New Research at Smithsonian

Podnar shoots dry ice pellets, which sit at a frosty temperature of around negative minus-180-degrees Fahrenheit, at the object's surface

The Innovative Spirit fy17

Conservation of a Pair of Saint-Gaudens Goes al Fresco at the Freer

The beauty of dry ice cleaning is the efficient and environmentally safe process; but also the procedure was on view from the street

A Smithsonian scientist and other researchers announce success in the first-ever cryo-preservation of zebrafish embryos using gold nanotechnology and lasers.

The Innovative Spirit fy17

A Cool New Way to Freeze and Unfreeze Zebrafish Embryos Using Gold Nanotechnology and Lasers

The downstream applications could make food cheaper, repair coral reefs and help restore frog populations

Mateo-Vega (derecha) muestra a los compañeros Emberá y Kuna cómo tomar medidas forestales. De izquierda a derecha, los técnicos indígenas Edgar Gariboldo, Chich Chamarro, Baurdino López, Evelio Jiménez, Alexis Solís. (Sean Mattson / Smithsonian)

Future of Conservation

Cómo Los Científicos y Grupos Indígenas Pueden Aliarse Para Proteger Los Bosques y el Clima

Compared with the trees, lianas are able to put more energy  into the production of leaves and seeds and less towards growing a trunk.

Tarzan's Favorite Mode of Travel, the Liana Vine, Chokes Off a Tree's Ability to Bear Fruit

With lowered fruit production, fewer seeds are dispersed to grow new trees

A female Limosa harlequin frog sports a miniature radio transmitter.

A Pioneering Force of Harlequin Frogs Set Out to Help Save Their Species

Outfitted with tiny transmitters, these frogs are released to face the challenging chytrid fungus that decimated their populations

“These males were still alive and living around the females, they just apparently weren’t getting any of the matings, or the matings weren’t working,” says Robert C. Fleischer.

Future of Conservation

Safer Digs for Tortoises Put a Damper on Their Love Lives

A new genetic study surprised scientists who learned the males were not breeding

Exclusively feeding in the wild on blood from live animals, vampire bats, native to Central and South America, can regurgitate blood in order to feed one another, though they won't do this for just anyone.

What a Vampire Bat Can Teach Us About the Economics of Friendship

A Smithsonian scientist says important lessons about making friends and sharing can be learned from these blood-sucking creatures

Multiple views of the young teen's right humerus arm bone that runs from the shoulder to the elbow show where the tumor left its mark.

Oldest Cancer Case in Central America Discovered

A young teen, who died 700 years ago, likely suffered pain in the right arm as the tumor grew and expanded through the bone

A giraffe skin disease was first described in the mid-1990s in Uganda and evidence of the disease has been spotted in numerous other countries, including Namibia, Zimbabwe and Botswana.

Future of Conservation

How a Tiny Worm is Irritating the Most Majestic of Giraffes

They sound horrifying and look worse. A Smithsonian researcher is investigating the cause of these grotesque skin lesions

Photograph of two Havana meteoritic metal beads with a 1 cm cube for scale. The bead on the left (7.8 g mass) is cut perpendicular to the central hole, illustrating the extensive alteration of the bead and infilling of the central hole. The bead on the right (4.6 g mass) is cut parallel to the central hole and exhibits a concentrically deformed structure.

New Research

Beads Made From Meteorite Reveal Ancient Trade Network

Researchers have confirmed iron beads in Illinois come from a Minnesota meteorite, supporting a theory called the Hopewell Interaction Sphere

“It's hard to imagine," says Smithsonian scientist Carlos Jaramillo,"that you could have the Caribbean ocean in the west Amazon."

A Vast and Now Vanished Amazon Sea Is Discovered

About 18 million years ago, the Caribbean Sea seasonally flooded inland forests, where enormous crocodiles and turtles roamed

Mateo-Vega (right) shows Emberá and Kuna colleagues how to take forest measurements. From left to right, indigenous technicians Edgar Garibaldo, Chicho Chamorro, Baurdino Lopez, Evelio Jiménez, Alexis Solís.

Future of Conservation

How Scientists And Indigenous Groups Can Team Up to Protect Forests and Climate

A collaboration between Smithsonian researchers and the Emberá people of Panama aims to rewrite a fraught narrative

Scientists studying the bones of the Hawaiian petrel, which flies great distances over the north Pacific Ocean to feed, are collecting an invaluable long-term story dating from thousands of years ago.

Bones of the Hawaiian Petrel Open Up a Window Into the Birds' Changing Diet

Industrial fishing may play a role in the shift

An illustration of LHS 1140b orbiting its faint red star

New Research

Exoplanet Discovery Arrives in Time for New Telescope Technology

Astronomers call LHS 1140b one of the "best targets" for hunting liquid water with NASA's James Webb Space Telescope

Ingenious leafcutter ants have developed a successful symbiotic relationship with the fungi they farm. New genetic analysis helps pinpoint when, and why.

New Research

How Ants Became the World’s Best Fungus Farmers

Ancient climate change may have spurred a revolution in ant agriculture, Smithsonian researchers find

Andrew Altieri of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama conducts a survey where more than 90 percent of the coral reef has died due to hypoxia.

Coral Reefs Now Face Deep Water Dead Zones, As If Climate Change Were Not Enough

A Smithsonian scientist says there may be a greater prevalence of undocumented oxygen-starved deep coastal waters

The Kirtland’s warbler is one of North America’s most endangered bird species.

The Innovative Spirit fy17

Scientists Track, For the First Time, One of the Rarest Songbirds on Its Yearlong Migration

The journey of the Kirtland’s warbler is discovered thanks to a combination of the latest tiny technology and centuries-old solar location methods

Thanks to this evolutionary novelty, a flexible joint in the skull of dragonfishes, the creatures are able to swallow prey that is almost as big as they are.

This Hinged Skull Helps Dragonfish Eat Prey Bigger Than Its Head

Scientists have discovered the world's only group of fish that has this unbelievable ability

Panamanian golden frog (Atelopus zeteki)

Here's Why You Should Never Kiss a Toad

A scientist at Smithsonian's Tropical Research Institute helped catalog everything known about toxins in the skins of endangered frogs and toads

An infrared image of 47 Tucanae, a dense globular cluster of stars located roughly 16,000 light years from Earth. A new study has predicted that a black hole lies at its center.

Think Big

How Astrophysicists Found a Black Hole Where No One Else Could

A new method could help scientists peer inside universe's densest star clusters to find undiscovered black holes

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