Bright green curtain-like large areas of light shining over evergreen treetops.

New type of aurora revealed in 19-year-old video

Scientists call it a “diffuse auroral eraser.” That’s because this newly named aurora first appears as a bright stripe over a diffuse auroral background. Then, when it disappears, it scrubs out the faint auroral light behind it.

Bearded man on a boat out in the ocean, holding up a small shark.

Sharks navigate using Earth’s magnetic field

Longstanding mystery solved! New research shows that – just as lobsters, turtles and some birds do – sharks navigate using Earth’s magnetic field,

White bug with big brown eyes and wings ready to expand coming out of a pink shell.

The Brood X cicadas are emerging now

Some areas of the United States are starting to report the emergence of the Brood X cicadas after their 17-year absence.

A translucent white jellyfish, shaped like an umbrella with wispy tentacles along it edges, and pink internal organs in the middle of the bell.

How jellyfish swim

Check out the videos in this post to see the hypnotic pulse of swimming jellyfish. Their gentle movement belies a complex flow of water that make these creatures highly energy-efficient swimmers.

What moves the sailing stones of Death Valley?

At Death Valley’s Racetrack Playa, some rocks show signs of movement, etching trails in the dry lake bed. It was an enduring mystery until quite recently.

Warmer ocean temperatures may decrease Saharan dust crossing the Atlantic

Every year millions of tons of dust from the Sahara Desert are swirled up into the atmosphere and carried across the Atlantic. Research suggests that, as the climate changes, Saharan dust transport will decrease.

View of planet Earth from space.

Climate has shifted axis of Earth, says study

New research suggests that loss of water on land through ice melting and human-caused factors is changing the movement of Earth’s North and South Poles.

Big full moon with seagull silhouette.

Expect flooding from this week’s supermoon, but know a lunar cycle masks effects of sea level rise

The April 2021 supermoon and the lunar nodal cycle, explained.

Starry sky with fuzzy band of Milky Way and many short, narrow bright streaks.

More than 5,000 tons of space dust fall to Earth each year

Dust shed from comets and asteroids constantly rains down on our planet. How much of this extraterrestrial material lands on Earth’s surface?

Brown grass in foreground, distant trees and rooftops, blue mountains and sky beyond.

Is there such a thing as earthquake season?

Researchers have found a connection between earthquakes in Taiwan and its dry and rainy seasons.

Western Hemisphere from space with land in green and brown, and blue oceans with white clouds.

Martin Rees and Frederick Lamb on humanity’s fate

From nuclear weapons to biowarfare to cyberattacks, humanity has much to overcome. Martin Rees and Frederick Lamb discuss the obstacles we must face as we look forward to humanity’s future on Earth.

Saving a humpback whale

Take 3 minutes to watch a feel-good video of a team of responders saving a humpback whale in distress.

Why is Earth Day on April 22?

April 22 is the date of Earth Day in part because of Arbor Day, an earlier observance. The focus of Earth Day 2021 is ‘Restore Our Earth.’

Illustration of dinosaur with open mouth.

How many Tyrannosaurus rex lived on Earth?

During 2.4 million years of existence, a total of 2.5 billion Tyrannosaurus rex lived on Earth, and 20,000 individual animals would have been alive at any moment, according to new calculations.

Celebrate Earth Day 2021 with NASA

For Earth Day 2021 (April 22), NASA highlights science and technology that is helping us live more sustainably on our home planet and adapt to natural and human-caused changes. Here’s how to participate.

Dense, complex network of threads in many colors.

Listen to a spiderweb

Spiders are master builders, expertly weaving strands of silk into intricate 3D webs. Now, scientists report they have translated the complex structure of a web into music. Listen here.

A large brown spider with big black eyes crawling down a door frame.

A case against killing spiders

An entomologist explains why it’s a good idea to be nice to the spiders you encounter and consider a live-and-let-live policy.

Bare tree trunks against a cloudy sky.

Sea level rise creating ghost forests in U.S. East

Sea level rise is killing trees along the U.S. east coast, creating ‘ghost forests’ that are visible from space.

Smokestacks spewing smoke against an orange sky

Carbon dioxide levels now higher than at any time in past 3.6 million years

Levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane continued to rise in 2020, said NOAA, despite the economic slowdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic response.

Painting of lots of blue and yellow fish

5 ways fish are like you and me

Fish are more like humans than you might realize.