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Bird, Plane, Bacteria? Microbes Thrive In Storm Clouds

Microbes can thrive in extreme environments, from inside fiery volcanoes to down on the bottom of the ocean. Now scientists have found a surprising number of them living in storm clouds tens of thousands of feet above the Earth. And those airborne microbes could play a role in global climate.
NPR

How Mountain Grass Makes The Cheese Stand Alone

Aficionados of cheeses made from the milk of mountain-grazing cows swear they really do taste better than those from cattle pastured on plains. Now, scientists are teasing out some of these subtle differences – in hopes of proving the mountain cheese tradition is worth preserving.
WAMU 88.5

Technology Of The Future: 2013 And Beyond

Self-driving cars that come pick you up. Robots that care for you in your home. Computers that respond to your brain waves. Kojo explores the future of tech inventions.

NPR

Iran Claims 'Major Achievement;' Says Monkey Was Sent Into Space

The nation's official media reports the primate was sent up about 75 miles. It reportedly survived the trip. Iran says it's aiming to launch a manned mission in five to eight years. Other nations are concerned that the program is really aimed at developing long-range missiles.
NPR

Federal Agency Funds New Energy Technologies

Renee Montagne talks to Cheryl Martin, deputy director of the Energy Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. Modeled after the Defense Department's research program, ARPA-E provides grants to researchers developing cutting edge energy technologies that are too early for private sector investment.
NPR

Focus On Fracking Diverts Attention From Horizontal Drilling

Hydraulic fracturing gets the spotlight, but without another technology — horizontal drilling — natural gas drilling booms across the country would not be happening now.
NPR

Turning Girl Scout Cookies Into Graphene

Researchers at Rice University in Houston have discovered a cheap source of the wonder material graphene: baked goods. Marc Abrahams, editor and co-founder of The Annals of Improbable Research, talks about how to transform a box of Girl Scout cookies into $15 billion worth of graphene--in theory, at least.
NPR

Months After Sandy, Mucking And Gutting

On a recent day in the Rockaways, a neighborhood in Queens, N.Y., hazmat-suited volunteers far outnumber anyone else on the streets. They are "mucking and gutting" — stripping homes to the studs to remove mold. Many residents are concerned about the health effects of mold exposure, according to community organizer Peter Corless. Mycologist Joan Bennett has been sampling fungi in homes damaged by Sandy to determine which species are present.
NPR

The Book Club Catches 'The Andromeda Strain'

This month, the book club discusses Michael Crichton's 1969 best-selling science fiction thriller The Andromeda Strain. Writer Richard Preston joins the club to talk about Crichton's writing style, and what it was like to work on Crichton's unfinished final manuscript, Micro.

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