Tag Archives: Nature Podcasts

Coronavirus Update: State Of The Pandemic After Six Months (Nature Podcast)

Coronapod ReportWe take a look back over the past six months of the pandemic, and discuss how far the world has come. It’s been a period of turmoil and science has faced an unprecedented challenge. What lessons can be learned from the epidemic so far to continue the fight in the months to come?

Also in this episode:

12:55 Unanswered questions

After months of intensive research, much is known about the new coronavirus – but many important questions remain unanswered. We look at the knowledge gaps researchers are trying to fill.

Nature Medicine: Real-time tracking of self-reported symptoms to predict potential COVID-19

20:36 How has lockdown affected fieldwork?

The inability to travel during lockdown has seriously hampered many researchers’ ability to gather fieldwork data. We hear from three whose work has been affected, and what this means for their projects.

Top New Science Podcasts: Poker’s Life Lessons, Peer Reviews & Mars’ Greenness

Nature PodcastsOn this week’s podcast, life lessons from poker, keeping things civil during peer review, a sweaty synthetic skin that can exude useful compounds, and Mars’s green atmosphere.

In this episode:

00:44 Deciding to play poker

When writer Maria Konnikova wanted to better understand the human decision making process, she took a rather unusual step: becoming a professional poker player. We delve into her journey and find out how poker could help people make better decisions. Books and Arts: What the world needs now: lessons from a poker player

09:12 Research Highlights

A sweaty synthetic skin that can exude useful compounds, and Mars’s green atmosphere. Research Highlight: An artificial skin oozes ‘sweat’ through tiny poresResearch Highlight: The red planet has a green glow

11:21 Developing dialogues

The peer-review process is an integral part of scientific discourse, however, sometimes interactions between authors and reviews can be less than civil. How do we tread the fine line between critique and rudeness? Editorial: Peer review should be an honest, but collegial, conversation

18:47 Briefing Chat

We take a look at some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This time we talk about research into racism, and a possible hint of dark matter. Nature News: What the data say about police brutality and racial bias — and which reforms might work; Nature News: Mathematicians urge colleagues to boycott police work in wake of killingsQuanta: Dark Matter Experiment Finds Unexplained Signal

Top New Science Podcasts: Tougher Diamonds, Whale Hideouts & Ancient Incest

Nature PodcastsThis week, researchers make diamonds tough, and evidence of incest in a 5,000 year old tomb.

In this episode:

00:51 Tough versus hard

Diamonds are famed for their hardness, but they are not so resistant to fracture. Now, researchers have toughened up diamonds, which could open up new industrial applications. Research Article: Yue et al.

06:07 Research Highlights

A spacecraft helps physicists work out the lifespan of a neutron, and the icy hideaway of an endangered whale. Research Highlight: The vanishing-neutron mystery might be cracked by a robot in outer spaceResearch Highlight: A secluded icy fortress shelters rare whales

08:33 Ancient inbreeding

Analysis of the genomes of humans buried in an ancient Irish tomb has uncovered many surprises, including evidence of incest amongst the elite. Research Article: Cassidy et al.News and Views: Incest uncovered at the elite prehistoric Newgrange monument in Ireland

21:13 #ShutdownSTEM

Nature reporter Nidhi Subbaraman joins us to talk about the #ShutdownSTEM movement, and anti-black racism in academia. Editorial: Note from the editors: Nature joins #ShutDownSTEMNews: Grieving and frustrated: Black scientists call out racism in the wake of police killingsNews: Thousands of scientists worldwide to go on strike for Black livesNews: How #BlackInTheIvory put a spotlight on racism in academia

Top New Science Podcasts: “Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer”

Nature PodcastsAn instrument on the International Space Station is providing new insights into some of the Universe’s most baffling objects. Neutron stars have puzzled scientists for decades. It’s known that these ultra-dense objects are born from the remnants of supernovae, yet what’s under their surface, and what processes that go on within them, remain a mystery.

Now, an instrument called the Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer is providing new information to help answer these questions, ushering in a new era of research into these strange stars.

This is an audio version of our feature: The golden age of neutron-star physics has arrived

Top New Science Podcasts: Quantum States In Space Lab, Barcode Bacteria

nature-podcastsThis week, the spaceborne lab that allows investigation of quantum states, and the debate surrounding how mountain height is maintained.

In this episode:

01:18 Space lab

Scientists have built a lab on the international space station, allowing them to remotely investigate quantum phenomena in microgravity. Research Article: Aveline et al.News and Views: Quantum matter orbits Earth

08:37 Research Highlights

Trackable ‘barcode’ bacteria, and physicists simulate near light speed cycling. Research Highlight: ‘Barcode’ microbes could help to trace goods — from lettuce to loafersResearch Highlight: What Einstein’s theory means for a cyclist moving at almost light speed

10:48 Maintaining mountain height

For a long time many researchers have thought that mainly erosion controls the height of mountains, but new research suggests that tectonic forces play a bigger role. Research Article: Dielforder et al.News and Views: Mountain height might be controlled by tectonic force, rather than erosion

16:12 Pick of the Briefing

We pick our highlights from the Nature Briefing, including how sleep deprivation kills, and a monumental Maya structure hidden in plain sight. Quanta Magazine: Why Sleep Deprivation KillsNational…

Top New Science Podcasts: Splitting Water With Light, Missing Matter And Working Memory (Nature)

nature-podcastsThis week, perfecting catalysts that split water using light, the mystery of missing matter in the Universe and how working memory ‘works’ in children.

In this episode:

00:44 Water splitting

After decades of research scientists have managed to achieve near perfect efficiency using a light-activated catalyst to separate hydrogen from water for fuel. Research Article: Takata et al.News and Views: An almost perfectly efficient light-activated catalyst for producing hydrogen from water

05:37 Research Highlights

The hidden water inside the earth’s core, and how working memory ‘works’ in children. Research Highlight: Our planet’s heart is wateryResearch Highlight: A child’s memory prowess is revealed by brain patterns

07:53 Measuring matter

Estimations of baryonic matter in the Universe have conflicted with observations, but now researchers have reconciled these differences. Research Article: Macquart et al.

13:42 Pick of the Briefing

We pick our highlights from the Nature Briefing, including the possibility of a black hole in our solar system, and the biting bees that force plants to bloom. Physics World: If ‘Planet Nine’ is a primordial black hole, could we detect it with a fleet of tiny spacecraft?; Scientific American: Bumblebees Bite Plants to Force Them to Flower (Seriously)

New Science Podcast: New Artificial Eyes, Elephant Seals And Disk-Galaxies

nature-podcastsThis week, crafting an artificial eye with the benefits of a human’s, and understanding how disk-galaxies formed by peering back in time.

In this episode:

00:45 Biomimetic eye

Researchers fabricate an artificial eye complete with a human-like retina. Research Article: Gu et al.News and Views: Artificial eye boosted by hemispherical retina

09:27 Research Highlights

Dazzling elephant seals to avoid predation, and helping blind people ‘see’ through brain stimulation. Research Highlight: Mighty seals humbled by prey that flickers and flashesResearch Highlight: Blind people ‘read’ letters traced on their brains with electricity

11:36 Early disk-galaxy

There’s an open question about how disk-galaxies form, but now new observations are pointing to an answer, from the very early Universe. Research Article: Neeleman et al.News and Views: Galaxy disk observed to have formed shortly after the Big Bang

17:47 Pick of the Briefing

We pick our highlights from the Nature Briefing, including a HIV ‘vaccine’, and incredibly hardy bacteria. Science: Long-acting injectable drug prevents HIV infectionsQuanta Magazine: Inside Deep Undersea Rocks, Life Thrives Without the Sun

Top New Science Podcasts: Image Manipulation, Tully Monster & Air Pollution

nature-podcastsThis week, Elisabeth Bik tells us about her work uncovering potential image manipulation, and a new route for particulate pollution formation.

In this episode:

00:45 Seeing double

Elisabeth Bik spends her days identifying duplicated images in science papers. She tells us about her efforts, and why they’re important. Feature: Meet this super-spotter of duplicated images in science papersNews: Publishers launch joint effort to tackle altered images in research papers

08:11 Research Highlights

New insights on the mysterious Tully Monster, and how football fans can stoke air pollution. Research Highlight: Unmasking the Tully Monster: fossils help to tackle a decades-old mysteryResearch Highlight: The meaty link between a city’s football matches and its foul air

10:29 Understanding air pollution

Particulate pollution is a serious threat to human health, but the way that new particles form is poorly understood. This week, new research suggests a new mechanism for it to happen. Research article: Wang et al.News and Views: Airborne particles might grow fast in cities

15:09 Pick of the Briefing

We pick some highlights from the Nature Briefing, including the closest discovered black hole to Earth, and how wriggly worms are helping physicists model microscopic processes. National Geographic: Closest black hole to Earth found ‘hiding in plain sight’Physics: Worm Viscosity

Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.

Top New Science Podcasts: ‘Sniff-Response’, Carbon Dioxide And Vaccinations Replacing Antibiotics

nature-podcastsThis week, how the ‘sniff-response’ can help clinicians determine a patient’s state of consciousness, and how vaccines could help drive down antibiotic use.

In this episode:

00:45 Sniffing out consciousness

Researchers have found that the sniff reflex can indicate whether a patient is in a vegetative state, and even the likelihood that they will recover consciousness. Research Article: Arzi et al.

08:37 Research Highlights

The stupefying effect of carbon dioxide, and a chameleon gemstone that tricks your eyes. Research Highlight: Rising carbon dioxide levels will make us stupiderResearch Highlight: How a chameleon gemstone changes from red to green

11:12 Vaccination and antibiotic usage

Looking at data from low- and middle-income countries, researchers have determined that vaccination could prevent millions of infections currently treated by antibiotics. Research Article: Lewnard et al.

16:49 Pick of the Briefing

We pick our highlights from the Nature Briefing, including the forgotten mother of climate change science, and a new global study on insect declines. Chemistry World: Eunice Foote: the mother of climate changeScience: Meta-analysis reveals declines in terrestrial but increases in freshwater insect abundances

Subscribe to Nature Briefing, an unmissable daily round-up of science news, opinion and analysis free in your inbox every weekday.

Top Science Podcasts: Our Ancient Hominin Species DNA, Vikings, Lemur Love & “Gargantuan” Hail Stones

nature-podcasts23 April 2020: Denisovan DNA in modern Europeans, and the birth of an unusual celestial object. This week, evidence of ancient hominin DNA in modern human genomes, and the origin of a snowman-shaped object at the edge of the solar system.

In this episode:

00:45 Intermixing of ancient hominins

By combing through the DNA of over 27,000 modern day Icelanders, researchers have uncovered new insights about the ancient hominin species who interbred with Homo sapiensResearch Article: Skov et al.

08:05 Research Highlights

The scent of lemur love, a hidden Viking trade route, and ‘gargantuan’ hail. Research Highlight: Lemurs’ love language is fragranceResearch Highlight: Vikings’ lost possessions mark a long-hidden early trade routeResearch Highlight: Enormous hailstones inspire a new scientific size category: ‘gargantuan’

11:44 The origin of Arrokoth

In 2019, the New Horizon Spacecraft took images of Arrokoth – an unusual, bi-lobal object found in the Kuiper belt. Now, researchers believe they’ve figured out how it formed. Research Article: Grishin et al.

17:29 Pick of the Briefing

We pick some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This week we discuss why the Universe may be lopsided, and why water could actually be two different liquid states. Scientific American: Do We Live in a Lopsided Universe?Chemistry World: The weirdness of water