Carbon nanotubes built this bizarre ultrablack material

From Verge Science. Carbon nanotubes are a lot like graphene: both are super-hyped materials that haven’t changed the world the way we hoped they would. At least, not yet. But while producing nanotubes, one research team accidentally found something else: one of the blackest materials on the planet. We explore how nanotubes help comprise Vantablack,…

The cosmic secrets inside this tiny meteorite

From Verge Science. Earlier this year, Verge Science went hunting for space dust on a rooftop in Brooklyn. The hunt turned up some promising samples, but looking at them under a microscope led to inconclusive results — even from the world’s foremost micrometeorite hunter. To get to the bottom of things, we took a trip…

Why NASA hasn’t gone back to the Moon

From Verge Science. NASA has big plans to return to the Moon by 2024, and it’s banking on the historic Space Launch System (SLS) to get them there. But after years of delays and cost overruns, skeptics are questioning whether SLS should remain the biggest priority for NASA. As the 50th anniversary of the Moon…

Is the “insect apocalypse” real?

From Verge Science. This week, we hit the road in rural Texas for our weirdest experiment yet. We’re collecting all the bugs that splat on our car’s windshield. It’s a silly project that hints at a very serious issue: the decline of insect populations around the world. It’s mysterious and disturbing…but might be different from…

The real reasons the US refuses to go metric

From Verge Science. In 1975, the US had their shot at going metric… but we blew it. Over 40 years later, we’re still entangled in mass confusion. In this video, we take a look at why our old system of measures has held out for so long, why Americans are so hesitant to make the…

NASA needs your help to improve its space laser

From Verge Science. NASA recently launched a new satellite with an ambitious goal: it will measure the height of every forest on the planet. It’s part of an effort to figure out how much carbon is locked up in trees across the Earth. But, NASA’s not totally sure how accurate their space-laser measurement system really…

On board Virgin Orbit’s flying launchpad

From Verge Science. Richard Branson’s Virgin Orbit is taking an unusual approach to putting satellites in space: the company wants to launch them in midair off the wing of a Boeing 747. We toured the prototype jet that’ll send the first satellites into space, and asked Virgin Orbit’s pilot what it’s like to fly a…

This is what sea level rise will do to coastal cities

From Verge Science. Sea level rise is already redrawing coastlines around the world. What happens when the coast retreats through a major city? We look at how the world map will change in the year 2100, and what coastal cities can do to defend themselves. Correction: An early version of this video suggested that researchers…

The at-home DNA test craze is putting us all at risk

From Verge Science. Investigators have begun solving violent crimes through a new kind of DNA search — one that relies on DNA data from popular at-home DNA tests like 23andMe and AncestryDNA. But, as consumer DNA databases grow, a disturbing reality emerges: you could be identified via your DNA even if you’ve never taken a…

Unlocking the secrets hidden inside your voice

From Verge Science. Your voice says a lot about you, and it has nothing to do with what you’re saying. Your voice’s tone, pitch, pace, and other “vocal biomarkers” can reveal much about your mood, and even your decision-making process. Here are a few ways that researchers and companies are learning (and profiting) from the…

The underground life forms that have taken over Centralia

From Verge Science. Centralia, Pennsylvania was a town destroyed by a nightmarish, decades-long subterranean fire. While there are almost no people left there, scientists have discovered some new residents: heat-loving microbes who have appeared to capitalize on the fire. In this “Trial & Error” episode, we collect and regrow some of the mystery microbes from…

Everything wrong with the young blood injection craze

From Verge Science. The FDA recently issued a bulletin warning people not to buy injections of “young blood.” Why on Earth does the government even need to say such a thing? The answer involves some misunderstood science, overblown news reports, and sketchy entrepreneurs. We interviewed some scientists about why young blood to reverse aging became…

How astronauts train for a worst-case spacewalk

From Verge Science. Underwater space stations, Mars rover simulators, and space walk VR: NASA has built quite the futuristic playground to help its astronauts prepare for missions. Loren Grush visits NASA’s simulations lab and tries some scary space scenarios out for herself. This is an episode of The Verge’s original series Space Craft, and we…