Old and distant galaxy

Old and distant galaxy
A faint smudge — with the dark red insignia of super-old light — distinguishes the oldest galaxy ever seen. The old gal was active in a period when the universe was very different, but still looks a bit like a midget-size modern galaxy. More »

Weather: [More data + more computers = better forecasts]

Weather: [More data + more computers = better forecasts]

Weather forecasts improve, but who’s ever satisfied? Check some around-the-corner technologies that will paint a better picture of tomorrow — especially in hot, stormy summer days. What is the promise of GPS, better radar and “hyperspectral” instruments? More »

Boasting about the boson

Boasting about the boson

Award follows last year’s sighting of elusive boson at world’s largest atom smasher. At last, matter can have mass, and physics can understand why! More »

Pitching the biomechanics

elbow ligaments and tendon (illustration)
The fate of baseball teams valued at hundreds of millions of dollars and followed by millions of rabid fans can come down to the elbow ligaments of a handful of young men who can throw a ball nearly 100 mph. But that doesn’t mean the best science guides their training. More »

Dunewatching, Martian style

Dunewatching, Martian style

New pix from Mars show sand dunes on the move. Mars has been dry for 1.5 billion years; could massive erosion be due to wind? Yes, says a new report that tracked dunes with precise new images. Surprise: dunes move as fast on Mars as on Earth! More »

The importance of being Einstein

Black and white photo: closeup of Einstein's face with blackboard in background

Experiment finds Earth “dragging” spacetime, as Einstein predicted. Einstein knew his physics. Bending light, gravity lenses, shifting spacetime, spinning neutron stars: he called them all. More »

Breaking the bubble!

Breaking the bubble!
High-speed movies of popping bubbles show a ring of “daughter” bubbles forming around the edge. A close look reveals a third generation of “granddaughter” bubbles. How does this happen? Does this matter to real-world medicine and climatology? And can we get paid to play with bubbles? More »

Pop goes the super supernova

Pop goes the super supernova
Titanic explosion shows one of the biggest bangs since the Biggest Bang, spreads useful elements through the universe. Finally revealed: anti-matter is working for you! More »

Electric eye learns from animal eye!

Lenses cannot project a perfect image on the flat back of a camera, so images are distorted at the edges. A revolutionary camera solves this problem by curving the light detector. More »

The sounds of sax

New study shows that controlling throat shape helps pro players hit the high notes that elude amateurs. More »

Music and speech

Music and speech

Most music is built on the 12-tone “chromatic” scale. Does this reflect chance, or the basic structure of the human voice? New study finds tight link between pronunciation and musical scale.
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Tornadoes: Power & Fury

Darlene Young reacts to the devastation around her house in Pierce City, Mo., Monday, May 5, 2003, the day after the town was hit by a tornado. Young says her house was spared destruction by a church next to it that took the brunt of the winds. (AP Photo/John S. Stewart)

Tornadoes kill 60 Americans each year. How do we predict tornadoes? How do we make houses safer? Where do tornadoes get their energy? More »