How do you study an animal you can't even get close to? Camera traps and drones are revolutionizing wildlife biology by recording the secret lives of animals—from whales and tigers to elusive giant armadillos—all without disturbing them.
Violence is all over the news. But some say we’re living in the most peaceful time in history. Journey through time and the human mind to investigate whether—and how—violence has declined. And witness how people are working to stop violence today.
Leonardo da Vinci was a Renaissance genius. Not only did he paint masterpieces of art, but he was an obsessive scientist and inventor, dreaming up complex machines centuries ahead of his time, including parachutes, armored tanks, hang gliders, and robots. On the 500th anniversary of Leonardo’s death, with the help of biographer Walter Isaacson, NOVA investigates the secrets of Leonardo’s success.
Since the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 1947, these fragile parchment relics have intrigued scholars, religious leaders, and profiteers alike. The 2,000-year-old scrolls include the oldest-known versions of the Hebrew Bible and hold vital clues about the birth of Christianity. While certain scrolls have survived intact, others have been ravaged by time—burnt, decayed, or torn to pieces.
After years of anticipation, autonomous vehicles are now being tested on public roads around the world. As ambitious innovators race to develop what they see as the next high-tech pot of gold, some experts warn there are still daunting challenges ahead, including how to train artificial intelligence to be better than humans at making life-and-death decisions. How do self-driving cars work?
In 2018, Italy’s Morandi Bridge collapsed, tragically killing 43 people. For 50 years, the iconic bridge had withstood the elements—and stress from ever-increasing traffic. What went wrong that fateful day? And how can new engineering technology protect bridge infrastructure to prevent such tragic failures in the future?
Sixty-six million years ago, an asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs in a fiery global catastrophe. But we know little about how their successors, the mammals, recovered and took over the world. Now, hidden inside ordinary-looking rocks, an astonishing trove of fossils reveals a dramatic new picture of how rat-sized creatures ballooned in size and began to evolve into the vast array of species.
In the far reaches of the solar system, Uranus and Neptune dazzle with unexpected rings, supersonic winds, and dozens of moons. And NASA’s New Horizons gets a stunning up-close view of Pluto before venturing deep into the Kuiper Belt.
NASA’s Cassini explores Saturn for 13 years, looping through its icy rings and flying by its moons. The probe captures stunning ring-moon interactions, but when it finds the ingredients for life on the moon Enceladus, a bittersweet decision is made.
Jupiter’s massive gravitational force made it a wrecking ball when it barreled through the early solar system. But it also shaped life on Earth, delivering comets laden with water—and perhaps even the fateful asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs.
Mars was once a blue water-world studded with active volcanoes. But when its magnetic field and protective atmosphere faded, it became the frozen desert planet we know today. With so many necessary elements in place, did life ever form on Mars?
The rocky planets—Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars—were born of similar material around the same time. Yet only one of them supports life. Were Earth's neighbors always so extreme? And is there somewhere else in the solar system life might flourish?
Fifty years after humans first set foot on the Moon, new scientific discoveries are fueling excitement for a return to the lunar surface—this time, perhaps, to stay. Join the scientists and engineers working to make life on the Moon a reality.
Bioarchaeologists investigate a ninth-century mass grave in a rural English village. Will the remains unlock the mystery of the “Great Heathen Army,” a legendary Viking fighting force that once invaded England?
Horse riding played a key role in human expansion and civilization. But when and how did people first master these animals? Scientists use archeology and genetics to uncover clues about the first horse riders and how they shaped the world.
The California wildfires of 2018 took a worrisome trend to a new extreme, claiming scores of lives and over a million acres. Scientists investigate how forestry practices, climate change, and drought may contribute to the rise of deadly megafires.
As the Dead Sea shrinks, engineers prepare a daring solution: connect it with the Red Sea by way of a massive desalination plant. If it works, it could stabilize the legendary lake and ease regional tensions. But will it put the environment at risk?
In the shadow of Italy’s Vesuvius, a lesser-known volcano rumbles: Campi Flegrei. If it erupts, millions of lives could be at risk. Scientists explore its unique geology and develop a warning system that could prevent Naples becoming the next Pompeii.
New technologies are making rockets cheaper and more powerful than ever before. As companies like SpaceX and Virgin Galactic make space more accessible, and NASA returns to crewed spaceflight, a new era of space exploration may be on the horizon.
Stunning new archaeological evidence provides clues about the Egyptians who built the Great Pyramid of Giza--and how they did it. Join researchers as they delve into the logbook of a work crew and discover how the massive project transformed Egypt.