Science | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

Science

RSS Feed
NPR

Drilling Team Finally Hits Antarctica's Liquid Lake

After years of trying, Russian scientists say they have drilled into an Antarctic lake that is buried beneath more than two miles of ice. They are looking for signs of life that haven't been exposed to sky in 20 million years.
NPR

A New Weapon Against Nukes: Social Media

A top State Department official wants to unleash the power of Twitter, Facebook and other services to crowdsource the fight to control the world's nuclear weapons.
NPR

'Amasia': The Next Supercontinent?

More than 100 million years from now, the Americas and Asia might fuse together, squishing the Arctic Ocean shut in the process. That's according to a new model that predicts where the next supercontinent may form. But don't worry: Humans will likely be long gone by then.
NPR

Engineer Who Warned Of Challenger Dangers Dies

The rocket scientist who argued vigorously against the fatal launch of the Space Shuttle Challenger has died. Roger Boisjoly led a group of five Morton Thiokol engineers who tried to stop the launch in a series of conference calls with NASA the night before the tragedy. Boisjoly presented data showing cold launch-time temperatures could cause the joints on the shuttle's booster rockets to fail catastrophically. He was also one of two whistleblowers who anonymously revealed the launch decision debate to NPR a few weeks after the launch.
NPR

20 Million Years Later, Russians Work To Drill Into Lake

Russian researchers in Antarctica are on the verge of piercing a hole through two miles of ice into an ancient lake, untouched by the light of day for some 20 million years. But it'll be a delicate process to break through without disturbing the pristine waters. Guest host David Green speaks with Antarctic researcher John Priscu about the process.
NPR

'Arctic Oscilliation' Behind Season's Mixed Winter Weather

For snow fans in the contiguous US, this winter has left much to be desired. The warm and mild season in the lower 48 and the wild snow dumps and cold weather up north in Alaska can be blamed largely on a weather pattern called "arctic oscillation." Audie Cornish gets an explanation of the weather phenomenon from meteorologist Jeffrey Masters.
NPR

New USDA Map May Mean Earlier Planting In North

A new map from the USDA has some northern gardeners hoping to grow plants that used to be considered too fragile for cold weather zones. The hardiness zone chart is about a half zone warmer than the last one issued in 1990. The USDA says the changes are not due to global warming, but to more sophisticated mapping methods. Seed sellers and buyers say that, whatever the reason, the warmer temperatures expand possibilities for planting this spring.
NPR

IBEX Spacecraft Intercepts 'Alien' Particles

As it circles Earth, NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer hunts for particles streaming in from beyond the solar system. It has intercepted hydrogen, helium, neon and oxygen atoms. IBEX principal investigator Dave McComas discusses how the abundance of those atoms hints at the Milky Way's composition.

Pages