Astronomy & Space

Astronomy may well be the oldest science of all, seeking answers to questions such as: "Where did it all come from?" and "Are we alone?" But, today's astronomers are focusing on phenomena our forbearers never imagined—planets orbiting other stars, for example; black holes the size of our solar system; galaxies being driven apart by invisible "dark energy"; ripples in the fabric of space and time; and of course the big bang, where time itself began.

LIGO Detection

LIGO Detection reveals what unfolded behind the scenes between the detection of merging black holes on 14 September 2015, and five months later when LIGO announced it to the world.

NSF Science Now: Episode 50

In this week's episode, we learn how AI uncovers insights into cancer, how loops give toughness to spider silk, a newly released database of stars and finally, we investigate a novel water testing technique. Check it out!

Women engineers discuss ‘Hidden Figures’ and lingering challenges

The nonfiction book and its film counterpart "Hidden Figures" revealed the genius behind the American space race in the 1960s: a cohort of black women who, despite segregation and discrimination, applied their genius in math and engineering to help send our rockets and astronauts into space and bring them back safely.

Editors' pick: The universe waves hello

In this editors' pick video for the Best Of the National Science Foundation's Science360 2016, Charlie and Jordan explore the biggest news story of our century so far: the detection of gravitational waves.

Supercomputers solve case of missing galaxies

California Institute of Technology (Caltech) associate professor of theoretical astrophysics Phil Hopkins and Carnegie-Caltech Research Fellow Andrew Wetzel use massive supercomputers to build the most detailed and realistic simulation of galaxy formation ever created.

The nature of matter

If there's one thing that we think we understand, it's matter. After all, matter makes up everything around us; it even makes up you. However, all is not as it seems.

Why does time advance? Richard Muller's new theory

A simple question from his wife -- Does physics really allow people to travel back in time? -- propelled physicist Richard Muller on a quest to resolve a fundamental problem that had puzzled him throughout his 45-year career: Why does the arrow of time flow inexorably toward the future, constantly creating new "nows"?

When protons collide

A proton collision is like a car accident--except when it isn't. Boston University physicist Kevin Black explains why. (Watch out for the kitchen sink!)

Happy B-day NSF!

For more than six decades, the National Science Foundation has funded science and engineering research that has led to discoveries and innovations that transformed our world.

Creating knowledge to transform our future

A brief look at how National Science Foundation-supported fundamental research helps drive our nation's economy, enhance our security, advance our knowledge to sustain global leadership, and transform our future.

Science of Innovation: Origami structures

Origami is the ancient Japanese art of paper folding. But to engineer Mary Frecker of Pennsylvania State University, it is the future for designing tools that could be used in fields such as medicine and space exploration.

NSF Science Now: Episode 40

In this episode we create an ice storm lab, discover gravitational-waves, track the path of chemo drugs and, finally, test out new deep-sea ROV grippers for handling fragile coral and sponges.

The universe waves hello

In episode 41, Charlie and Jordan explore the biggest news story of our century so far: the detection of gravitational waves.

Do we live in a multiverse?

In this video, Fermilab's Don Lincoln explains how the existence of a multiverse is a possible answer to the question of why the universe seems so well tuned for human life.