T/science

Shaking Ordinary Ice (Very Hard) Transformed It Into Something Never Seen Before
Science, February 3

The research illustrates how much scientists still have to learn about a molecule as simple as water.

These Extinct Elephants Were Neanderthals’ ‘Biggest Calorie Bombs’
Science, February 2

A study of butchered bones from 125,000 years ago offers what researchers call “the first clear-cut evidence of elephant-hunting in human evolution.”

Why Do Bears Rub Against Trees? Scientists Offer New Explanation.
Science, February 1

In experiments, researchers found that ticks avoid the tar of beech trees, which bears seem to have an affinity toward.

Space and Astronomy in February: What to Expect
Science, February 1

The shortest month of 2023 will have plenty of highlights in orbit and beyond.

Be Open to Spiritual Experience. Also, Be Really Careful.
Op Ed, February 1

The reasonability and risks of metaphysical experimentation.

When Animals Are Used in Research
Letters, January 31

Readers discuss experimentation on lab animals. Also: Racism in America; preparing for the next pandemic; maternal deaths; Amazon’s donations.

When Your Old Fishing Buddy Has a Snout and a Blowhole
Science, January 30

Bottlenose dolphins help Brazilian fishermen pull in their catch, and researchers have worked out what the marine mammals get from the cooperative hunting.

What the Ancient Bog Bodies Knew
Science, January 30

The first comprehensive survey of a 7,000-year-old burial tradition reveals an often violent final ritual.

Expert Panel Votes for Stricter Rules on Risky Virus Research
Science, January 27

The White House will decide whether to adopt the panel’s recommendations on so-called gain of function experiments.

El asteroide 2023 BU pasará cerca de la Tierra, pero no es motivo de preocupación
en Español, January 27

Aunque fue detectado por primera vez hace unos días, 2023 BU se acercará a unos 3540 kilómetros de la superficie de nuestro planeta antes de continuar su trayectoria.

Newly Discovered Asteroid Passes Close to Earth
Science, January 26

First detected just days ago, 2023 BU approached within 2,200 miles of our planet’s surface before moving on.

How Rare Island Bunnies Do a Parasitic Plant’s Bidding
Science, January 26

The world’s only wild black-furred rabbit has a very important job — distributing seeds for a parasitic plant.

N.I.H. Did Not Properly Track a Group Studying Coronaviruses, Report Finds
Science, January 26

An internal federal watchdog said that the health agency had not given adequate oversight to EcoHealth Alliance, which had been awarded $8 million in grants.

Ukraine’s Scientists Receive a Funding Lifeline From Abroad
Science, January 25

The Simons Foundation in New York is providing annual grants to the country’s chemists, biologists, physicists and mathematicians.

A New View of the Most Explosive Moon in the Solar System
Science, January 25

Recent strange activity around Jupiter’s volcanic moon, Io, confused and excited scientists.

What Are These Apes Trying to Say? Take This Quick Quiz.
Interactive, January 24

The great apes do not have spoken language, but they share many gestures. Can humans like you understand those gestures too?

El núcleo de la Tierra está cambiando la forma en que gira, según científicos
en Español, January 24

Un grupo de investigadores cree que el corazón de hierro de nuestro planeta cumple un ciclo de rotación cada 70 años e informa que estamos en medio de uno de sus grandes cambios.

Where is Physics Headed (and How Soon Do We Get There)?
Science, January 24

Two leading scientists discuss the future of their field.

A ‘Big Night’ for Newts, and for a California Newt Brigade
Science, January 24

Salamanders get a little help across the road from some two-legged friends in Northern California.

Earth’s Inner Core: A Shifting, Spinning Mystery’s Latest Twist
Science, January 23

Researchers proposed a model with a 70-year rotation cycle of our planet’s iron heart, and report that we’re in the middle of one of its big shifts.

What Do We Owe Lab Animals?
Science, January 23

The standard ethical guidelines encourage minimizing the use of, and harm to, animals used in research. Some experts propose an additional courtesy: repayment.

How to Watch the ‘Green Comet’ While You Still Can
Science, January 20

The last time the comet came this close to Earth was during the Stone Age. On Thursday it’ll make its nearest approach to our planet.

Unlocking the Genes That Made Whales Into Giants
Science, January 19

The submarine-size ocean creatures were not always behemoths. Now, a new study has found that the secret to a whale’s size may be in its genes.

The Toxin That Helps Oyster Mushrooms Devour Worm Flesh
Science, January 18

That does not sound fun, guy.

10 Mummified Crocodiles Emerge From an Egyptian Tomb
Science, January 18

Found beneath an ancient dump, the mummies shed light on ancient Egyptian mummification practices and the many lives of a necropolis.

K. Alex Müller, Innovator in Ceramic Superconductors, Dies at 95
Obits, January 18

His and a colleague’s breakthroughs in high-temperature superconductors were honored with a Nobel Prize in Physics and opened up a world of scientific possibilities.

Bomb Cyclone? Or Just Windy with a Chance of Hyperbole?
Science, January 18

When the barometer drops, the volume of ‘hyped words’ rises, and many meteorologists aren’t happy about it.

‘Polar Vortex’ Got You Baffled? Try This Extreme-Weather Guide
Science, January 18

A handy explanation of some of the newer climatological verbiage.

What Happened to All of Science’s Big Breakthroughs?
Science, January 17

A new study finds a steady drop since 1945 in disruptive feats as a share of the world’s booming enterprise in scientific and technological advancement.

Are We Living in a Computer Simulation, and Can We Hack It?
Science, January 17

A popular cosmological theory holds that the cosmos runs on quantum codes. So how hard could it be to tweak the supreme algorithm?

Why This Trilobite Had Neptune’s Trident for a Nose
Science, January 16

A new paper suggests an ancient creature’s odd anatomical feature may be the earliest known example of specialized sexual combat in the animal kingdom.

Snarl, You’re on Candid Camera
Science, January 16

Wildlife cameras in Wisconsin are capturing interspecies encounters — and providing evidence that human activity might make such meetings more likely.

An Issue in the Abortion Debate: The Beginning of Human Life
Letters, January 14

Readers weigh in on a fraught question that touches on biology, politics, religion and philosophy.

Hannes Keller, Swiss Deep-Sea Diving Pioneer, Is Dead at 88
Obits, January 13

His 1,020-foot descent to the Pacific Ocean floor in a diving bell in 1962 made headlines and set a record. But it had disastrous consequences.

Did Aliens Land on Earth in 1945? A Defense Bill Seeks Answers.
Express, January 13

The Defense Department’s annual spending bill requires it to review U.F.O. sightings dating to 1945, the year some believe an object from space crashed in the New Mexico desert.

Dolphins Can Shout Underwater, but It’s Never Loud Enough
Science, January 12

Researchers found that dolphins confronted with noise increase the volume and duration of their calls to one another but struggle to cooperate.

A Fossil Flower Trapped in Amber Had a Mistaken Identity for 150 Years
Science, January 12

A study of the Baltic specimen offers new insights into what Europe’s climate was like some 35 million years ago.

At NASA, Dr. Z Was OK With Some Missions Failing
Science, January 12

Thomas Zurbuchen concluded six years leading NASA’s science directorate, during which he presided over some of the agency’s biggest successes.

Russia to Launch Space Station Rescue Mission to Bring Astronauts Home
Science, January 11

The capsule that carried three astronauts to orbit was damaged in December and will be replaced by another Soyuz spacecraft.

The Muscles That Power a Female Insect’s Penislike Organ
Science, January 11

Scientists studied the internal anatomy that make a female-male role reversal possible in a group of Brazilian cave insects.

Where the Bison Could Roam
Science, January 10

Bison once numbered in the tens of millions in the United States. Now, a nonprofit is working to restore the shortgrass prairie, where the American icons and their ecosystem can thrive again.

A.I. Is Becoming More Conversational. But Will It Get More Honest?
Science, January 10

At a new website called Character.AI, you can chat with a reasonable facsimile of almost anyone, live or dead, real or (especially) imagined.

You May Miss These Parasites When They’re Gone
Science, January 9

Warming temperatures in one part of the world seem to have driven down the parasite population, suggesting another unexpected way that climate change harms ecosystems.

A.I. Turns Its Artistry to Creating New Human Proteins
Science, January 9

Inspired by digital art generators like DALL-E, biologists are building artificial intelligences that can fight cancer, flu and Covid.

Willard Gaylin, a Pioneer in Bioethics, Is Dead at 97
Obits, January 7

A psychiatrist, he started the Hastings Center with Daniel Callahan, a leading Roman Catholic thinker, to explore the moral issues arising from medical advances.

U.S.D.A. Approves First Vaccine for Honeybees
Express, January 7

Dalan Animal Health’s vaccine for American foulbrood, an aggressive bacterial disease, is the first for any insect in the United States.

Health Experts Warily Eye XBB.1.5, the Latest Omicron Subvariant
Science, January 7

A young version of the coronavirus makes up one-quarter of Covid cases across the United States and over 70 percent of new cases in the Northeast.

Your Tuesday Briefing: China’s Space Push
N Y T Now, December 12

Plus China’s vaccination pivot and the year’s most stylish “people.”

Your Monday Briefing: The World Cup Semifinals Loom
N Y T Now, December 11

Plus, China’s sluggish economy and the arrest of the Lockerbie bombing suspect.

Ómicron cumple un año. Así ha evolucionado
en Español, November 29

Al cumplirse el aniversario del descubrimiento de la variante, los expertos en virología siguen intentando ponerse al día con la rápida transformación de ómicron.

Happy Birthday, Omicron
Science, November 26

One year after the variant’s discovery, virologists are still scrambling to keep up with Omicron’s rapid evolution.

The Pandemic Generation Goes to College. It Has Not Been Easy.
National, November 1

Students missed a lot of high school instruction. Now many are behind, especially in math, and getting that degree could be harder.

Pandemic Learning Loss Is Not an Emergency
Op Ed, October 29

In a vacuum, test score declines look like bad news. But none of this happened in a vacuum.

G.O.P. Senator’s Report on Covid Origins Suggests Lab Leak, but Offers Little New Evidence
Science, October 27

The report, signed by Senator Richard Burr, foreshadows a new wave of political wrangling over Covid’s origins if Republicans gain control of the House or Senate.

Math Scores Fell in Nearly Every State, and Reading Dipped on National Exam
National, October 24

The results, from what is known as the nation’s report card, offer the most definitive picture yet of the pandemic’s devastating impact on students.

Lab Manipulations of Covid Virus Fall Under Murky Government Rules
Science, October 22

Mouse experiments at Boston University have spotlighted an ambiguous U.S. policy for research on potentially dangerous pathogens.

How One School Is Beating the Odds in Math, the Pandemic’s Hardest-Hit Subject
National, October 15

Benjamin Franklin Elementary in Connecticut overhauled the way it taught — and the way it ran the classroom. Every minute counted.

Russia’s New Onslaught Against Ukraine
Letters, October 10

Readers respond to the latest Russian attacks in Ukraine. Also: The wonders of math; pandemic spending; Republicans and crime.

¿Quién tenía la culpa de que los alumnos de la Universidad de Nueva York estuvieran reprobando química orgánica?
en Español, October 5

Maitland Jones, un profesor respetado, defendió sus estándares. Pero los estudiantes hicieron un reclamo y la universidad lo despidió.

At N.Y.U., Students Were Failing Organic Chemistry. Who Was to Blame?
National, October 3

Maitland Jones Jr., a respected professor, defended his standards. But students started a petition, and the university dismissed him.

N.Y.C. Children Held Ground in Reading, but Lagged in Math, Tests Show
Metro, September 28

The first standardized test results that capture how most city schoolchildren did during the pandemic offered a mixed picture.

¿La variante ómicron llegó para quedarse?
en Español, September 27

La decimotercera variante con nombre del coronavirus parece tener una capacidad sorprendente para evolucionar con nuevas particularidades.

Why Omicron Might Stick Around
Science, September 22

Omicron, the 13th named variant of the coronavirus, seems to have a remarkable capacity to evolve new tricks.

The Quiet Cost of Family Caregiving
Science, September 4

Many employees reduce their hours or stop working to help ailing family members. But it may be years before they fully return to the work force, studies indicate.

The Pandemic Erased Two Decades of Progress in Math and Reading
National, September 1

The results of a national test showed just how devastating the last two years have been for 9-year-old schoolchildren, especially the most vulnerable.

How Bad Is the Teacher Shortage? Depends Where You Live.
National, August 29

Urgently needed: teachers in struggling districts, certified in math or special education. Perks: maybe a pay raise, or how about a four-day week?

Wastewater Disease Tracking: A Photographic Journey From the Sewer to the Lab
Interactive, August 17

Here’s how a scrappy team of scientists, public health experts and plumbers is embracing wastewater surveillance as the future of disease tracking.

El viaje evolutivo de la COVID-19 ha sido funesto e impresionante
en Español, August 11

El coronavirus, como muchos otros virus, evoluciona deprisa. ¿Los seres humanos y su ingenio podrían adaptarse más rápido a él?

We Are Still in a Race Against the Coronavirus
Op Ed, August 10

Human ingenuity must keep up with the coronavirus.

Combined nasal and throat testing swabs would detect more Omicron infections, two papers suggest.
Science, July 22

The papers, which have not yet been published in scientific journals, suggest that testing just a single type of sample is likely to miss a large share of infections.

Students Are Learning Well Again. But Full Recovery? That’s a Long Way Off.
National, July 19

A new report estimates that it may take students at least three to five years to recover from the pandemic. Federal relief money will most likely have run out by then.

Did Nature Heal During the Pandemic ‘Anthropause’?
Science, July 16

Covid precautions created a global slowdown in human activity — and an opportunity to learn more about the complex ways we affect other species.

Bat Virus Studies Raise Questions About Laboratory Tinkering
Science, July 15

Working in a laboratory in Paris, scientists gave a close relative of the Covid virus the chance to evolve to be more like its cousin.

The pandemic kept many children less active around the world, researchers find.
Express, July 11

Pandemic shutdowns and restrictions led to a 20 percent drop in average daily physical activity among children and adolescents, a new analysis shows.

The U.S. government will buy 3.2 million doses of Novavax’s Covid vaccine.
Science, July 11

The vaccine has not yet been authorized but is expected to be soon.

Think All Viruses Get Milder With Time? Not This Rabbit-Killer.
Science, June 20

The myxoma virus, fatal to millions of Australian rabbits, is a textbook example of the unexpected twists in the evolution of viruses and their hosts.

Unexplained hepatitis is not more common in U.S. children than before the pandemic, a C.D.C. study suggests.
Science, June 14

Officials have also been trying to determine whether the cases represent a new phenomenon or are simply a new recognition of one that has long existed; there have always been a subset of pediatric hepatitis cases with no clear cause.

Mysteries Linger About Covid’s Origins, W.H.O. Report Says
Science, June 9

“The lack of political cooperation from China continues to stifle any meaningful progress,” one expert said.

Reckoning With a Pandemic, as a Doctor and a Human
Book Review, June 8

In his essay collection “Virology,” Joseph Osmundson examines the myriad ways we coexist with viruses.

Two new versions of Omicron are gaining ground in the U.S., according to C.D.C. estimates.
Science, June 8

The spread of the subvariants adds more uncertainty to the trajectory of the pandemic in the United States.

He Helped Cure the ‘London Patient’ of H.I.V. Then He Turned to Covid.
Special Sections, June 6

Ravindra Gupta, who led the efforts that resulted in the second case of a patient being cured of H.I.V., was drawn into pandemic research.

In Florida, Social-Emotional Learning + Math = Rejection
Letters, May 2

Readers discuss the Florida Department of Education’s objections to some of the topics in math textbooks. Also: The Ukraine war; mask mandates.