Core Sciences

  • How to make a superheavy element

    The latest addition to the periodic table is the heaviest yet. But how much further can scientist...

    The 120-metre long linear accelerator at GSI, which crashes atoms together to form new, heavier elements. – Image cou...

    Physics May 19, 2014
  • How ferns learnt to live in the shadows

    Genetic detective work suggests that ferns acquired a novel light sensor from hornworts – a gift ...

    Ferns can make use of red light wavelengths prevalent on the forest floor. – Howard Snyder / Getty Images W...

    Biology April 28, 2014
  • An alimentary guide to microbes

    Scientists have little idea exactly what microbes live in our intestines but believe they play an...

    iStock Two facts about the human body often surprise people. One is that our bowels are outside our bodies ...

    Biology April 14, 2014
  • Sniffing out cancer

    We've know for some time that dogs can detect the scent of diseases including cancer, but new...

    Dogs trained over five years show they correctly sniff out bladder cancer in urine samples 93% of the time. – Corbis...

    Biology March 10, 2014
  • Make your own spare parts

    Can 3D printing solve the organ donor shortage?  By Mark Peplow.

    The tiny body on the operating table is not breathing. All around him the medical staff at the C.S. Mott Children’s H...

    Biology January 5, 2014
  • Neutron beams reveal innermost secrets

    3D imaging of everything from rocks to jet engines.

    Aircraft engineers and palaeontologists might not seem to have much in common but both sets of scientists are set to ...

    Physics November 10, 2013
  • Inside Syria – the search for sarin

    When the world weighs up whether to go to war, a lot rides on the accuracy of tests for chemical ...

    A UN chemical weapons expert, wearing a gas mask, inspects one of the sites of an alleged chemical weapons attack in ...

    Chemistry October 13, 2013
  • Naughty numbers in the news

    Statisticians are sensitive souls pained to see data misused by politicians and the media. It’s t...

    ISTOCK I love numbers. As a small boy I used to write down car registration plates, and when it came to my ...

    Mathematics October 12, 2013
  • Shakespeare and the stars

    The bard was born in the same year as Galileo and witnessed a cosmic revolution. Some say it is t...

    Missions to Mars; reading our genomes; Google: welcome to the modern age, where science repeatedly revolutionises our...

    Physics September 2, 2013
  • Poo transplants to treat range of diseases

    Other people’s faeces is something we instinctively avoid, but the emerging science of the human ...

    We face some pretty grim treatment options for the sake of our health. We swallow foul-tasting pills, vaccinate ourse...

    Biology May 1, 2012
  • Deep sea glass sponge

    The sea sponge occupies a niche position in taxonomy – not quite an animal but also not a fungus ...

    The dried siliceous skeleton of the deep sea glass sponge, Euplectella. – Wikimedia Sponges are considered ...

    Biology March 6, 2012
  • 17 molecules that changed the world

    The power of a simple molecule has never been more obvious.

    All molecules are not created equal. Some have saved billions of lives, wreaked environmental havoc or made the world...

    Chemistry December 31, 2008
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