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Exploring the coolest and most incredible stuff in science, from way back when dinosaurs roamed the Earth to a future where humans live in space! Fun Kids Science Weekly is hosted by Dan and is the perfect science podcast for kids and families everywhere. Each week, you'll find episodes from series like Deep Space High, Age of the Dinosaurs and Professor Hallux. There's also a special guest, top experts answering all your science questions and Dangerous Dan - something scientific that’s also ...
 
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Guardian Science Weekly

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Guardian Science Weekly

Guardian Science Weekly

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The award winning Science Weekly is the best place to learn about the big discoveries and debates in biology, chemistry, physics, and sometimes even maths. From the Guardian science desk Ian Sample, Hannah Devlin & Nicola Davis meet the great thinkers and doers in science and technology. Science has never sounded so good! We'd love to hear what you think, so get in touch via @guardianaudio or podcasts@theguardian.com
 
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Show Notes: Startup's new stunning kite can pull energy from the sky | Interesting Engineering (01:07) Several kite power companies are attempting to pull energy out of the sky, and they are succeeding. Kitekraft, a Munich-based company developing a kite power system is one of those companies working on this technology Their co-CEO and chief techno…
 
We want to hear YOUR Voices! Send in your science questions for Dan to answer at www.funkidslive.com and find the Fun Kids Science Weekly where you can record your own questions to be played on the show! In this weeks episode we find out how some coral has been able to regrow, some evil seagulls terrorising a town and the discovery of the biggest c…
 
Could the food we eat and the air we breathe be damaging our immune systems? The number of people with autoimmune diseases, from rheumatoid arthritis to type 1 diabetes, began to increase around 40 years ago in the west. Now, some are also emerging in countries that had never seen the diseases before. In this episode from January 2022, Ian Sample s…
 
Anxiety is common in people with autism – but is is different than other types of anxiety or similar? Is it part of the autism phenotype? When does it start and what triggers it? Two new studies which use a longitudinal design and examine the links between autism features, anxiety symptoms and brain development are summarized this week. It shows th…
 
In early April this year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a new report giving the world just 30 months to get greenhouse gas emissions falling. Beyond that, we’ll have missed our chance of limiting global heating to 1.5C. As this summer of heatwaves, droughts, wildfires and floods prove, going much above 1.5C will have truly …
 
Show Notes: Groundbreaking heart disease treatment uses ultrasound-assisted lasers | Brighter Side News (01:21) Atherosclerosis, a buildup of plaque, can lead to heart disease, artery disease, and chronic kidney disease and is traditionally treated by inserting and inflating a balloon to expand the artery. Rohit Singh, of the University of Kansas, …
 
Why do we wheeze? And what makes the James Webb Telescope better than the Hubble Telescope? This week we have Dhara Patel from the National Space Centre to tell us just that, as well as how the Webb telescope takes such in depth images! In Science in the News this week we learn about the fossil of the earliest know predator in Leicester, and who it…
 
James Lovelock, the creator of the Gaia hypothesis, died last Tuesday on his 103rd birthday. Known as something of a maverick, the scientist and inventor was one of the most influential thinkers of the past century. Our global environment editor, Jonathan Watts, tells Madeleine Finlay about spending time with Lovelock for his forthcoming biography,…
 
For decades, the absolute priority when rescuing victims after traffic accidents has been to minimise movement of the spine. Emergency services go to great lengths to keep the patient still while they are cut free from the wreckage, because a shift of just a millimetre could potentially lead to the person needing to use a wheelchair. Or at least, t…
 
News: Bedside AI warning system for sepsis reduces mortality by nearly 20% | New Atlas (01:23) Infections can trigger all kinds of reactions in the human body, and one of the most extreme is sepsis. Occurs as a result of an infection that triggers a severe immune response in the body. Begins with widespread inflammation and can end in blood clots, …
 
Is there evidence for a lost city? Why do we name storm names after people? We hear about the latest news on monkeys attacking people, a brand new space station, and the rise in JELLYFISH SWARMS! Dr Zoe Randle joins us to tell us more about the Big Butterfly Count and in Dangerous Dan its all about the BIGGEST thing in the Universe! As always Profe…
 
Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak have clashed on a number of issues as they battle to become the next prime minister. However, as heated debates hit our television screens, the climate emergency has been alarmingly absent from discussions. Ian Sample chats to Guardian environment correspondent Fiona Harvey about which candidate is ‘least bad’ when it come…
 
The impacts of the climate crisis are undeniably here. Heatwaves, droughts, wildfires and flooding are causing devastation around the world. And yet, we still aren’t seeing the drastic action that’s required to avert climate disaster. As things get worse, it’s easy to give up hope – but ‘climate doomism’ is just as dangerous as climate denial. Anan…
 
News: Serum from hibernating black bears boosts muscle mass in human cells | New Atlas (01:16) The incredible ability of bears to hibernate for months at a time has inspired some interesting lines of research around how their secrets might benefit human health, and among them is a focus on muscle wasting. First let’s talk about bear hibernation: Th…
 
Thanks to Dr. Susan Kuo at Broad Research Institute and MIT, there is an analysis of 17,000 individuals with autism across 4 different studies that all looked at how developmental milestones emerged. The results show a great deal of diversity – across different studies, time, intellectual disability and genetic background. Different groups of peopl…
 
We find out the oldest animal in the world that lives in the UK! And in recent news we hear about a foxes favourite food.... beware its a bit stinky, and VERY GROSS. As always we are answering your questions, this week it is on boredom and sleep! Techno Mum takes on her Tech Trivia Quiz on Recycling this week, can you score better than her? And we …
 
US president Joe Biden campaigned on climate issues, but recent events may have sounded a death knell for his promises. Last week, his attempts to pass sweeping climate legislation were thwarted – by a senator in his own party. And in June, a landmark US Supreme Court ruling has greatly limited the federal government’s ability to regulate emissions…
 
The H5N1 strain of avian influenza is sweeping across the world, killing millions of birds. In the UK, it’s causing disastrous losses of seabirds – populations that were already being hit by a number of threats, including habitat loss, overfishing and global heating. Biodiversity reporter Phoebe Weston tells Madeleine Finlay about how the virus mad…
 
News: New prehistoric human unknown to science discovered in Israel | The Jerusalem Post (01:20) A new type of early human previously not known to scientists has been discovered in Israel, Tel Aviv University and Hebrew University researchers announced Thursday, July 14th. They believe this new “Homo” species intermarried with Homo sapiens and was …
 
New neurons can be generated in a dish (amazing in itself), and then these neurons can then be studied to examine how they grow, expand, divide and connect. Using this technology, researchers are finding differences in several cell functions in different forms of autism. These differences are in proliferation, which is an increase in the number of …
 
This week's special guest opens up by telling us about how she gouges out fish eyes to find out where they've been, it's Anna from Ocean Travellers telling us about how they can find out where sea creatures move and how they live. Techno Mum is back in another Tech Trivia, this week it's all about energy while Professor Hallux examines bad breath. …
 
This week, Nasa unveiled the first images from the James Webb space telescope – much awaited pictures that show our universe in glorious technicolour. The $10bn telescope, now 1 million miles from Earth, will allow scientists to look back to the dawn of time. Prof Ray Jayawardhana, who is working with one of the instruments onboard the JWST, speaks…
 
The varroa mite, a deadly honeybee parasite, has finally found its way into Australia. Varroa destructor affects every other major beekeeping area in the world, damaging honeybees and transmitting viruses across hives. Now, in a fight to contain the mite, the state of New South Wales has destroyed 1,533 infected hives and implemented a statewide st…
 
News: This new neural sleeve helps people overcome mobility challenges | ZDNet (01:08) A new mobility sleeve under development and out of stealth promises a compelling solution for those suffering a variety of mobility issues. Monitor and stimulate the neuromuscular system Lightweight next-gen mobility devices The technology was invented by Jeremia…
 
This week we discuss the CANDID meeting: Consortium for Autism, Neurodevelopmental Disorders and Digestive Diseases, what was shared, what was learned, and where doctors and researchers need to do more. They included the link between the brain-gut connection, challenges in diagnosis, ongoing studies, potential solutions, and what pediatric gastroen…
 
It's been hidden in plain sight for 100 years, but what could this discovery be? We hear from Connie Gray, Young Scientist of the Year who conducted research on bird feathers and staying on the bird theme in Dangerous Dan, we hear about a common UK bird gone rogue internationally. We answer your questions, this week its on why does hair turn grey? …
 
The US supreme court’s decision to overturn Roe v Wade will have a significant impact on the reproductive health and the safety of women who become pregnant in the US. Researchers have estimated it could increase maternal mortality in the country by 20%. The ruling also sparked debates around men’s reproductive options, including the role of vasect…
 
The UK is yet again facing a wave of Covid infections, with cases soaring by more than half a million in a week at the end of June. This time, the wave is driven by even more transmissible variants of Omicron known as BA.4 and BA.5. But with all Covid precautions gone, and many of us heading to bars, pubs, festivals and sporting events as the summe…
 
News: Cabless autonomous electric truck approved for US public roads | New Atlas (01:35) Freight technology company Einride first introduced its cabless autonomous electric T-pod truck back in 2017. Couple years later in 2020, it started rolling along Swedish Roads Now the company has been given the green light for operation on public roads in the …
 
What actually is in our blood? Why can Cheetahs run so fast? Author Paul Ian Cross joins us to chat all the grossest things about the body from is book Bodies, Brains and Bogies. In Science in the News this week we learn about the first rocket NASA has launched outside of the USA, a spacecraft being built in the UK and a new secret we have learnt f…
 
Last week, public health officials declared a ‘national incident’ after they found vaccine-derived poliovirus in London sewage samples. No cases of polio symptoms have been reported but there is evidence the virus is spreading. So what does it mean to have found the virus almost 20 years after the UK was declared polio-free? Ian Sample speaks to ep…
 
When the Guardian’s UK technology editor Alex Hern was contacted on Twitter to ask if he was involved in a new cryptocurrency called Tsuka, he assumed they just wanted him to buy it. He ignored the messages. But soon after Alex realised that, without knowing it, he was already involved. What happened next reveals a lot about the strange world of ‘s…
 
NEWS: Sugar-studded protein is key to an Alzheimer's cure | The Brighter Side (01:38) In a bit of “reverse engineering” research using brain tissues from five people who died with Alzheimer’s disease, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers say they discovered that a special sugar molecule could play a key role in the development of Alzheimer’s disease.…
 
We’ve heard a lot about social robots – do they help? One or two studies are not going to answer this, but a systematic review and meta analysis will! It turns out when you combined all the data, they do help in social abilities, but not other areas. This is how technology can help those with autism, especially technology which can be adapted to ad…
 
How can we save our coral reefs, and why are they so important? Marine Biologist David Smith joins us this week to tell us exactly why and how we can help! We answer your questions on why we have such wrinkly fingers when we are in the bath too long. And we are joined by Professor Hallux and Nurse Nanobot for the last time this week, and it's all a…
 
After wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone national park in 1995, researchers noticed some big ecological changes, leading to the regeneration of the landscape. It’s an argument used to justify the return of apex predators – but it’s increasingly being challenged. Phoebe Weston talks to Ian Sample about whether wolves really have the power to sh…
 
They support an incredible array of biodiversity and may also be some of the world’s most effective carbon sinks. But vast swathes of seagrass meadows have been lost in the last century, and they continue to vanish at the rate of a football pitch every half hour. Madeleine Finlay makes a trip out of the Guardian office to visit a rewilding project …
 
This week’s podcast highlights a paper from the IBIS (infant brain imaging study) that tracks infants from 6 months to 5 years of age to examine how ASD symptoms cluster together. These infants either have a diagnosis or they don’t, or they have something which doesn’t meet diagnostic threshold but is still impairing in some way. Ignoring the actua…
 
SHOW NOTES 01:50 The first perovskite solar cell with a commercially viable lifetime is here | Interesting Engineering A team of researchers from Princeton University has built the first perovskite solar cells that last long enough to be commercially viable. Silicon-based cells, which many regard as an expensive and suboptimal component, have domin…
 
How were our stone age ancestors able to watch their own movies? Archaeologist Andy Needham joins us this week to tell us exactly why. We answer your questions on What is a turtle shell made of? And why are diamonds unbreakable? And we are joined by Professor Hallux and Nurse Nanobot, this week its all about your ears! An ancient croc is the topic …
 
Last week an engineer at Google claimed that an AI chatbot he worked with, known as LaMDA, had become ‘sentient’. Blake Lemoine published a transcript of his conversations with LaMDA that included responses about having feelings and fearing death. But could it really be conscious? AI researcher and author Kate Crawford speaks to Ian Sample about ho…
 
According to some estimates smoking causes one in 10 deaths worldwide. A lesser known side-effect of cigarettes is the damage they cause to our mental health. Yet, the rates of smoking among people with mental health conditions are much higher than the rest of the population. Last week, the UK government published the Khan review, an independent re…
 
News: Researchers run a gas turbine on pure hydrogen in world first | New Atlas (01:51) Gas turbines are found in aircraft, trains, ships, generators, pumps, compressors and all sorts of other places. 90% currently run on natural gas, which produces carbon dioxide when you burn it In the race to zero emissions by 2050, several organizations, includ…
 
What is sweat made of? Why did Pangea separate? In the news this week we hear about the worlds biggest plant, robotic hospitals and the food fight of the Megalodon. In Dangerous Dan it's all about the exploding carpenter ant and we are joined by Professor Hallux and Nurse Nanobot who tell us what happens in A&E and we learn all about the craters an…
 
When reports surfaced that Boris Johnson would be announcing the return of imperial measurements to mark the Queen’s platinum jubilee, there was some celebration, consternation, and a lot of confusion. Britain already uses a mix of both imperial and metric, and it is legal to price goods in pounds and ounces if this is displayed alongside the price…
 
Are synthetic chemicals we encounter every day causing us to gain weight? According to a major scientific review authored by dozens of scientists, there is now enough evidence to conclude that they are. Termed ‘obesogens’, these chemicals can be found in food packaging, personal hygiene products, electronics and even water. Madeleine Finlay speaks …
 
Scientists just broke the record for the highest efficiency solar cell | Interesting Engineering (01:46) A team of researchers at the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has created a solar cell with a record efficiency of 39.5 percent. This is the highest efficiency solar cell of any type, measured using standard …
 
This year’s first podcast dedicated to COVID issues explores both caregiver and clinician satisfaction with telehealth. New studies explore this satisfaction with assessment as well as psychiatric interventions. Also, as a follow up to the INSAR presentations on resiliency in mental health, a new study from Canada explains what may be at the core o…
 
Scientists Gertrud and Angela join us this week to discuss their study on how Dolphins are using their own skincare in coral reefs and we answer your questions on why drinking glasses make music and what actually happens in a black hole! A dangerous stink is the subject of Dangerous Dan and we catch up with Professor Hallux and Nurse Nanobot, and t…
 
Bisexuality is the largest sexual minority in the world – but according to psychologist Dr Julia Shaw, it’s the least well understood. She talks to Madeleine Finlay about her new book, Bi, which challenges us to think more deeply about who we are and how we love. She discusses the history of trying to define and measure bisexuality, sexual behaviou…
 
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