Twenty surprising scientific facts we learned in 2020

From corals bunkering down in deeper waters to wait out climate change stress, to how vaccines can boost our immune system beyond a specific disease – here are the 20 most surprising scientific facts that we discovered this year.  Read: Five things you need to know about bats, disease and coronavirus  Read: We are starting … Read more

Galactic archaeology: astronomers are using stars as fossils to study the Milky Way

Our Milky Way is thought to be home to as many as 400 billion stars, one of which is, of course, our own sun. But how and when did these stars form, and where did they come from?  Understanding the stellar population of our galaxy could reveal a great deal, not only about our own home … Read more

Q&A: It’s time to rethink the Milky Way

How stars and planets form, and how special is the Milky Way, are among the as-yet unanswered questions about our galaxy. Image credit - Oliver Griebl/Wikimedia, licenced under CC BY 3.0

by Kelly Oakes The Milky Way might be right on our cosmic doorstep, but a group of astronomers suspect that the way we currently study it is stunting our understanding. Professor Ralf Klessen at Heidelberg University in Germany is one of four researchers who have recently begun a six-year project, ECOGAL, to try something new: imagine … Read more