Science Fiction

The late publisher and editor Betty Ballantine at the Nebula Awards on April 28, 2002 in Kansas City, Missouri.

Sci-Fi Lovers Owe a Debt of Gratitude to Betty Ballantine

"Introverted and quiet" Betty, who ran the editorial side of the Ballantine publishing companies, deserves her due for changing the industry

Real Planet Discovered Where Vulcan Home World in "Star Trek" Is Set

"Fascinating, Captain"

This science is poppin’

Popcorn-Powered Robots? Get 'Em While They’re Hot!

In an attempt to harness the power of pop, researchers went against the grain to push the boundaries of this staple starch

The chevrons on the Panther's early suit, and the tessellated triangles on his later model, hint at the "sacred geometry" of triangular forms common to several African cultures.

King T’Challa’s Black Panther Suit, a Bold Statement of Afrofuturist Pride, Comes to the Smithsonian

Pounce on the opportunity to celebrate contemporary African-African filmmaking at the National Museum of African American History and Culture this fall

We now know that velociraptors were closer to dog-sized than horse-sized, meaning full-grown Blue should be closer to these dimensions. Also: FEATHERS.

Five Ways Real Science Would Make the New <i>Jurassic World</i> So Much Better

It appears that <i>Fallen Kingdom</i> has not evolved alongside 21st century research

Four of the seven newly named Mercury's faculae lie in the Caloris basin, shown here.

Sci-Fi and Snakes Rule in New Official Names for Features on Pluto's Largest Moon and Mercury

Stanley Kubrick and Octavia Butler are among the figures honored

"Deep Pool That Never Dries" nabbed first prize.

These Contest-Winning 'Fairy Tales' Might Be Bleak, But They Are Topical

Blank Space's fifth-annual competition plays with everything from fake news to gravity

Awesome Con provided an opportunity for science fiction and real-life science to play off of one another. The Robot from Netflix's Lost in Space reboot (center) illustrates the former, while the NASA jacket of the con attendee on the right nods to the latter.

The Real Science Behind Your Favorite Nerd Culture at Awesome Con

Astrophysicists, vehicle technicians and biologists joined the party to bring cutting-edge research to fictional worlds

Dr. Frankenstein at work in his laboratory

What Frankenstein Can Still Teach Us 200 Years Later

An innovative annotated edition of the novel shows how the Mary Shelley classic has many lessons about the danger of unchecked innovation

Thomas Edison's ideas fed the story that would become In the Deep of Time.

Thomas Edison’s Forgotten Sci-Fi Novel

By feeding his visions for the future to a well-regarded contemporary, the prolific inventor offered a peek into his brilliant mind

In the nothingness of space, sound waves have no medium by which to travel.

The Science of Silence in 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi'

The soundless lightspeed attack that baffled some fans was actually the film's most scientifically accurate moment

Could satellites ever prevent natural disasters?

The "Science" Behind "Geostorm", the Newest Weather-Fueled Doomsday Flick

Researchers have long sought control over the weather, but have yet to find a realistic way to master it

Jemison aboard the space shuttle 'Endeavour' in the Spacelab Japan science module.

This Groundbreaking Astronaut and Star Trek Fan Is Now Working on Interstellar Travel

Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman in space, wants us to look beyond Earth

SoftBank's humanoid robot "Pepper" can lead funerals.

Nine Tasks Robots Can Do That May Surprise You

Machines can cook your dinner, fill your prescriptions, make your shoes and much, much more

The inaugural issue of Gernsback's Amazing Stories magazine. Young readers—in several cases the sci-fi writers of the future—could expect an exciting blend of adventure and technology in every fresh installment.

Fifty Years Later, Remembering Sci-Fi Pioneer Hugo Gernsback

Looking Back on a Man Who Was Always Looking Forward

A 2009 U.S. stamp commemorating "The Twilight Zone" from the collections of the Smithsonian

'Twilight Zone' Enters the Stage Dimension

London theater will adapt the iconic television series to capture "American nightmares" past and present

A young padawan asks astrophysicist Erin Macdonald a question at a Future Con panel. This year, Smithsonian's Future Con took place as a special programming track within Awesome Con, leading to a number of serendipitous moments like this.

When Cutting-Edge Science Meets Science Fiction, It Packs the House

At Future Con, fans of sci-fi, fantasy and comics met the researchers and engineers who are bringing their stories to life

Mad Max: Fury Road offers a dystopian look at the future.

What Happens to Fiction When Our Worst Climate Nightmares Start Coming True?

Movies, books and poetry have made predictions about a future that could be rapidly approaching

An illustration from 'Professor Dowell's Head,' a 1925 science fiction story from Russian author Alexander Belyayev.

Good News, Everybody! Someone Once Patented Plans For Keeping A Severed Head Alive

It was what's called a "prophetic patent"—one that isn't real yet

Stunning, Surreal Concepts Cast a Spell on the Fairy Tales Architecture Competition

Ukrainian architect Mykhailo Ponomarenko came in first this year for his sci-fi meditation "Last Day"

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