Science News

Living in lava tubes: cities in the moon

Tim Biggs   Study suggests large empty pockets beneath the moon's crust could offer shelter from the deadly low temperatures and radiation of the surface while being stable enough to house buildings.


Latest science news


Research troll: no, chocolate doesn't help you lose weight

What? Eating chocolate doesn’t help lose weight? But I read it in the newspaper!

Will J Grant 7:41 PM   How a science journalist sucked the world in and exposed the flaws in diet research and media with a prank study that showed eating chocolate made you lose weight.

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Large Hadron Collider is cranking up again: prepare to have your mind blown

The Large Hadron Collider has been newly revamped.

Marcus Strom 5:07 PM   Prepare to have your mind blown. A hundred metres under the Swiss-French countryside scientists are aiming two particle beams at each other and smashing them together near the speed of light at energy levels never before attempted. Data from those massive collisions will start pouring out sometime on Wednesday afternoon.

Single atom experiment gives scientists a reality check

Andrew Truscott with PhD student Roman Khakimov.

Bridie Smith 5:00 PM   Australian physicists have proved one of the most mind-blowing quantum theories on offer, confirming that the reality does not exist until it is measured – at least at the atomic scale.

Aggressive walking fish hitching to Australia

 The climbing perch can live out of water for up to six days.

Bridie Smith 11:15 PM   A freshwater fish capable of surviving out of water for up to six days may also be able to survive in salty water, prompting scientists to warn that the aggressive climbing perch could make its way to mainland Australia from Papua New Guinea.

A dangerous equation: How fake science gets published

SPECIAL 000 biotech;syd;020315;pix phil carrick;brw - Laboratory Technician performing scientific experiments.S Bio technology, Laboratory,science, biology, chemistry

Charles Seife 11:45 PM   A now-discredited study got headlines because it offered hope. But the alleged deception is a symptom of a weakness at the heart of the scientific establishment.

The world's biodiversity is not as diverse as first thought

Melbourne University's Andrew Hamilton is co-author of a paper which has published findings on the number of species on the planet, particularly beetles.

Bridie Smith   Our planet may be home to millions fewer species than previously thought, according to the results of a new study led by Australian researchers.

Sydney Uni undergraduate maps huge plasma tubes in the sky

Cleo Loi, University of Sydney astrophysics graduate. Author of academic paper on plasma tubes in the atmosphere

Marcus Strom   A Sydney University student has used radio telescopes like a giant pair of electronic eyes to locate huge plasma tubes in the atmosphere that interfere with astronomers' observations and which could affect some navigation systems.

Birds-eye view gives scientists a rare insight into the life of seabird

Deakin Uni researchers put cameras on the backs of gannets to work out how they get their food in and around Port Phillip Bay

Bridie Smith Science Editor   Researchers have attached cameras and tracking devices to the tails of Australasian gannets to get a bird's-eye view of how the seabirds forage for their food in Victorian waters.

Complementary medicines: which work and which don't

Essential oils

Harriet Alexander and Nicky Phillips   Which complementary medicines work and which ones are a waste of money?

Sorry, John, John and John. This time the award goes to a woman

Cathy Foley ... winner of the Clunies Ross award.

Nicky Phillips   Physicist Cathy Foley and colleague Keith Leslie have been awarded the prestigious Clunies Ross award for innovation and commercialisation.

For sale: one Nobel prize

A Nobel Prize Medal: The reserve for Lederman's has been set at $325,000.

Nicky Phillips   Fancy yourself a bit of a collector? Why not add a Nobel Prize to your pool room. It'll only set you back a few hundred thousand dollars.

In Shanghai's wearable technology, Melbourne has it nailed

The Spider Dress 2.0, by Anouk Wipprecht, an artist and fashion designer based in Holland. The dress is operated by hidden sensors and micro-controllers, and attacks strangers if they come too close. The sensors are conditioned to attack or not by the wearer's rate of breathing -- an indicator of fear or anxiety. The speed at which a person approaches the wearer can also trigger an attack. Image supplied by the artist.

Andrew Masterson   Dresses that attack, strap-on kidneys and holographic fingernails. One way or another, wearable tech is about to rock your world.

Major breakthrough in serous ovarian cancer research

Women with ovarian cancer can face repeat surgeries as more tumours appear.

Bridie Smith   Australian researchers have identified four key ways by which one of the most common type of ovarian cancers becomes resistant to chemotherapy, a breakthrough which will better match patients with the most effective treatment.

The world we're lucky not to live in

Ozone hole over Antarctica in 2006.

Nicky Phillips   An ozone hole larger than Australia would have opened up over the Arctic if we had continued to use CFCs for the past three decades.

Why a real-life Terminator is far away

A robotics contest aims to provide a reality check on the rise of machines like this one from "Terminator Genisys".

John Markoff   Sci-fi movies appear to confirm our worst fears. But the truth is robots aren't very 'smart'.

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Biodiversity under threat as Melbourne's grasslands become suburbs

Ecologist Mark McDonnell has warned that Melbourne is at risk of losing more than half its native plants species in the next century.

Bridie Smith   Ecologists have warned that Melbourne is at risk of losing more than half its native plant species over the next century, with grasslands in Melbourne's west the most vulnerable to the city's urban sprawl.


The best way to kill a cane toad

It was once thought the brain of a cane toad remained warm enough to feel pain while the rest of their body froze.

Nicky Phillips   A team of Sydney researchers has discovered a two-step process that is the most humane way to kill cane toads. And it was a practice banned 20 years ago by animal ethics committees.

Neil deGrasse Tyson's cure for innovation blues: a Mars space race

Neil deGrasse Tyson sees a role for space in stimulating our terrestrial economy.

Chris Zappone   In the search to find the high-paying jobs and industries of the future, Neil deGrasse Tyson has an idea for a novel solution. How about a militarised space race to Mars?

'Redundant' CSIRO scientist elected to Australian science academy

CSIRO researchers Dr San Thang (right) with Dr Ezio Rizzardo

Bridie Smith   World-leading chemist San Thang, who attracted headlines late last year after CSIRO made him redundant the very month he was named a frontrunner for the prestigious Nobel Prize in chemistry, has been elected a fellow of the Australian Academy of Science.

Could this solution fix Mondayitis?


Marissa Calligeros   Struggling with Mondayitis? Australian scientists have uncovered a simple way to stimulate the mind.

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Scientists find echoes of Big Bang

An experiment at the South Pole leads to what is potentially one of the biggest scientific discoveries of the past two decades.

The secret to running repairs

Scientists think the Mexican walking fish may hold the key to regeneration in humans.

Alive as a dodo

Bringing animals back from extinction is no longer science fiction. But the question is, should we do it?


Navy reveals Antarctic secrets

Australian Navy hydrographers on their boat the Wyatt Earp map the seafloor off Casey Station in Antarctica.

Cycling out of intensive care

World leading research is under way to rehabilitate ICU patients - some unconscious - with horizontal exercise bikes. Producer - Tom McKendrick

Furry Facts

Why onions make you cry

Ever wonder why chopping onions is such a tear jerking event?


Needles aren't a whole lot of fun, but why is immunisation so important? Cartoonist John Shakespeare and Science Editor Nicky Phillips explain.

El Nino and La Nina

Have you ever found it hard to understand why Australia's swings between drought and floods?


They're some of the most destructive forces on the planet, but what's the difference between a tornado and a cyclone?


What is a sinkhole? What causes them? Furry Facts explains.