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New Scientist Weekly

New Scientist Weekly

New Scientist

Keep up with the latest scientific developments and breakthroughs in this award winning weekly podcast from the team at New Scientist, the world’s most popular weekly science and technology magazine. Each discussion centers around three of the most fascinating stories to hit the headlines each week. From technology, to space, health and the environment, we share all the information you need to keep pace.


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194 - #194 Rewilding special: a night in the beaver pen at the rewilded Knepp Estate
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  • 194 - #194 Rewilding special: a night in the beaver pen at the rewilded Knepp Estate

    The world is undergoing a catastrophic biodiversity crisis, and the UK is one of the most nature-depleted countries in the world. The problems are big, but there are solutions. On this special episode of the show, host Rowan Hooper reports from the Knepp Estate in southern England, a large estate owned by Isabella Tree and Charlie Burrell, who have become pioneers in the rewilding movement. Rowan spent the night wild camping in the beaver enclosure and being serenaded by nightingales. He speaks with Isabella and Charlie about their new book, The Book of Wilding; to beaver reintroduction expert Derek Gow about the magic of this keystone species, and to ecologist Andy Hector of the University of Oxford. 

    To hear a livestream of the sounds of nature from Knepp, listen to Wilding Radio here.

    To read about subjects like this and much more, you can subscribe to New Scientist magazine at newscientist.com.



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    Fri, 26 May 2023 - 31min
  • 193 - #193 Drug that could cure obesity; world’s largest organism; octopus dreams; mood-enhancing non-alcoholic drink

    A new class of drugs that can reliably help you lose weight are generating great excitement in the fight against obesity - and Elon Musk and Hollywood actors have been using them too. Weight-loss scientists have developed hormone-mimicking injections that can reduce body fat by 20 per cent... and the team discuss how it works.  

    The world’s largest organism is not the blue whale. In fact, Pando the aspen grove in Utah weighs 35 times more than a blue whale and has lived for thousands of years. The team discovers why this incredible life form - a forest of genetically identical, connected trees - may now be at risk, and thanks to sound artist Jeff Rice, we get to experience how it may “hear” the world around it. 

    We’ve all seen our sleeping pups run in mid-air as they dream of chasing squirrels, but did you know that octopuses dream too? And, as the team learns, by observing one very special octopus, scientists now believe they also have nightmares.

    Reaching out to aliens… could we trust them? The team discusses some of the concerns around making contact and suggests some fantastic reads on the subject.

    Always struggled with “Dry January”? Your prayers may finally have been answered. Sam Wong tests a new type of non-alcoholic drink… that still gets you tipsy. 

    On the pod are Rowan Hooper, Clare Wilson, Michael Le Page, Alison Flood and Sam Wong. To read about these subjects and much more, you can subscribe to New Scientist magazine at newscientist.com.

    Events and discount codes:

    bookclub@newscientist.com

    newscientist.com/nslpod



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    Thu, 25 May 2023 - 28min
  • 192 - #192 Life-extending mutation; Kangaroo poo transplant for cows; irregular sleep linked to increased risk of death

    Want to live 20 percent longer? Well, it may be possible in the future thanks to a new discovery. A life-extending mutation has been found in mice, and the team explains how its benefits can be transferred by transplanting blood stem cells. But will it work in humans?

    Cows’ burps are a big problem for global warming - but could kangaroo poo be the solution? We hear about a novel new idea to replace the bacteria in cows’ stomachs.

    A special kind of particle that can remember its past has been created using a quantum computer. The team explains the mind-bending qualities of this non-Abelian anyon, and how its creation could serve as a building block for advanced quantum computers.

    A new study has linked irregular sleeping patterns with an increased risk of death. The team finds out what’s going on.

    Climate change may have broken a link between desert grasslands and the Pacific Ocean. We learn how this severed connection is impacting biodiversity in North America’s Chihuahuan desert.

    On the pod are Chelsea Whyte, Sam Wong, Michael Le Page, James Dinneen, Alexandra Thompson and Alex Wilkins. To read about these subjects and much more, you can subscribe to New Scientist magazine at newscientist.com.

    Events and discount codes:

    newscientist.com/wondersofspace



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    Thu, 18 May 2023 - 18min
  • 191 - #191 Special episode: the most mind-bending concepts in science

    On this bonus episode of the podcast we present a guide on how to think about some of the most important and mind-bending concepts in science, fromartificial intelligence tomental health, fromnutrition tovirtual particles. It all comes from aspecial How To Think About issue of New Scientistthat is out now – the team discuss some of the things it covers. Other topics includeconsciousness,wormholes,ageing,origins of life,quantum gravity, and evenhappiness. Make yourself happy subscribing to our podcast and by checking out the special issue.

    On the show this week are New Scientist journalists Rowan Hooper, Dan Cossins, Cat de Lange, Abby Beal and Clare Wilson.



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    Thu, 11 May 2023 - 18min
  • 190 - #190 Problems for lab-grown meat; do we need vitamin D supplements?; waking the sleeping Arctic ocean; fish sing for Eurovision

    Lab-grown meat may be cruelty free, but is it really better for the environment? Not at the moment. In fact, the team finds out how it’s up to 25 times worsethan normal meat. And with prices still astronomically high, will it ever become a viable replacement?

    Are we waking up the sleeping Arctic ocean? Melting sea ice from rising global temperatures is having a knock on effect on one of the Arctic’s major ocean currents, the Beaufort Gyre. Rowan speaks to earth scientists Harry Heorton and Michel Tsamados of University College London, authors of a new paper looking at the changes to the gyre. Rowan asks them whether we’re approaching a climate tipping point where changes become self-perpetuating and irreversible.

    In the unlikely event that you have ever wondered what a church organ would sound like if it was played on another planet - wonder no more! Thanks to Timothy Leighton, professor of ultrasonics at the University of Southampton, we get to hear a church organ as it would sound on Mars, Jupiter and Venus. The team explains how this work might come in handy during future missions to these planets.

    When it comes to sharing their food, chimps are just like 4 year-old kids. The team finds out about a new study which clues us into the evolution of altruism in apes.

    Vitamin D supplementation has been the subject of a lot of controversy. Do we need to take them or not? The team highlights a new kind of study which shows how vitamin D can help fight off certain diseases. 

    And the team signs off the show by playing a genius entry to this year’s Eurovision song contest - EuroFISHion, a track recorded with hydrophones at the SeaLife London Aquarium.

    On the pod are Rowan Hooper, Clare Wilson and Alice Klein. To read about these subjects and much more, you can subscribe to New Scientist magazine at newscientist.com.

    Events and discount codes:

    newscientist.com/spacetelescope



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    Thu, 11 May 2023 - 27min
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