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GBH

Prof. Taylor Perron, a recipient of one of this year’s MacArthur fellowships, speaks with Callie Crossley of GBH’s Under the Radar about his work studying the mechanisms that shape landscapes on Earth and other planets. “We try to figure out how we can look at landscapes and read them, and try to figure out what happened in the past and also anticipate what might happen in the future,” says Perron of his work as a geomorphologist.

Newsweek

Newsweek reporter Robert Lea writes that astronomers from MIT and elsewhere have found evidence of a large planetary collision that stripped the atmosphere from a planet. “While astronomers have long believed these kinds of collisions are common throughout the Universe, this is the first time that they have spotted evidence of one that stripped an atmosphere in such a way around a distant star,” writes Lea.

Popular Science

Researchers from MIT and other institutions have uncovered evidence that early dinosaurs may have lived in social herds, reports Kate Baggaley for Popular Science. “People have known for a long time that the more advanced dinosaurs, the ones that lived in the late Jurassic and Cretaceous, especially the large sauropods…moved and lived in herds,” explains research scientist Jahandar Ramezani. “But the question has always been, when did this behavior start?”

Space.com

A new study co-authored by MIT researchers presents the first evidence that a distant planet had its atmosphere partially blown away by a large impact, reports Charles Choi for Space.com. "I think a really critical implication is that the gas that is released in the aftermath of a giant impact can last for a long time, and it can affect the way the system evolves long-term," explains graduate student and lead author Tajana Schneiderman. 

Forbes

Forbes contributor David Bressan writes that a new study co-authored by MIT researchers finds that images taken by the Perseverance rover show that Mars’ Jezero crater was once a lake. “The fine-grained clay and carbonate layers deposited in the fossil lake are capped by a diamict, a sedimentary rock consisting of a mix of large and small boulders,” writes Bressan. “Scientists think the boulders were picked up tens of miles upstream and deposited into the former lakebed by episodic flash floods, suggesting a catastrophic climate change in Mars' distant past.”

Popular Science

Prof. Tanja Bosak and Prof. Benjamin Weiss speak with Popular Science reporter Kate Baggaley about how their analysis of images captured by NASA’s Perseverance rover found that the Jezero crater was once a lake and river delta. “The geological history of the Jezero crater could help scientists understand how the Red Planet changed from being wet and possibly habitable into a harsh desert world,” writes Baggaley. “Definitely we hit the jackpot here,” says Weiss, 

Space.com

Space.com reporter Mike Wall writes that a new study co-authored by MIT scientists finds that the Jezero crater on Mars previously hosted a big lake and river delta. “The newly analyzed photos may provide an intriguing glimpse” into Mars’ transformation to a dry landscape,” writes Wall.

CNN

Researchers from MIT and other institutions analyzed images captured by NASA’s Perseverance rover and found that Mars’ Jezero crater was a lake 3.7 billion years ago, reports Ashley Strickland for CNN. “The new information shows the importance of sending rovers to explore the surface of Mars,” writes Strickland. “Previous images captured by orbiters had shown that this outcrop resembled the kind of fan-shaped river deltas we have on Earth. Perseverance's images show definitive proof of the river delta's existence.”

The New Yorker

Researchers at MIT’s Plasma Science and Fusion Center and Commonwealth Fusion Systems speak with The New Yorker’s Rivka Galchen about the history of fusion research and the recent test of their large high-temperature superconducting electromagnet. “I feel we proved the science. I feel we can make a difference,” says MIT alumna Joy Dunn, head of manufacturing at CFS. “When people ask me, ‘Why fusion? Why not other renewables,’ my thinking is: This is a solution at the scale of the problem.”

Vox

Professor Susan Solomon, geophysicist Joseph Farman, and Environmental Protection Agency official Stephen Andersen were recently honored with this year’s Future of Life award for their “significant role in our triumph over the depletion of the ozone layer,” reports Kelsey Piper for Vox.  

Forbes

Forbes contributor Michael T. Nietzel spotlights the work of Prof. Taylor Perron, who was awarded a 2021 MacArthur Fellowship. “By using mathematical modeling, computer simulations, and field studies, Perron is able to describe the environmental history of current landscapes and predict how landscapes will respond to future environmental changes," writes Nietzel.

CBS Boston

CBS Boston spotlights how Prof. Taylor Perron has been honored with a 2021 MacArthur Fellowship for his work “unraveling the mechanisms that create landscapes on Earth and other planets.” CBS Boston notes that Perron is “currently studying river networks on Mars and one of Saturn’s moons for clues about the climate history of each celestial body.”

The Washington Post

Prof. Taylor Perron has been named a recipient of the 2021 MacArthur Fellowship for his work investigating the processes that create a planet’s landforms, reports Ellen McCarthy for The Washington Post.

National Public Radio (NPR)

Prof. Mark Bear speaks with NPR’s Jon Hamilton about how injecting tetrodotoxin, a paralyzing nerve toxin found in puffer fish, could allow the brain to rewire in a way that restores vision and help adults with amblyopia or "lazy eye." Bear explains that: “Unexpectedly, in many cases vision recovered in the amblyopic eye, showing that that plasticity could be restored even in the adult.”

Motherboard

Motherboard reporter Matthew Gault spotlights how scientists from MIT and Commonwealth Fusion Systems developed a large high-temperature superconducting magnet that can create a magnetic field of 20 tesla, “a breakthrough that paves the way for carbon-free power.”