Feature Stories

  • Although they're not nominated for an Academy Award, plants play a central role in the blockbuster movie "Avatar." A botanist provided the science behind how these unusual organisms may have evolved.
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  • Microbe mats in Yellowstone's hot springs may be living analogs of the primordial microbe communities that constructed the oldest rock fossils on Earth.
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  • High-impact lab experiments simulate whether the building blocks of life could have survived the rough arrival on Earth via meteorite impact.
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  • A new technique is being developed to detect water in the protoplanetary disks of other solar systems. If successful, it would help in our understanding of how habitable planets form.
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  • The possibility that life was shared between Earth and Mars could be tested with a DNA analyzer. One research team has built a prototype and plans field tests on a South American volcano.
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  • In the search for life beyond Earth, we should not expect to find life forms we´re familiar with. Determining whether something completely alien is 'alive´ could be a challenge, so a universal definition of life is needed. Biologists have yet to agree on a definition,
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  • In the search for life beyond Earth, we should not expect to find life forms we´re familiar with. Determining whether something completely alien is 'alive´ could be a challenge, so a universal definition of life is needed. Biologists have yet to agree on a definition,
    more...
  • The Obama Administration plans to cancel NASA´s Constellation program that was to take American astronauts back to the Moon. Instead, NASA will oversee a competition among commercial space developers to come up with the technology to reach the stars.
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  • A new project aims to replicate the surface on the moon Titan in order to learn more about its hydrocarbon lakes. This study could also tell us about the chemistry that led to the origin of life on early Earth.
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  • A new project aims to replicate the surface on the moon Titan in order to learn more about its hydrocarbon lakes. This study could also tell us about the chemistry that led to the origin of life on early Earth.
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