Earth & Environment

The "third rock from the Sun"—Earth. With an orbit neither too close nor too far from the Sun, it occupies a unique position in the Solar System. It's the only planet known to man with the right conditions for the origin and evolution of life. During Earth's 4.5 billion-year history, a combination of processes has transformed it into a watery blue, living planet. The Earth's ecosystems involve complex interactions between the biological (living) and physical (non-living) worlds. Scientific research helps us comprehend our effects on the environment and how the environment in turn responds to impacts of our activities.

Carbon flux explorers

Jim Bishop, senior scientist at Berkeley Lab and professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is leading a project to deploy robotic floats that provide data on how microorganisms sequester carbon in the ocean.

Big ideas for future NSF investments

Six research "big ideas" that will drive important aspects of the National Science Foundation's long-term research agenda, push forward the frontiers of US science and engineering research, and lead to new discoveries and innovations.

Turn your eyes to the skies for the latest explorers

In episode 68, Charlie and Jordan head outdoors to show how National Science Foundation-supported researchers are finding new ways to use small, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)--also known as drones--to gather data, improve communication and explore environments where humans and larger aircraft dare not go.

What's under Mount Hood?

A study of Mount Hood, Oregon, shows that the volcano's magma reservoir is in an eruptible state as little as 1 percent of the time.

Breaking summer records

In episode 60, Charlie and Jordan return from summer break to investigate the future of summers. According to NSF-funded research at NCAR, in 50 years, summers across most of the globe could be hotter than any other experienced by people, ever.

Research at the ends of the Earth

Over the last year, Rhian Waller, associate professor of marine science at the University of Maine, has been to the ends of the Earth to study how changing oceans are affecting cold-water corals and what those changes may eventually mean in places like the Gulf of Main

Citizen science research, improving student motivation

In partnership with Bowling Green State University, Perkins Local Schools and Sandusky City Schools, the iEvolve with STEM project seeks to increase student motivation and engagement through the integration of Citizen Science Research into classroom instruction across the curriculum.

NSF Science Now: Episode 45

In this episode, we tested out a computational design tool that transforms flat materials into 3-D shapes, a virtual reality environment that is helping autistic teens learn to drive, a new novel underwater microscope and, finally, "smart thread" for wirelessly monitoring the health of a wound.

Meet a geophysicist

Postdoctoral Research Fellow from Arizona State University, Harmony Colella, talks about how experiencing an earthquake as a child in Southern California inspired her to become a geophysicist.

Meet a geophysicist: Danielle Sumy

When she was very young, Danielle Sumy's experience on the Earthquake ride at Universal Studios launched her quest to understand how earthquakes happen. Here she describes how this encounter and her early love of science motivated her to become a geophysicist.

Meet a geophysicist: Kathy Davenport

As a graduate student in geophysics, Kathy talks about her involvement with the Idaho - Oregon Research Project (IDOR) and explains why she likes her work. Kathy was part of a team from Virginia Tech supervised by John Hole, one of the IDOR Principal Investigators.

Meet a geophysicist: Jenny Nakai

Jenny Nakai talks about her interest in engineering and science as a means to be useful and solve problems and the importance of education in the Navajo culture in general.