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New Scientist

In a conversation with New Scientist reporter Jonathan O’Callaghan, Prof. Tanja Bosak discusses her work with the NASA Perseverance rover’s rock reconnaissance mission. “In the middle of a pandemic, I think we needed something good to happen, and that’s why so many people wanted all the science and engineering that goes into landing a rover on Mars to succeed,” says Bosak. “As for what will happen when the samples come back – I can’t imagine. It’s going to be otherworldly.”

Scientific American

In an article for Scientific American, graduate students Meghana Ranganathan, Julia Wilcots, Rohini Shivamoggi and Diana Dumit call for the removal of racist language from the names of many geographic features and places in the United States. “We cannot have a just society when racist names are officially sanctioned,” they write. “We need a national, multifaceted push to change any instances of racial slurs and racist terminology in our natural land features.”

The Boston Globe

Writing for The Boston Globe, M.J. Andersen highlights Prof. Sara Seager’s book, “The Smallest Lights in the Universe.” Seager’s memoir is "half hymn to the stars and half guide to grief recovery,” writes Andersen. “Lured by her faith in finding life elsewhere, she continued her research on exoplanets — versions of other star-orbiting Earths — and methods for detecting them.”

The Washington Post

Prof. Sara Seager speaks with Washington Post reporter Timothy Bella about the search for exoplanets and the James Webb Telescope. “I just remember seeing the stars and being overwhelmed by the beauty and the vastness and the mysteriousness of it,” recalled Seager, of a camping trip with her father that helped inspire her interest in space. “There’s something almost terrifying about it at the same time as it being so beautiful, because yeah, it’s so unknown, and it seems like it goes on forever.”

E&E News

A new study by MIT researchers finds that the oceans may begin emitting chlorofluorocarbons by 2075, reports Valerie Yurk for E&E News. “Even if there were no climate change, as CFCs decay in the atmosphere, eventually the ocean has too much relative to the atmosphere, and it will come back out," says Prof. Susan Solomon.

GBH

"We are looking for remnants of past life," says Prof. Tanja Bosak in a discussion broadcast on GBH's Boston Public Radio of the NASA Perseverance rover’s mission on Mars. "There won't be anything that's a complex organism, so everything we have to look for is microscopic. All these rocks tell a story. Depending on their chemical properties and the way they look, we can tell a history and then decide which may have been good to preserve life."

CBS Boston

Profs. Tonja Bosak and Jeffrey Hoffman speak with CBS Boston about the successful landing of the NASA Perseverance rover on Mars. Hoffman says of the MIT-designed Mars MOXIE experiment: “we are going to demonstrate how to make oxygen on the surface of Mars…we want to learn how to produce that on the surface of Mars and that’s what Moxie is going to demonstrate for the first time.”

The Atlantic

Graduate student Lauren Dykman speaks with Atlantic reporter Sabrina Imbler about her quest to investigate the life cycle of the deep-sea trematode, a type of parasitic worm.

CNN

CNN reporter Ivana Kottasová writes that a new study co-authored by MIT researchers finds there has been a significant drop in CFC emissions and a resumption in the recovery of the ozone layer. Prof. Ronald Prinn, director of the Center for Global Change Science at MIT, said that the results were “tremendously encouraging,” adding that “global monitoring networks really caught this spike in time, and subsequent actions have lowered emissions before they became a real threat to recovery of the ozone layer.”

The Christian Science Monitor

The Climate Modeling Alliance (CliMA), which includes a number of MIT researchers, is working on developing a new climate model that could be used to create more accurate climate predications that could be useful at the local or regional levels, reports Doug Struck for The Christian Science Monitor. “It’s always a mistake to say that you shouldn’t try something new,” says Prof. Raffaele Ferrari. “Because that’s how you change the world.”

CBS News

CBS News spotlights how two MIT researchers have been named to key roles on the Biden administration’s science team. Prof. Eric Lander, president and founding director of the Broad Institute, has been nominated to lead the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, will co-chair the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Zuber said she hopes to "restore trust in science, and pursue breakthroughs that benefit all people."

Nature

Prof. Eric Lander, president and founding director of the Broad Institute, and Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, have been nominated to leading roles on the Biden administration's science team, report Nidhi Subbaraman and Alexandra Witze for Nature. “These are excellent appointments, highly qualified and experienced, and well grounded in science,” says Rita Colwell, a professor at University of Maryland at College Park and former director of the National Science Foundation

Associated Press

AP reporter Seth Borenstein writes about how President-elect Joe Biden is nominating Prof. Eric Lander of the Broad Institute to serve as his chief science officer and lead the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and has selected Maria Zuber, vice president for research at MIT, to co-chair the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Francis Collins, director of the NIH, called Lander, “brilliant, visionary, exceptionally creative and highly effective in aspiring others. I predict he will have a profound transformational effect on American science.”

New York Times

New York Times reporter Carl Zimmer writes that Prof. Eric Lander, president and founding director of the Broad Institute, has been nominated to serve as director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy and to serve as a presidential science advisor. MIT Vice President for Research Maria Zuber will co-chair the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.

The Washington Post

Prof. Eric Lander, president and founding director of the Broad Institute, has been nominated by President-elect Joe Biden to lead the Office of Science and Technology Policy, which Biden will make a Cabinet-level position, reports Sarah Kaplan for The Washington Post. Maria Zuber, MIT’s vice president for research, will co-chair the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.