Science Friday

Science Friday

United States

Covering everything about science and technology -- from the outer reaches of space to the tiniest microbes in our bodies -- Science Friday is your source for entertaining and educational stories and activities. Each week, host Ira Flatow interviews scientists and inventors like Sylvia Earle, Elon Musk, Neil deGrasse Tyson, and more.


Hr2:Political Math, Great Lakes  

The North American Great Lakes are changing under the influence of pollution, invasive species, and climate change. How well will they weather this stress?

Hr1: News Roundup, Amazon Pharmacy, Flatworms in Space, Milkshake Mindset, Cephalopod Week  

Cephalopod Week kicks off with an octopus matchmaker and cephalopod defense moves. And how your mindset might change the way you metabolize a milkshake. And researchers look to a simple organism, the flatworm, to study how living in space might affect humans on a cellular level.

Hr2:Algorithm Accountability, CRISPR, Gravitational Lensing, Hottest Exoplanet  

Biochemist Jennifer Doudna describes her work on developing the CRISPR-Cas9 technique and the ethical concerns of using the revolutionary tool. Plus, regulating algorithms could offer better insight into why they fail. And researchers find a doomed planet orbiting a massive hot star.

Hr1: News Roundup, Telescope, Sunscreen, Paleoanthropology  

A new report says only one quarter of SPF products on the market are up to snuff. And a customizable melanin-like material could offer better protection from the sun.Plus, hominin fossils dating to 300,000 years ago have been found at a site in Morocco.

Hr1: News Roundup, Fisheries, Hedy Lamarr, LIGO  

Scientists using LIGO detected a third gravitational wave, this time from two colliding black holes located 3 billion light-years away. Plus, the tale of actress and inventor Hedy Lamarr.

Hr2: Allergies, Bionic Limb Connections, Exosuit  

A look at why our immune systems turn on us, and why we are still powerless to stop the attack. Plus, an innovative muscle graft could help people with amputations feel their bionic limbs. And how researchers are developing wearable devices that can improve human movement.

Hr2: Jupiter, Useless Research, Leland Melvin  

Scientists report the first scientific results from the Juno mission, now in orbit around Jupiter. Plus reviving a case for foundational science that dates back to Einstein. And Leland Melvin on the perseverance and different communities that helped launch his career into space.

Hr1: News Roundup, Fidget Spinners, Award-Winning Space Tracker, Science Budget, Undiscovered  

Amber Yang, 18, won Intel's Young Scientist Award with her novel space debris tracker. Plus, a look at the White House's proposed science budget.

Hr2: Springtime Soil, Muskox  

Moldy compost? Compacted soil? Here comes some soil science to help your garden spring into shape. Plus how one researcher plays pretend to shed light on species survival in a warming climate.

Hr1: News Roundup, Forensic Science, Hack Stockpile, Undiscovered  

A look at efforts to improve forensics after the death of a key federal commission. Plus, when should the government alert the computer industry about software flaws that could become cyberweapons? And the story of meteorite hunter Nina Lanza, and what life is really like in Antarctica.

Hr2: Microwaves, Sea Spray, THC, Sea Lion Pups  

We have been microwaving our food for 50 years. Why are some people still worried about their safety? And new research looks at the connections between the oceans, the phytoplankton and bacteria that live in them, and the aerosolized materials that can end up high in the atmosphere.

Hr1: News Roundup, Bird Tracking, Homo Naledi, Undiscovered  

The team of paleoanthropologists that discovered fossils of Homo naledi in a South African cave two years ago say the bones are between 335,000 and 236,000 years old. Plus, Science Friday has a new show! Undiscovered tells the back stories of great scientific discoveries.

Introducing Undiscovered: Episode 1, Boss Hua and the Black Box  

Introducing Undiscovered, a brand-new podcast spinoff from SciFri! A team of social scientists stumbles onto a cache of censored Chinese social media posts—and decides to find out what the Chinese government wants wiped from the internet.

Hr2: Endurance, Borne, Giant Larvacean  

In Jeff VanderMeer's latest book, a future world overrun by biotech mutants still has hope. And scientists investigate the genetic pathway that leads to better endurance in mice.

Hr1: News Roundup, Spacesuits, Eclipse, Aurora, Hypoliths  

The solar eclipse provides an opportunity for scientists to study the solar atmosphere and polar plumes. Plus, in the driest deserts, hardy bacteria cling to the underside of translucent rocks, eking out an existence where nothing else can.

Hr2: Star-nosed Moles, Transportation Infrastructure, Richard Garwin Biography  

Physicist Richard Garwin has played a prominent role in fields ranging from nuclear weapons, personal computing technology, and science policy. Plus, a look at the state of our transportation infrastructure, and the secrets of the star-nosed mole.

Hr1: News Roundup, Worry, Human Settlement of the Americas, Genius, Spirals  

A fossil find in California makes the case for human settlement of the Americas 130,000 years ago--€”more than 100,000 years earlier than previously believed. But not all anthropologists are convinced. Plus, a new TV series based on a biography of Einstein. And a mathematical artist and his never-ending blooms.

Hr2: Forensic Ornithology, Internet Privacy, Health Research  

A CSI lab tracks the birds that strike airplanes. The species that hits most often? Not the one you might guess. Plus, practical tools to save some of your online privacy. And a look at how scarce resources and the pressure to publish undermine quests for cures.

Hr1: Can Science Survive In A More Politicized Age?  

The March for Science makes history as science and advocacy come together.

Hr2: Heiltsuk Archaeology, Brain Difference, Water Widget, Shoelace Physics  

An older-than-expected archaeological dig in British Columbia is building the case for a long-inhabited Pacific coast. Plus, psychiatrist Gail Saltz explores the unique abilities of those with mental disorders. And the physics of your shoelaces.

Video player is in betaClose