The worlds’ oceans have changed dramatically in the 50+ years that marine ecologist Jeremy Jackson has been studying them. Overfishing, pollution, and climate change have converted once-thriving ecosystems like coral reefs and mangrove forests
The Titanosaur, Patagotitan mayorum, is the largest-known dinosaur to ever walk the Earth—weighing more than 10 African elephants. How did it get so big? How did it dominate the prehistoric landscape for millions of years? And what can this ext
Climate change may be affecting populations around the world in different ways, but the sobering state of our shared environment should worry everyone. How can we as a global community make changes to our economic, leadership, and policy models
Only a fraction of the oceans’ floors has been explored, yet scientists already know that microbial communities are thriving in the extreme and often bizarre landscapes of the deep sea. Harvard University geobiologist Jeffrey Marlowe shares fin
What can science reveal about bias in our education, healthcare, and other social systems? It turns out, quite a bit. This series of short talks from experts in the fields of medicine, law, education, and business explores where bias comes from
For most humans, foods that have been cooked or otherwise processed are a part of everyday life. But what happens on a molecular level when you chop, mash, and sautee your meal? How has cooking given humans an evolutionary edge? And how is new
Asteroids can teach us a lot about the origin of our solar system—but they can also pose a potential threat if they come too close to Earth.
Join Harold C. Connolly Jr. for an overview of the OSIRIS-REx and Hyabusa2 spacecraft missions that a
Oxytocin, the so-called “love drug,” has been the subject of ongoing debate surrounding its impact on the human brain—but what does the latest science show? Bianca Jones Marlin, a neuroscientist and postdoctoral researcher at Columbia Universit
Imagine a robot that knows without being told which tool to hand to an autoworker, or how to match hospital patients with the most appropriate medical staff. The next generation of robotics may be capable of complex tasks like these—able to lea
Woolly mammoths and giant ground sloths are just a few of the strange animals that once roamed Earth, living on every habitable continent. But about 50,000 years ago, these “megafauna” began to disappear. What factors contributed to their disap
What does a carnivorous plant have in common with the design for a water-saving toilet? What about a hungry cell with surgical equipment? It may be surprising to learn that engineers still turn to the natural world for inspiration. For Tak-Sing
In April 2018, the Gaia space telescope released its second catalog of over 1.3 billion stellar distances, helping astronomers map the Milky Way like never before. Astrophysicist Jackie Faherty takes us on a tour through her current work using
In celebration of International Cat Day and to honor the legacy of zoologist and conservationist Alan Rabinowitz who died August 5, we’re re-publishing a talk he gave at the Museum in 2014. Rabinowitz shares his journey to conserve the jaguar,
The world under the waves or the wilds of the land? Which creatures—marine or terrestrial—are the most compelling, intriguing, and inspiring? Comedian and journalist Faith Salie leads two teams of scientific luminaries in this tongue-in-cheek “
Swirling disks of dust and gas surround young stars, and these disks contain the building blocks for new planets. It would take 100 million years to see a planet fully form, but luckily there are plenty of planetary systems in development for u
While wild orangutans in the rainforests of Borneo feed on a remarkable variety of plant life, they also endure unpredictable cycles of feast and famine. Erin Vogel of Rutgers University explains how research on these primates’ diet and health
Astronomers have discovered thousands of planets in our galaxy, but how much do we understand about how they are formed? Why, for example, are some planets rocky like ours, while others like Jupiter and Saturn are gaseous? Astrophysicist Meredi
How can studying ocean life help us to create more efficient technologies? Frank Fish, professor of biology at West Chester University of Pennsylvania, explores how the elegant movements of manta rays and humpback whales are inspiring new and b
On April 25th, 2018, the European Space Agency’s Gaia observatory released its second data catalog, which includes the distances to a staggering 1.4 billion stars. Museum Astrophysicist Jackie Faherty explains why these new findings are importa
How do our brains make sense of the world our eyes see? How does attention affect our perception? And how is it possible to miss things even if they are right in front of us? In her recent SciCafe talk, Marisa Carrasco, a professor of psycholog
On April 24, 1990, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low Earth orbit. Over its 28- year career, Hubble has helped scientists make incredible discoveries, from evidence of dark energy in the early universe to comets whizzing into our
To celebrate our new exhibition, Unseen Oceans, we’re “re-surfacing” earlier podcast episodes about our planet’s last frontier: the oceans.
In this SciCafe from 2014, John Sparks, curator in the Department of Ichthyology at the Museum and cur
What does a dolphin see when it looks in the mirror? Cognitive psychologist and marine mammal scientist Diana Reiss of Hunter College explains what we already know about bottlenose dolphin intelligence and communication, and describes her teams
In honor of Albert Einstein’s birthday on March 14, we’re re-publishing this podcast primer on his theories of General and Special Relativity—ideas that most people have heard of but few truly understand. Astrophysicist and educator Jeffrey Ben
Scientists have only just begun to detect exoplanets—planets orbiting stars other than our Sun—but already these alien worlds have upended the rules previously believed to govern planetary systems. Astrophysicist Elizabeth Tasker takes us on a
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