Close encounters of the stellar kind
A star flashed past our solar system about 70,000 years ago. Consumed as they were by their own existential problems, did our ancestors even notice it?

Quake sensors can’t see water
Researchers thought they could detect water with a seismograph, but there was no link between how much there was in a sample and how fast seismic waves went through it

‘A manifestation of amazing willpower’
Cosmologist and colleague Martin Rees looks back at the life of Stephen Hawking – one of spectacular success against all odds

A star bursts back into life
A slowly spinning dead star sucks up enough matter from its partner to re-ignite its long-extinguished fires

Deep thought and cold noses
Small, light, and non-obtrusive thermal cameras result in infrared images that help researchers confirm a link between the two

When light gets all entangled
A weak laser shot through ultracold atoms resulted in up to three photons sticking together, a phenomenon with possible applications in quantum computing

New language discovered in Malaysia
Researching another tongue, linguists stumbled upon a group of 280 hunter-gatherers who spoke the newly discovered language, Jedek

The amazing spider silk mic
Researchers get some enviable sound quality using some wispy fibers coated with gold

Teaching machines to teach themselves
For future machines to be as smawart as we are, they’ll need to be able to learn like we do.

Dolphins may also fall prey to Alzheimer’s
Pathological signs of Alzheimer’s have been seen in these mammals, whose brains are much like ours

When Zika battles cancer
Zika depletes the stem cell reservoir for new brain tumor cells, reducing the likelihood of a relapse

Imaging links toolmaking with human smarts
A researcher describes how getting modern people to make Stone Age tools shows what brain power our ancestors needed to do the same thing

The smelly side of ant social life
Indian jumping ant female workers usually rely on smell to note the absence of a queen and step in. A gene mutation puts paid to all that

Better than water into wine
Expected to produce everything from towers into space to supercool electronics, carbon nanotubes now promise to make water from brine

Chemical tags key to brain cell differences
Clearly, there are more things in the brain and CNS than are dreamt of in hoary neurobiology

Why this meteorologist is eager for an eclipse
Researchers empty investigative armory as they prep for the first total eclipse across the U.S. in 99 years

Exorcising the very bones
Blocking a long-chain sugar stops tumors developing in genetically susceptible mice

There are easier ways to split water
Splitting water for energy is clearly the hot new thing

Supercapacitors from scrap tires
Flexible polymer carbon composite films could create flexible electrodes, says study

So, yes, viruses may be alive
And the tiny critters may even share some of their history with the rest of us

That pain could be in your head
The central nervous system may play an important role in a syndrome involving chronic pain

Flooding fields may fill aquifers
At least 3.5 percent of California’s land could be used to replenish its groundwater