Are we living through the seventh mass extinction event?

Mass extinctions…they are a bit like buses. You wait an epoch for one, then two come along at once.  

Science – the world’s best diplomat?

Later this year we should see a remarkable event taking place. All being well, scientists and engineers will see ‘first light’ at a synchrotron facility known as Sesame.

Are we making money from Ebola?

Marketing buzz-words are, sadly, a staple of modern life. And it’s a staple that is often served up in the world of scientific equipment.

New geological epoch marked by the world’s first nuclear test

It’s funny how an off the cuff remark can sometimes be a shortcut to the truth. Atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen must surely agree.

Why did you become a scientist?

I ask because at the tail end of last year the Government published the much anticipated science and innovation strategy outlining how much money it will spend on science over the next decade. All in the name of building and sustaining a knowledge economy.   

How a comet can inspire a generation

In the middle of November – I hardly need remind you – the human race made a historic, if rather bumpy, landing on comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The first time such a ‘soft’ landing had been attempted.   

Super spectroscopy

In the final LN Companion Series of 2014, we take a look at an analytical method that has enlightened us in so many ways.

The ‘omics’ revolution

The ‘omics’ revolution that has taken place in biology over the last few decades promises to yield so much. Yet undoubtedly we will have to wait a while before this promise is kept.

Respect in the face of desolation

Tunneling through mountains, creating entire islands where once open ocean dominated, razing swathes of forest  – this is big engineering to meet big ambition; engineering which many would class as a defining characteristic of human kind.

Combating chemical warfare

 A year ago the world stood open mouthed as reports came in on the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian city of Damascus. For the first time since the Iran-Iraq war began in 1980, chemistry its self was once again the ammunition.