risky decision to float a proportion of shares for the site last week. Although this may not have been as successful as planned, social networking sites are constantly accessible, incredibly popular and seem to be unavoidable. Following revelations earlier […]

A Silent Homage: The Scientist

French silent film The Artist has been a smash hit this year, amassing various Oscars, Academy Awards, Golden Globes and BAFTAs – and propelling adorable dog Uggie into stardom. Earlier this year at Imperial College, three students – including Juan Casasbuenas and Harriet Jarlett – decided to put a spin on this iconic film for […]

Museums at Night 2012: Lancing the Surgeons

Hunterian Museum The Royal College of Surgeons of England, 35-43 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London Friday 18 May, 6-9pm If you’ve not been to the Hunterian museum before (or just haven’t been in a while), this is a chance to see the spookiest setting around in an even spookier light at the Hunterian Museum Lates tomorrow […]

Sounds From Other Planets

Have you ever wondered what your voice might sound like on another planet? A team of scientists working at the University of Southampton have used mathematical and physical tools taking into account atmospheres, pressure and fluid dynamics to produce the natural sounds of other worlds, including thunder, human voices, whirlwinds, probe splashdowns and waterfalls. The […]

Interview With an Astronaut

The docked Apollo 9 command and service modules and lunar module conduct the first docking maneuvers in space. This photo of command module pilot David Scott in the command module’s open hatch was taken by lunar module pilot Russell L. Schweickart on the fourth day of the Apollo 9 Earth-orbital mission. Image: NASA — INTERVIEW […]

Robonaut 2 Says “Hello, world”

It might be very obvious considering my past posts and – if you’ve ever met me – my constant ramblings on the topic, but I’m quite a fan of astronauts. In Issue 20 of I, Science we interviewed former Apollo astronaut Colonel David Scott, which gave us the opportunity to ask a question that is […]

Our Planetary Neighbourhood

ESO/L. Calçada This article is taken from the Winter 2011 issue of I, Science. Nicola Guttridge explores the hunt for planets around other stars, and how this is helping to answer questions about the possible existence of alien life in our universe. There is no place more inhospitable and mysterious than space, although if you […]

Space Shuttle Columbia

Nine years ago today, the Space Shuttle Columbia burst into flames as it re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere after 16 days in orbit. All seven crew members lost their lives, and the debris from the craft was scattered across hundreds of miles. NASA diligently collected all the fragments that were found, and they are now stored […]

Photographing a Black Hole

It’s been a very challenging year for Einstein: first the neutrino saga threatened his postulated upper limit to the speed of light, and now astronomers hope to use the Earth-sized Event Horizon Telescope to peer into the very heart of our galaxy and make the first ever observations of a supermassive black hole, again testing […]

5 Space Breakthroughs of 2011

With the New Year comes the inevitable question of resolutions – how will you better yourself in 2012? The familiar answers of getting fit, losing weight, saving money and the like are a bit jaded, although surprisingly resolutions have been proven to make a huge difference to how we accomplish our desired goals. With this […]

Science Behind the Photo #35

Shuttle landings Perhaps unsurprisingly, the space shuttle takes off like a rocket. The orbiter has rocket  boosters in addition to its main engines, which are used for launch before they detach and drop back down to Earth – these falling boosters are strategically aimed towards the ocean, so they land relatively unharmed and can be […]

Video: Edible CERN

In the build-up to CERN’s announcement tomorrow, I, Science is going Higgs mad! Here is a great stop-start animation from a group of Science Communication students explaining exactly how the Large Hadron Collider works – proof that we found it first! Credit to Peter Larkin, Harriet Jarlett, Heather Cruickshank, Sam Cavenagh, Kelly Oakes, Georgia Bladon, Antonio Torrisi, and Dharshani Weerasekera. Music: Yann […]

Have We Found the Higgs Boson?

The furore surrounding the world-famous Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will reach its peak tomorrow when particle physicists working at CERN are expected to reveal whether or not they have found the elusive Higgs Boson, or ‘God’ particle. A theoretical necessity in keeping our postulated ‘standard model‘ of particle physics, scientists have been accelerating and colliding […]

Science Behind the Photo #33

This detailed photograph of our Moon was taken at the University of London Observatory (ULO), on the amazingly beautiful and intricate Fry telescope. Made by famous telescope manufacturer Thomas Cook in 1862, it was moved to ULO in 1930. It is used often to instruct astronomy students and is mainly used to observe planets, solar […]

NASA’s Curiosity: destination Mars!

Launch of NASA’s Curiosity rover a success. NASA’s Curiosity rover was launched today at 10:02 a.m. EST from Space Launch Complex 41, on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. At the time of writing this article, the spacecraft has been off the ground for approximately 2.5 hours, winging its way through space to the […]

Running rings around Pluto

What we know (or perhaps more accurately what we think we know) about our universe is constantly changing – in a relatively tiny amount of time, our scientific research has progressed from a simplistic geocentric solar system model to one in which there are hundreds upon thousands of galaxies, each containing countless stars with orbiting […]

The Eastern Social Network

Sina Weibo logo Social media has become more than a hobby for much of the western world, with many users updating and sharing information so openly as to get in trouble with neighbours, partners, friends, and even employers. This phenomenon has spread to the east, where Twitter-rivalling microblogging networking site Sina Weibo captivates users in […]

A Year in the Life of Neptune

Having started life as a hypothetical planet, it was only recently that Neptune’s precise path through space was confirmed, as it completed its first full orbit since its discovery in 1846. To celebrate this occasion, NASA released some stunning anniversary pictures, taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. At the giant planet’s great distance of 30 […]