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All Stories by Laurel Hamers
Science & Society
Watching meat rot helps decode what Neandertals ate
One scientist has measured the chemical makeup of decaying meat. She’s comparing it against what’s in fossil bones to figure out what Neandertals ate.
Science & Society
Carbon dioxide emissions will hit a record high globally in 2018
CO2 emissions from China, the United States and India all rose in 2018, a new report finds. This is despite urgent calls for nations to cut back on their releases of this greenhouse gas.
How wombats make their unique cube-shaped poop
The elasticity of the wombat’s intestines helps the creature to shape its distinctive scat.
Zaps to spinal cord help paralyzed people walk
Sending electrical pulses to the spinal cord can help paralyzed people learn to walk again, new tests show.
New ways to clean up polluted sources of drinking water
Some 21 million people in the United States may get drinking water from sources that are polluted. Some new water treatments promise to greatly lower costs or tackle formerly hard-to-remove pollutants.
Six things that shouldn’t pollute your drinking water
These are why drinking untreated water can be harmful. But keep in mind, today’s water-treatment plants still won’t remove all of these.
Explainer: How is water cleaned up for drinking
Unless you’re drinking well water, city folks typically get drinking water that has been treated in a water-treatment plant. Here’s what that means.
Three take home chemistry Nobel for harnessing protein ‘evolution’
New ways to create customized proteins for use in biofuels and medicines earned three researchers the 2018 Nobel Prize in chemistry.
Wilder wildfires? Computing helps predict their path and fury
Math probes how wildfires feed on the air around them to erupt into devastating conflagrations.
Eating queen’s poop makes naked mole rats babysit her kids
Hormones in the poop of a naked mole rat queen turns other females into babysitters for her young.
Wildfires worsen extreme air pollution in U.S. northwest
America’s air is getting cleaner — except in places prone to frequent wildfires.
Electric currents in the air may cue ‘ballooning’ spiders on when to take off
Some spider species float on the breeze using a parachute of silk. A new study suggests electrical charges in the air help spiders time these flights.