Neil deGrasse Tyson: ‘If your best image of an intelligent alien visiting from outer space is monochromatic, out of focus and hazy, then we have more work to do.’

The communication of science is now arguably more important than ever, gaining a resurgence in appreciation since the beginning of the pandemic, and r(...)

With scientific uncertainty still abounding, the present international moratorium on commercial ventures in fertilisation seems secure

As the climate crisis stirs deeper global anxiety, the risks and costs of some forms of geoengineering may come to seem worth bearing. Geoengineering(...)

Immunologist Prof Kate Fitzgerald: elected to the US National Academy of Sciences

Irish immunologist Prof Kate Fitzgerald has been elected to the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in recognition of her distinguished and continui(...)

Nothing has so dramatically reconfigured the history of life on Earth as the epic mass extinction events that punctuate the fossil record stretching b(...)

Scientists still debate over why bats seem to harbour so many viruses.  Photograph: Olivier Farcy

The 2011 film Contagion seems strangely prescient when viewed in light of Covid-19. The disturbing movie features quarantines, face masks, Gwyneth Pal(...)

Janthina. Illustration: Michael Viney

The ultimate ripples of the summer’s long calms have been making gentle deliveries from the pleuston, the world of small, aquatic organisms living on (...)

‘Normal talking to a person while keeping the recommended social distance will be fine. Putting on a mask will be even better.’ Photograph: iStock

Coughs or sneezes may not be the only way people transmit infectious pathogens like the novel coronavirus to one another. Talking can also launch thou(...)

 Indian farmers harvesting  wheat. As much as one third of the world’s population could  be exposed to Sahara Desert-like heat within half a century. Photograph:  EPA/Sanjay Baid

More than three billion people will be living in places with “near unlivable” temperatures by 2070, according to a major study of global heating trend(...)

Bats are considered the probable source of the coronavirus outbreak spreading from China. Photograph: Kim Raff/The New York Times

The world has to face up to the reality that the current coronavirus epidemic is not a once-off. What’s more, scientists who study these viruses have(...)

Seeing the glass as half full may mean a longer life. Photograph: iStock

Seeing the glass as half full may mean a longer life, according to research suggesting optimists not only live longer in general, but have a better ch(...)

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